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NextLight Pre-installation

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Pre-installation is the step that takes place before your install date arrives and NextLight comes to your home. To explain what we’ll be doing during this stage, we’ve answered some common questions below. 


Remind me again…. what is the NextLight TAP Box?

The “Test Access Point” (TAP) is where we bring the super-fast fiber optic network to the side of your house.  This slim box is the transition point that connects your home’s NextLight service to our main fiber-optic infrastructure; it also provides  a convenient point outside your home to troubleshoot potential network issues.

NextLight TAP box

Where will this box be attached to my house?

For most subscribers, the standard location for the TAP box will be at, or close to, the common “utility cluster” at your home.  This is the outside utility area that typically houses your electric meter, cable/phone boxes, and gas meter. During the “pre-install” (the outside installation work), our fiber technicians will bring the fiber to your home’s TAP box either by stringing overhead aerial fiber or by burying underground fiber in conduit. The method will usually be the same as your electric lines, overhead or underground. This will result in exposed cable outside of your home near the TAP box. 

Can the TAP box be placed somewhere else?

One possibility is for the exterior TAP box to be mounted near or at the planned interior ONT location.  Usually, this is requested when first signing up for NextLight with our customer service representatives, so that the pre-install technicians know to look for a location designated by the customer. The homeowner may also choose to be available at the time of the pre-install in order to direct the technicians to the preferred spot. However, in both cases, the desired location may not be accessible by the pre-install technicians, making another site necessary. 

How does this relate to installation of the NextLight services inside my home?

The special “Optical Network Terminal” (ONT) device – sometimes referred to as a fiber modem – serves as the primary fiber connection inside your home. This is the small black box that provides a NextLight connection to your home network equipment, or directly to your computer/laptop, as well as providing your Digital Voice phone line if you have signed up for that service. The ONT device is connected to the network via the TAP box and an additional home fiber cable.  This additional cable is connected on your install date. 

Optical Network Terminal

Where will the ONT be? 

In a standard installation, the ONT is located in a room with an exterior wall, near a power outlet.  The ONT normally just sits on a desk or table, but may also be mounted to a wall.  Within 2 or 3 feet of this location, the installer will drill a hole to the outside and install a fiber wall jack.

Wall Plate
Fiber wall jack

Can I have the ONT installed somewhere else?

Yes, but there may be an extra cost for custom installations. A technician will tell you if this is the case and give you the cost estimate before the work occurs.


Please note: The pre-install technicians do not consult on inside installation matters.  They are mobilized to your house to either bury or hang the NextLight fiber to the exterior TAP box. Specific homeowner questions on the inside installation can be directed to the NextLight call center at 303-651-8386.


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