Wednesday, February 07, 2007

DSL, the Internet, and Squirrels

Last Sunday our DSL Internet connection started dropping every ten minutes or so. We called Bellsouth Fastaccess and they checked the lines remotely and said they detected a problem on their line and would dispatch a technician on Monday. Monday afternoon the tech showed up and ran tests which showed the lines were clear. That day our connections were slow but stable. Monday night brought rain and our connection became unstable again. Our phone lines were plagued with static which made conversations difficult. We began to see a correlation with rain and our problem. Tuesday morning I called Bellsouth's residential service and complained about the static rather than calling Fastaccess to complain about the Internet drops. I knew they would say they had sent a tech out and everything was ok. In the afternoon the new tech arrived and investigated the problem. Again, it was sunny, no rain, and no problem. But, when I told him about the correlation with rain he climbed the pole and discovered the problem. Squirrels had chewed the insulation off the wires up on the pole. Every time it rained water seeped into the line causing the static and the Internet drop outs.

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