Question Can a powerline adapter disrupt other connections on the network?

Furial

Distinguished
Feb 5, 2011
19
0
18,510
0
Hi everyone,

I have a bit of an odd one here.

I have 2 ethernet connections to my router and everything's great. Recently, we got a powerline to be able to get a computer really far in the house plugged in too.

Every time the powerline is plugged, my internet is all wacky. Speedtests either give me reading of 250, which is normal, 3-6mb or they flat and cause speedtest.net to give an error.

Now, I'm with VirginMedia and currently it shows they may be experiencing some issues: https://downdetector.ie/status/upc/

However once the powerline is unplugged, no more issues. Additionally, my neighbour (same building= also mentioned she had similar issues, so in reality what I'm asking is if the powerline can mess up with the electrical system in the building in a way that messes everyone's connection or has this all been just a huge coincidence and it's an ISP issue?

Kind regards,
Tom
 
One scenario I can think of.
When something is plugged into your "extended" power line....it draws current.
Anytime you draw current.....you generally get a voltage drop at the outlet.
If this outlet is connected to the other outlets (in certain ways)....the voltage can drop at the other outlets.
This may be your problem.
I might try plugging the router into some other outlets that may not be directly connected to the extended one and you might see the problem go away.
 

SamirD

Honorable
Jan 16, 2014
1,314
178
11,490
43
There is no way a powerline adapter can cause problems through the power circuits--it's just not that heavy of a load.

However, a malfunctioning powerline adapter (or any malfunctioning ethernet adapter) can disrupt ethernet networks although most switches are supposed to be smart enough to disconnect such offending adapters to avoid problems on the rest of the network.
 

Furial

Distinguished
Feb 5, 2011
19
0
18,510
0
The router is in an outlet on the opposite wall of the powerline outlet. Whether or not they connect, I wouldn't know. I contacted my ISP and they said my router appears to be faulty and will be replaced so I think I'll go with that. It's odd though as my neighbour does have the same issue and neither of us had it before. Hoping it's not Customer Service misinterpreting the situation.
 

SamirD

Honorable
Jan 16, 2014
1,314
178
11,490
43
The router is in an outlet on the opposite wall of the powerline outlet. Whether or not they connect, I wouldn't know. I contacted my ISP and they said my router appears to be faulty and will be replaced so I think I'll go with that. It's odd though as my neighbour does have the same issue and neither of us had it before. Hoping it's not Customer Service misinterpreting the situation.
If you're able to unplug the powerline and it restores both you and your neighbor's Internet, there is nothing wrong with your isp equipment and customer service is wrong.

Have you always had this problem with the powerlines or did they previously work correctly?
 

Furial

Distinguished
Feb 5, 2011
19
0
18,510
0
Never had an issue in years, new housemate in a far away room, so we got her a powerline yesterday and that's when it started. I've just unplugged it again and it seems ok. Thing is. Yesterday we unplugged the powerline and I connected a 30m ethernet cable from the router to her PC and the issue was still there, but we practically removed the powerline, plugged the cable and ran speedtest. It could take a few moments for things to get back to normal. I'm going to try some online gaming for an hour without the powerline and plug it back to be sure. I really doubt it's the router but then again, affecting my neighbour's internet is also very odd... or maybe not... they're directly under us.
 

SamirD

Honorable
Jan 16, 2014
1,314
178
11,490
43
Thank you for the additional information. If a long cable running to the new system on the network takes the network down, it's that system that's the problem and they'll need to clean it of all the malware/etc on it before you connect it back to your network via powerline or otherwise.

And now a simple test we can do for the power line is to simply use them to replace an existing cabled system/device. If you don't have any problems, then the powerlines are fine, your internet is fine and your new housemate's system is bork3d. :D
 

Furial

Distinguished
Feb 5, 2011
19
0
18,510
0
Not sure if that's it Samir. My friend's PC was turned off this whole time. It seems to be the act of plugging the powerline that's messing everything up. I tried my own old powerline (that one has no wifi) and the issues reocurred. I might try and plug it to different outlets if the issue persists.

For now, it's been on for 10 minutes without a problem haha...
 

SamirD

Honorable
Jan 16, 2014
1,314
178
11,490
43
That's definitely wierd. Powerline shouldn't be affecting anything else at all.

Here's an experiment if you've got some sort of surge protection power strip. Put both powerlines on the power strip and connect one of the units to the router and another to a known working device (disconnect its ethernet and plug into the powerline). If this works and doesn't cause any problems, there is something wrong with the powerlines or how they affect the wiring in the building, which would be a total first that I've ever seen.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS