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Level 2: Rookie

Possible bad lines, what's the next step?

Over the past 3weeks my internet speed has greatly degraded, and upon reviewing my modem stats I'm not actually getting ADSL2+(g922.5), I'm getting ADSL2(g922.3). Unfortunately I don't have old modem status so I'm not sure if this was always the case.

Anyway my speed was always around 5Mbps, and a few weeks ago it was dropping in and out and slowing down quite a bit then it dropped out for about 30minutes and stayed a constant 1.5Mbps since. I had no idea what caused it, but put up with it, hoping it would sort it's self. Over the last few weeks I was also getting the odd drop out and had very high latencies along with this slowed speed

Then 3 days ago it massively slowed down and got really really jumpy with speed and cutouts. So I reset the modem(TG587n v3) and set it up again, this changed nothing, I isolation tested the modem and still had issues. I assumed it was the modem or even the phone cable. So I used new cable and a new filter(an adls2+ one, yes) and used a different modem(TG782T) and had the exact same results in every phone port around my house.

My speed is now a steady 0.5Mbps(65KBps). From what I understand this is practically 1/2 the promised minimum of my contract (110KBps).

Along with this massive speed drop I also have static/noise on my phones now.

After a lengthy period of testing and a lengthy thread on Whirlpool forums it was narrowed down to it most likely being a line issue, and the cabling going from my house to the pole must have degraded over time and recently got very bad(it's not a new house).

From what I've heard, Telstra generally does not care about your ADSL connection and if you are below the contracted speed they'll just exit you from your contract rather than bothering to do anything. BUT I hear they legally HAVE to fix phone line issues, and as I have noise on my phones now they are obliged to fix any issue that is outside the cabling in my house.

My question is, what is the next step for me?
How do I go about getting a telstra technician to check my lines for faults and fix them if they find them?
Is it true that the cost is theirs if they find a fault?
Is it true that if they find nothing I must pay $150?
How do they check thouroughly, or do they usually spend 10minutes and get their $150 without bothering?

I'm fairly sure that this is a line fault(though not sure if it is outside my house or inside) and just want this sorted as quickly as possible, but I'm worried as Telstra has a bit of a bad track record for dealing with customer issues that I'm going to lose $150 and gain nothing.

Just looking for advice on the next step, I want my old internet back.

Thanks heaps for reading!

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6 REPLIES 6
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Level 22: Superhuman

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?


My speed is now a steady 0.5Mbps(65KBps). From what I understand this is practically 1/2 the promised minimum of my contract (110KBps).


Firstly, just to be clear, is BigPond your Internet service provider? If so, then there is no minimum connection speed or data throughput stipulated for BigPond ADSL in Our Customer Terms, which forms the bulk of your service agreement. Download speeds below 110KB/s falls outside the expected speed range, and BigPond will treat it as indicative of a possible fault condition and investigate it as such when you report it.


BUT I hear they legally HAVE to fix phone line issues, and as I have noise on my phones now they are obliged to fix any issue that is outside the cabling in my house.


Telstra has to supply you with a basic telephone service that is fit for purpose, that is, for voice communication, under the Universal Service Obligation. On the other hand, phone lines are physical infrastructure, and no, Telstra does not have to fix the line if, for example, it offers to supply you with a wireless telephone service (charged at standard HomeLine rates) that may or may not support data network access.

This is where most people get stuck: ADSL (inclusive of variants such as ADSL2+) is dependent on the state/quality of the phone line, but Telstra does not sell phone lines to consumers and small businesses, and so has very little obligation to attend to customers' issues specifically with respect to the physical phone lines themselves. If you have a Telstra telephone service, and/or a Telstra/BigPond broadband service, then Telstra will attend to your service(s) if a fault condition develops.


My question is, what is the next step for me?
How do I go about getting a telstra technician to check my lines for faults and fix them if they find them?
Is it true that the cost is theirs if they find a fault?
Is it true that if they find nothing I must pay $150?


If the communications technician attending finds that the fault has to do with your equipment, or cabling on your premises past the first telephone socket (or network boundary point), then you will be charged for an incorrect call-out fee.

 

Which is why, before you report a telephone service fault, you should disconnect everything from the telephone sockets on your premises, and connect only a telephone handset to the first socket. If the noise/static on the line can still be heard, then the likelihood of the fault being in your equipment (which, in that case, will only be the handset itself) is low. If you have two telephone handsets, try both – one at a time – to further reduce that likelihood (and hence the likelihood of being charged an incorrect call-out fee).

 

Note that it means specifically to remove all ADSL components from the equation, and therefore the performance of your ADSL service is irrelevant, with regard to reporting a telephone service fault.

——
Departed from CrowdSupport as of 12 June 2013, when the fun factor for me had finally completely evaporated with all the recent site layout and functionality changes, and the apparent efforts to turn a community goodwill-powered vehicle into something closer to a customer service channel.

The opinions and sentiments expressed above are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect Telstra's views or position. I work at Telstra, but my participation here is strictly in a personal capacity as a fellow Australian telecommunications services consumer, and you can safely assume you are not my customer, client, patron, benefactor or friend when I post in this forum.
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Level 2: Rookie

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?


Drat wrote:


Firstly, just to be clear, is BigPond your Internet service provider? If so, then there is no minimum connection speed or data throughput stipulated for BigPond ADSL in Our Customer Terms, which forms the bulk of your service agreement. Download speeds below 110KB/s falls outside the expected speed range, and BigPond will treat it as indicative of a possible fault condition and investigate it as such when you report it.

Yes BigPond is my ISP. You are saying that with speeds this low I am still bound to my contract and have to pay out the 24months if no fix is made?
So they'll treat it as a indication of a fault, what investigating/fixes will they normally do for ADSL issues like this and what are the costs?

Which is why, before you report a telephone service fault, you should disconnect everything from the telephone sockets on your premises, and connect only a telephone handset to the first socket. If the noise/static on the line can still be heard, then the likelihood of the fault being in your equipment (which, in that case, will only be the handset itself) is low. If you have two telephone handsets, try both – one at a time – to further reduce that likelihood (and hence the likelihood of being charged an incorrect call-out fee).

I did the isolation test, I get no nose when I have only the phone connected, I get no noise with the phone plugged in via the new filter on it's own, so the filter is fine. The second I connect either of the modems I get noise the second they connect to the internet, this noise instantly cuts out when I turn off the modem. As both modems have 2 years between them in age and one of them actually was never used, I can confidently say it's not a router fault since they've both giving indentical performance, and the same amounts of phone noise.

This is where most people get stuck: ADSL (inclusive of variants such as ADSL2+) is dependent on the state/quality of the phone line, but Telstra does not sell phone lines to consumers and small businesses, and so has very little obligation to attend to customers' issues specifically with respect to the physical phone lines themselves

With this in mind, they will fix issues involving where the phone line connects into roof of the house via the little white Telstra box, such as loose connections?
If the issue is between my house and the telephone pole, who can be contacted and can fix it? As far as i know it's illigal for me to hire any kind of cabler to look at it as I don't own it.


What is the most likely cause of my recent drop in speed with these symptoms? 
With this extra info, what is your recommendation of my next step?
Sorry, as I'm new to this forum, my quoting skills are quite average.
Also, thankyou very much for your thourough reply. Smiley Happy

 

 

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Level 22: Superhuman

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?


Yes BigPond is my ISP. You are saying that with speeds this low I am still bound to my contract and have to pay out the 24months if no fix is made?


First of all, strictly speaking you remain bound by a contract you signed, until the contract term (stipulated in the contract itself) has expired, or the contract has been expressly terminated or cancelled.

 

Secondly, the cancellation charge for an in-contract BigPond broadband service is effectively only $15 (and not the full monthly plan fee) multiplied by the number of months remaining in the minimum contract term.

 

Thirdly, if the download speed of your BigPond ADSL service is “a steady 0.5Mbps” and Telstra determines that it is not an issue with your equipment or cabling on your premises for which you're responsible, then I daresay it will be prepared to release you from the contract and waive the otherwise applicable cancellation charge, if it cannot lift the service's performance.


So they'll treat it as a indication of a fault, what investigating/fixes will they normally do for ADSL issues like this and what are the costs?


I don't know how BigPond and/or a communications technician will go about investigate and fixing that kind of an issue with an ADSL service, sorry. As long as the fault lies with the phone line, or the telephone exchange, or anything for which Telstra is responsible, then you will not be charged for the work to fix it.


The second I connect either of the modems I get noise the second they connect to the internet, this noise instantly cuts out when I turn off the modem. As both modems have 2 years between them in age and one of them actually was never used, I can confidently say it's not a router fault since they've both giving indentical performance, and the same amounts of phone noise.


How and to where are you connecting your modems? To the same ‘first socket’ on your premises to which you connected your phone for the isolation test, or an additional socket somewhere on your premises? Are you using a filter where you're connecting the modem?


With this in mind, they will fix issues involving where the phone line connects into roof of the house via the little white Telstra box, such as loose connections?
If the issue is between my house and the telephone pole, who can be contacted and can fix it?


I can only hazard a guess that, if your house is a regular suburban house, then generally speaking Telstra is responsibile for anything up to the first socket inside your house.

——
Departed from CrowdSupport as of 12 June 2013, when the fun factor for me had finally completely evaporated with all the recent site layout and functionality changes, and the apparent efforts to turn a community goodwill-powered vehicle into something closer to a customer service channel.

The opinions and sentiments expressed above are mine only, and do not necessarily reflect Telstra's views or position. I work at Telstra, but my participation here is strictly in a personal capacity as a fellow Australian telecommunications services consumer, and you can safely assume you are not my customer, client, patron, benefactor or friend when I post in this forum.
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Level 2: Rookie

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?


@Drat wrote:

Thirdly, if the download speed of your BigPond ADSL service is “a steady 0.5Mbps” and Telstra determines that it is not an issue with your equipment or cabling on your premises for which you're responsible, then I daresay it will be prepared to release you from the contract and waive the otherwise applicable cancellation charge, if it cannot lift the service's performance.

This is the main thing, I have no idea what else it could be and really the only suggestion I was left with after testing everything was that it must be lines faults somewhere between Telstra and myselft, whether it's in my house, outside, or 1km away, who knows. The main thing I wonder is there anything else it really could be?

I don't know how BigPond and/or a communications technician will go about investigate and fixing that kind of an issue with an ADSL service, sorry. As long as the fault lies with the phone line, or the telephone exchange, or anything for which Telstra is responsible, then you will not be charged for the work to fix it.


Any idea how far from my house the issue would have to be for it to not be Telstra's issue, are we talking like if it's not between the first pole and my first socket, it's not on their plate?
As you mentioned before about the "first socket" I, since I've tested what I assume to be the first socket and still had issues that would mean, even if the issue is in my house/roof, as long as it's not past the first socket, it's up to them?


How and to where are you connecting your modems? To the same ‘first socket’ on your premises to which you connected your phone for the isolation test, or an additional socket somewhere on your premises? Are you using a filter where you're connecting the modem?


Both the modems I tried(separately of course) have been connected into the first socket up stairs and the kitchen socket down stairs, I isolation tested the modem in both sockets to test the speed, and tested in both sockets plugged in via a splitter/filter with 1 phone plugged in as well. I found the virtually the same results under all circumstances. The phone was tested on eeeeeevery socket in the house for isolation testing, and only ever got noise when the modem was plugged in as well, using a filter/splitter, same socket. As stated above though I only tested the phone with the modem both pluggedd in, in 2 sockets.


I can only hazard a guess that, if your house is a regular suburban house, then generally speaking Telstra is responsibile for anything up to the first socket inside your house.


I guess I better just man up and risk a call out fee now Christmas is over(I assume if they do find something there is no call out fee?) unless there is anything else that is possible other than lines, and anything else I can try?

I just hope they sort of go that extra mile when testing for issues considering this isn't a new connection that has been bad from the start, but this is infact a connection that was going strong for so many years I can't even count, something like 6-8 off the top of my head. I think 4 on the "up to 20Mbps" plan's speed, so obviously something has broken/degraded.

Highlighted
Community Alumni (Retired)

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?

HI Goformickey

 

Telstra is responsible for maintaining the service up to the network boundary point. Unless a MDF (usually found in unit complex) is on the property, or another device marked as such, they are normally responsible to the first socket.

 

Telstra will usually say if the fault lies with your equipment or your internal wiring (ie: House Wiring) then its not their fault.

 

If you lodge a fault and have done all the prerequisite troubleshooting, then the techs who go out are usually pretty nice about it, and won't bill for the charge. Its all about being nice to people tho Smiley Happy

 

B.

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Level 2: Rookie

Re: Possible bad lines, what's the next step?


@Ben_F wrote:

HI Goformickey

 

Telstra is responsible for maintaining the service up to the network boundary point. Unless a MDF (usually found in unit complex) is on the property, or another device marked as such, they are normally responsible to the first socket.

 

Telstra will usually say if the fault lies with your equipment or your internal wiring (ie: House Wiring) then its not their fault.

 

If you lodge a fault and have done all the prerequisite troubleshooting, then the techs who go out are usually pretty nice about it, and won't bill for the charge. Its all about being nice to people tho Smiley Happy

 

B.


Definitely a great tip, but I often find it hard to be rude to anyone that's come all the way to fix a problem that only affects me, even if it's their job. I'll be calling up tomorrow now the Christmas rush is over, I assume I just call the technical support line? or should I call a different line? It's 24/7 isn't it?

Another point worth mentioning was that I've had a few cut outs and my net is actually worse now, but my upload is faster than my download:

Link Information
    
Uptime:0 days, 0:26:38
DSL Type:ITU-T G.992.3
Bandwidth (Up/Down) [kbps/kbps]:711 / 366

Seemed pretty strange, can anyone explain a cause for something like this..?
I thought if it was line issues and they were slowed down this much, they'd be at the same speed, since both are under what their capped to and should only have spped affected by the lines and my equipment...

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