Internet -Speed-Troubleshooting

Troubleshooting Internet Speed Issues

Here is MontanaSky's process for troubleshooting SLOW Internet speeds which you may have reported. MontanaSky Techs will check everything on our end... everything. Your settings in the router, the electronic path in the switch, the line quality at your MontanaSky Modem router combo.

If you do not have a modem/router combo, you should consider getting one from us because we can remotely examine your line quality with that. Without, we to have roll a truck and plug in directly at your premises to get this information. Obviously, we do not roll a truck until we check our end AND you do everything you can to check things at your end.

This is why this guide is being sent to you.
If you do not want to trouble shoot, our gold standard for service is: We will fix anything that is a MontanaSky issue for free; all other issues may result in you being charged for the service call and tech support session.

This article will show you how to help troubleshoot speed issues for Internet on MontanaSky Networks connections.


  • Connection speed much slower than it used to be with ONE device connected:

    • 10Mb would be considered slow when testing lower than 8Mb with only one device.
    • 6MB would be considered slow when testing lower than 4Mb with only one device.
    • 3Mb would be considered slow when testing lower than 2Mb with only one device.
    • 1.5Mb would be considered slow when testing lower than 1Mb with only one device.

  • Files take a long time to download despite being small in size
  • All websites don’t load properly or suffer lag
  • Movies and media buffer, reload or stop

First Thing

You may pick up a back-up modem or router combo with cables from our office to have on hand in case your's is failing. You may test with both to see if one of them gives you better results.

Disconnect ALL but ONE connected devices and run a Speed Test.

Every device you have connected will show you only how much speed you have left with those devices connected.

For example, an iPhone or Smartphone, can hog 30Mbs each, and your Internet is much lower speed than that. One iPad doing auto-updates will interfere with your internet speed especially if you're streaming movies in 720p or higher. Therefore to measure if your line is not functioning at it's fully capable speed, you must unplug every phone, fax, satellite TV, alarm, or other device plugged into every phone jack in your premises.

Turn off all WiFi devices, Game boxes, TV streaming devices, and other computers hard wired or connected into your router.

After you have turned off all internet devices except for the one you will test with you may procced to record a SPEED TEST HERE with only one device connected: http://speedtest.montanasky.net

Best to run this test on a virus-free, current PC or Apple MAC run with an Ethernet cable connected directly to your modem or modem router combo.

Next best device would be a high quality iPhone or Android device running the speed test while standing no more that 3 feet away from the wireless router. You should use a speed test app from OOKLA:
Apple IOS Windows Android Amazon.

Use MontanaSky in Kalispell as your speed test server on the app.

Again ALL other devices must be turned off to measure whether your Internet line itself is causing a slow down.

Your speed will be recorded in our database which will allow our technicians to see exactly what speeds you got on your test.

Testing at the NID vs. an inside phone jack.

If you want to do the absolute best test to rule out your wiring at your building, testing at the NID is it. The NID is the gray box where the phone lines come in from the curb and enter your house, usually near where the other utilities enter. Here is a video about testing at the NID from our wholesale telephone/DSL circuit supplier .

Second Step Swaping Gear

  1. If your speeds are still slow, after testing with only one device connected, if possible, try using different phone cable to plug your modem into the phone socket, and a different Ethernet cable to plug your computer into your modem.
  2. Run another speed test. If your speeds are faster now, follow the advice below.
  3. If possible, plug in that back-up modem (with no filter) into your wall socket and run another speed test after the modem has fully booted up and the DSL light is SOLID. If a different modem gives you improved speeds, the first modem may be faulty and may need to be replaced.
    If a different modem also gives you slow speeds, then it's safe to say that the original modem isn't faulty.

If your speeds improve during the troubleshooting

  1. If your speeds go back to normal when you have just one computer connected to your modem, you can start plugging your other equipment back in, piece by piece. Start with any phones or faxes and their line filters.
  2. Wait a minute or two after each device is plugged back in, and then run another speed test.
  3. If your speed suddenly drops, the cable or device you’ve just plugged in is probably affecting your speeds. It may be faulty, or if it's a phone and/or fax device it may just need to be plugged into a line filter before being plugged into the wall.
  4. If your device already has a line filter, it may be the filter that is faulty and needs replacing. If possible, try plugging it in with a different filter and check if your speeds improve.

More information

Why do I need to test? Can't you just flip a switch and fix it?

Speed issues can be caused by several things, but the most common causes are: too many devices connected, malfunctioning WiFi due to distances, walls or interference, problems with a modem, your router or damage to your copper phone lines or cords, or device (like satellite TV recievers) needing filters. Your speed conditions are unique to your address, so testing must be done at your property.

This and our side troubleshooting helps to rule out as many other possible causes for your connection issue as we can. Remember our gold standard for service is: We will fix anything that is a MontanaSky issue for free; all other issues may result in you being charged for the service call and tech support session.

Finally... we'll compare your testing with our testing.

Once you have completed your troubleshooting, you may contact us; or we will contact you when we have our's finished. We will compare results and determine a possible solution. You may need a speed upgrade or less connected devices, or both.
MontanaSky Self Help Site