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How to Troubleshoot Down or Slow Internet Service

In this time where more people are working from home than ever before, Internet connectivity issues are becoming more common. Our techs who service Coeur d’alene, Post Falls, Hayden, Spokane, and surrounding areas have seen an increase in calls concerning slow Internet speeds, outages, and spotty connections. Although tech support is sometimes needed, there are a handful of investigative tools and practices that can be used to uncover the root of your connectivity issue before consulting tech support.

 

Troubleshooting Slow Internet

If you find that your Internet is abnormally slow, you should test your Internet speed to see about how many Mbps you are getting to your location. Use these practical solutions to increase Internet speed and diagnose connectivity issues.

Perform Speed test

 

Practical solutions

  1. Try “unloading” the network. Meaning, make sure no devices (or as few devices as possible) are using the network, especially for streaming or gaming. If you unload the network and your speed goes up, then you may need to purchase more bandwidth.
  2. Connect on a modern device. Outdated computers, phones, and other devices may not be capable of utilizing all the bandwidth available to you from your WiFi router. If possible, try connecting on a newer device. You may find that the old device is the issue and not the Internet.
  3. Get closer to the router. If using WiFi, move close enough to the router to physically see it. If connectivity and speed improve you may need to increase your router’s output power, work closer to the router, or invest in a solution that helps to extend uniform WiFi coverage throughout the home. See WiFi Networks.
  4. Perform a speed test over a wired connection. You will get the most accurate Internet speed test when plugged right into the WiFi router itself using a network cable (Cat5e/Cat6).

Check for outages

If you followed these practical solutions and found that you still have slow Internet, it’s time to check for outages. Down Detector is a useful website where users can report issues across the web. You can find issue reports for websites, software, and even Internet service providers. Use the links below to view user-submitted reports for Spectrum and Frontier. Large spikes may indicate regional or national issues. Chances are, there will be long wait times for tech support during these outages.

Spectrum    Frontier    Down Detector

 

Additional variables to consider

Internet speed can be affected by interference due to neighboring wireless routers. Excessive demand for services in a particular area/region or, physical damage to Internet infrastructure locally, regionally, or nationally may be to blame. Or…it may just be a gremlin (aka -- inexplicable issues that have no rhyme or reason). The cause of slow Internet can be elusive and hard to pinpoint. But, what about when the Internet flat out isn’t working?

 

Troubleshooting “No Internet Connection”

Although it may seem obvious, the best place to start when the Internet is not working is unplugging the modem. Resetting the Internet in this way can often fix connectivity issues. And again, consider your physical proximity to the WiFi router. A device may be unable to connect if it is too far away from the WiFi signal. Lastly, there may be an Internet outage in your location. Use links above to see if your Internet service provider has had a spike in reported issues. This will help identify if it’s a widespread issue or an isolated issue. The next step may be contacting Intechtel (if you are a current customer) or your Internet service provider.

 

Enlisting the Help of Tech Support

Still need some help or have questions? Time to contact Intechtel or your Internet service provider. Let them know in detail what information you have already learned from troubleshooting. Not only will you be their favorite client of the day, but you’ll also get to a solution much faster -- thanks to your prep work!