Cat 5 for automatic sprinkler wiring

Anyone use Cat 5 for sprinkler wiring? I had a home built over the fall an d winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and t he back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 11:38:54 AM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote :

and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guy s installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?
Cat 5 wire is generally much smaller gauge, 24/26. Sprinkler wire is 18 gauge. Cat 5 is for signaling voltages/currents, not to deliver power to solenoids. So I'd say the answer is no, it shouldn't be used, but it might work. And even if you did use it, then it would have to be Cat 5 rated for direct burial.
Why did they run Cat 5 to the sprinkler areas instead of normal sprinkler wire that everyone else uses?
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On 02/11/2014 11:00 AM, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Yep , might as well get the right stuff...
It's about $75 for 250 feet
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On 2/11/2014 12:11 PM, philo wrote:

Goes to the annunciator board, and auto dialer?
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 10:00:41 AM UTC-7, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote :
te: > Anyone use Cat 5 for sprinkler wiring? I had a home built over the fa ll and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone? Cat 5 w ire is generally much smaller gauge, 24/26. Sprinkler wire is 18 gauge. Cat 5 is for signaling voltages/currents, not to deliver power to solenoids. S o I'd say the answer is no, it shouldn't be used, but it might work. And ev en if you did use it, then it would have to be Cat 5 rated for direct buria l. Why did they run Cat 5 to the sprinkler areas instead of normal sprinkle r wire that everyone else uses?
Thanks for your response. The wiring is actually run through the house and is not and will not be buried. From what I can read about the solenoid ne eds a .30amp to open the valve and .19 amp to keep it open and each wire fr om the Cat 5 has a max current of .57amp so I'm thinking it can work. I'm going to try it tonight when I get home. I have no idea why the low voltag e guys ran Cat 5, and I didn't look until this past weekend.
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 12:40:32 PM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote :
te:

rote: > Anyone use Cat 5 for sprinkler wiring? I had a home built over the fall and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltag e guys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the fron t and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone? Cat 5 wire is generally much smaller gauge, 24/26. Sprinkler wire is 18 gauge. C at 5 is for signaling voltages/currents, not to deliver power to solenoids. So I'd say the answer is no, it shouldn't be used, but it might work. And even if you did use it, then it would have to be Cat 5 rated for direct bur ial. Why did they run Cat 5 to the sprinkler areas instead of normal sprink ler wire that everyone else uses?

nd is not and will not be buried. From what I can read about the solenoid needs a .30amp to open the valve and .19 amp to keep it open and each wire from the Cat 5 has a max current of .57amp so I'm thinking it can work. I' m going to try it tonight when I get home. I have no idea why the low volt age guys ran Cat 5, and I didn't look until this past weekend.
24 gauge wire is 26 ohms per 100 ft 26 is 41 ohms 18 gauge, which is standard sprinker wire is 6
You can do the math for your installation. There is also NEC code that covers some of these issues, not sure what it says about what you're proposing to do. It's kind of unusual for the sprinkelr control valves to be located inside the house. Every installation I've seen, they are in boxes in the ground.
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 11:22:05 AM UTC-7, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote :
te:

rote:

wrote: > Anyone use Cat 5 for sprinkler wiring? I had a home built over th e fall and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low volt age guys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the fr ont and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone? Cat 5 wire is generally much smaller gauge, 24/26. Sprinkler wire is 18 gauge. Cat 5 is for signaling voltages/currents, not to deliver power to solenoid s. So I'd say the answer is no, it shouldn't be used, but it might work. An d even if you did use it, then it would have to be Cat 5 rated for direct b urial. Why did they run Cat 5 to the sprinkler areas instead of normal spri nkler wire that everyone else uses?

and is not and will not be buried. From what I can read about the solenoi d needs a .30amp to open the valve and .19 amp to keep it open and each wir e from the Cat 5 has a max current of .57amp so I'm thinking it can work. I'm going to try it tonight when I get home. I have no idea why the low vo ltage guys ran Cat 5, and I didn't look until this past weekend.

The timer control box is in the garage, not the valves. Sorry if it sounde d like that.
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On 2/11/2014 8:05 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

wrote:

wrote:

snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

...

...

So how does the signal get to the solenoid if it's not buried to it???
Sounds like there is a Cat 5 for control and "regular" sprinkler wire to the valve solenoids, maybe?
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On Tuesday, February 18, 2014 12:57:53 PM UTC-5, dpb wrote:

I think what he's saying is that they ran Cat5 to various spots inside the house. There is Cat5 wiring inside the house from the sprinkler controller in the garage to the couple of places inside the house that are near where the outside sprinkler valves are. He's proposing to use the Cat5 from the controller, through the house, then transition to sprinkler wire for the underground run to the valves where it exits the house. The alternative would be to run sprinkler wire underground all the way, but that would require a much longer run underground and around the house. At least that's what I think he's saying.
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On 2/11/2014 11:38 AM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

a home built over the fall and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?

Check with the fire marshall. You'd not want the house to burn down because your sprinklers are wired wrong.
I've never seen low voltage wiring sprinklers, what's with that?
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On 2/11/2014 5:43 PM, Stormin Mormon wrote:

Really? I have never seen high voltage wiring sprinklers. :-)
Regardless, Cat 5 is rather odd.
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 9:38:54 AM UTC-7, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guy s installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?
Fortunately I work at a place that employs many electrical engineers, I got a hold of one with a Phd in EE, and hashed out a plan. Got home, tried it and worked. Used a multimeter to measure data and no loss in amps or volt age; opened, closed and kept open the solenoid with no issues. The volts a nd amps are well in the range of what Cat 5 can handle. I will not bury th e cable but will use conduit from the house to the valves and make sure the cable is not exposed to moisture in the valve box. Maybe I will make a vi deo and put it on Youtube. Thanks for taking the time to answer!
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On Tuesday, February 11, 2014 10:38:54 AM UTC-6, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote :

and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage guy s installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front and the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?
generally they use braided wire so it can flex.
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On Wednesday, February 12, 2014 9:09:45 AM UTC-5, Daring Dufas: Hypocrite T eaBillie on welfare wrote:
te:

l and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage g uys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front a nd the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?

braided? you mean stranded? I've never seen sprinkler wire that was either. Typical is solid.
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On 2/11/2014 8:38 AM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

It depends on the gauge. Cat 5 could be anywhere from 28AWG to 24AWG. 24AWG could handle the current of a valve solenoid (about 300mA to activate, 230mA to hold). 24AWG is rated at 570mA. 26AWG would work too. 28AWG would be a bad idea; it would almost certainly work, but you'd be exceeding the current capacity by a slight amount so the resistance would go up and the voltage to the valve would decrease but the valve would still operate.
So if it's 24AWG then it'd be fine, if a little strange.
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On Tuesday, February 18, 2014 6:20:10 PM UTC-5, sms wrote:

l and winter and now I beginning to set up my sprinklers. The low voltage g uys installed Cat 5 to my garage and to both sprinkler areas in the front a nd the back yard. Now I'm wondering if I can use the wire. Anyone?



As I pointed out before, you're ignoring the *power source*. This is like saying 18 gauge wire is fine off an AC panel because it's only going to a 100 watt light. The cable has to be able to support the max worst case current that the controller is capable of supplying.
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