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Is Spectrum Internet Down?

Learn about Spectrum outages, and get back online fast

Home internet outages can throw off your daily routine, your social life, and even your ability to check accounts and pay bills. So frustrating!

The official line from Spectrum is that it offers 99.9% internet reliability. But your real-world experience could be a different story.

We’ll go over how to tell if there’s a Spectrum network outage, give you tips for getting back online, and help you understand Spectrum outage frequency so you can decide whether it’s time to switch providers.

Frustrated with another Spectrum outage?

How to find out if Spectrum Internet is down

Step 1: Check other Wi-Fi-capable devices

If you get a dreaded error box that says your device isn’t online, or if you can’t load new content, there’s a good chance your internet connection is down. However, the app or device might be the problem.

To find out, first try to load a different website or streaming app. If that doesn’t work, try getting online with a different laptop or gaming console. A device connected with an Ethernet cable is your best bet, but wireless devices can work too. If you don’t have a hard-wired device, you can try accessing new shows, sites, or apps on  smartphones, smart speakers, or even smart TVs.

If you can’t get online with any device, there may be a problem with your internet equipment (gateway or modem+router) or your cables. The following guides from our resource library may help you diagnose and fix home equipment issues:

Step 2: Check lights

If troubleshooting your gear doesn’t work and you can’t get online with any device, it’s time to take a closer look at the internet connection coming into your home. If you’re using Spectrum equipment (and our customer research shows about two-thirds of Spectrum customers do), look for a solid blue light on your Spectrum gateway. If it’s there, your connection to the internet is probably OK. If not, you may be in an outage.

That said, Spectrum has deployed many different models over the years. That’s why Spectrum has published its own guide on modems, routers, and combos.

If you are using Spectrum Wi-Fi gear, you can manage it through the My Spectrum app. If you use your own, there’s a good chance the router manufacturer also has a mobile app you can use. If not, refer to your manufacturer’s troubleshooting guides to find out whether the router itself is receiving outside internet.

Step 3: Restart and power cycle your gear

If your internet connection is on the fritz, there may be a simple fix (and it’s one you’ve probably heard before): Turn your gear off, and turn it back on again. This tried-and-true troubleshooting technique works for routers, modems, gateways, and your devices themselves.

If a restart doesn’t resolve things, you can take your troubleshooting to the next level with a technique known as power cycling. Here’s how it works:

  1. Power off and unplug your device.
  2. Wait for about 60 seconds.
  3. Plug the devices back in and power them back on.

When you’re power cycling your modem, router, or gateway, expect to wait several minutes for the devices to reconnect fully. A series of flashing lights means the process is underway.

Pro tip:

Be very careful with reset buttons on your internet equipment (or any buttons that require a special tool like a pin). These will restore the gear to factory defaults, and you will have to set up your whole network from scratch. If rebooting and power cycling your equipment doesn’t work, contact Spectrum Support.*

Step 4: Check the Spectrum app or online portal

If you’ve done everything you can on your end and still can’t connect to the internet, it’s time to ask Spectrum what’s going on. The easiest way to see if there’s a reported outage is to check for text messages from Spectrum or log into the My Spectrum app on an account holder’s smartphone. You can also go to your Spectrum account page or visit the Spectrum outage and troubleshooting tool online.

Unfortunately, you might know about a Spectrum outage before Spectrum does. In one Connect California study, for example, customers reported experiencing internet outages 30–90 minutes before they were posted by Spectrum.

If you think Spectrum is down but the company isn’t up to date, you can sign into your account and ask Spectrum a question.

Pro tip:

Sometimes, you can find out about Spectrum outages on social media before the company alerts you of a problem. We recommend checking out r/Spectrum on Reddit, the Ask Spectrum account on X, or the Spectrum page on Facebook.

Step 5: Check outside

Another way to find out if there’s an outage outside your home is to simply go outside. If you have a neighbor who also has Spectrum, ask if they have an internet connection. If they can’t get online either, you know there’s a widespread problem.

You can also look for construction crews. These might be Spectrum crews actively working on system upgrades and repairs, or they could be a third-party construction company that has inadvertently cut a line.

Finally, check the weather. A lot of Spectrum’s cabling is attached to utility poles, so issues like wind and ice storms can take out connections for entire neighborhoods.

Step 6: Call customer service

If you still can’t get online, it’s time to contact Spectrum Support. You’ll need the phone number of the account holder or your Spectrum account number. You can find that number at the top left corner of your printed bill or the top right corner of our account page online. In the My Spectrum app, tap Your Account in the top-right corner of the home screen and then tap View Account Info.

When you dial in, your call will be answered by an audio chatbot that will walk you through options. To reach a live human, press “0” or say “representative” and answer the questions from the robot voice until your call is routed properly.

Refunds for Spectrum Internet outages

Spectrum doesn’t offer automatic refunds to home internet customers, but you may be able to ask for a refund if you’ve had a lot of problems. In the California Connects study mentioned above, researchers found $20 was the most common refund. If you insist, though, you may be able to get up to $50.

We read every word of the terms of service, and here’s what we found: “Spectrum may give credit with respect to Subscriber’s recurring monthly subscription fee but isn’t required to do so.”

We found only one important exception in the terms. New customers may be eligible for a refund within the first 30 days of signing up (if they cancel service within 45 days of billing).

How to get back up if Spectrum is down

If your Spectrum Internet is down and getting back online is an emergency, try using your smartphone as a Wi-Fi hotspot or tethering it to your computer via Bluetooth or USB cable. Just remember that most mobile plans have strict data limits on tethering and hotspot usage, so you should reconnect to your Spectrum Internet as soon as it becomes available.

If you have transportation and a little more time to get online, look for public hotspots at places like restaurants, transit stations, and coffee shops. You can also find secure Wi-Fi (and public computers) at most public libraries.

Leave a review about your Spectrum service

Hearing from real customers helps us make better recommendations so other customers can decide which providers to choose. If you’re a Spectrum customer, tell us know what you think about your service.

What other Spectrum customers say

We talk to thousands of customers a year as part of our annual customer satisfaction survey, and we hear from even more who leave reviews on our site. Below is a snapshot of what we heard in 2023.

Quotes from Spectrum customers*

I like that Spectrum has affordable prices, and they can do better at being more reliable without as many outages”

“I am happy that Spectrum upgraded their system in my area. Prior to that, my service was subject to more slowdowns and outages.”

“The rare outages and rare slower speeds are disappointing. Customer service is top notch. I always reach someone to help and my questions/issues are responded to timely.”

“I like that our internet is very reliable. If we have issues, we can get help on the phone or on the website. Usually, if the internet goes down, it’s less than five minutes before it comes back up.”

About two-thirds of Spectrum customers are either very satisfied or completely satisfied with their plans, and about the same number are satisfied with the reliability of their service. However, 8% were either hardly satisfied or not at all satisfied with the reliability. Slightly over half of customers tell us they are very likely to choose Spectrum again next time they shop for internet.

Spectrum fared a little better than average among national internet providers in our 2023 survey. It earned especially high marks for speed.

Overall satisfactionSpeedPriceReliabilityCustomer Service
Spectrum3.73.93.33.73.7
AT&T3.93.93.73.83.8
Verizon3.943.643.9
Frontier3.53.63.43.53.6
All providers3.63.73.33.63.6

Customer-reported outage information

In addition to asking how customers felt about their service, we asked about recent outages. The results were not quite as good as what we saw from fiber internet providers such as Google Fiber.

pie chart showing customer satisfaction survey results for Spectrum outages

Reliability in different areas

Spectrum offers internet service to nearly 30 percent of households in the U.S. and has networks spread from Oregon’s west coast to the far south of Texas and the northern tip of Maine. That means it has hundreds of different networks, each with its own strengths and weaknesses.

Spectrum says it offers 99.9% reliability, and that covers outages due to damaged cables or connectors, vandalism, new construction, construction repair, node optimization, and backup power source failure. It also includes scheduled maintenance. Spectrum does not include in its 99.9% reliability figure outages caused by “outside events” including storms, fiber cuts from outside construction, and events related to commercial power outages.

However, because Spectrum often strings its wiring above ground on utility poles, weather-related outages can occur. If you’re in a storm and your Spectrum Internet goes out, you can visit the Spectrum Storm Center or contact Spectrum to report your issue and get updates.

If you’re not sure whether you’re experiencing an outage or slowdown on your Spectrum connection, check your speed using our mobile app or any browser.

Spectrum system upgrades

Many of the short but frequent outages we hear about seem to be related to Spectrum’s network-wide upgrade. A Reddit thread about the high-split tech answers questions about upgrade-related questions from a technician, for example. It lines up chronologically with complaints we see on online outage detection sites. In most cases, brief outages occur during early morning hours, but we have seen reports of them lasting for multiple hours.

According to Spectrum, the upgrade is expected to take place in three stages and last through 2025. By the time it’s done, customers may be able to get download speeds as fast as 10Gbps.

Spectrum’s cable internet connections

Spectrum Internet offers mostly cable internet throughout its network of more than 65 million homes and businesses. It offers fiber-to-the-home connections only in areas where no other fiber providers are available. These connections are available to less than half a percent of addresses in the U.S.

Throughout its cable footprint. Spectrum uses a local and regional network built with fiber-optic cables. However, the connections from the wider network to individual homes are coax cables. The coax and underlying tech may mean congestion during busy times, when all your neighbors are trying to get online or watch a big sporting event at once.

Thanks to continuously improving cable technology, though, those slowdowns are mostly in the past. In fact, the majority of Spectrum cable customers can now get download speeds up to 1Gbps and upload speeds of 35Mbps.

Fiber internet, in comparison, almost always offers symmetrical upload and download speeds and is much less susceptible to congestion and electrical interference.

Learn more about Spectrum Internet plans

Spectrum offers super speedy 1Gbps plans, but also has cheaper plans with slower speeds. The specific plans available to you will depend on where you live.

PackagePriceSpeedOrder online
Spectrum Internet® 100$29.99/mo.*
for 24 mos.
Up to 100Mbps
(wireless speeds may vary)
Spectrum Internet®$49.99/mo.*
for 12 mos.
Up to 300Mbps
(wireless speeds may vary)
Spectrum Internet® Ultra$39.99-$69.99/mo.*
for 12 mos.
Up to 500Mbps
(wireless speeds may vary)
Spectrum Internet® Gig$59.99-$89.99/mo.
for 12 mos.
Up to 1,000Mbps
(wireless speeds may vary)

How Spectrum Internet compares

Spectrum competes with AT&T fiber in major metros in Texas and parts of Atlanta, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Ohio, Michigan, and the Carolinas. If you can get AT&T where you live, you will usually get faster speeds at better prices than you would with Spectrum, but you may be able to find a slower budget plan from Spectrum.

Spectrum competes with Fontier’s fiber internet in places like Los Angeles, Dallas, areas of Connecticut, and Tampa, Florida. Spectrum also competes with DSL from Frontier in areas throughout the U.S. If you can get only DSL, Spectrum is usually the better choice. If you’re in one of Frontier’s fiber neighborhoods, though, it’s a tough call. You may qualify for slow but super cheap plans from Spectrum (for the first 12 months), but you can get excellent speeds and reliable prices with Frontier.

Spectrum also competes with Earthlink. We recommend careful comparison shopping, because prices and available speeds vary widely. Lucky for you, you can get unlimited data with plans from either provider.

If the choice is between Spectrum and Verizon (and you can get Verizon Fios), our experts say you should go with Fios. If your choice is between Google Fiber and Spectrum, you can save a little money upfront with Spectrum, but you will likely be happier with Google Fiber in the long run. Between Spectrum and Optimum, Spectrum might be the better choice due to its lower prices and higher customer service scores. However, both Spectrum and Optimum raise prices after an initial promotional period.

Comparing home internet providers side by side

ProviderCustomer ratingMax download speedCheapest planInternet typeCheck availability
Spectrum 3.7Up to 100Mbps$29.99/mo.*Cable, fiber
AT&T 3.9Up to 300Mbps$55.00/mo.Fiber
Frontier 3.5Up to 500Mbps$44.99/mo.§Fiber
EarthLink 3.3Up to 300Mbps$54.95/mo.||Fiber
3.9Up to 300Mbps$49.99.00/mo.#Fiber
Optimum 3.3Up to 300Mbps$30.00/mo.ΔCable, fiber

FAQ about Spectrum

How do I know if Spectrum is down in my area?
Why isn't my Spectrum Internet working?
How do I check my Spectrum signal?
Why is my Spectrum Wi-Fi connected but I don't have internet?
Does Spectrum work when the power is out?

Disclaimers

Author -

Chili Palmer covers breaking news, satellite internet, mobile connectivity, and streaming services for HighSpeedInternet.com. Previously writing under the name Rebecca Palmer, Chili is passionate about providing accurate and accessible information any time you're trying to connect … whether you already speak geek or just got your first smartphone.

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