New Fiber Builds FAQs
Fiber Construction Process
Locate existing utilities
You’ll see paint on the roads and in yards indicating where other utilities are buried. Before we build, we ask the utility companies to come out and mark where their lines are located to avoid damaging them.
Place fiber along the road
Much of the fiber optic cable for this project will utilize SCI-REMC utility poles making construction quicker and more cost efficient. Aerial fiber installation removes the need to dig, which also removes the probability of running into rock. Even so, in some areas you may notice underground installation occurring. We may dig in the yard to verify the location of other utilities. This process is called spotting.
For underground fiber installation a method called directional boring will be used. This creates a path for fiber that’s at least three feet deep with minimal surface disruption. Along this path, we will also install hand holes that will allow us access to our fiber when necessary. While there won’t be much underground installation in your project area, please be mindful that crews utilizing bucket trucks will be hanging fiber optic cable on roadside utility poles and may impede the flow of traffic.
Please pass our teams safely when you encounter them.
Connecting fiber to your home
After all mainline construction is complete, a company representative from whomever you requested service will contact you—SCI REMC or Smithville. When your order is confirmed, the Smithville team will work with you to connect the fiber from the right-of-way to your home.
The fiber to your home may be aerial or may be placed underground depending on the circumstances. Smithville will then place a small box on the side of your home for your fiber connection. You’ll be asked to sign a “drop permit” that gives us permission to place fiber in your yard. It’s your place, so you know best the areas of the yard we should avoid—like an invisible dog fence or sprinkler system.
A technician from the company you choose for service—Smithville or SCI REMC—will visit your home one more time to finalize the installation, connect everything inside, and turn on your fiber services. We will be happy to teach you about the equipment if you have questions.
The black cases are called splicing terminals. They provide a connection between lengths of fiber and make repairs between sections of fiber much easier.
Directional boring is the method we use to dig the path for our underground ﬁber. The machine itself is pretty big, but ultimately the drill head bores a small hole at the desired depth producing a cavity for our ﬁber duct with minimal above-ground disruption.
Our construction crews use sand to partially ﬁll holes because it settles less than normal soil. Soil is layered on top of the sand so your yard won’t appear to have been disturbed in any way.
That’s a hand hole. Hand holes are placed periodically along the road in the case of underground installation. They provide access points to our fiber. We install them on, or as close as possible to, the property line and flush with the ground so you can mow right over them.
Bringing fiber to your area requires us to build past every home and down every street in your area. This is accomplished through construction in the right of way, which affects everyone to some extent. Having fiber service available to your home can also increase the value of your home.