Broadband connection speed

24 August, 2011

Have you sometimes found that your broadband connection is rather unreliable, variable in speed or perhaps non-existent?   Well, you might have problems with your broadband filters.

In a case I had today, the customer was finding that YouTube video clips and music over the internet kept on pausing while it buffered the next chunk.  I checked the router … it had a negotiated line speed about 4 Mbps but when I tried a web based speed test from PC Advisor or Numion I found very variable results, but usually very slow in the region of 300 kbps.

So I decided to check the router connection.  WiFi was fine so I moved onto the phone line which is where I found the problem.  The customer had a Sky Box install a week or so ago and the Sky engineer had connected it to the phone line without a broadband filter.   All devices (phones, Sky Boxes, Fax machines, routers) connected to the phone line must have a broadband filter. Problem solved.

That is not the only type of problem I find with phone lines.  Sometimes the wiring is faulty or very poor in condition.  Sometimes the customer has fitted such a complex load of phone extension cables that the system has too many phone devices connected.  Most domestic phone connections can only take a maximum of 4 devices.  Sometimes a broadband filter has been omitted.  Sometimes, because of the complexity of the multiple phone line extensions 2 broadband filters have been connected in series.

So, if you have connection problems, check your wiring and your filters.