Should My Broadband Speed Fluctuate? (And how can I fix it)
The speed of your internet service is very important to the overall speed of your home or business network. A fast internet connection provides for greater data transfer speeds between your computer and your devices, which allows for better, more efficient communication. Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can provide many services, such as providing faster access to the internet, faster download speeds and more.
Internet service providers often advertise their services based on speed tiers. These tiers can range from “up to 10 Mbps” (megabits per second) to “up to 100 Mbps” to “up to 1 Gbps.” It’s important to know that the maximum speed you can obtain depends on the type of service you are using. You can also connect additional devices to your home network and increase the speed of your internet.
One of the biggest mistakes that home and business owners make when dealing with an internet service provider is that they assume they have purchased a fixed amount of bandwidth.
The actual bandwidth that is allocated to each customer varies, based on how much is being used at any given time. This variation can lead to slower speeds when there is a surge in traffic. Many people don’t notice this variation until it is too late.
Here are a few ways you can try to improve your internet speed
1. If possible, use a fiber optic network. These are the fastest networks and provide the best speeds. Most businesses opt to get fiber optics, but residential options are increasing.
2. If you are experiencing slow speeds during the day, it could be because there is a lot of network activity going on. Try to limit your use of social media and other activities during peak times to avoid this problem.
3. If you are running multiple applications simultaneously, you might want to consider setting your computer to prioritize one over the other. This can cause slowdowns when switching from one app to another.
4. If you are not using a wireless network and are relying on a wired connection, the speed of the network itself is likely affecting your overall experience.
5. Finally, if all else fails, you can always ask your internet service provider to upgrade your speed.
Why does my broadband speed vary so much?
A lot of people blame their cable provider or ISP for not being able to offer a consistent and stable connection. The truth is, though, that the reason speed fluctuates isn’t always the fault of the service provider.
It could be that your device is incapable of providing the speed that your ISP is promising. This is often true for mobile devices, which are notoriously finicky when it comes to network speeds. It can also be true for any device that relies on wifi as its sole network connection.
If your speed is inconsistent, it’s important to understand what’s causing it.
There are several possible reasons for inconsistent speeds, and it’s important to find the root cause in order to ensure that your speed stays consistent:
- Poor network infrastructure
- Device interference
- Cable modem
- Broadband modem
- Badly-connected/poorly-configured wifi router
- Poorly-designed wireless network (e.g. poorly-placed access points)
If your speed is consistently slow, there are a few different things that can be done:
- Change your wifi router’s password.
- Try another wifi network.
- Rework your access points.
- Get a better modem.
- Ask your internet provider for assistance.
In general, though, the reason speed fluctuates can be the result of many different issues, and it may take more than a little testing to discover what the problem is.
Why is my Mbps going up and down?
There are a lot of reasons that can cause your broadband speeds to fluctuate, whether you’re dealing with a local ISP or a service provider that offers high speed connections. For example, it could be due to heavy use of the internet, or a router or modem that’s malfunctioning.
It could also be due to a network issue with your service provider’s servers. If you’re trying to stream movies and other video, or playing online games or downloading large files, the quality of your connection might become noticeably worse.
To resolve your speed issues, it’s important to check that the service provider isn’t throttling your bandwidth, which can affect the speed of your internet. If the speed drops, there are steps you can take to resolve the issue.
How do I fix my internet speed fluctuation?
A lot of people are very interested in knowing about why their internet speeds are fluctuating. It can be very frustrating to be stuck with a slow internet connection, especially in the age where broadband internet is available almost everywhere.
It’s actually a very complex issue that has several different factors at play. Most of which are outside of our control. However, we can take steps to reduce the impact of the many things that are out of our control on the speed of our internet.
One of the main factors that impact the speed of the internet is the distance of your ISP from your home. Typically, your ISP is the cable company, telephone company, or satellite provider. They lease a portion of the infrastructure and manage the data being transmitted to and from your device. If you’re located closer to the backbone of the internet, then you’ll typically experience faster internet speeds.
There are several reasons that distance could be affecting your internet speed. One of the more common reasons that I see is that you have a long distance between you and the backbone of the internet. This is commonly seen as the reason for people having slower internet speeds in rural areas.
Another factor that impacts internet speed is the congestion at the edge of the internet. It’s important to note that this congestion is not usually the fault of your ISP. This is typically the result of an increase in demand for internet use. If this is the case, then you’ll need to contact your ISP to find out what they can do to help alleviate the issue.
However, there are a few other reasons that your internet might be fluctuating in and out of speed. These include:
- Your ISP is oversubscribed
- Your ISP is congested
- Your ISP is underprovisioned
- Your ISP is experiencing an outage
- Your ISP is experiencing a routing error
- Your ISP is experiencing packet loss
- Your ISP is experiencing a DDoS attack
As always, the best thing you can do is to try to pinpoint exactly what is going on so that you can make a call to the ISP.
Practical tips for improving your broadband speed
Body content: A number of things can affect your broadband speed, including whether or not you use Wi-Fi, your ISP, and the condition of your network. There are a number of different variables that can impact your speed, so keep in mind that every situation is unique.
A good starting place would be to review your current speeds in comparison to your previous speed tests. A simple tool like Speedtest.net or WebMeasuring can be used to track changes over time.
If your speeds are staying consistently high, then there are a few things that may be limiting your speed. First, it’s possible you’re saturating your network connection. For example, if you’re streaming a high-quality video, you might be downloading too much data to stay within your bandwidth allocation.
In order to help you monitor this, a number of tools allow you to view your usage, including NetLimiter, Ookla Speedtest, and Bandwidth Analyzer.
A second thing that could be holding you back are security issues. While you may not be downloading malicious code directly, your computer could be infected with malware that is slowing your download. To protect your data and ensure it doesn’t get infected, make sure you run anti-malware software.
If you are still experiencing slow speeds, it may be time to consider a different connection provider. If your ISP is not providing a reliable connection, you may want to switch to a provider with better service.
Perform a speed test on your line
Take the guesswork out of how to optimize your internet speeds by performing a speed test on your line and making changes based on what you see.
The test will give you a comprehensive view of your current internet speed and give you some insight into where you might be able to improve things.
Contact your Internet service provider
In order to troubleshoot, you need to contact your internet service provider (ISP) and ask them to connect you directly to their network so you can determine if there is a problem on their end. While they might be able to do it for you, they should give you detailed instructions on how to do it yourself.
Make sure your browser is updated
This seems like a simple thing that has little to do with your internet, but believe it or not, an outdated browser can cause issues down the line. This is especially true if there are security vulnerabilites in your internet browser’s current version.
Your router may be interfered with by some electrical devices
If your internet speed drops drastically or stops working altogether after you plug in your phone charger, TV, or computer, then it’s probably an electrical interference issue.
If your router is outdated, consider upgrading it
If your router is becoming a bit long in tooth then now is a great time to refresh your home internet setup. We have a whole lot of recommendations for you to check out.
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Secure your broadband connection with a password
This is a very obvious security step, but you should always have a secure password set up for your internet router.
Your WiFi is a direct path to your broadband connection, and also your locally connected wireless devices such as your phone, laptop and computer.
Your local network should always be protected with WiFi security, so make sure that you have made your password hard to guess but easy to remember.
Checking your line with an Ethernet cable rather than wireless
This is one of the easiest checks that you can do to test your internet, and see where the problems lie.
If you connect an Ethernet cable to your computer and you notice that your internet speed is suddenly much better, then you have a WiFi issue in most cases.
You can contact your ISP and ask them to test out your connection, or you can performa factory reset on your router and see if that solves the wireless issues once it is set up and configured again.
The main phone socket in your home should be connected directly to your broadband router
If you are running DSL and you have telephone cables, extensions, and even repaired breaks in that cable, then you could be giving your router a bad signal to work with. If you are hearing static on your phone line, then you should contact your ISP and have them look at the line if they are responsible for that service.
We hop that these easy to follow, actionable steps have helped you to track down any issues that are preventing you from enjoying your home broadband.
We hope that you have found these tips helpful, and if you have any questions about any of these topics or have other questions about internet speed and internet troubleshooting, then please let us know.