We answer your questions about churning to a new broadband provider

As the Australian ADSL and ADSL2+ broadband market is incredibly competitive, there is a good chance you’ll come across a new offer better than your current plan. This is especially true if you have been on the same broadband plan for a long time, as the evolution of technology means broadband speeds and amounts of provided data are improved on a regular basis.

If you do decide to move to a new Internet Service Provider (ISP) from your old broadband service, this is called a ‘churn’. Here are a few common questions we are asked about churning, and their associated answers. Churning is not as hard as you may think, but if you have further queries please fill out the online enquiry form below, or call us at Compare Broadband on 1300 106 571.

Does it cost a lot to churn over to a new ISP?

Churning to a new broadband provider is cheaper than disconnecting your current service and then starting again from scratch from an inactive line. Often churning can be done in a rapid transfer, which some ISPs will even do for free.  Churns never cost more than a new connection fee.

How long will I have to go without the internet or telephone when churning?

Another positive aspect of doing a churn is you only have to go without the internet and telephone for a very short time, sometimes only a matter of hours. If you disconnect your current bundle service completely, it can take 10 to 20 working days to start a new ISP’s service from scratch.

Do I need to contact my old ISP when leaving their broadband service? What if I am changing telephone providers as well?

Your new ISP will be able to do every aspect of the changeover for you, so it won’t be necessary to contact your current provider to inform them. Once the previous ISP’s service has been cut-off they are by law not allowed to further debit your bank account or credit card.

Note: Some very small broadband providers may tell you that you have to give them notice before leaving their company. Find out about this before going through with the churn in order to minimise your time offline.

What if I am still under contract when I decide to churn away from my current ISP?


If you are under contract it is up to you to contact your current provider to see if any cancellation fees may be involved when you leave their service early. You can then decide if you are willing to pay and churn now, or if you need to wait until the present contract finishes.

What do I have to do with my modem when I churn to a new broadband provider?

When you change over to a different broadband company you will need to reprogram your ADSL modem with the new ISP’s information. The new provider’s technical support team will usually give you a hand over the phone if you need help, but it’s not that difficult a task to attack on your own.

Usually the new ISP will send you an email before the churn explaining which information you need to program (E.G Username, password, IP address) the modem with. When you bought the modem originally it also should have come with a manual or CD explaining how to reconfigure it when churning to a different service.

Your last option is to get online elsewhere and Google search, ‘How to reconfigure a (name) modem’. Someone else will have already experienced what you are going through with the same machine, and so step-by-step instructions are only a few steps away. Simply search for the model name and number.

Will I lose all of my emails and my email address if I change broadband providers?


This is one of the most common reasons people think churning to a cheaper or higher quality service cannot be done. It’s just not true. We advise people to never use the email services of their ISP, as this is a way they can ‘coerce’ you into staying with their service.

A third-party generic email company like Hotmail, Gmail, or YahooMail are all free email services that only take a few minutes to set-up. These three email services are massive, global companies, so there is little risk of ever losing your messages or contacts, and you’ll have easy access no matter where in the world you are.

Take your current emails and contacts and transfer them over to the new generic email service before you go ahead with the churn. The new email service will provide information on how to do so. Don’t wait too long, as once the old service is disconnected, all of your contact information and emails will disappear indefinitely.

If changing both my landline and ADSL provider when churning, does a technician need to come to my house?

A technician only needs to visit your home if a brand new landline connection is being made. If you already have an active home phone line, the new ADSL bundle provider will be able to do all of the necessary changes for the churn from the end of the line at the telephone exchange.

However, if you do disconnect the current phone service, a Telstra or Optus technician (these are the two main telephone infrastructures in Australia) will need to check that the phone is working again upon reconnection. This can be a tiresome process, as they often only give half-day time windows for when they will come to your home. It may also only be done on weekdays, which can be a real hassle for people who work Monday to Friday. Churn instead!

How hard is it to transfer my broadband from one Internet Service Provider (ISP) to another?

As you can see, doing a churn to a new broadband provider is a relatively simple and easy process. It could only take you a couple of hours to be connected to a new, cheaper service, and the churn itself is often done free of charge.