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Fix a dropping broadband connection

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If your Wi-Fi keeps dropping out unexpectedly, the first thing to do is run a health check to see if there are any problems with your line. Then take a look at our tips below for getting a more stable broadband connection.

New to TalkTalk or just upgraded to fibre? your line will go through a stabilisation period which can last up to two weeks. It's normal to experience varying speeds and occasional drops in your connection during this time.


Be mindful of your bandwidth

Some online activities use more bandwidth than others. You're more likely to experience Wi-Fi drop-outs when everyone in your household is using the Internet for tasks like streaming, downloading and gaming all at the same time.

Some devices can use up bandwidth without you knowing by scheduling software updates, running apps in the background and backing up photos to the cloud.

If you feel like your broadband isn’t keeping up, try taking a few devices offline to free up your connection. You might also want to think about swapping to a package that better suits your needs.


Reverse any changes to your setup

Have you recently changed your Wi-Fi setup by moving your router or connecting new equipment? Try reversing the changes one by one and keep an eye on your connection to see if it becomes more stable.

If this doesn’t help, check your router’s wires to make sure they haven't been knocked out of place or become loose. You should also check your master socket to make sure your router is connected correctly.


Keep your router switched on

We send important software updates to your router throughout the day and night. Switching your router off when you go to bed or when you're out means it can't receive our updates which can cause issues with your broadband.

Restarting your router is a quick and easy fix for most common connection problems, however, restarting your router too often can trick our systems into thinking you have a problem with your line. To fix the perceived problem, our system slows your broadband down to try and stabilise your line. We recommend that you keep your router switched on at all times and avoid restarting it more than once within 24 hours.


Rule out a faulty device

If your Wi-Fi drops when you’re far away from your router then try to improve your Wi-Fi range.

If the issue continues no matter what the distance is between your device and router, check to see if you have the same problem on other devices. If your other devices are working normally, then the issue could be to do with your device rather than your router. In this case, you should get in touch with your device’s manufacturer.


Check your router setup

Your router's wires and cables can easily get knocked out of place or become loose over time. You should check that your equipment is all connected properly and set up correctly.


Improve your wireless range

Your Wi-Fi signal comes from the front of your router, so make sure it's facing into your home with its antenna pointing upwards.

Try putting your router in an elevated position on a table or shelf, and make sure it’s not blocked by any furniture or books. This way, your router will give out a clear, uninterrupted signal.

Electrical appliances like microwaves, cordless phones and even remote controlled toys can also disrupt your Wi-Fi signals, so it’s best to keep your router away from these where possible.


Change your wireless channel

Depending on your technical ability, you may want to try changing your wireless channel. All wireless routers broadcast Wi-Fi signals on a channel. If any of these channels get too busy – i.e. if your neighbour’s router is broadcasting on the same channel as yours – it can interfere with your signal which may result in drop-outs.


Try a wired connection

Try connecting your device to your router using an Ethernet cable. This can help determine if your wireless set up is causing your broadband connection to drop.

  1. Connect one end of the yellow Ethernet cable to the Ethernet port on your computer
  2. Connect the other end of the cable to one of the yellow LAN ports on the back of your router

If your broadband connection is stable using a wired connection, your wireless set up could be causing your connection to drop. You should check your setup to make sure it's correct.

Router connected to laptop with an Ethernet cable


Reboot your router

If you’re still having issues, try resetting your router as a one-off. A software update may have gotten stuck and doing a quick reset will force it through. Simply turn your router off for 20 minutes if you’ve got Fibre, or 30 seconds for Non-Fibre. If you have an Openreach modem, this will also need to be turned off (along with your router) for 20 minutes.


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