Why is Load Shedding affecting my Internet Connection?

  • The pandemic has made having a working Internet connection even more vital and when bad weather and Eskom load-shedding play havoc with infrastructure it is an unfortunate reality that the result is a significant increase in outages and service interruptions.

  • You should ideally have a backup power solution for your Internet router and wifi access points as this will go a long way towards protecting you from some of the load-shedding issues that can arise.

    For more information on these solutions you can refer to our power tips guide, or look for backup power solutions in our online store.

  • Load Shedding Common Issues

    Now lets go over some common issues caused during loadshedding
    • I have backup power, but my Internet connection failed anyway.

    • Whether you have an LTE service, or a fibre connection the network infrastructure you connect to also needs to have power to run on. Due to our load-shedding challenges in South Africa, network operators have deployed extensive backup batteries and generators on their remote equipment, but these are not perfect solutions, especially during extended periods of rolling power cuts. Overworked batteries can fail and constant restarts put additional strain on equipment meaning that network outages will generally be more frequent during load shedding.
    • My Internet goes off for +- 2 hours when I don’t have load-shedding.

    • We do see this happen and it relates to some of the issues that might occur above. In all likelihood if you experience this it means your connection is dependent on a portion of infrastructure in a different load-shedding zone.
    • I don’t have backup power, when the power came back on my Internet did not, or it took a very long time to reconnect.

    • If you have ever been in a fire drill at work or school and experienced everyone trying to get back into the building at the same time, then you will understand what happens to the network when the power comes back on in an area. We have had load-shedding for some time and network operators have made a lot of improvements to try and prevent this, but reconnection bottlenecks do still occur at times and they can result in customers experiencing some delays in reconnecting when the power comes back on. In these scenarios it’s best to simply leave everything on and wait for a short period of time, as constantly restarting your equipment could exacerbate the network delays. When customers invest in backup power solutions to keep their Internet connections running it’s can help to keep the network running smoothly as well.
  • What can you do in the scenarios?

    Just Wait a little

    When the power comes back on, check to see if power has been restored to both your router and ONT.

    If the answer is yes , make yourself a hot drink, take a deep breath and wait the extra 20-30 minutes for your connection to restore itself automatically. There’s a good chance it will be up by the time you finish your drink.

    Check for reported outages

    There are many solutions in place both at Mweb and with our network partners designed to detect and report problems on the network automatically.

    If your connection has not come back up on its own, we urge you to consider checking for a reported outage and then if possible waiting at least an hour and checking again before reporting the fault to our call center.

    We understand how important your connection is to you and we wish that we could speak to every customer who experiences an outage personally, but these scenarios place considerable pressure on our call centers and we respectfully ask that you wait a little longer and try the self-help suggestions below, before picking up the phone.

    Careful restarting of equipment

    We’ve seen some ‘community technical experts’ giving out advice about unplugging fibre cables and ONT power and even factory resetting equipment.

    Please avoid these options unless you are very confident technically and know how to undo what you are attempting.

    Even if you are technically confident, never factory reset your fibre ONT as this will result in an expensive technician callout.

    We recommend the following restart sequence after a reasonable wait for the connection to restore itself:

    1. Power down the router and the ONT.
    2. Power on the ONT alone and wait for the signal lights to go green.(wait at least a minute to be sure)
    3. Power on the router and wait for all signal lights, most importantly the WAN light, to go green before testing again.

    Check your router for lost settings

    Ideally this should not happen, but routers do occasionally lose their settings after a power cut.

    If you have an Mweb supplied router and you think this may have happened, you can find the setup guide for your router here and carefully attempt reconfiguring it yourself.