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Improving your home internet

Find out about some common problems in your home that can affect internet performance and how to fix them.

Home cabling

The type and condition of the cabling in your house can affect how internet signals are carried.

Slow internet may be caused by:

  • old cabling that has become damaged
  • existing cabling that may not be suitable for carrying high-speed data
  • unused segments of cabling (known as ‘bridge taps’) causing issues with FTTN/B services.

Watch our video to see how cabling can affect your internet

If you think your cabling may be the problem, try these tips:

  • If your internet connection is provided using FTTN or FTTB, you’ll get the best speed by plugging your modem into the first telephone socket in your home. This isn’t always easy to spot so you may need to contact a registered cabler.
  • If you’re using your home cabling to carry data around your home, you’ll need CAT5 cabling or better.
  • If you think you may need to make any changes to your home cabling or have new cabling installed, contact a registered cabler.

Wi-fi

A wi-fi router is typically integrated with a modem as a single device or it can be a standalone device that plugs into your modem.

Slow internet may be caused by:

  • the standard or type of wi-fi router
  • the frequency band in which your wi-fi operates
  • the location of your wi-fi router
  • other devices sharing or interfering with the bandwidth
  • interference.

Watch our video on slow internet and your wi-fi.

If you think your wi-fi router may be the problem, try these tips:

  • Put your wi-fi router in the middle of the area where you want coverage and, if possible, away from furniture and thick walls that may block your signal.
  • Lift your router up so it’s not sitting on the floor.
  • Use a router that has the two newest types of wi-fi: 802.11n and 802.11ac.
  • Use the 5.8 GHz frequency band (which has faster speeds and less congestion) rather than 2.4 GHz networks.

Interference from electrical devices can also reduce the speed and coverage of your wi-fi network:

  • Devices using the same 2.4 GHz band as your wi-fi router—microwave ovens, cordless phones, baby monitors, garage door openers and wireless cameras.
  • Power sources close to your wi-fi router—such as electrical cabling in the wall.

Try these tips to minimise wi-fi interference:

  • Temporarily switch off and unplug electronic devices to check if any are causing interference.
  • Move the interfering device away from your Wi-Fi router.
  • Look out for interference patterns such as when a microwave oven or cordless phone is used or if a neighbour/factory is operating industrial machinery.
  • Change the channel of your wireless device.

Modems

If you’re connected to the NBN using fibre-to-the-node (FTTN) or fibre-to-the-building (FTTB), you’ll use a VDSL2 (very high-speed digital subscriber line modem).

The make and model of your VDSL2 modem can affect the speed and stability of your internet connection. Read our report on modem performance testing.

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