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Aspiring Contributor
Message 1 of 4

Perpetual Broadband and Phone line problems

I am truly tearing my hair out.  Since September last year I have had constant broadband and telephone problems.  I have had over 15 engineers out I lost count after the 15th), each one says they have fixed it, but once they've gone, the problem returns.

The problem is that the line goes down intermittently for about 30 secs to 2 minutes each time.  A couple of days can go by without any problems, then on another this down/up is constant for hours, or sometimes, for an hour or so, then twenty minutes or half an hour it will be fine, then down/up again.

I have learnt how to download the log from my hub and can now see when it goes down and for how long, but no-one in BT or Openreach are interested.

When BT runs the test, the line is not showing a fault.  Since September I have had two new BT hubs and purchased a new BT phone system, so I know I have full compatibility and new equipment.  The line comes straight from the outside into the main socket, i.e. there is no wiring through the house.

The whole thing is reminding me of when I was young and my parents had a party line (i.e. a shared telephone line) shared with 4 different households.  We knew if the light on the phone was red, then someone was on the phone and the behaviour of my line/hub now reminds me of sharing a party line.

Everytime an engineer comes in, they want access to the socket which is behind a filing cabinet with a heavy printer on top and so my husband (who is nearly 75 and has health problems) has to move the printer and pull out the filing cabinet - only for them to look at it and say "well there is no problem with the socket".  But some say they need access to test the line, only to find there is no problem with the line.

I really don't know where to go next.  I am considering sending a round robin letter to all the houses in the neighbourhood to see if anyone else is suffering the same problem.  Of course the engineers say no-one else has reported any difficulties.

But if anyone out there has had a similar problem which they have solved, I would be ever so grateful to hear from them.

Many thanks

Antiquated Anne


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Aspiring Expert
Message 2 of 4

Re: Perpetual Broadband and Phone line problems

Just a thought have you had some new electrical gadget installed which may be causing interference. Smart meter, Ring doorbell or similar. Also are you in a rural area as poorly installed electric fences are known to cause interference on phone lines. How close is the printer to the hub. When working years ago we had a problem where every time a large printer was used it would knock out the office telephone system. 

Not sure this helps but might help eliminate some things causing the problem.

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Aspiring Contributor
Message 3 of 4

Re: Perpetual Broadband and Phone line problems

Many thanks for taking the time to reply and your suggestions.  They certainly have got me thinking down a different track. 

The only new electrical gadget we've had is a smart TV, but we only bought that this last month, whereas this problem has been going on since September.  The hub is directly behind our ancient HP LaserJet printer (no wifi on that one), but that set up has been in place for years and the printer is hardly ever used as I have another wifi printer elsewhere.  Both hub and printer are next to where I am sitting so I can see every time the hub goes off, so can see there is no correlation between the hub and printer. 

But we are rural, and so an electrical fence may well be the problem.  It certainly seems to me to be some sort of outside interference, so I think I might just circulate a round robin letter and see if I get any answers.

Once again many thanks

Antiquated Anne

To give an example of how erratic it is, it has been down 11 times this morning, 5.13, 5.51, 6.55, 7.50 and 8.40.  Within those minutes it has been back up and down and up again two or three times.  Yesterday it went down first at 10.05 and then pretty constantly (28 times) to 12.15, then fine until 15.47, up and down 8 times until 15.54, twice at 16.22, twice at 17.38, twice at 20.54, then apart from 4 times between 2 and 3, fine until 5.13.  It didn't go down at all on the 22nd Feb.

Annoyingly the spam calls seem to get through with no problem at all!


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Message 4 of 4

Re: Perpetual Broadband problems

Hello, I have had similar experience with endless connection drops, and a stream of engineers, who say they think they have fixed, only for the drops to start all over again, this has been going on for three years.  However, this year, the engineers started to mutter about electric fence interference, hard to believe, as the fence has been there longer than I have, and the first five years of my being here there were no problems.  Eventually, engineer no: 10, 12, ??? uncovered a joint and attached  a monitor to the end of my line, it was registering huge errors.  The farmer who owns the fence was around so he was asked to turn off the fence briefly, I went with the engineer to watch the monitor and it dropped back to normal. The farmer was asked to turn it on again, and we watched the device register the loads of errors.  The engineer, Openreach, said there was nothing they could do, and for me to contact BT.   I did, and BT said it was Openreach's job to sort out infrastructure issues.  Impasse.  A further complication arose when the farmer claimed he had not turned his fence back on and so Openreach were lying.  When I explained that I had seen the monitor working, all the toys came out of the pram, and he flounced off muttering it was not his fence causing a problem.  At no time did I suggest he should do anything to relocate his fence, and nor did BT.  Another impasse.  

However, Broadband began to stabilise, and the clicking on AM radio stopped, so I have concluded that the farmer went round his fence and cleared anything that were causing shorts, and that has cleared this problem.  Meanwhile my official complaints to BT have been ignored, calls back promised have not happened.  It is ironic that a company dealing with communication is so appallingly bad at, yes, communication, either with their customers, or between themselves and Openreach, their 'wholly owned subsidiary company'.      George Bernard Shaw said 'the problem with communication, is the illusion that it has taken place.'

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