I think it might be your modem or land line. I have used Aol for as long as I have had a useful ISP connection - and very seldom (almost never) have I had a disconnection.
Just occasionally, if I am sitting here staring into space, I may get a prompt Do you wish to remain online? As long as I click Yes, the connection remains.
When there was a BT failure in this neck-of-the-woods, the BT engineer phoned to see if we had a connection and I mentioned fairly slow speeds. He offerred to turn up the gain, I accepted and have had 48K plus connections ever since, plus downloads reaching (very occasionally) 5K/sec...........Wow, Roll on BB., ordered but not arrived yet.
Device manager and scrolling down to Universal serial bus controllers. Expand the list and right click on root hub, choose properties, power management tab and remove the tick from "Allow this device to turn off when not in use to save power"
Also if you have other USB hardware on the same connection then disconnect them for a while, if this cures the problem you will need a powered hub. The USB modem supplied by AOL [BT Voyager] is a good one but likes to be on it's own connection or through a powered hub.
No. I've been on to the phoneline that rmriph kindly posted (thanks) and after 2 calls ( the first of which was your suggestion) I hope to have resolved the problem. The second advisor went into connectivity services followed by the AOL autofix. (as a last resort he mumbled something about thunderstorms at AOL headquarters.) However at last I've been online for more than 5 minutes!!