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Why Do I Have A Slow Upload Speed? (Solved)


Have you ever tried to upload a 10-minute (or even 10-second) video to a file-sharing or a social media site, only to wait hours and hours for the process to complete? Yeah, it wasn’t fun for me, and I’m sure similar experiences weren’t fun for you either. So, why does the upload speed slow down considerably? 

You have a slow upload speed mainly because of a bad network connection and limited bandwidth. Congestion on the network, malware, outdated drivers, and a faulty modem or router are other reasons that account for slower upload and download speeds. 

In this article, I will go into more detail on the causes of slow upload speeds and how to fix them. 

Possible reasons for slow upload speeds

Old WiFi tech device (WiFi 6 is much better & faster)

You might be using an old WiFi device that can no longer keep up with the demands of your current internet needs.

The good news is that a breakthrough in WiFi technology, WiFi-6, can provide significantly faster speeds and better coverage than similar, older technologies such as 802.11ac. It may be time to switch if you’re not already using a Wifi-6-compatible device.

It might be worth you investing in a WiFi 6 Router that can handle many devices at once.

Check this article by Netgear on why you should upgrade to WiFi 6.

Check our guide if you run into issues with WiFi connecting but there is no internet.

The browser is acting up

Sometimes browsers play up just like computers do. The best solution for this? Just fully close your browser and open it up again!

Usually, this solves a lot of issues caused by browsers.

You can also try just using a different browser program.

Bandwidth speed limitations

Most ISPs purposely have slow upload speeds. For example, Virgin Media Fibre Broadband on most plans lock their upload speed to 38Mpbs.

Here you can check your upload speed. The only real option from here is to speak to your ISP.

Too many devices on your WiFi network

If you have an old router or the standard router you get from your ISP, then you may need to upgrade.

Nowadays, we connect everything to our WiFi, such as TVs, Phones, Computers, Fridges, Washing machines, Cameras, Xboxes, PS5s and much more!

If you have too many devices on the same router, it will cause a bottleneck in the upload speeds. You should look at powerful Asus WiFi 6 routers; they are amazing. They can have up to 250 devices connected simultaneously!

Monthly bandwidth cap

One possibility is that you’ve reached your monthly bandwidth cap. If you’re using a shared internet plan, other people on your network could be streaming or downloading large files, taking up all of that precious bandwidth and leaving none for you. 

It’s also possible you’re simply using the internet more than usual, so the bandwidth is being stretched thinner. 

Issues with ISP (Internet Service Provider)

Another possibility is that there’s something wrong with your internet service provider’s equipment or network. Any scheduled maintenance, outages, or upgrades happening in your area could also cause your upload speed to slow down.

You could probably search on Google your ISP’s name and then “down?” like this – “Virgin Media broadband down?” Some good results come up and could let you know if something is happening.

Also, keep an eye out for mail, because usually, they would send some mail to you to warn you of planned works in your area.

Congestion with your ISP

Some ISPs have slower upload speeds in the daytime than at nighttime. Usually, after around 1am, upload speeds tend to get a bit faster. This is due to congestion on the network and can cause slower upload speeds.

Especially using 4G or 5G, if you’re in a busy area that isn’t usually that busy (like a festival or similar), then network connections can become bottlenecked if the infrastructure isn’t in place in that area.

Malware / Spyware on your computer or mobile

If you’ve ever visited a suspicious website and your computer (as well as your internet connection) slowed down considerably afterwards, you may have a malware/spyware problem on your hands. These malicious files can execute on their own and attempt to communicate with unscrupulous third parties over the internet, slowing down your upload speed.

Video to help solve slow upload speeds

How to fix slow upload speeds

Perform basic troubleshooting steps

When you’re fixing any problem, starting with the simplest solution is a good idea 90% of the time. 

For example, you may want to start with things like:

  • Restart your browser
  • Restarting your computer or device
  • Turning your router off and on
  • Reduce the number of devices on the network

If these don’t work, then you can check things like:

  • Changing your router’s settings
  • Updating your computer’s software and drivers

Factory resetting your modem or router could solve the problem of slow internet speed. If the problem persists after resetting it, replacing your router may be necessary. Remember, Asus routers are amazing. I know from experience!

This YouTube video explains how you can reset your router:

Buy a new router

I will say it again, the routers you get with ISPs are really bad. If you can, then upgrade to a WiFi 6 router that can handle much more!

Upgrade your internet plan

Given the added cost of this fix, you may want this to be your last option. However, if limited bandwidth is the main cause of the issue, you may want to upgrade to a plan with higher speeds.

Ask your internet provider about this and what other perks come with their premium plans.

Contact your Internet Service Provider

Sometimes, the problem isn’t the computer hardware or the connection itself. One common cause of slow upload speeds is traffic congestion on the network. Waiting this out and trying again later can be your best bet.

If you’re still having trouble after trying these things, it might be worth contacting your internet service provider and asking them about the issue. Chances are, they’ll likely tell you to wait until their service team has taken care of the problem.

Run antivirus software

If you suspect a malware problem, the best thing you can do is run a full antivirus scan of your computer. Note that this can take hours or even days, depending on how many files and programs your antivirus needs to scan. 

You can always adjust your antivirus settings to scan only Drive C to speed up the process, but if you have time for a full scan, the latter option is better.

Final thoughts

It can be incredibly frustrating to deal with slow upload speeds. You won’t be able to do things you want to do online or may have to wait a while for files to upload.

There could be several reasons for slow upload speeds. It could be your internet provider throttling your traffic, or you’re using an outdated WiFi tech device. You can try fixes such as resetting your modem, changing your internet plan, or waiting out the problem.

Will Sutton

Will Sutton

Will is a professional Camera Operator/Video Editor with over 17 years of experience). Now living between the Isle of Man & Brighton UK. Highly experienced in Premiere Pro, DaVinci Resolve, and After Effects + some other editing software. Founder of Teckers, Bounce Color, Stunt Camera Crew & more.

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