Information and advice on fixing slow broadband connections
Test for Slow Broadband
What causes slow broadband?
If you have noise on your telephone line, you'll be having problems with your broadband speed. Noise on the line causes drops in connection, which in turn cause a reduction in speed as the line technology tries to stabilise the line.
Testing for line noise is easy, though you will first have to remove all broadband equipment from the line and connect via the master socket (this is where the line enters your premises). Just pick up the phone and dial 17070 then choose the option for the quiet line test. If you hear any crackling here, then there's a potential issue with noise on the line and you'll need to speak to the company who provides your telephone line.
If there is no noise on the line, connect your broadband equipment, and complete the line test again. If there is noise on the line now, it's likely your router, cabling or filter causing the issue. Swap each part of the hardware and run the quiet line test after each change to determine the cause. If you can't find the cause of the noise, you may need to report a fault.
Once any noise has been removed from the line, that should be the end of your slow broadband! Typically, speeds will be back up to normal within a day or 2.
Appliances like Fax Machines and things like Sky boxes have been known to cause issues with both connection speed and connection stability (which also affects connection speed). Avoid slow broadband by ensuring, as much as possible, that it is just your router connected to your master socket.
You'll get the best connection speed when you connect your router to the first socket in your premises (where the line enters the premises). If you connect via an extension socket you may find that the broadband signal is degrading somewhere along the way. The best advice is to always connect to the master socket.
Slow WiFi doesn't necessarily mean that your broadband is slow. Where broadband speed is the connection between your line and your router, wireless speed is the connection between your device (phone, tablet, laptop) and your router.
If you have a slow connection on WiFi, try connecting to your router using a cable and seeing if your broadband is faster. If it is, then it's a Wireless issue, if there's no change, then it's a broadband speed issue. If, despite a fast broadband connection, your WiFi is still slow, then it could be a few things.
Poor Signal Strength: If you live in a big house, or a premises with thick walls, you'll struggle to get a decent WiFi signal everywhere in the building. You may look to purchase a new router with the latest wireless technology on it, or maybe simply moving the router within the premises might be enough to get a better signal.
Interference: If you see a large number of available networks when you scan for available wireless connections, it may be that there are too many routers on the same channel. You can change the Wireless channel in your router settings - there's no right or wrong channel to use. Just experiment and see if one channel seems faster/more reliable than another.