It is common for Comcast to make it seem like a great idea to rent a modem or router directly from them with the promise that they can support you when you need help with it. But, the truth is, you never get to own the device, despite paying $168 a year for the privilege of using it. So, what should you do? Replace the Comcast Xfinity modem with one of your own.
- Get a new modem/router. The first thing to do is to buy a new device. You can look through a list of Comcast supported WiFi routers to get yourself off to a good start, but what you are really going to want to replace is the modem. You can get a combo unit that is a modem with a router, but if you want to get away from paying rental fees, you need to get a new modem as well. You can also get a separate modem and router, depending on your personal preference.
Comcast has updated their system in most locations to support DOCSIS 3.1 modems, so you will have more choice when looking for a modem. While some modems might cost more than the $168 a year you pay Comcast to rent a modem, the price will pay for itself in a year or two, and, you still get to keep the modem.
- Talk to Comcast. After you have done your research and purchased a new device, you will need to plug it in and activate it. You plug in the modem’s coaxial cable to your cable connection and then use an Ethernet cable to connect the modem to your computer. Then, you need to activate it.
You can do it online if you have a connection through xfinity.com/activate or simply call Comcast. You will need to locate or select tech support and tell them that you have a new, compatible modem and are replacing the Comcast modem. The tech will need the information from your device and they are nice enough to help you get it set up. Make sure that you remove any modem rental charge during this phone call so you are not still paying for a modem that you are not even using.
- Set up the router. If your router is part of your modem, you still need to set it up to your needs. You can plug in the devices that need that solid connection and connect any wireless devices as well. You will need to make sure that your login information is unique once you have accessed your device’s settings and then you can get down to deciding what personalization you might need from your modem or router.
Since there are a wide variety of brands of modems that you can use, the instructions for setting this up are not uniform. The device itself should have come with information that explains what the process is.
- Mail the modem back. Do not forget to send the modem back to Comcast after you have your new one up and running. You will be charged for the price of the modem if you do not return it in a timely manner, so do not miss this step. You do not need to pay Comcast for a brick that you cannot do anything with.
If you are still on the fence as to whether you should stop renting a modem, consider this: you are limited by the features Comcast provides you with. The modem that they choose to let you borrow will not have all of the features that you might need in your network. You might need more security or parental controls, or perhaps you have a lot of online gaming going on in your network. Regardless, a rental modem is never going to be able to meet your needs. Save yourself the headache, and get your own Xfinity compatible router.