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Verizon technicians are devious devils - be careful !! Blinking Red READY light on DSL Modem

I had blinking RED light on my  12 year old Westel   DSL modem.  After plugging the modem directly into the gray customer service box to eliminate possibility of interior wiring issues and calling phone support in India several times I called to have  tech visit the house to check the gray service box bolted to the outside of the house.  It was either than the gray box was bad (its over 20 years old) or the modem (12 years old) was bad according to them.

I told them I was going to move laptop  and modem outside of the house near gray Verizon box and have them test the gray box to see if the DSL signal was passing all the way through it, to avoid the $91 servcie charge since that applies to inside wiring issues.  All I wanted check was the gray Verizon box.

So the guy shows up, I explained how hooked up the laptop and modem on my front porch and wanted him to check the box.  But he iignored me and wanted to go inside the house.  I told him - NO !!   Explained what I wanted again.  He barely glanced at the gray Verizon box and grabbed the modem, took out the line cord  and plugged it into his testing device and said there was a full strength signal so the modem must be bad.  (I was thinking {word filter avoidance}).   And then he said because he touched/tested the modem he said he had to charge me $91 for a service call and would charge me at least $40 for a new modem.  

Well, I said that was bull and he actually tested the gray box and not the modem.  I was bascially told the $91 only applied if they entered my house....and he said I could dispute the charge, so I immediately I said if I was going to be charged $91, thats the last $91 Verizon was getting from me and threatened to calll Comcast which I have for cable and swithch to them.    He then relented and agreed not to put it down as a $91 service call.  

So I still had no DSL and planned to buy a replacement DL modem on Ebay for $10-$20.    So I figured I would open the DSL case and see if there was a loose chip in there.   Well, I didnt not find a loose chip as all chips were soldered in place and everything looked normal ---- except for 1 thing -- -- a  1/4" ball of dust resting on the cicurit board.  So I I got rid of the dust and decided to plug it in one last time ----  No more blinking red READY light - now the modem works perfectly.

Now Im guessing that this guy never had anyone move their equipment outside the house before - but his refusal to examine the Verizon owned gray box bolted tot he side of the house and instead focus his attention on physically touching my modem was aggravatiing to say the least.  All he needed to do was plug his testing device into the gray service box.  But then he wouldnt have been able to justify the $91 service charge at all. 

I am planning to upgrade to fiber early next year after a remodeling project - but this incident means Verizon already has one strike against it when it comes time for me compare costs/benefits. 

I hate telecom companies in general (be they Comcast or Verizon or anyone else) as they have created billing structures where you need an attorney and an accountant to sort it all out !!!  I love the marketing materials they keep sending me that saying $89.99 or whatever for FIOS for a year,  PLUS an assortment of unspecified equipment rental fees,  technology fees, taxes and other activating charges which inflate the bill at least 50%.  Then figuring out how much all that will cost after the introduction 12 month or so period expires would be is a real challenge.     I will say Comcast is far less annoyiing sending offers maybe once a MONTH (reasonable)  while Verizon often spams my mailbox with as many as 1 or 2 mailing per WEEK !!!  My shredder is woriing overtime.  

Anywho....  if your DSL modem has a red blinking light try opening it up and removing dust balls if you find any.