Viasat Satellite Internet Not Working? Here’s What To Do.

The logo for Viasat satellite internet
Viasat
3.8 out of 5 stars
3.75
  • pro
    More than one speed option
  • pro
    Lower price per Mbps per month than Hughesnet
  • con
    Three-month price hike
Easton Smith
Nov 09, 2023
Icon Time To Read5 min read

Viasat (formerly Exede) is probably the best way to stay connected to the internet if you live in a very rural area (at least until 5G becomes more widely available). But satellite internet technology doesn’t always give you the most reliable connection.

In this article we’ll help you troubleshoot your Viasat internet connection, whether it’s an issue with your equipment, your account, or something else (like the stormy weather). After all, you can only play the offline Google Dinosaur game for so long.

We’ve split our Viasat troubleshooting tips into two sections: (1) no connection and (2) slow or spotty connection.

If you’re not sure exactly what’s happening with your Viasat internet, you might want to start with a speed test. (Our speed test is free, give it a go.)

This speed test should give you an indication of whether your network is totally down or just running slow. It’s also a good way to see if your internet speed is below or above what Viasat says it should be.

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Troubleshooting no connection

If you’re not getting any signal or connection at all from your Viasat dish, then you should try the following solutions.

Check your account

First and foremost, check your account to make sure that you’re not in “data restriction” mode. If you’ve already used up your data allowance for the month then your service might be restricted.

You can contact Viasat on its website or by phone (+1-855-810-1308) if you want to change your account options or add more data.

You can also use the contact info above to see if Viasat is experiencing network wide issues in your area. The problem may be on Viasat’s end and not your own.

We also recommend checking to make sure your last payment went through. If there was some kind of issue with your payment method, it's common your service would be suspended. You can call the customer service number above or sign in to your account to confirm your account is in good standing. 

Reset your Viasat internet

Often a simple “hard reset” of your satellite internet system will kick your internet back into gear. Viasat recommends taking the following steps (in this order!) to reset your system.1

How to reset Viasat internet: 

  1. Turn off your computer.
  2. Turn off the router by unplugging it.
  3. Turn off the modem by unplugging it.
  4. Unplug any Ethernet cables going to the modem. Wait a moment, then plug them back in.
  5. Plug your modem back in and wait until all LED lights are lit up solid.
  6. Turn on your router.
  7. Turn on your computer.

If this didn't work, you can also run a quick modem diagnostic test by signing into your MyViasat account. By running a modem diagnostic test you can see if your router and modem are working properly. 

Check your satellite dish

For this one you’ll have to go outside. Check your dish to make sure that it is undamaged and intact. Weather events like hail storms and heavy snow can damage or displace your dish, leading to a loss of connection.

If your dish is damaged or obstructed, it’s best to contact Viasat before trying to fix it yourself. The company may be able to walk you through a solution or send a technician to help you repair the system.

Troubleshooting a slow or spotty connection

If your connection is not totally down but just acting a bit erratic or sluggish, then try the following fixes. We've also got a full guide on how to speed up your satellite internet if you need more tips.

Check your account

Before you try anything else, check your account to make sure that you’re not in “data restriction” mode. If you’ve already used up your data allowance for the month then Viasat may have slowed your connection.

If your account is out of data you can reach Viasat on its website or by phone (+1-855-810-1308) to add more.

Check your dish (and the weather report)

If your dish is obstructed by tree branches, wires, or other objects, then your signal might suffer. Weather events, like rainstorms, snowstorms, and hail can also affect your satellite internet connection (even sunspots can sometimes cause outages!).

If you feel like your dish is in an incorrect position or is being obstructed, you should contact Viasat before trying to fix the problem yourself. Someone at the company may be able to walk you through a solution or send a technician to help.

Move your connected devices

A common cause of satellite internet slowdowns is an overstretched network. If your Wi-Fi router is in the basement, but you’re on the second floor, then your signal might be weak. Try rearranging the placement of your Wi-Fi router and your connected devices so that they’re closer together.

If moving your devices around your house doesn’t work, you may want to consider plugging your device directly into the router using an Ethernet cord. This bypasses the Wi-Fi router (so you’ll be less mobile) but may give you a stronger connection.

You can also try disconnecting some of your devices (cell phones, for example) from the Wi-Fi network. Having too many devices connected, even devices that aren’t streaming or browsing, can clog up your home internet bandwidth.

Try using a different app or new equipment

The problem with your shotty internet might be related to an app or program that you’re using. Maybe it’s Netflix that's acting up, or maybe you just need to try out a different streaming device.

Check your browser

You might not think that your browser can affect your internet speeds, but it definitely can. If you’re using an old version of an internet browser, or if you’ve got hundreds of tabs open (I plead guilty on that one), it could affect your connection.

Additionally, you can try clearing the cache on your internet browser. This may mean you have to re-enter passwords and other information on sites that you regularly visit, but it can free up memory on your device and increase your internet speeds.

Other issues with Viasat internet

Although we’ve gone over some of the most common issues people face with their Viasat satellite internet connection, your specific problem may be something else entirely.

If you’re working with old or incompatible equipment, you may need to upgrade. Viruses and malware can wreak havoc on your computer and cause it to slow down. If you think your issue may be originating in your device (rather than the network itself), try connecting with a different computer or phone.

We hope that our guide to fixing your Viasat internet has been helpful! Here’s a chart to recap common issues and their potential fixes.

Viasat troubleshooting chart
Issue
Known causes
Potential fixes

Internet doesn't connect.

Account in 'data restriction' mode, dish damaged/obstructed, or network outage.

Add more data to your account, reset your system, reposition dish, or contact Viasat.

Internet is slow.

Account in 'data restriction' mode, bad weather, dish damaged/obstructed, too many devices connected, or browser issues.

Add more data your account, wait for weather to pass, reposition dish, disconnect and/or move devices, or clear browser cache.

Alternatives to Viasat internet

Hopefully one of the tips here has helped you get back online. But if you’re still stuck in no-internet land, or just fed up with your sluggish speeds, then maybe it’s time to consider switching things up.

Obviously, some houses can only get internet through satellite, in which case you should probably stick with Viasat (or try Hughesnet). But it’s worth taking a look to see if you can get a more reliable wired connection from one of these companies or by entering your zip code into our tool for a quick list of all the internet that's available in your area. And if you're sure satellite internet is your only option, check out our comparison of Viasat and Hughesnet.

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Look for more reliable internet providers in your area.
Recommended rural internet providers
Provider
Monthly price
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Connection Type
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CenturyLink Internet$50-$75*100-940 MbpsDSL/Fiber
Earthlink Internet$54.95-$189.9545-5000 MbpsDSL/Fiber
Hughesnet Internet$49.99-$79.9950–100 MbpsSatellite
Optimum Internet$30-$55^300-940 MbpsCable/Fiber
Windstream Internet$39.99-$169.99°100-2000 MbpsDSL/Fiber
Xfinity Internet$19.99-$120**75-2000 MbpsCable/Fiber
Data as of 04/05/2023. Offers and availability vary by location and are subject to change.
* Speed may not be available in your area. Paperless billing or prepay required. Additional taxes, fees, and surcharges apply.
With a 12 month contract.
Service plans require a 24-month commitment. Pricing not available in all areas.
^ Prices w/Auto Pay & Paperless Bill plus taxes. Terms apply. Not available in all areas.
° With Auto Pay for 12 months
** Pricing for some packages are for the first 12 months. Some packages require a 1- or 2-year contract.

Feeling fed up with satellite internet altogether? If you're feeling ready to switch to a wired internet service provider (ISP), then check out these other companies that might be available in your area. If you're too far off the grid for a wired connection, you could always try using a mobile hotspot with an unlimited data cell phone plan.

Now that you know more about the best ISPs in the US, check these out next.
Viasat
4 out of 5 stars
4

Read our full review of Viasat internet service.

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Easton Smith
Written by
Easton Smith
Easton has worked as a freelance writer and researcher for several years, reviewing health, lifestyle, and technology products. He has probably read more Terms of Use contracts than any human alive. When he’s not sitting in front of a computer, Easton spends his time camping, climbing, and volunteering with humanitarian aid organizations.

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