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Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Sadly, this is the nature of intermittent faults. 

And those automated, exchange-end tests don't tend to find this sort of fault. It requires a competent Openreach engineer at your NTE -- one who knows their way around the test gear, and who can be bothered to climb poles, lift chamber lids, etc.

It might help if you can tell the engineer what the crackling correlates with (e.g., certain weather patterns, or time of day). But don't sweat it if there's no obvious correlation.

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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason when the interference occurs.  Previously it has been in the evening but the weather doesn't seem to be an issue as has varied.   I thought at first it was very wet weather but subsequently that hasn't been the case.  Today was mid morning but didn't last very long.  Unfortunately it doesn't help that when I do update the fault ticket, its not looked at until at least a week after the update and the chance to test at all has long passed.

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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Interference on line reappeared this evening during phonecall.  Broadband fell over twice and DLM has now kicked in to reduce speed from 14 to 11 DS and 11 to 8 US.  Typically this is when its going to be impossible to contact PlusNet support to get the line tested.

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Seriously, forget exchange-side testing. Just log a voice fault and request an Openreach engineer.
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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

That's all very well richi, but whose paying the Openreach charge when they decide there is nothing wrong with the line?  We all know it depends on who attends and I can't afford a charge to pay their charge.  Yes its frustrating, but until it lasts for a bit longer than currently, I'm uninclined to run the risk of Openreach claiming nothing is wrong.  When I spoke to one of the PlusNet techies a few weeks back he had the same view, don't want to run the risk of a charge.

Perhaps if PlusNet removed DLM completely from the line (assuming its possible, the interference, when it happens, would stick around long enough to be there for their support hours.  Sadly most of the time its too late into the evening to get anything done, even if its just me phoning up with chronic interference in the background so it can be logged as heard.

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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Respectfully, that's not how this works. I'd be horrified if Plusnet is really recommending you not get this fixed.

Firstly, Your contract for a crackle-free line is with your CP -- Plusnet. Plusnet's contract is with Openreach. (While it's marked "not contractual," BT SIN351 is the standard applied here, I believe, which sets a very quiet -22 dBm as the upper limit for impulse noise, albeit with a typo).

Second, assuming you're confident that the intermittent problem happens while you have a wired phone plugged into your test socket -- and and no other equipment is plugged in -- then Plusnet can warn you about potential charges until the cows come home.

If it were me, I'd say to Plusnet that, yes, I accept the potential charge, which Plusnet has explained contractually will be made if and only if a fault is found on my side of the demarcation point (the NTE), but that I've ruled out a fault on my side -- by following Plusnet's instructions -- so I do not expect a charge to be levied.

If a charge is levied in these circumstances, it's usually because Openreach has made an error. It does happen (although it's much rarer that it might seem from these fora, because people rarely write a post saying everything went swimmingly). You can minimise the chance of error by making sure any engineer understands it's an intermittent crackle and by playing them a recording of a quiet line test that demonstrates it.

Again, if it were me and I was presented with a rare, incorrect charge, I would:

  1. give my CP 5 working days to credit the charge on my account,
  2. then give my CP notice that I intended to dispute any direct debit that included the charge,
  3. then dispute such a direct debit if it reached my bank, under the terms of the DD Guarantee.

I hope it's a misunderstanding, but if Plusnet is really recommending you not get an obvious voice fault fixed, I'm sure they'd agree to release you from your contract so you can migrate to a CP that will work with you. Zen or Pulse8, perhaps -- or A&A if you're made of money!

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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

I'm pretty sure any fault is on the data side of the line not the voice.  When I've had interference on a phone call, it tends (can't remember each time) to disappear when the connection has dropped and while the router is in a disconnected state but starts again when the router tries to reconnect.  When this happens, whether I've switched to the test socket or not, I have found no interference until the router has started to try and connect.  That said, I only notice this happening when the intermittent interference occurs which tends to be while I'm on a not very frequent phone call.  I can't remember for definite but I vaguely remember when this started in March sometimes the interference continued on the phone call when the router was disconnected, but its possible I'm remembering incorrectly. 

Granted that the connection has always dropped intermittently over the years to varying degrees and frequency but I've never actually checked until last Saturday whether there was interference on the phone.  On Saturday I actually went downstairs when it failed to stay connected after a first reconnection and checked the phone line which had interference on it.  However, when it reconnected for a second time DLM kicked in and there was then no interference on the line.  Having already changed the filter once I'm not inclined to purchase another and my router is only 6 months old, albeit I've tried the old one previously at the beginning of March when this all started and the interference at that point continued on both routers.  I had problems with intermittent interference on the line when I was with BT but since moving over to PN for phone as well as broadband two years ago, I've had little or no problem until the beginning of March and nothing has changed my end.

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

OK, you've reminded me you said the noises only happen when the modem connects. This is a classic symptom of a rectified loop problem. Basically, like an old "cat's whisker" crystal wireless from a century ago, a bad joint acts as a diode (aka rectifier) that causes broadband signals (i.e., the ADSL tones) to be heard in the baseband (i.e., the phone audio).

As I may have mentioned once or twice, you need an Openreach engineer to come and sort out a bad joint on the line you're renting.

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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month


@richi wrote:
If it were me, I'd say to Plusnet that, yes, I accept the potential charge, which Plusnet has explained contractually will be made if and only if a fault is found on my side of the demarcation point (the NTE), but that I've ruled out a fault on my side -- by following Plusnet's instructions -- so I do not expect a charge to be levied.

Unfortunately those terms don't accurately describe your contract with Plusnet. You may get charged if the fault is not found, not if and only if there is some fault found with your own wiring or equipment.

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

If that's the case (and I have no reason to doubt @ejs) then OP should consider migrating

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month


@ejs wrote:

 


...your contract with Plusnet. You may get charged if the fault is not found, not if and only if there is some fault found with your own wiring or equipment.

Are you talking about the "Abortive visit charge"? That's the only mention I can see in my contract.

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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

I can't seem to quote your last but one reply richi but what would be the point of me migrating?  Unless I move to a non BT supplier (such as Talk Talk or Virgin), I would still have the same potential problem with a BT charge whoever I was to move to. 

That said, my parents had no end of problems with their broadband dropping out some years back and their then supplier, Pipex, even got BT in at their expense but couldn't find a fault.  Parents weren't on that occasion charged but the problem only went away when they moved to Zen yet nothing had changed apart from ISP.  They're paying over the odds for broadband with Zen as they only get 4mb maximum download (won't upgrade to fibre even though unlike me they can get it) but won't move 'cos of fear that the problems could return. 

I just wonder if PlusNet would remove DLM from my line completely, perhaps the problem would be more often and something might get done about it.  Having been connecting at 15-16mb regularly and reliably for some years with them until beginning of March this year, its frustrating that 14mb is unstable and DLM restricts me to 11mb at most and often less.

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Aspiring Pro
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Again, you need a CP who will go to bat for you. I still find it hard to believe Plusnet is really trying to persuade you to ignore this problem, but if what you say is true, then ditch and switch to a CP that will.

Asking you to pay for an engineer's time to diagnose an intermittent line fault would be ludicrous, because this is why you're paying line rental.

(I shan't mention again the three CPs that are known to have a positive attitude to faults, given that this is Plusnet's own forum!)

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Plusnet Help Team
Plusnet Help Team
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

Hi @nicki77, sorry to hear the intermittent issue persists. Checking your connection this side everything is looking to have been spot on over the last 4 days in terms of broadband connection with no drops in connection and very little in terms of signs of errors.

eneral Information
NTE Status:   NTE Power Status: Unknown Bypass Status:  
 
  Upstream DSL Link Information Downstream DSL Link Information
Loop Loss: 18.3 30.5
SNR Margin: 10.8 10.0
Errored Seconds: 0 0
HEC Errors: 0  
Cell Count: 62891 247141
Speed: 852 11826
 
Maximum Stable Rate (KBPS): 10208 Fault Threshold Rate (KBPS): 8166
Mean Time Between Retrains (Seconds): 86400 Mean Time Between Errors Upstream (Seconds): 86400
Indicative Line Quality: G Mean Time Between Errors Downstream (Seconds): 1964

image15258653107725

Running tests on your line hasn't detected any issues either. But given how intermittent you've noted the line noise happening it can be a pain to progress these types off issues forwards to a resolve. A few things I want to ask to hopefully help get to the bottom of this one... Although I can see you've tried the test socket, 2nd filter, a 2nd router, I can't see you've tried a second handset? Although it may be unlikely it may be worth trying another handset for a few days to see if the issue persists as for my this seems like the last internal component your side that could be causing the issue and if the problem persists then you can be safe in knowing the engineer would find anything within your internal wiring that could be the cause being you've ruled everything out.

I'd suggest this and also, have you noticed and weather patterns that seem to related to the intermittency of the issue? Windy/rainy days? As sometimes these can be key factors in resolving intermittent issues like this one. Also, just to double check... when you noticed the drops in connection on the 4th with the noisy line, was your set-up still in the test socket at this point?






 Ben Devine
 Plusnet Help Team
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Grafter
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Re: Repeated Broadband Dropouts for last month

@BD How will a different phone be of use when the intermittent interference occurs when the router tries to connect and not when it is not connected (assuming there is obviously a problem at that point)?  The issue has to be on the data side of the line not voice.  Granted it doesn't happen that often but when it does it momentarily disappears until the router tries to reconnect, as I've posted about previously.  While I could try another phone it won't be until next week as it means I have to purchase a new one.

There appears no pattern to when it happens.  It has been both very wet and cold and very sunny.

Currently I'm using the normal socket not the test socket.  The reason being that when using the test socket I get a bit of a gale through the wall from the gaps around the plate outside.  While I accept this has not been much of an issue over the last few days, at other times it has caused a very cold draft in the lounge which isn't the warmest room in the house as it is.