ISP Scepticism ….. Tin foil hats at the ready

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  • ISP Scepticism ….. Tin foil hats at the ready
  • Premier Icon letmetalktomark

    We’ve been with our ISP for years.

    Only ever needed to contact them on a few occasions.

    Recently we upgraded our rather aged ISP supplied router with a new all singing all dancing ISP supplied routed as I was having VPN issues linked to router firmware – tinterweb seemed to substantiate this being likely.

    Since new router has been in place we have had more calls to the ISP than ever previously. Connection speed drops from a workable level – streaming, working etc to almost nothing.

    Three “investigations” have been carried out each resulting in a temporary fix.

    Todays issues have prompted ISP to send an Openreach engineer. 90 minutes after this being booked all “issues” seem to have stabilised again – speed is back up and most importantly its been a continual connection – well according to my VPN …..

    ISP laboured the point that the cost of the engineer will fall to me if no fault is found – no intermittent fault that is ….. hmmm.

    Loathed to pay out for something that could have been a “prompted fix” at their end do I monitor and cancel the callout after 48hrs or stick to my guns that there is an issue and its not with my set up?

    Router is plugged directly into the master socket via the micro filter will all supplied ISP kit.

    Any thoughts?

    Premier Icon FuzzyWuzzy

    Are they still sending the engineer? If so I’d cancel if there’s a chance the fault has cleared.

    What’s the new router model and have you googled for known issues relating to it? I’d generally advise people spend £100ish on their own decent WiFi router rather than use an ISP one (if you experience issues). There’s a reason ISP ones are usually free.

    If you do have a new intermittent line problem though that’s a whole different headache…

    Premier Icon letmetalktomark

    Sadly the new ISP router wasn’t free but seems to have been well reviewed. I was given the choice of basic or better!

    The issue with the engineer is that the previous telephone reporting of the “fault” has always resulted in the (temporary) resolution of the issue.

    Todays call to their helpline seems to have again resolved the “issue” but the engineer is still booked.


    As a former BT customer as well as an IT professional I would recommend anyone to spend that ~£100 better elsewhere and buy a third party router. That is if you have the confidence to set it up yourself of course.

    I have used various incarnations of the Home Hub and later home routers all with various issues, be that NAT, VPN or DMZ related. I would not use their hardware again. On all occasions I replaced the BT kit with third party stuff and ended up with better stability, speeds and more control over the connection.

    Premier Icon nickdavies

    Wouldn’t worry hugely about the bt charge, as long as you’ve changed filters etc and made sure wiring is ok inside you should be right- I’ve called them out loads and never had a charge. Last time they ran new lines in did all the internal wiring too not so much as a bother, the engineers all are pretty good. I’d guess they warn you just to make sure numpties don’t phone up complaining when they’ve pulled a plug out or something.

    Premier Icon rossburton

    Openreach can happily charge you if the problem can’t be isolated to their bit of the cabling, so really do verify that you have the problems with the router plugged directly into the master socket with a fresh filter.

    Really does sound like a shoddy router though. Buy a decent one that hasn’t been “customised” by your ISP. If you have the space I’d recommend getting separate models and wifi APs, because then you can upgrade the modem from eg ADSL to fibre, or upgrade from normal wifi to a mesh setup. It’s quite likely that you can configure the all-in-one box from your ISP to be a dumb modem, FWIW.

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