BT Broadband Hell !

  jsp21c 19:48 12 Aug 2003

My exchange was upgraded to broadband in July & I registered for a connection with BT as soon as I found out. I looked into their packages and decided to have the 'Line Only' because they only offer a basic ASDL modem with their 'Plug & Go' package.
I purchased an Alcatel 530 Modem/Router from the Line Only to give me the possibility of expansion at a later date.
My account was activated last Thursday and I was able to connect to broadband that evening, but the connection kept going off. I had abetter connection on Friday, but still it kept going off. On Saturday evening conection went off and I haven't had one since. I have phoned the BT technical help at least six times in the last 3 days and they tried to fobb me off with all sorts of excuses -- my accont hadn't been fully activated, the signal I had picked up was only a test signal -- I needed to reinstalll the modem, I needed to update my USB drivers, faulty splitter, faulty modem, all sorts of excuses but they wouldn't admit to a line fault which is what my modem had diagnosed as the problem.
Today, Tuesday, BT has finally admittted that there is a line fault and that it will be 48 hours before a engineer does something about it.
It seems because I didn't buy a modem from them that I am being treated as a second class customer.

It is particularly annoying when I know that the problem is not at my end that it takes BT three days to admit to having a problem with the line. They have run a line test every time I have been in contact and until today have said there is no fault, but this morning after exhausting ridiculous suggestions they did the line test again and said the modem is not synchronising with the exchange, which is what I have told them from the start !

I'm thinking of complaining to OFTEL, but the last time I looked at their site there was a huge list of subjects that they didn't accept complaints about, made up of just about every service that BT provide ( or not !)

  Confab 12:10 13 Aug 2003

Calm down have a cup of tea and let BT fix the problem.

I'm sure that they have a diagnostic routine that they have to follow regardless of whether you believe you know what the fault is or not. Quite often MODEMS will report a line fault when its nothing of the sort. Phoning BT 6 times in 3 days does seem a little excessive and as for complaining to OFTEL....

  jsp21c 12:39 13 Aug 2003

That's it Confab, here's a problem which is BT's fault and as a customer who pays their bills on time every time I should consider myself unworthy of recieving any form of customer service. Obviously I am stuck in this 12 month contract with BT for a broadband sevice but I am certainly asking too much to be able to connect to that service.
You are right as a customer who is paying BT £29.99 a month for broadband I should not be annoyed that it took BT three days to even admit there was a fault and I should be happy that when I reported the line fault on Sunday I was told it would be next Friday before an engineer might start looking into doing something.

BT need to get away from the school of thought that suggests when something goes wrong, it was the customers fault for buying the service from BT in the first place.

As for making six phone calls, when BT 'Technical Help' made various suggestions on what could be the possible causes of the problem I carried out these suggestions and needed to tell them the suggestions had not worked. If I don't contaact BT and tell them I have a problem with the connection how do you think they will know about the problem ?

It seems you are an ideal BT customer, sit back and wait for BT to do nothing.

  Confab 13:11 13 Aug 2003

No I am not an ideal BT customer. When I had my adsl installed it took BT over six weeks to sort out my line problem and I knew what the fault was because my brother works for BT and he told me.

There will always be problems with some adsl intallations but I just think that your post goes a bit over the top. Why don't you wait for them to fix the problem - and no, I don't mean wait forever, but give them a REASONABLE amount of time. Its only been a few days and you're not their sole customer.

When the probelm is solved then write for a refund on your adsl subscription.

  Esso43 13:32 13 Aug 2003

I am sure you are being reasonable, however BT do not seem to be puuting the right level of process control into their BB efforts.

I have recently been told it could take up to 42 days to check whether a line was able to have ADSL when the issue was actually that they hadn't filled out the post code correctly on the installation system (the billing system had the correct code).

I think their customer service apporoach is typical of a large previously publicly owned organisation in the UK and is a perfect example of why the privitisation and opening up of the markets is a good thing. (not perfect but in the right direction).

And by the way it was noticble that the attitude deteriorated when the person dealing with realised that I was not buying the adsl from them.

  Maxiem39 15:26 13 Aug 2003

Right from the start I had problems with BT. I subscribe to PC Advisor & in one I saw a good deal for Broadband,free modem & installation, so I phoned to place an order. To my surprise noone knew about the offer. I had to fax the page from the magazine before they would believe me. What had happened was that they had decided not to go ahead with the offer but to late to pull it from the magazine. I eventually got a phone call saying that the offer would go ahead for me. ten minutes later a phone call, from a different department , saying the offer would'nt be honoured. I set up the modem & filters as suggested but kept having problems.Dropped connections, modem not being recognised. As jsp21c mentioned BT have this habit of treating the customer as having caused the fault. On one occaison they had be pluging in different combinations of my phone system? I am asthmatic & this caused me to have an attack but at no point did the person offer to call back & my son had to continue. I spent a fortune to the helpdesk & could repeat word for word the action they would suggest. I complained and it was suggested that I pay for a new modem!! BT also offered to cancel the contract & reimburse me. I certainly got various explanations for the problem. One was that my old internal modem, on a com port was blocking Broadband from using the USB connection. The only positive suggestion was to buy a USB hub which seemed to work. I still have the occaisional problem but never ring the helpdesk. My aplogies for the length of this but jsp21c's post reminded me of my own problems.

  Djohn 15:54 13 Aug 2003

Think it may depend what part of the country you live in as regards service from BT. I've just contacted them this morning, regarding a move to new address [only a short distance away], No problem can keep the same number, change will take place the same day.

Also I went Broadband with AOL last week, called them and explained, again no problem, they ill transfer my B/B account/line over to new address, no charge, but will take about 5 to 10 days to do it. Can't ask for better than that. j.

  jsp21c 16:00 13 Aug 2003

Thanks for your response,

I do have my old 56k PCI modem plugged in and it should enable Winfax to work when I'm connected to Broadband by being plugged into the splitter. I might try removing it from the tower later and seeing what happens although I have disconected the phone line to it previously and it made no difference and the device manager is not giving any error signs, nor is the Windows system info.
The first modem I bought is an Alcatel 530 which has USB and Ethernet, both of which connections I have had working at some stage, but nothing since Saturday evening. I am not getting any error messages from Windows.
The 530 is powered from the mains and won't synchronise even when it is not connected to my PC by USB or Ethernet,the DSL light flashes amber which means it is trying to connect.
I then bought a Zoom USB DSL modem yesterday which is just powered from the USB port and this does excatly the same as my Alcatel -- DSL light flashes.

  lodger 18:33 13 Aug 2003

Your posting sounded very resonable to me, except for the part where you blatantly admitted to phoning the infamous BT 'Helpline'. ( u cannot be serious!!!!!!!!)..........anyway, if you now have been cured of such insane behaviour, then perhaps the whole sorry episode will have a silver lining...........;)

  zinnie 20:19 13 Aug 2003

hello out there.

reading all this 'doom and gloom' I thought
would reflect my experiences.

I purchased 'Btbroadband' directly. Got their Voyager modem and micofilters and the whole thing
worked perfectly.

When my system crashed weeks later(unrelated to broadband) I contacted the 'Btbroadband helpline'
to make sure I was doing the 'right things' when
re-installing and they were 100% helpful.

  gibbsy 21:40 13 Aug 2003

Write to the Chairman, I'm sure he'd love to hear your story. He sits in an ivory tower, thinking everything in BT Broadband is rosy!

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