How to Replace TV Cables in Existing Walls

By Finn McCuhil

Replacing television cables in existing walls may be a simpler job than you'd expect. In most cases, it isn't necessary to remove or cut through the walls to replace cables. You can use the existing cable to pull the new wiring through the walls to save time as well as the expense and labor involved in removing and replacing wall-covering material. Careful preparation is the key to success in this operation.

Things You'll Need

  • Screwdriver
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Coaxial cable connection adapter
  • Duct tape

Step 1

Inspect the current cabling route. Cables are threaded through the wall headers or footers, directly above or below wall plates. Identify and remove any obstacles to cable access before you begin to pull the new wiring.

Step 2

Use a screwdriver to remove the outlet cover plate from the existing wall outlet. Loosen and remove both mounting screws. Set the screws aside for use reinstalling the cover plates.

Step 3

Remove the cable's mounting nut from the surface of the cover plate with an adjustable wrench. Tighten the wrench on the mounting nut and rotate it counterclockwise to remove it from the end of the adapter. Save the mounting nut to secure the replacement cable.

Step 4

Connect the loose end of the existing cable to the end of the replacement cable. Use a cable connection adapter when both terminated ends are of the same gender. Most cable wall connections are male. If the replacement cable is terminated with a male end, use a female/female adapter to connect the two cables. Tighten the connectors with an adjustable wrench.

Step 5

Wrap the joined connectors with duct tape. Apply a double layer of tape extending at least 2 inches on either side of the connection to reduce the chance of losing one end of the cable from a faulty crimp in a connector.

Step 6

Pull the cable through the wall. This task is best done with two people. One person should feed the cable carefully through the outlet box while the second person pulls the existing cable through the wall header or footer.

Tips & Warnings

  • Pull enough cable through the wall to reach the cable terminal block with a single cable run. Each splice or cable termination point increases signal resistance. Increased resistance may result in poor television reception.
  • Do not kink the cable or exert too much force while pulling. Kinking the cable damages cable insulation as well as the signal conductors.