How to Test Fiber Optics for Continuity

BY: Christina Hansen

Before installing your fiber optic network, one of the most important steps that you can take to ensure that data will be transmitted properly is to test your cables and connectors for continuity. This tutorial will help you find out if your fiber cables and connectors are fit for transmission in just a few simple steps.


Experience Level: Intermediate

Time Required: Testing takes seconds per cable; minimal setup

Steps: 3

Supplies: Fiber optic connectors, fiber optic cables, fiber optic tracer or Visual Fault Locator, and a fiber optic microscope.

Budget Estimate: $200 - $4000, depending on whether testers are purchased separately or in kits.


Attach your fiber optic tracer or visual fault locator to the connector of the cable being tested


Send a light signal into the cable. While you're doing this, watch the other end of the cable closely. If light is detectable in the fiber core, this means there are no breaks in the fiber, and that your cable is fit for use.


Using the fiber microscope, inspect the connectors' fiber ends to ensure that they are smoothly polished and able to provide effective connection and transmission.