Tuesday, June 11, 2024

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Troubleshooting Starlink Issues: Solutions and Fixes


Starlink is a revolutionary development for individuals residing in regions with limited or no access to high-speed internet, and it stands out as the top provider of Satellite Internet. However, being a relatively new technology, it relies on communication with small satellites located in outer space. As expected, there may be occasional issues. In this guide, we examine Starlink’s common problems and solutions.

The issue at hand: Starlink is not functioning, resulting in a complete absence of signal from Starlink.

starlink satellite

Credit: SpaceX

Is Starlink completely non-functional? In that situation, there are several potential causes that may be to blame. Here are some of the most frequent explanations:

Is Starlink down?

Earlier this month, there was a significant period of time where service was unavailable. I was unaware that it was a complete outage in my region and spent approximately twenty minutes trying to diagnose potential issues. Before attempting any troubleshooting, it may be helpful to check the unofficial Starlink Status website or Down Detector.

Is your router and dish connected correctly?

I experienced a problem where I had no signal and it seemed like my dish was not working. However, I discovered that the cable connecting my dish had become slightly loose, even though it didn’t appear so at first glance. Perhaps the strong winds we had recently caused enough movement to disconnect the cord.

To clarify, please examine your cable connections. Disconnect and reconnect both the dish’s base and your router. If functionality resumes after this, it indicates this was the issue.

The weather may be the issue.

Although Starlink is more resilient to weather conditions compared to traditional satellite services, it is not completely immune. Heavy rain can disrupt the signal, although it can usually handle light rain or mist without issue. Snowy weather can also cause disruptions. Despite having a built-in heater, the Starlink dish may face challenges with extremely cold temperatures, which could result in snow buildup that interferes with the signal.

If there is snowfall and you are able to access your dish, carefully brushing off the snow may temporarily improve the signal. However, in the case of heavy rainfall, there is no option but to wait for it to subside.

In order to reduce interruptions, it is recommended for satellite users to have a contingency plan, such as a hotspot. If your current mobile data plan permits, you may also utilize it as a temporary hotspot. Although mobile signals can also be affected by severe weather, the impact is usually not as significant.

, try moving it closer to a window

Perhaps the location of your Starlink dish is the problem, consider relocating it towards a window.

If you reside in a location with numerous barriers, such as densely forested areas, you may encounter frequent disruptions in signal. To verify for obstacles, you should open the official Starlink app.

After logging in, navigate to Obstructions where you will see a 3D visualization of your dishy’s view of the sky. Blue areas indicate clear visibility, while red areas indicate obstructions. To manually check for obstructions, click the Check for Obstructions button and use your phone’s camera to scan the sky. Starlink will detect any potential issues as you point and move the camera.

The temporary issue may be affecting the router or dish.

starlink and router (1)

Credit: Starlink

Occasionally, software malfunctions may cause major issues with Stalink, such as a signal loss. Although these problems may resolve on their own, here are some alternative methods you can attempt:

  • Make sure your software/firmware is up-to-date. Open the app and scroll down to the bottom. Select the Advanced tab. You will find details about the current software versions for both your router and dish. You can compare these versions to the latest one available on Starlink Insider. If they are outdated, the software will automatically download the newest version in due time. To initiate the update immediately, restart your router.

  • To resolve unusual issues, consider restarting both your router and dish, even if your software is current. In the Settings section, there is an option to Reboot Router. Simply slide the toggle to initiate a restart. Please avoid manually unplugging the cable while the device is powered on to prevent potential damage.

  • To restart your Starlink Dish, access the Settings tab and select the Starlink tab. From there, you can use the Slide to Reboot option to restart the dish.

If the previous method did not work, consider using the Stow Starlink slider. This feature is designed for storing your unit during shipping, but it can also initiate a hard reset when you unstow it.

Please examine the base of your router as there may be problems with communication.

If the router’s light is displaying a red color, there may be an issue with its connection to the dish. This problem could be caused by hardware malfunctions or a defective cable. Unfortunately, for those with square dishes, the router and dish are linked by a specialized cable. If the cable is damaged due to circumstances beyond your control, Starlink may provide a complimentary replacement. However, if you need to buy a new one, the Starlink accessory is priced at $64 for a 75-foot cable or $93 for a 150-foot option.

If you are having trouble identifying or solving the issue independently, it may be necessary to contact Starlink for help. Please note that there is no direct phone number to call, but you can use the app or go to Starlink’s support page for assistance.

Issue 2: The speed of Starlink is not as fast as usual.

starlink ground pole mount

Credit: Starlink

Are you experiencing a decrease in your Starlink internet speed? You’re not the only one. There are various factors that can lead to slower speeds, but the main cause is oversubscription, which means there are too many users in your area. Unfortunately, this is a difficult problem to address. One solution for those on the Residential (Standard) plan is to upgrade to the Business tier, but this would come at a cost of $250 per month. Starlink Roam users have the option to temporarily activate priority data for an additional fee of $2 per GB, which can accumulate quickly.

Prior to making a decision to quit or increase your spending, it is crucial to verify that the issue is indeed network congestion. Other Starlink options may not offer significant improvement in this case. To confirm, please follow these guidelines:

  • Launch the Starlink application and select the Speed Test option. The application will assess your connection and disclose any identified problems. If the test is conducted during a busy period with no additional concerns, it will probably identify the issue as being caused by high traffic.

  • If it is not during a time of high usage, attempt to reset. To reset the satellite dish, access Settings > Starlink > Slide to Restart. Also, reboot the router by going to Settings > Router > Reboot Router.

If the issue persists despite following these steps, it is necessary to reach out to Starlink support. There may be a variety of reasons for the problem, including malfunctioning equipment or temporary network difficulties.

Contacting Starlink customer support can assist in identifying the root cause of your reduced speed and offer guidance towards resolving it. There are various potential factors that may be contributing to the issue, such as malfunctioning equipment or temporary network problems.

Issue 3: Starlink’s WiFi connection is not accessible at all.

starlink dish second angle

Credit: Andrew Grush / Android Authority

Are you unable to find a Wi-Fi connection? Your router may be the cause. Follow these steps to fix the problem:

  • Verify Power: Begin by confirming that your router is receiving power. If you are utilizing the Starlink-approved router, flip it over and look for a small white light to indicate it is turned on. If there is no light, double check that the cables are securely connected and confirm that the outlet (and any surge protector) is working properly.

  • Is there no electricity?: If there is no electricity coming from the outlet, try plugging the router into a different outlet to eliminate any issues with the electrical connection. If the outlet and surge protector are functioning properly and the cables are connected correctly, the issue may be with the router itself, potentially due to a damaged cord. In this situation, it is recommended to contact customer service.

  • If the router is receiving power but is not working properly, try restarting it. Navigate to the Settings menu and select “Router,” then choose “Reboot Router.” This basic action may solve the problem. If the issue continues, contact customer service for assistance. Depending on the warranty of your hardware, you may need to buy a new router.

If you’re in a hurry to get a new router, and you have an older Starlink router that comes with an Ethernet cable (or an adapter), you can try connecting your laptop directly to the router using the Ethernet cable. If this setup allows you to access the internet, it can serve as a temporary solution until your new router arrives.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get in touch with Starlink?

To receive assistance with any concerns, please visit the official Starlink support page or contact us through the app.

What is the reason for Starlink’s slow speed?

It is probable that Starlink’s slow speed is due to usage during peak times. Even with a Starlink plan, heavy data users may experience deliberate deprioritization compared to Standard and Business users.

What is the time frame for Starlink to establish a connection?

After resetting your equipment, it usually takes about 15 minutes to reboot. In some cases, it may take longer if the software needs to be automatically updated or if there are issues with connecting to the network.

What is the significance of a red light on your router?

When the red light is on, it indicates that there is a communication issue between the dish and router. Make sure that all cables are securely connected and if they are, attempt to reset the system. If the issue persists, it may be necessary to replace one or more of the cables, dish, or router components.

What is the maximum number of devices that can be connected to a Starlink router?

The brief response is that there are more devices than you will probably possess. The confirmed answer is that 128 devices can be used simultaneously.

Does the weather impact Starlink?

The functionality of Starlink is impacted by weather conditions, particularly heavy rain and snow. Wind and other environmental factors may also impact the connection, though to a lesser extent.