Quick and Free Way to Test if a Filtered Faceplate Will Improve Your Broadband

Updated February 2021.

Before spending any money, here is a quick, painless and completely free method to determine if a filtered faceplate will improve your broadband connection. It works for standard broadband (ADSL/ADSL2+) and fibre broadband (Fibre-to-the-Cabinet – FTTC) connections.

First, you should baseline your broadband connection, and determine the connection speed of your link. This is not the same as the speed shown by online speed tests. Read your modem manual on how to get this information. The reason why an online speed test is of no value is that it can take the exchange several hours or days to react to an improved line and increase actual throughput speeds. However, any line improvement should be reflected in the connection speed immediately. Please read our Increase Broadband Speed Guide, which explains the difference between connection speeds and throughputs.

BT master socketOnce you have determined your connection speed, find your BT mastersocket, which is where the cable from the BT exchange enters your property. It is a white box, as shown in the photo, with a BT or Openreach logo on it.

Closer examination will reveal that there is a faceplate screwed to the front bottom part of the box. You should remove the two front screws in order to detach the faceplate. Once unscrewed, the faceplate pulls off.

With the faceplate removed, the so-called ‘test socket’ should now visible. This just looks like the socket at the front of the faceplate. The only difference is that internal wiring in your property (for example, connecting extension phones) is actually connected to the faceplate. This internal wiring throughout your property can pick up interference, degrading your broadband signal.

With all your internal wiring disconnected, the test socket provides a clean connection to test the optimum performance of your broadband line.

All you need to do is to plug your modem directly into the test socket. Once the modem has reconnected to the exchange, make a note of the connection speed. If this has increased, then a filtered faceplate will definitely make a difference for you!

Our ADSL faceplate page gives links to where you can buy a high-quality filtered faceplate.