Why Are My Starlink Speeds So Slow?

Photo of author

Have you been experiencing slower speeds with your Starlink internet connection lately? You aren’t alone, as many customers report slow speeds and performance issues. The issue is especially noticeable in the evenings, between 5pm and 10pm.

Starlink has been operational for about 2 years, and there are still some growing pains happening. A lot of the performance issues and slow speeds are due to network congestion, but there are some things on your end to check. In this article I will explain some of the causes, and offer potential fixes.

What are the average Starlink speeds?

Before I get into the problems, it’s important to understand what your speeds should be. There are two good sources of information. The official Starlink specifications tell us the capabilities of the system, and the speeds that customers should expect:

Residential customers should expect between 20 and 100 mbps download speeds. For RV customers, speeds will be slower, especially during peak hours when your traffic is deprioritized. The RV download spec is 5-50 mbps.

But the official Starlink specs don’t tell us the whole story. What customers getting in real life? Fortunately, Ookla.com publishes regular reports about Starlink performance. They gather data from real users, and calculate median speeds:

Median Download Speed: 62 mbps

Median Upload Speed: 7 mbps

As you can see, the real world speeds are pretty close to the specifications provided by Starlink. These two data sources give us an idea of what to expect in terms of performance.

For more on performance, check out our full article on Starlink speeds.

What causes Starlink speeds to slow down?

What if you aren’t getting at least 20 mbps? There are several reasons that can cause your speeds to slow down. Here are the most common problems:

Network congestion

The biggest issue facing Starlink customers right now is network congestion. The demand for Starlink service is outpacing the capacity of the network. Starlink simply can’t launch satellites fast enough to handle the amount of people that want Starlink.

In the peak internet usage hours of the day, between 5pm-10pm, you may notice your speeds slow way down. This is caused by too many Starlink customers in your area trying to connect at the same time. Since there is limited bandwidth through the satellites, you are competing with other Starlink users for speed.

You can test to see if your issue is network congestion by performing a speed test outside of peak hours. For example, run a speed test at 7AM and compare it with a speed test at 7PM. If you get normal speeds early in the morning, but slow speeds in the evening, the cause is likely network congestion.

Wifi issues

Most people are connecting to the internet through Wifi. If you are noticing slow speeds, check your Wifi connection. Open the Starlink app, and then tap on Network. Your connected devices will be displayed, with a Wifi strength meter.

The further you are from the Wifi router, the slower your speeds will be. You can test by performing a speed test on your phone, standing right next to the Starlink router. If you get better speeds next to the router, it means the Wifi signal in your house isn’t very good.

You can improve the Wifi signal in your home by installing a mesh system. For more details, check out our full guide to Starlink mesh systems.

Faulty equipment

There are several hardware components that can go bad, and cause slow speeds. If you are using a Starlink Ethernet Adapter, and you are experiencing slow speeds through Ethernet, it could be faulty.

If you have really bad speeds almost all the time, regardless of the time of day or Wifi signal, your Starlink dish or router could be bad.

If you suspect you have bad hardware, you will need to contact Starlink for an exchange. Starlink is able to remote in and check out your system. If they determine you have an issue, they will send out new hardware to fix your issue.

Using a 3rd party router? Make sure the settings are correct. If you use any aftermarket network gear in your system, it could cause conflicts with the Starlink router, causing slow speeds. Remember, if you use a 3rd party router, you must put the Starlink router into Bypass mode.

Try these tips to improve your speeds

Here are several tips you can try to maximize your Starlink speeds:

  • Use Ethernet when practical to eliminate Wifi issues
  • Use the Starlink app Range feature to check Wifi signal levels throughout your home. Add a mesh system if necessary
  • Turn off devices when they aren’t in use. Devices like TV’s and computers can use bandwidth in the background
  • If your dish has any obstructions according to the app, they will need to be fixed for optimal performance
  • Separate the Wifi network into 2.4/5 GHz channels. Older devices may only be compatible with 2.4 GHz, while newer devices can connect to the faster 5 GHz channel

Contact support

If none of the above helps you out, I suggest reaching out to Starlink for help. They have advanced diagnostic tools to remotely troubleshoot issues you may be having.

To contact Starlink, log in to the app or website and click on Support in the menu. Search the topics for your issue, click on one, and then click the thumbs down icon to create a support ticket.

More information on how to contact Starlink is available here.

Want the latest Starlink news and info, right in your inbox? Join our newsletter!

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

6 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
dimiris
dimiris
19 days ago

In Greece Starlink sucks, latency 120-220ms

T J
T J
2 months ago

The Fact is, people are finding out that Elon’s companies get his attention for a limited time, then he moves on to something else, leaving behind YES men and woman who are no empowered to make actual decisions in his companies. this guy has shown over and over that to him we are just workers and buyers, nothing more. He will work you until you quit, he will over charge his customers and under perform. Lucky for him you purchased the equipment and he has made it almost impossible to transfer the equipment to another account, so he knows he can push it a lot farther before people start to disconnect service.

Mary Holmstrand
Mary Holmstrand
3 months ago

Noah, what does separating the 2.4 and 5 GHz do for me? I just installed the standard dish and 3 StarLink Mesh nodes to get coverage through a 4,000 sg ft home. Not having an issue per se, but I did discover that our thermostat will only connect to 2.4 GHz. Does separating decrease mesh node performance? If I separate, will each Gz then be visible by node? Trying to understand the benefit or why I would separate. So far, we are very happy with the performance and speeds, being that we have for yrs with other systems for our rural area, have only been getting about 10/10 speeds. No streaming for us..until now!! Thanks so much!

Thomas McGowan
Thomas McGowan
3 months ago

My Starlink dishy in Henderson NV gets so slow at night that we can’t watch YouTube TV. All we get for long periods of time is a spinney circle and frozen tv image. Its become unwatchable at night now in October.
Dishy also reports that we are in Denver CO when we are actually in Las Vegas area. TV programs and web surfing is all messed up due to reporting the wrong DMA.
Starlink really had potential, but now its as slow as Centurylink DSL and less reliable when I really need it to be fast. I dont care if its 200mbs at 3am give me minimum 25mbs. I see Verizon and Cox cable have minimum SLA speeds, why doesn’t Elon Musk guarantee something like that? #starlinkfail #slowstarlink 10/11/22

Guy
Guy
1 month ago
Reply to  Thomas McGowan

Youre comparing satellite to cable? Really?

Starlink is not for everyone. If you have access to cable internet, then use it. If your only other option is traditional satellite like Hughesnet or Viasat then Starlink is the best.