Energy bills crisis: why are UK households being warned not to turn off WiFi overnight?

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Experts say turning the WiFi off can cause issues with your broadband speeds

UK households have been warned not to turn off their WiFi routers overnight as energy prices hit record highs.

Prices have gone up from around 17p on average per kWh last winter to 34 kWh after the rise on 1 October, even with the Government’s energy price guarantee.

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Why should routers be left on? 

Switching your WiFi router on and off again can wreak havoc with broadband speeds and even make your internet connection easier to hack.

Most of the UK’s biggest Internet Service Providers (ISPs), which also include BT and Sky recommend leaving their WiFi equipment on 24 hours a day, for 365 days a year.

The reason for this because endlessly switching on and off your router can send signals to your provider there is a fault on the line which can cause ISPs to place an emergency speed restriction on the service to ensure the customer stays connected.

Along with downloads getting slower, vital security updates might not be received during the night if the power is off.

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Stock photo.Stock photo.
Stock photo.

What was said?

BT said: “Constantly switching off the hub makes the line look unstable, meaning that your speed may be automatically reduced to improve the reliability of your broadband connection”.

Aman Bhatti, director of propositions at Sky Broadband, told : “We know our routers are put through their paces during the day – whether on video calls, streaming the latest show, or online gaming.

“That’s why our routers run firmware updates during the night, to avoid any unnecessary disruption during the day.

“Switching off your router overnight can affect automatic software updates and optimisations which in turn can impact the overall performance, speed and stability of your Broadband.

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“Other connected devices in the home that are connected to your router will also be disrupted by the delayed updates.

“All our current hubs are EU Eco Design Regulation approved, meaning no excessive energy consumption is being used.”

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