Using an alternative router to the providers

Posted 14th Mar 2023

I want to install my own router to get better coverage.

Do all service providers allow this? Is there any procedure to follow?

Thanks in advance
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  1. KodaBear's avatar
    That really depends what provider you are with. For example with Virgin you would need to put the Virgin hub in Modem mode and plug your own router into the back of the Virgin one to make it work.

    But with BT You can get any suitable router for the type of line you have and that will work just fine.

    And then other providers like Sky make it very difficult to use your own router due to the authentication it uses.

    Something else to consider is that if you use the landline and are now on the new digital voice system, using your own router would mean you lose your landline service.

    Who are you currently with? And what type of line are you using?

    Even if you can't use your own router for whatever reason, you should be able to use something like a WiFi range extender to boost the signal further than the router itself can. So you wouldn't be completely stuck no matter what.
    adamnsu's avatar
    Thanks for that.

    I am with Community Fibre now. I have always had issues with wifi signals in the first floor, even in my bedroom which is directly over the area below where the router is placed . I don’t live in a large house either.

    I am using extenders which partly help downstairs.

    Someone told me a better router helps although I have read and as you pointed out certain providers don’t allow it
  2. one_eight_seven's avatar
    They should! Not really, some won’t entertain any issues or provide assistance once they find out that you are not using their hardware.
    jase.2's avatar
    If you report a fault on BT, EE or Plusnet they will make you plug the BT router back in to prove its not your own equipment causing the fault , same as Openreach will install the supplier hub but won’t touch a third party 
  3. Gumbon's avatar
    Usually under different names virgins is called modem mode

    Some don't and you may just need to disable 5ghz and hide SSID best option
  4. bobogago's avatar
    On my router, running Asuswrt-Merlin firmware, I've connected the wan port on the ISP's hub to my laptop, restarted the hub and run Wireshark then found the credentials in the output - something like aabbccddeeff@skytv|aabbccdd. This value is then pasted into the Manual Client ID (Option 61) field on the Asus router's interface. Done this for Sky/TalkTalk/Now, maybe others. Once connected, hub wireless is disabled.
  5. jnrcocobean's avatar
    I'm on virgin fibre optic broadband. Their hub is on modem mode and I use my own router and mesh.
    Can't see reason why a provider will stop a client from using their router of choice
    Gumbon's avatar
    Usually because paying bare minimum to write firmware for there routers
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