Why Is My Internet Really Slow? 8 Trouble-Shooting Tips

why is my internet really slow

When it takes forever to load a page or download a file, seconds feel like minutes and minutes feel like eternity and you’re asking (or shouting) “Why is my internet really slow?”.  We know how frustrating it is and you’re not alone in this struggle. 

In this article, we will explore why your internet might be running slowly and offer 8 solutions that could improve its performance. Knowing what causes slow connections gets us one step closer towards faster internet speeds and a zen-like calm. 

It’s important to note, that these tips are for people intent on fixing the issue themselves. To be honest, we advocate for calling your internet service provider after step one (re-booting your POE/router) to help you trouble-shoot.

But we respect the problem-solvers of the world so if you want to diagnose your slow internet on your own, read on (then call us if you want a job!)

At the end of the article, you should have an understanding of why your internet is sluggish and how to fix it quickly and easily.

Wood River Internet offers the fastest reliable wireless internet to rural communities in Saskatchewan, with no data caps, competitive prices, and go-the-extra-mile customer service. To see if there is coverage in your area, visit wrinternet.com.

Checking Your Modem/POE And Router

First things first – before you dive into more complicated and technical trouble-shooting, it’s important to make sure your modem (if your internet is DSL or cable) or POE (if your internet is wireless) and router are functioning correctly. First, examine the lights on both devices. If they aren’t lit up as normal or have changed colour, there may be an issue with either device. 

Next, if you haven’t done so already, follow these steps:

  • Unplug power cord from modem or POE and router
  • Wait 30 seconds for the device to power down 
  • Plug power cords back into their sockets and turn on
  • Let modem or POE & router boot up

Once you’ve finished, wait another five minutes before testing your connection again. If this does not work, there may be interference issues that need diagnosing. 

Analyzing Your Computer Settings

If re-booting your modem or POE and router didn’t work, try assessing your computer settings. To do this, check if any programs are running that could be using up bandwidth or causing performance issues. 

You will also want to make sure the browser and operating system software you’re using is up-to-date. Finally, make sure all security measures such as anti-virus programs are updated and active on your device.

If these settings appear fine but your connection still seems sluggish, it might not just be a problem with your computer—it may have something to do with your network connection itself. Let’s take a look at some common scenarios associated with slow connections caused by networking issues.

It’s possible there’s too much activity happening on the same Wi-Fi channel you’re connected to. If several devices are competing for bandwidth in the same area, the speed of everyone’s connection can suffer as a result. In this case, troubleshooting your network connection should help restore speeds back to normal.

How To Troubleshoot Network Connectivity Problems

Now that you’ve analyzed your computer settings, it’s time to troubleshoot and see if the issue lies with your network connection. Here’s what you do:

Check for external interferences such as wireless devices running nearby.

  • Test different ports on your router or switch to a wired connection.
  • Verify no one else is using bandwidth-heavy applications like streaming services or video gaming.
  • Restart both the router and modem or POE by unplugging them from the power source for 30 seconds and then plugging back in.

If none of these tips seem to be helping speed up your internet, it could be an issue coming from outside of your home network. It’s possible there may be an outage affecting service in your area, so contact your Internet Service Provider (ISP) before taking further action. 

If nothing shows up on their end then try checking the cables connecting into your modem or POE/router, making sure they’re securely plugged in at all times. You should also check if your modem or POE/router firmware needs updating – this might increase performance levels significantly if done correctly. 

With all of these things checked off the list, we can now move onto examining our modem or POE and router setup.

Diagnosing Interference Issues

It’s important to consider potential interference issues when diagnosing slow internet speeds. Interference can come from a variety of sources and is often overlooked as the cause for poor performance. To diagnose this issue, you should:

  1. Check your device environment – Are there any physical or electronic devices in close proximity that could be causing electromagnetic interference? (Think microwave, baby monitor, etc)
  2. Analyze signal strength – Is the connection strong enough to handle all activity? If not, it may need to be boosted with amplifiers or other equipment.
  3. Run an analysis tool – Use available tools such as ping, traceroute, and SpeedTest to measure latency and throughput rates across various connections. This will help identify where bottlenecks exist in the network.

If these measures do not resolve the issue then disabling unnecessary programs on connected computers or devices may be necessary to improve overall speed and reliability.

Disabling Unnecessary Programs

One of the main causes of slow internet speeds is programs running in the background on your computer. They can take up bandwidth and processing power, reducing the speed with which you can download or upload files. To ensure that this isn’t affecting your connection, we need to disable any unnecessary programs that may be running.

First, access the task manager by pressing CTRL+ALT+DELETE simultaneously then click on ‘Task Manager’. This will provide a clear view of all applications currently running on your device.

If there are any non-essential apps taking up resources, simply select them and click ‘end task’ at the bottom right corner. Be mindful though; some key applications such as antivirus software should remain active for security reasons!

To further reduce strain on your system, we need to check if any other processes are running in the background without being actively used by yourself or another user. To do this, open the control panel and search ‘startup’.

Here you’ll find options to enable or disable certain programs depending on whether they’re required upon startup or not. You can easily turn off those that aren’t necessary – freeing up more valuable resources for faster browsing experience!

By disabling these unnecessary services and applications, we’ve freed up enough space for our next step: optimizing our home wifi network.

Optimizing Your Home Wi-Fi Network

Now that we have discussed disabling unnecessary programs, let’s look at ways to optimize your home wi-fi network. Optimizing your wireless connection is essential if you want a fast and reliable internet experience.

The first step in optimizing your Wi-Fi network is to ensure you are using the correct router for your ISP. It’s important to make sure your router is compatible with the type of service you receive from your provider. If not, it can significantly slow down or even prevent access to certain websites or services.

If your equipment was supplied by your ISP, then this is not likely the issue. But if you’re using your own equipment dug out from the dusty shelves of your garage, it’s worth having a look.

Additionally, upgrading your router may help increase signal coverage depending on how many devices will be connecting to it.

From here we move onto checking for malware or viruses which may also be impacting performance…

Checking For Malware Or Viruses

The first step is to run a scan on all of your devices connected to the internet. This includes computers, mobile phones, tablets, routers, etc. Look for any suspicious programs running in the background which could potentially be using up bandwidth and slowing down your speeds. You can also use anti-virus software or online tools such as VirusTotal to detect malicious files and applications on your device.

Remember to regularly update your operating system and other software installed on your computer as these updates usually contain security patches which close any vulnerabilities that may have been exposed by hackers or cybercriminals. 

Also, make sure you are aware of phishing emails sent out by scammers who are looking to gain access to sensitive data stored on your device – never click on unknown links or download attachments unless you are certain they are safe!

Finally, ensure you have strong passwords set up across all accounts associated with your device so only authorized users can access them; this will help protect against potential intruders attempting unauthorized access into your network. 

By following these steps consistently, you should be able to keep yourself protected from unwanted malicious activity while ensuring optimal performance of your internet connection.

If all of the above fail, your resort is contacting your Internet Service Provider (ISP).

Contacting Your Internet Service Provider

As mentioned, Wood River Internet advocates for reaching out and making sure the speeds you’re subscribed to are actually being provided. Make sure you have all the information ready when contacting your ISP – name, address, any relevant account info, etc.

If after speaking with customer service nothing changes, don’t just give up! Ask if there’s an option to speak with a network engineer who can provide more detailed technical advice specific to your situation.

The engineers typically know exactly how things should work and could offer helpful solutions such as setting up a new router or optimizing settings on existing hardware.

Sometimes simply troubleshooting from home isn’t enough; getting expert help from someone at the provider level could be just what you need in order to get back online faster than ever before.

Why Is My Internet Slow – The Bottom Line

When your internet is lagging and you’re aging quickly in front of your computer screen, there are several steps you can take to fix the issue. But if technology isn’t your jam, we encourage you to pick up the phone and call your internet service provider who can help you diagnose the problem.

Right now, when you sign up for Wood River Internet Services, you will get the next fastest wireless internet package FOR NO EXTRA CHARGE for 3 months! To take advantage of this offer, visit wrinternet.com or call (306) 992-5516.


How Often Should I Reset My Modem or POE And Router?

At the very least, do a hard reset at least once every six months. The CEO and founder of Wood River Internet (John de Graauw) resets his as often as once a week, so do what feels right for you and your household.

Can Interference From Other Devices Affect My Internet Speed?

Yes, interference from other devices can definitely affect the internet speed. In fact, it is one of the most common causes of slow network performance.

When Should I Call My Internet Service Provider?

Unless you enjoy the thrill of figuring out the problem yourself, or you’re a tech wizard, call your internet service provider if rebooting the modem or POE and router (and your computer/device) doesn’t work. We’re more interested in relieving your pain!