5 Reasons businesses don't achieve maximum broadband speeds

Struggling with your broadband speed but don’t know where to start to diagnose the problem? We’ve have listed five common reasons why you may not be getting the broadband speeds you need to run a successful business.

  1. Poor quality extension cable

Probably the number one cause of slow broadband speeds, a poor quality extension cable connected to your router can massively increase interference on your line and cause your broadband speeds to be lowered.

FIX: Ditch the extension cable and connect the router directly to the phone socket. Use a long connection cable to connect your computer to the router (these can be purchased fairly cheaply) and will not degrade the speed of your connection.

  1. Electrical interference

Everyday items such as faulty power adapters, timed devices (such as central heating), Christmas tree lights (especially on the flash setting), road works and faulty TV set-top boxes can cause electrical interference that can drastically affect the speed and stability of your broadband speed.

These interferences, known as Repetitive Electrical Impulse Noise (REIN) and Single Isolated Impulse Noise (SHINE) generate interference in the frequencies used by the ADSL (Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line) service.

FIX: To start, ensure your router is connected to an ADSL filter at the master socket (for more information on microfilters, see No. 5).  Try also reducing interference by moving your router to a shelf or table, rather than on the floor.

  1. Older computers and out of date anti-virus software

If your computers are more than five years old, you may not be able to get the maximum broadband speed you can receive. You should also check what applications are running in the background of your computer as some updates or applications can quietly use your broadband connection for tasks that you’re unaware of.

Having up-to-date anti-virus software is crucial to stable and fast broadband speeds. Viruses, trojans and worms can use your broadband, which will slow your connection down.

FIX: Check your computer meets the minimum system requirements for your broadband, and that you have the latest version of your internet browser software installed. If you do not have anti-virus software installed, invest in one now, and make sure you keep it up-to-date to stop unwanted viruses slowing down your broadband.

  1. Poor quality routers

Just as a cheap radio gives a poorer sound than a higher quality radio, a cheap or poor quality router can sometimes be the cause of slow broadband speeds. This can especially be an issue if you haven’t switched broadband suppliers for quite some time as you may be using a router that doesn’t support more recent upgrades to your telephone exchange.

FIX: If you’re not sure if your router is the problem, look online for reviews of the make and model of your router – if there are issues it’s likely that reviews will show this. If you suspect this is the root of the problem, consider replacing it if your provider allows.

  1. No Microfilters

Microfilters are essential for your broadband to work properly over the same line as your telephone service. They stop the broadband signal and the voice on your telephone line from interfering with each other. Not using microfilters or not plugging them in properly may mean your broadband speed is slow or you might hear high pitched noises when you make phone calls.

FIX: Plug a microfilter between your master telephone socket and your router then make sure that every telephone socket that has equipment plugged in, has a microfilter. If you have microfilters, ensure they are plugged in properly. Equipment that needs a microfilter includes:

  • Broadband modem or router
  • Telephones
  • Answer machines
  • Digital TV boxes
  • Fax machines
  • Alarm systems
  • Credit card machines


If your router works wirelessly, make sure it is password protected to ensure no one is hitching a free ride on your connection and taking up bandwidth which will reduce your speed. If you don’t need to use your router’s wireless network, consider turning it off completely

If you have felt your broadband is still not as good as it should be, complete our free broadband assessment and our technical team will investigate this for you.