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Tips on Preparing My Home for FiOS Installation?

Tips on Preparing My Home for FiOS Installation?

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Copper Contributor
Copper Contributor
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎10-16-2009
Message 1 of 6
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First off, I am a middle-of-the-road techy (at best), and by that I mean I know just enough to sort of put things together in my head, but not nearly enough to explain myself eloquently in a room full of network specialists.  So I’ll try to explain myself as best as possible here and maybe someone will be able to offer advice.  Maybe this stuff is just simple, and I’m over-workin it. 

I think portions of my concerns have been answered by me reading other folks’ questions and answers in these forums, but I feel I still need some help, (if anyone can oblige). 

 

I am looking at Verizon FiOS internet and TV setup.  Possibly phone as well, but still on the fence about that. 

 

I want to ensure a couple things occur over the course of this venture.  Probably like most homeowners, I want to mainly ensure there is as little footprint as possible in terms of new lines and boxes being visible in and around my home.  And secondly, that I of course get the best signals to the TV’s and computer(s); signals that are degraded as little as possible from what is brought in from the street. 

 

I feel like I want to do a large portion of the prep-work myself in order to hopefully make the installation-day fairly painless, as well as achieve what I desire without inconveniencing an installation tech any more than necessary. 

 

This brings me to the questions.  I need to first understand more clearly what the technician brings to install and how the items talk and connect.  I am hoping someone could help me understand it better.  I'm going to number the following paragraphs from here on out, just simply to make referencing this a little easier for anyone that may attempt to assist me. 

 

1.  The Initial Steps.  I get the first few parts of the installation… the fiber is brought from the street up to the home, usually buried.  Then installation of the ONT and battery backup, all located close to a power receptacle of course so it can be plugged in.  Fiber then ties into this ONT, and then from there I am lost.  What leaves the ONT box and runs through the home?  Coax?  Cat5e cable?  Both?  Only one or the other?  My choice?    

 

2.  Existing Coax.  Through my research I’ve kept reading that the “existing coax lines are used”.  Do I understand that to mean that coax would carry the signal from the ONT and split out to the respective TV’s and computers?  If so, then I assume it is wise for me to have that coax line (or lines) in close proximity to my desired location of the ONT, yes? 

 

3.  Long Runs of Coax.  All of my coax is RG6 and fairly new.  It’s all solid lines with little to no “breaks” (or splitters/couplings).  So I assume it will provide good signals.  Although some of the runs are probably 100 feet or so.  How will that degrade signals, if at all?  It currently does not seem degraded with standard cable service, although maybe I just haven’t noticed.  Point being, I of course want to get the full benefit of the HD signal that I am going for of course, so is 100 foot (+/-) coax runs too much?  If so, what can I do to prevent loss of signal quality? 

 

4.  My Proposed Approach for Prepping.  Here’s some steps that I feel I need to do well in advance of Verizon showing up for installation-day.  I would be much appreciative of any input as to whether I am right, wrong, or maybe just nuking this when I don’t have to.  This is all based on me feeling it's best to have both coax and Cat5e connections in six rooms of my home.  So basically me starting from scratch.  I’m going to forget that I already have coax ran around the house, mainly because it isn’t ran exactly how I’d prefer it anyhow.  So I will likely take it all down and do it right, probably re-using much of it.  And if I am going through all the work, why not Cat5 with it too, right?  So starting at the source of where the fiber will connect:

 

    a.  Mount Panel in Closet for the ONT.  I intend to mount a panel in my downstairs (sub-basement level) closet.  It’s a split-foyer home by the way, so the “basement” is really only half underground.  This is where I want/prefer the ONT; in this closet.  Heck, I’ll even run conduit out through the wall of the closet (which is an underground exterior wall) and I’ll stage it outside with a hole dug.  That’s if I need to, and I think I probably will, that way it’s there for the tech to feed the fiber through easily and into the room where the ONT will be (or at least where I want it to be).  So again, in that closet I will mount a panel roughly 3'x4' (heavy plywood). 

 

    b.  Power Receptacle on the Panel.  On this panel I intend to mount a 2-gang 120 power receptacle on the board.  I already have power in that closet, so that’s easy.  I see this is a need for the ONT battery backup, and anything else plugged in there.   

 

    c.  Splitters for coax and Cat5 on the Panel.  And also on the panel I intend to pre-mount a splitter device for the coax as well as one for the Cat5e.  My intent being the ability for the tech to simply come from the ONT into one or both of those splitters that will be mounted right there, which I will have already split off into the six rooms of the home.  Am I making sense?  Wish I could post a drawing here. 

 

5.  Is All of This Overkill?  & What About Phone Too?  So each of the six coax cables and six Cat5e cables from the splitting devices to the respective rooms.  Overkill perhaps?  I figure if I am pulling one type of cable, might as well pull both.  Should I do phone line with them too maybe?   

 

6.  What Provides a Better Signal - Coax or Cat5e?  I really don’t know which is better for the signal to the TV and computer; coax or cat5e?.  But I figure it can’t hurt to have both.  Yes?  No?  Maybe it’s hard to define “better” in this case…?  The scenario I prefer is to have just a simple patch cable from a wall to a computer in any given room, with nothing in between the computer and wall.  To achieve this, I need to lay this out as I am explaining, correct?           

7.  Router Still Needed?  If I do all this “hard-line” wiring of my home and into the TVs and computer(s), would I still need a router?  I wouldn’t think so, but it’s an unfamiliar area for me.  Isn’t a router used to wirelessly send the signal?  If I am all hard lines, then I wouldn’t need a router, right?  I don’t know.      

8.  Interference Concerns.  Are there any “interference” concerns with running a coax line and a Cat5e line real close together?  Or is one (or both) shielded enough for there to be no concern?  How about inside conduit together? 

 

9.  Old Phone Lines?  And wow, I just thought about phone?  What about if I decide on phone.  Yes I know they would utilize my old lines in some fashion, but with me potentially pulling cable all through my house, would this be a good time to also pull fresh new phone lines with it?  And have those all running back to the panel where I desire the ONT to be mounted?  Wouldn’t that make the phone install portion pretty simple too?  And good connectivity, instead of using the old phone lines that are currently in my walls and have been since 1971?         

10.  Set-Top Boxes: Need Them, or No?   And probably a less-important question of mine (at least for now), but one that keeps coming back to me…  Why does Verizon (and others) indicate that “set-top” boxes are needed for each TV, particularly even if the TV is a brand new LCD with obvious up-to-date digital tuning capability built in?  Wouldn’t this TV already accept the signal and process it for me to change channels, etc?  Or is there something specific to the “set-top” boxes that make it a requirement in order to fully utilize the Verizon programming?  I am trying to limit the cluttering of devices that are associated with this.  I understand the DVR thing, where I definitely need it for recording, stopping, rewinding type actions.  But let’s say I don’t care for that anyhow and don’t want the DVR…. seems like I will still be required to use some sort of set-top box for each TV.  But why?  Something to do with a TV's "QAM" tuner not being capable of providing all channels?  Anyone have any experience trying it?             


I’ll probably think of many more questions before anyone even answers these, but I will thank you in advance for any help given to get me started.  A big “I owe ya” to anyone who can assist.  Sorry if this is written with lack of clarity - I probably posed way too many questions for one post.  But I wrote it last night while being up way past my bedtime....

Regards,

Rusty 

 

5 REPLIES 5
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Employee Emeritus
Posts: 110
Registered: ‎09-08-2009
Message 2 of 6
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Hey Rusty... Understand your concerns about the install. If you already plan on running cable in your house I would recommend the following...& this is just me. For each room you want TV or DATA (internet) or PHONE in. I would run @ least 2 CAT 5e or CAT 6 runs along with a COAX RG6 quad shielded from your basement (TELCOM CLOSET) up to each room, all home runs to a 3port or 4port face plate w/ a RF connector for the COAX to hook to TV & punch down the CAT X cable to RJ45 jack for Data connection or phone connection (could be used for either or).  Then in your basment (TELCOM CLOSET) have the Verizon tech mount the ONT on your plywood along w/ the battery back up unit. Then with all your CAT X cable get a punch down pannel & punch all the cables down to the pannel. Dont forget to label each cable you run so you know which cable goes to which room and which jack. Then with your Coax get a 8 way splitter mount that on your plywood & plug in all the coax runs to the out RF connections. So now & least your home is all ready to go for now & future use. From the street you will have the fiber go into the ONT. Coming out of the ONT you will have a short run of Coax  go to your input of the 8 way splitter that will feed all your TVs Video signal..(100 FT runs for Coax is fine)..Then I would recommend having the Verizon Tech provision the ONT to be on Ethernet (And yes you need a Router. Verizon will provide that for you) From the ONT you can have a patch cord go from the ONT into the router that you can also mount on your plywood or put on a shelf. From the router you will then need a short piece of coax to go into your 8 port splitter. This will provide the Set Top Boxes with the ability to get VOD/ Guide info/ Widgets which passes through the Verizon Router. Then from the Routers LAN ports you can take patch cords & plug them into your patch pannel that feeds the rooms in your house that you wish to have data (Internet). The verizon provided router only has 4 LAN ports, so if you plan on more then 4 connections you will have to purchase a switch & put that into the loop. As far as phone connections if you decide. From the ONT will come a piece of CAT 3 (most likely) you can have the Verizon tech put up a 66 punch down block. on your plywood. Then from that block which will have the DialTone on there, patch that over to your patch pannel to feed the rooms/ jacks you want DialTone on. Hope this helps or answered some of your questions. Let us know if you have anything else. Thanks Brett

Brett
Verizon Telecom
Fiber Solution Center


Notice: Content posted by Verizon employees is meant to be informational and does not supercede or change the Verizon Forums User Guidelines or Terms or Service, or your Customer Agreement Terms and Conditions or Plan.

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Copper Contributor
Copper Contributor
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎10-16-2009
Message 3 of 6
(12,080 Views)

Brett,

Wow, the picture is forming in my head.  Boy, thank you kindly for all the info.  MUCH appreciated!  But of course some more questions:

-  Why at least two Cat5e (or 6) runs to each location?  Why not just one?

-  You mention twice where a short piece of coax will go into my splitter.  One being from the ONT, and the other being from the Router.  But aren't splitters 1 "in" and x number "out"?  How would two peices of coax go into one splitter.  Or are we talking of maybe a newer type splitter I am unfamiliar with? 

-  So that I understand the phone portion correctly... the ONT would have a lead to a 66-block, and then the 66-block has a patch cable "out" on it?  And that in turn would be connected to my patch panel where my Cat5e or 6 lines terminate from the rooms?

-  At the wall plate end, the patch cable is punched down to the RJ45 jack, and you mention it can be used for either internet or phone, but how so?  The phones (or at least mine) use the smaller jack (RJ11, I think it is), right?  How would the phone then connect with the jack if they are RJ45 jacks?  Is it compatible with the 45 jack, even though it's a wider jack?  And they make proper contact? 

-  Is Cat 6 preferred over 5e?  Is it "better"?

-  Are there consumer-available products that would allow me to run fiber through my walls instead of coax and Cat 5e or 6?  Probably pricey if so, eh? 

Thanks again for all the help.  Sorry for such persistent questions that are probably basic stuff I just am not quite grasping yet.

r/
Rusty

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Posts: 110
Registered: ‎09-08-2009
Message 4 of 6
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Hey Rut..

Why at least two Cat5e (or 6) runs to each location?  Why not just one?

*Only reason I say 2 is because if your running the cable now might as well. 1 cable for data the other could be furture data connections ie. BlueRay Players/ Game Systems/ Network Cameras.. whatever, or use it for a voice line.

 

You mention twice where a short piece of coax will go into my splitter.  One being from the ONT, and the other being from the Router.  But aren't splitters 1 "in" and x number "out"?  How would two peices of coax go into one splitter.  Or are we talking of maybe a newer type splitter I am unfamiliar with? 

*The coax from the ONT would go to the IN of the splitter (Video Feed) The coax from the router is bi-directional that feeds the STB for guide/vod/widgets so that feed would go into the OUT of the splitter

So that I understand the phone portion correctly... the ONT would have a lead to a 66-block, and then the 66-block has a patch cable "out" on it?  And that in turn would be connected to my patch panel where my Cat5e or 6 lines terminate from the rooms?

 

*On the ONT there would be two leads (Tip & Ring) so from there you would take 1 pair wire & then punch that down to a 66 type block. So now DialTone is @ the 66 type block on the pins. From the 66 type block you would then take another 1 pair wire run it over to your patch pannel, on the end of the 1 pair wire you can crimp an RJ11 connector then plug it in to your patch pannel. And yes the RJ11 connectors snap/fit/match up correctly on RJ45..Just make sure you use pins 4/5 .

Is Cat 6 preferred over 5e?  Is it "better"?

*Yes Cat 6 is preferred over 5e..Better cable.

 

Are there consumer-available products that would allow me to run fiber through my walls instead of coax and Cat 5e or 6?  Probably pricey if so, eh? 
* I am pretty sure there is, but then you would need Fiber NICs in your PC's & fiber capable switches. But from ONT to yuor equiptment would still be CAT5/6.. Pricey..Yes

 

Brett

 

Brett
Verizon Telecom
Fiber Solution Center


Notice: Content posted by Verizon employees is meant to be informational and does not supercede or change the Verizon Forums User Guidelines or Terms or Service, or your Customer Agreement Terms and Conditions or Plan.

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Copper Contributor
Copper Contributor
Posts: 16
Registered: ‎10-16-2009
Message 5 of 6
(11,996 Views)

Brett -

Interesting about your suggestion for multiple patch lines for future expansion.  I never thought of it that way.  Thanks.

Bi-directional splitter explanation makes it clear for me now.  I figured it was something like that.

The phone portion and 66-block stuff still confuses me a tad.  I think when it comes to that part, I'll just leave those ends "un-punched" so to speak, and let the tech handle that part.  Pulling all the cable and staging it to the boxes in the rooms and in the TelCom closet would be the largest part of the work, and I assume if I did that much then the rest doesn't involve much sweating, right?  Particularly if I keep it neat and labeled.

I have a Voltage Interference (and safety) Question!  -  Are there any concerns with having a two-gang box with both 120v and coax/Cat6 feeds in the same box???  Or how about lines running parallel in that same config???  I vaguely remember hearing that can create interference (or even possibly voltage absorption to the coax/Cat lines).  Is there any concerns with this?  I have one room where I have a box with both 120v and a coax already together in that two-gang box.  The lines come from different directions, but ultimately meet up fairly close in the box of course.  I did this a few years ago when I was preparing to hang a small TV on that wall and wanted a small footprint in terms of boxes behind the TV.  The power is hot, and I checked the cable signal once.  Seemed to be okay.  It’s a GFI and never trips.  Never hung the TV there though to test it for any length of time.  Just trying to be safe.  Any thoughts?

What type/model switch(es)?  -  You mentioned in your first reply that Verizon will supply a 4-port router as part of the FiOS package, and if I wish to run patch cables to more than 4 rooms, then I need a switch.  What type/brand/model of switch would I need?  Anything special or just go grab a switch with as many extra ports as I think I need?  Now that I have thought this through a little more, I’m thinking I’ll be running it to probably 9 or 10 places.  So with that said, what type switch (or switches) do I need to purchase in order to use in the Verizon FiOS setup?  I supply the switch(es), rigt?  Or would Verizon bring them? 

Punch-downs.  Please excuse my lack of knowledge with some terms, but I am slowly picking them up as I read.  When we say “punch down” I am understanding that to mean basically terminating the end of a line to a particular fitting, correct?  For example, taking the Cat6 wire, and “punching it down” to an RJ45 or RJ11 connector.  I hear this can be a bit tricky, sometimes leaving a novice with a line that has poor (or no) conductivity in the connection.  This likely due to the individual maybe not being proficient with the task, or not having the right tool(s).  So some additional questions of mine on this matter are:

    - If I have all cables ran and pulled and staged and pulled through the boxes and in my TelCom closet, on FiOS installation-day would the Verizon tech punch all those down to the required connectors for me? 
    -  Or are we talking a good bit of extra work for them given I am considering 10 locations with 2 or three connectors at each? 
    -  Would there be a charge for this extra work? 
    -  Would they supply the connectors? 
    -  Would it just be best for me to punch them down and save them a lot of time on an already lengthy install?  I don’t have testing equipment, so I guess I just want to make sure it’s done right the first time. 

Supplies.  What do I need to purchase, and what are some things I don’t need to purchase in the case that Verizon might supply it during the install anyhow?  Here’s what I assume I need to supply myself (and have mounted prior to install-day): 

    -  Punch-down panel for the patch cables
    -  Bi-directional splitter (do they make them bigger that 8-out?)
    -  All my needed Cat6
    -  All my needed RG6 quad-shielded Coax
    -  RG45 connectors and jacks
    -  RG11 connectors
    -  Wall plates
    -  Cable management proucts
    -  Coax stripper
    -  UTP cable stripping tool
    -  Crimper
    -  Punch-down tool w/ 110-style blade

What else? 

Wireless.  Given what you know of all the info I have supplied, am I limiting myself to not being able to include a wireless option with what I am doing?  In other words, still utilize my solid lines in the rooms when desired, but also have a WiFi connection throughout the home as well?  I want to incorporate that as well.  Where would the WiFi router need to connect to?  A port on the Ethernet router, I assume?

Cat6+?
  What is the plus symbol Cat6+?  I see that as an option.  Is it just shielded more or something? 

I’m a rock when it comes to learning this stuff.  I need pictures – ha.  Thanks so much for all the help thus far.  Wouldn’t be able to do it without this forum.  Can’t wait to start buying my supplies. …   

r/
Rusty
   

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Posts: 110
Registered: ‎09-08-2009
Message 6 of 6
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Hey Rut.. Verizon will only supply the Actiontec Router. As fas as a switch you can either find them online or @ a Best Buy electronic store. For your use you should get a 24 port switch. Remember some of those runs will be for phone if I'm not mistaking. So 24 ports should be plenty. All the material you probally could find @ a Home Depot Store or online for your home use.

Brett
Verizon Telecom
Fiber Solution Center


Notice: Content posted by Verizon employees is meant to be informational and does not supercede or change the Verizon Forums User Guidelines or Terms or Service, or your Customer Agreement Terms and Conditions or Plan.

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