Why are BT Broadband Packages So Slow?

This is a question often asked by consumers who do not have the fast speeds that fibre optics offer. Those consumers who use internet connections that run with traditional telephone lines may experience countless problems with slow broadband. We will look at reasons for slow connections. We wont go into wireless connectivity issues here, but there are a lot of things that can affect your connection if you are online wirelessly. If you have good wired connectivity but poor wireless then this article may not present the solution to your problem.

Extension Cabling for BT Broadband Packages
The cabling requirement for broadband with a telephone should normally consist of two wires. Many years ago, during the dial phone days, a third wire was usually installed to allow for telephone extensions to be operative. Often this wire may still be connected in your home and there may also be some others that were necessary at the time, but you now no longer need. The negative impact of all these wires is the collective interference created as they act like long radio aerials. Interference can slow down your broadband dramatically.

Many people use long inefficient telephone extension cables to run their service from one room to another, or to place their routers in a different area. Try to get rid of all these excess cables and wires. These extensions, or socket adapters, could be key reasons that you are experiencing slow internet connectivity.

To test if your extension cables are the culprits, you should try plugging your router directly into the socket that is placed behind your master socket. Leave it in this position for a few days and see if this more direct connection improves your service. If your service improves, then you should re-consider the cabling in your home.

Distance from the Exchange
The further you are from the exchange, the slower your connection will be. If you pass a BT broadband package cabinet and there is a poster stating ‘fibre broadband is here on it, you may start experiencing better speeds in the near future. There is a high-speed link between these marked cabinets and the exchange, which means the upgrade will affect your speeds. However, if you are far away from that type of cabinet it means that you are still many miles from the equipment that you need for faster connections.
Copper Cable Faults

The broadband that you receive in ADSL BT broadband packages flows over copper wires that measure half a millimetre in thickness. They often run through extremely old manholes that are filled with water, up poles, through damp junction boxes and through another cable to your home. You may be forewarned about potential cable faults by crackling on your telephone line and intermittent loss of signal, particularly during inclement weather. Although you will have to prove this to your provider, and that may be easier said than done, you should contact them to test your line. Intermittent faults are always difficult to prove and fix, but you should try and convince your provider to send out an engineer to sort out your problem.

Internet Provider
If you do not have a BT broadband package, and are using a different provider, this may be your problem. Some of the other providers have installed their own equipment in BT exchanges and this equipment may not be as reliable as the equipment used by BT. It is reasonable to expect breakdowns or hitches in service, but if your problem is consistent, you will have to contact your service provider to obtain the relevant information. Unfortunately, you need a telephone line to call them or an internet connection to check details on their website.

Service providers use the BT lines for their connections. If you have a problem then you need to arm the service provider with enough information for them to go to BT and request the line is fixed. They are essentially just middlemen when it comes to line faults. Of course they can look at issues in their equipment in the exchange with LLU, but the line is not under their control.

Slow internet speeds could be because your service provider has capped your speed. This can sometimes be that their equipment capacity is not able to cope with several fast users at any given time. You will have to check the usage policy in your contract, or call customer services. If you know of a neighbour who uses the same internet service provider as you do, check to see if they are experiencing the same problem. You can also use online methods to do a speed test on your line.

Broadband Filter
Dangling plug-in filters are known to be the culprits causing slow internet speeds. A better option is a filtered plate that can be fitted onto the master socket. These are available as part of your BT broadband packages and can be fitted quite easily.

Router Tips
Certain router models come with problems. Check the router model that you have and check online if other users have experienced similar problems to you. If the router model that you have is known to be an unreliable one your service provider should replace it free of charge. They are aware of this and should offer a replacement service to their customers as soon as they become aware of on-going problems with your router. You also have the option of replacing the router yourself by purchasing a more reliable premium model. Ensure that your provider supports this though as Sky broadband does not always.

Do not place your router close to other electrical equipment, such as a washing machine, television or microwave. Even items such as neon lighting and Christmas lights have been known to cause interference.

Do not switch your router on and off on a regular basis. This is always an easy option if you feel frustrated by the slow internet speeds that you are experiencing. Once you have exhausted all other options, you may feel that your only option is to turn the router off and then on again. This method sometimes works, but it is advisable not to do so. The router needs to be connected to the service providers equipment for it to synchronise electronically. With long periods of connection, it starts to build a speed profile which increases gradually, and over time will reach its maximum capacity. The difference in speed can be quite significant the longer the router is allowed to stay on. Every time you turn the power off, it has to return to the beginning and build up to maximum speed again.

Computer Problems
Finally, once you have exhausted all the other potential fixes for your slow internet speed, take a look at your equipment. Your computer may be the villain. If your computer is old and tired, or has been infected with a virus, you may have to consider a new upgraded version that can deal with fast internet connections.

Sam Jones never had a problem with his chosen BT Broadband packages, however, when his contract was up he decided to shop around to see what other deals were available. He checked out online price comparison sites like uSwitch and found there were some amazing offers available.


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