Whether you have Comcast or CenturyLink, or any other provider, the most difficult part of finding a modem is ensuring it will work with your service plan and be able to activate in your area. We refer to this as the devices’ “compatibility”. There are several factors that contribute to compatibility and unfortunately, most places that sell modems including Amazon and other online retailers don’t make it easy to find the best fit.
Making it easy to find the best fitting modem for your service has been the north star that guides ModemGuides since the beginning! This article will provide some strategies you can use to easily find the best modem for your needs.
Look at Your Current Internet Plan
One of the easiest ways to narrow down what equipment you can use is to find out what speed tiers you’re paying for from your provider. Each internet carrier offers different speed-tier breakdowns that provide a range of service offerings. Be careful to look at your bill, not just what’s offered by the company as a whole, since some speed tiers may not be offered in all areas. For example, here in Portland, OR CenturyLink offers Gigabit speeds for only certain zip codes. If you’re not sure what is offered in your location, you can always call your provider and find out what’s available.
Determine What Features are Important to You
Once you’ve narrowed down to looking at devices within your speed tier, you can then decide what other features you’d like to be included. If you’re just looking for a wired connection or already own a WiFi router that you like, it may not be necessary to get a modem with some of these upgrades. If not, though, it might be worth considering some of these commonly added features:
- Built-in Wireless connections (“Modem Router Combo”)
- Dual or Tri-Band Wireless – Better wireless signal strength and coverage
- Number of Ethernet Ports for connecting wired devices
- Easy to Install (includes an installation wizard, or is “plug’n’play”)
- Security Enhancements & Parental Controls
- DOCSIS Version – DOCSIS 2.0, 3.0 and 3.1 are the current versions
- DSL Version – ADSL, VDSL, etc.
Choosing the Best Modem Router Combo or Modem
Now that you’ve narrowed down your speed tier and your desired features, you can now move onto the hardest part of the process: choosing your device. There are plenty of websites that offer modems and routers for sale, however many of them are not known for good quality, or are not clear about their policies or the compatibility of each device. Device compatibility can change based on the firmware that’s installed on it, so even if you research really well, you may still wind up needing to return it.
All of our products are organized with the most up-to-date information on compatibility available. We survey our own customers to continuously improve our services. All modems we sell come with an activation guarantee for any provider where it’s included on their approved equipment list. We work extremely hard to keep our lists accurate and ensure that when you purchase a modem from ModemGuides.com, you’ll be able to use it as advertised.
Call Your Provider to Confirm Before Ordering
After you’ve selected the best modem and have verified it will work with your speed tier, and is compatible with your internet provider, we always recommend calling your provider to ensure this truly is the best modem for you before you place your order. It generally takes less than 10 minutes, and can save you time, frustration and money by ensuring you won’t need to return your cable or DSL modem due to compatibility. Plus, there’s always the chance you’ve overlooked something!
The most common reason for modem returns is due to compatibility issues. We’re confident that customers that follow this crucial step will be able to avoid this 99% of the time.
Once you know the type of modem you need, the next step is to read reviews. Reviews can give you an idea of how reliable a modem is, as well as any potential issues you may encounter. Take the time to read reviews from both experts and users to get a better understanding of the modem you are considering.
Look for a Warranty
Look for a modem that comes with a warranty. This will ensure that you are covered if anything goes wrong with the modem, and it can help you save money in the long run.
Ask for Help
If you are still having trouble finding the best modem for your internet service, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Reach out to customer service or your internet service provider and they can provide you with more information on the different models and brands available.
By following these tips, you can make sure that you find the best modem for your internet service. Take the time to determine your needs and read reviews, consider the price, look for a warranty, and ask for help if necessary. With the right modem, you can enjoy reliable and fast internet service.