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Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Frequent Visitor

Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I just received a message from Comcast telling me that their "monitors" have found the battery, in the DHG535 RCA/Thomson modem that I lease for Comcast Voice, to be weak or missing. The battery light is flashing, as they told me it would be. Since I've had Comcast Voice for a half dozen years or so, and I've gone through a few modems and a few more batteries, this was not good news. In fact, my last battery change was last year some time when Comcast stood behind their product and did not charge for the battery. Now, with shipping, it costs about what a modest UPS would run.

 

Since I'm leasing the unit, having to buy a battery for something I do not own that, for some reason, seems to eat batteries, is not sensible. Here's my question: Is there any reason why a back-up battery must be functional and in place, for the modem to work when the electric power to the home is on and happy? I know my laptop works fine without a battery when it is plugged in, but there are some odd pieces of equipment that want a battery in place even if it is dead because the battery's physical presence clicks a microswitch or something similar.

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I received the same message from Comcast recently. I was never given a battery, and wouldn't want one if it were offered, because I use a cordless phone for my land line. Therefore the phone will not work without electricity which is the only purpose of the battery. My only real fear is that whenever I move will Comcast try to claim I had a battery and charge me for one?

 

Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Thanks. My DHG535 modem is used strictly for voice. Because of the way my house was cabled, when Comcast took over from MediaOne and offered the voice option, the installer connected the phone lines at the end of the house near the garage, which is far away from where my other cable modem and router are situated. So, I have one modem for my phone lines and another for my Internet and TV lines.

 

The Internet modem need electricity at all times, which I supply through a UPS. Unfortunately, the voice modem has the battery problem and, rather than spending about $42 for a dinky lithium battery that doesn't seem to last anywhere near spec, I would install another UPS near this modem. My only question is whether the DHG535 requires a live battery to be sitting in its slot, in order for the modem to work when power to the house is ON, not OFF. It's an interlock or microswitch question.

Expert

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

No, it does not need a battery for normal operation.


I am not a Comcast employee, just a moderator. Pls observe Wheaton's Law.
Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Thanks. I was waiting to see if a horde of experts were going to support your comment before I responded to it. I thought the battery only matters when the power goes out, and I'm glad that you concur. Gracias.

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

This battery issue is such a scam. I was told that I needed a new modem to be able to get the faster Internet speed. So I exchange my old modem with battery backup and got a new modem missing the battery. So guess what the Internet runs at the same speed as before and now they want me to pay for a battery. Why are we paying for a modem if they don't support it with replacement parts. What a rip off. If you had regular phone service you would have the phone even with no power. We always keep an old plug in phone for that purpose. Now I will not have anything if there is no power. Great job Comcast!

Keep gouging your customers.

Regular Contributor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

The modem probably would not need a battery to work, but if the power goes out, you will need to have a working battery installed in your modem if you want your telephone service to work.

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I got the same BS message. Why should I be forced to pay for a battery for their crappy equipment? I have never had any power outages since I was stupid enough to switch to Comcast. How come it's dead?

Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Wow, thanks for the thread as I just got this email also.  Seriously, I pay $X dollars/month and NOW they want $35.00 more, go suck an egg!

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I am having the same issue. I was also told to "upgrade" my modem less than a year ago and complied.  Today the power went out and my backup battery lasted only 5 minutes.  My "new" modem is less than one year old and apparently eats batteries.  When I called, they told me that it would cost me $35 to replace the battery in a machine that I did not own!! Ridiculous.  This is why I left Comcast TV services to return to DirecTV.  I thought that the Internet and phone portion were a bit more stable in regards to pricing and levels of service.  However, today I was disappointed.

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I am having the same issue. I was also told to "upgrade" my modem less than a year ago and complied.  Today the power went out and my backup battery lasted only 5 minutes.  My "new" modem is less than one year old and apparently eats batteries.  When I called, they told me that it would cost me $35 to replace the battery in a machine that I did not own!! Ridiculous.  This is why I left Comcast TV services to return to DirecTV.  I thought that the Internet and phone portion were a bit more stable in regards to pricing and levels of service.  However, today I was disappointed.

Tags (1)
Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Open the modem, get the battery type and check w/ battery source (or other wholesale distributor) for a replacement battery.  It will be less than you are being told!

Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Thank you.  This latest Comcast scame convinced me to change providers.  No wonder they rate at the bottom of the pile with Consumer's Reports.  I will use my Tracffone cell phone in case the power goes out and the battery does not provide the back-up.

Problem Solver

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

Don't even bother with a battery just buy yourself a ups for your computer and plug the telephony modem into the ups.

Frequent Visitor

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I also feel that I'm being ripped off by Comcast on this battery issue.  When I was told that I "needed" to replace my old working modem, there was no mention of having to buy a battery for the new modem.  This type of customer service is about as bad as it can get!

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I will be downgrading my service with Comcast because of this issue with the "missing battery". 

I won't pay for a battery for a device that i rent.  i will be buying my own modem and removing the voice option. 

New Poster

Re: Is a modem battery necessary for voice?

I experienced the same exact thing - received a dual band modem without a backup battery when I exchanged a single band modem which had a backup battery, just as any other modem I had ever rented from Comcast until now.  I noticed it within minutes of the installation and called Comcast to provide a "fully functional device as the previous modem was" and was told I had to purchase the battery for $35 dollars and $15 for shipping.  At no point did anyone in the process of this exchange mentioned or pointed out that the new modem would not have a backup battery.   Thus, I refused to pay Comcast for something they consider "optional part" but which I consider "essential in the event of a power outage" for 1) a device rented from Comcast, and 2) for telephone services that Comcast gets paid for... The several Comcast folks I talked to since this issue occured on Wed evening were unwilling to provide the battery.  The backup battery is not needed for "normal operations" but it is needed in the event of a power outage for a service that can be life saving.

As a result, I am now in the process of moving all my "comcast related services" off of Comcast to other providers.  If this is the way Comcast believe they can treat a customer of 17 years, I am beyond dissappointed at their perception/stance.