Reuse a spare BT Home Hub as a Wireless Access Point

This article was rewritten and updated on 9th April 2017.

BT is a popular Internet service provider in the UK.  BT subscribers receive a free router called the “BT Home Hub“.  A new model of Home Hub is launched every few years, and as BT never takes the old ones back, many people have an old Hub tucked away somewhere, gathering dust.

This post explains how to convert an old BT Home Hub 5.0 or Home Hub 4.0 into a second wireless access point (“AP”) on your network, strengthening and extending the wireless signal around your home or office.  Although the details are for those routers, the basic procedure works for other BT and perhaps non-BT routers.  In particular, notes have been included for the BT Home Hub 3.0 and the now ancient Home Hub 1.0 – these are indented and written in italics.  Many users have also had success in reusing Home Hub models 2.0 and 6.0 (BT’s latest router, also known as the Smart Hub).

Summary

In summary, this procedure comprises resetting the old Home Hub to factory defaults, then logging into the Hub using the default IP address and password, disabling DHCP, and giving the Hub a suitable new IP address.  And finally, running an ethernet cable between the old Home Hub and your managing router.

Note: During test, my local network was managed by a Netgear router. But the managing router is not part of this procedure. You are not required to access or modify it in any way, except when running a cable at the end of the process. Only the Hub being re-purposed is changed.

Procedure

Start with the Home Hub not connected to anything except its power supply.

Hit the Reset Button

Power on the Home Hub 5.0 (or 4.0). Locate the recessed “Reset” button on the rear, towards the right hand side.  Using a paper clip or similar, hold down the Reset button 20 seconds or so.

The light on the front of the hub will go green. After about 20 seconds it will begin to blink, then turn solid blue for 15 seconds, then flashing amber for 15 seconds, before settling to solid amber. A few seconds later, the “b” will start to blink red. The Hub will remain in this condition. Proceed as follows.

Home Hub 3.0 users:
The Hub will reset (the power light will glow dimly amber, then flash, then the “Wireless” LED will light up blue, then both LEDS will settle to blue).

Home Hub 1.0 users: Press the “Wireless” button on the back of the Home Hub 1 and hold it down for 15 seconds. You will then hear a click and the Hub’s green LEDs will all illuminate. Wait a couple of minutes for the Hub to reset and reboot.

Resetting the Home Hub to factory defaults will clear out old settings that might otherwise prevent this procedure from working. For example, it will deactivate the “BT Fon” feature, also known as “BT Wi-Fi”.  If left active, BT Fon would prevent DHCP from being disabled. Also, if you have forgotten the admin password for the old Home Hub, the reset will get around that.

Instructions for resetting other BT routers can be found here.

Connect your PC Directly to the Hub

De-activate wireless on your PC. If it is connected to your home/office network with a physical network cable, disconnect it now. The PC needs to be completely isolated from your network.

Connect a spare Ethernet cable from your PC directly to the Home Hub. Use any of the Hub’s Ethernet ports (they are coloured yellow).

Your PC should then receive an IP address from the Home Hub, via DHCP.  (If you are curious to know, this address will probably be 192.168.1.64).

Reset the Admin Password

Start a browser on your PC and surf to the Hub default IP http://192.168.1.254.

You should see the Hub’s main home page. Click on “Advanced Settings”. The Settings page appears, with a message beginning “To prevent unauthorised access to your Hub’s settings, BT Hub Manager is password protected…“. Enter the default Admin password as directed. It can be found on the Hub’s white (detachable) panel, labelled “Admin Password for Hub Manager”. Note that the it is case sensitive. Click the OK button.

Home Hub 3.0 users:
You should see the Hub’s “Please Reset your Password” page. Enter the admin password located on the pull-out tab of the Home Hub 3.0, as directed. It is not case sensitive.  Also enter a new admin password where indicated, and enter it again to confirm.  You can also enter a hint, but it is not required. Finally, click the “Change Password and open Hub Manager” button. You will be presented with the Hub’s home page.

Home Hub 1 users: Instead of the admin password, you must enter the serial number found on the back of the Hub, as directed by the web page.  Also enter a new password, and again to confirm. Then click the “Change Password and open Hub Manager” button.  The home page opens.  Now proceed to the next Home Hub 1 section below.

Note: Some Firefox users have reported seeing JavaScript errors at this point – switching to the Chrome browser fixed it for Ed Iglehart, see his coment below.

Note: A couple of people have complained of not being able to surf to the hub at all. If this happens to you, try what Josh suggested in his comment below. That is, “go to File Explorer, then on the left it will say network, open that. If the hub is connected by Ethernet then it will show up with something like “BT Hub”. Click on that.”

Reconfigure Wireless Settings

Now Click “A-Z” at the very top right. Then click W -> Wireless Security – 2.4 Ghz.

Under “2.4 GHz Wireless Configuration”, make sure that Security is set to “WPA2 Only (Recommended)”. By default, it should be already. Under “Wireless key (WPA2)”, delete the default key and enter one of your own, and remember it. This is the password that clients will use to connect to the wireless network. Leave all other options as the default.

Click the Apply button at the bottom of the page. The page will reload and you should see a “Changes applied” message at the very bottom, confirming the new settings.

Note that by default, the key you have just set also applies for the Hub’s 5 Ghz wireless network.

Home Hub 3.0 users:
Under Wireless Configuration, make sure “WPA & WPA2 (Recommended)” is selected. By default, it should be already. Enter a Wireless key. This is the password that will be required for clients to connect. Click the Apply button at the bottom of the page. The page will reload and you should see a “Changes applied” message at the very bottom, confirming the new settings

HH1 users: On the Hub home page, select from the menu on the left: Advanced -> Continue to Advanced -> (enter “admin” and the password just created) -> Wireless -> Security.  Select the “Use WPA PSK Encryption” radio button.  Enter a wireless password (called a “key”) just below that.  And change the “WPA-PSK Version” drop-down to “WPA+WPA2“. Then click “Apply”.  Then jump straight to the next Home Hub 1 section below, where DHCP is deactivated and a new IP address allocated.

Allocate New Hub IP Address

The Hub IP address needs to be changed now. By default it is set to 192.168.1.254, and this would almost certainly clash with your managing router. What’s needed is a new IP address compatible with your home network, and which is not already in use by something else.

Click “A-Z” at the very top right. Then click D -> DHCP Settings. Under “Hub IP Gateway Address”, enter a new IP address for the hub. It should be in the same network, but outside the DHCP ranges of the router managing your network. For example, if your network is controlled by another BT Home Hub (eg. model 1,2,3,4 or 5), those routers by default allocate DHCP addresses in the range 192.168.1.64 to 192.168.1.253. You would therefore choose a new IP address outside of that range. I would recommend 192.168.1.63, but you could also use 192.168.1.62, (or 61, or 60, …).

After you have entered the new IP address for the Hub, click the “Apply” button and answer “Yes” to the “Are you sure?” question.  You will then see an error message about the page failing to load, or it will not load properly.  Don’t worry, this is expected because you just changed the Hub’s IP address.

In your PC’s browser, surf to the new IP address of the Hub, ie. the address you have just chosen.  For example, http://192.168.1.63. The Hub’s home page should load again, proving that the new IP address works.

Deactivate DHCP

Now click “A-Z” at the very top right. Then select D -> DHCP Settings. again.  Enter the admin password if asked.  Under “DHCP Server“, set the “Enable:” radio button to “No“.

Click “Apply” and then answer “Yes” on the “Are you sure?” page.  After a few moments, the page reloads. You should see a message at the very bottom: “Changes applied”. Proceed to the next section for connecting your Hub to the wired network.

Home Hub 1 users: From the left hand menu, select “IP Addresses“.  On the page that appears, uncheck the “Use DHCP Server” tick box.  Below that, under “IP addresses“, you should see these addresses:

10.0.0.138/24
172.16.1.254/24
192.168.1.254/24

Click “Edit” next to the address that matches the rest of your network. For example if your other network devices are addressed like 192.168.1.something, choose 192.168.1.254.  Enter a new IP address for the Hub.  Following the same background notes as for the Hume Hub 3 above, your new address should most likely be 192.168.1.63.  Therefore, change “192.168.1.254” to “192.168.1.63” and then click the “Apply” buttonThe page will then fail to load properly.  Don’t worry, this is expected because you just changed the Hub’s IP address.  In your PC’s browser, surf to the new IP address of the Hub, ie. the address you have just chosen.  For example, http://192.168.1.63. The Hub’s home page should load again, proving that the new IP address works.

Connect the Hub to your Wired Network

Now remove the spare Ethernet cable from your PC and the Hub.

Connect the Home Hub to your local network You can do this by using a long Ethernet cable. Plug one end into any of the Hub’s yellow Ethernet ports. Plug the other end into a vacant port on your managing router. Now the Hub 5.0 is part of your home network. And client devices connecting wirelessly to it will be able to access the rest of your network and to the Internet, using your general Internet connection.

Alternatively, if your Hub 3 is a long way from your managing router, and you don’t want to trail a cable, you could use a pair of power line connectors – one connected to the Home Hub, the other to your managing router. Once the connectors are paired up, the effect will be the same as if you had used an Ethernet cable.

Test your New Wireless Access Point

Activate wireless on your PC and check the list of available Wi-Fi access points. You should see the new Home Hub AP, which will be recognizable from its SSID.

Connect to the new AP. You will be prompted for the wireless key chosen above. Enter the key and your PC will connect wirelessly to the Home Hub. Try to connect from other devices too, perhaps a smartphone or tablet. In each case, you will need to enter the wireless password.

Flashing Lights on the Hub

At the end of this procedure, users of Hub models 4.0 and 5.0 will notice that the Hub light is now permanently amber and the broadband LED, shaped like a “b”, blinks red. Unfortunately there is no way to stop this, except to acquire some black insulation tape and use it to block the lights.

NB There is an option to dim the hub lights, which helps somewhat. Log in to your re-purposed Hub and go to A-ZH – “Hub Lights, change brighness“. Enter the admin password if asked. Then select “Brightness: Low” and click Apply. The message “Changes applied” appears and the hub lights immediately dim.

Conclusion

If all has gone to plan, you now have your second AP up and running. Wireless users in your home/office can connect to whichever AP has the strongest signal in their location.

Set a Different 5GHz SSID (Optional)

The BT home Hub (models 4.0, 5.0 and 6.0) is dual band, meaning it comes with an extra wireless channel on 5 Ghz. Modern wireless clients (circa 2015 onwards) can connect at the higher frequency and obtain a clearer, faster, less congested signal. Meanwhile, older devices will continue to connect using the slower channel

By default, the 2.4 Ghz and 5 Ghz channels use the same SSID (same name). I like to give them different names, so that they stand out in the list of APs when your client device (phone, tablet) does a wireless scan. If you want to give your 5GHz channel a special name, proceed as follows.

Surf to the IP address of your re-purposed Hub and login. At the top right, click A-Z and then W and Wireless Security – 5 Ghz.

The Wireless SSID will be set to something like “BTHub5-XYZ3”. Edit the field and add “-5Ghz”, for example “BTHub5-XYZ3-5Ghz”. Click the Apply button. The page will reload and you should see the familiar “Changes applied” message at the very bottom.

Your 5GHz network is now renamed and you should see “BTHub5-XYZ3-5Ghz” among the list of devices found when your phone/tablet/laptop does a wireless scan (but only on devices which are 5 Ghz enabled, likely to be those purchased from 2016 onwards).

A Note on SSIDs

Some readers have asked if it is worth setting the SSID of the new wireless access point to be the same as another existing SSID, for example the one on your main wireless AP, provided by your main wireless router. It is allowable to have both the same, but I would not personally recommend it. If the names are the same, it is difficult to know which AP your device is connecting to.

On the other hand, with different SSID names, you can see both in the list of APs on your client device (eg tablet), making it easy to choose whichever you prefer. Also, most devices will connect to the strongest signal by default. If you roam out of range of one, your smartphone, say, should pick up on the other automatically, if it is stronger/closer.
Or you can force it by disconnecting, then letting your phone/tablet reconnect to whichever is the nearer and stronger AP.

Some Background on DHCP

If you have followed the above procedure, wireless clients will be able to connect to your new AP. They are allocated an IP address by the DHCP server running on your main/managing router. There is no DHCP server on the re-purporsed Hub. It was deactivated as part of the procedure).

Acknowledgements

Thanks to Neil Pellinacci for the basic process. I just added the factory reset bits after encountering an inability to disable DHCP due to BT Fon settings.

230 thoughts on “Reuse a spare BT Home Hub as a Wireless Access Point

  1. I have two Hh 5’s which are connected as suggested and via Powerline Connectors and the second one works fine as a Wi-Fi Access Point. the problem I have is then connecting from the HH5 to my New BT Youview Box.
    The Internet Channels “freeze” after about a minute or so. When I connect the box direct from the Powerline Connector everything works fine.
    Anybody got any suggestions?

    • Hi AlexR. You have a Hub 5 as your main managing hub, and another Hub 5 which you have successfully made into a second wireless access point. A Youview box is connected to this second hub by Ethernet cable, and both hubs are joined with Ethernet/Powerline adapter.

      That sounds fine. I am not sure why you are seeing the video freeze up when Youview hangs off the second hub, but run smoothly when it is connected direct to powerline. Were you using the same cable in each case (between Youview and powerline socket / Youview and second hub) ? If not, try using the same cable. Cables can be faulty.

      Failing that, the most likely culprit would seem to be the powerline link, even though that does not seem to make sense. Power line links are variable, lumpy and involve layers of encryption that direct Ethernet links do not. You could try connecting the Youview box to your central hub (it might require a very long Ethernet cable) and see if the video is jerky that way. If it isn’t, and your cable was not faulty (see above), blame the powerline.

  2. different cables already tried so looks like it could be the Powerline Adapters, but can’t see why.
    i’ll try a long cat 5 cable from my original hub and see what happens

  3. I tried this a while ago and it worked a treat. We had a thunderstorm and power cut yesterday and now it won’t connect to the router as an AP. I’ve tried resetting it and starting from scratch but it doesn’t seem to work anymore – any ideas?

    • Hi Lisa. Your second router (the one you have re-purposed as a wireless access point) is no longer acting as a wireless access point. This kind of equipment can indeed be damaged by electrical storms. What happens when you scan for wirelss points with a device like a smartphone or tablet – can you still see the second router ?

      When you went through the process a second time, did it all go normally ?

  4. Thanks for the advice and got everything working fine. I have hh6 as main router with hh3 as AP. Originally was using powerline to connect but wifi speed from hh3 was only about 5mbps (when connected with same device to hh6 it is about 36mbps), so installed cat5 cable hoping this would increase wifi speed on hh3 to similar speed on hh6, but it hasn’t made any difference?

    • Great to hear it works Andrew. Concerning wireless speed, the HH6 supports the faster 5GHz band whereas the HH3 does not. However that doesn’t really account for the large difference you mention. Check that there are no large metal objects near to the HH3, and perhaps turn it round a bit and see if a stronger signal can be obtained.

      I just tested the HH3 I have set up as a wireless access point. Similar to your setup – HH5 main router, HH3 second WAP point, connected via Ethernet cable. Sitting about 10 feet from the HH3 I got 30 Mb/s download speed. Connecting direct to the HH5 (upstairs, much further away) I also got about 30Mb/s. The device in use seems to make a big difference. The above was a recent Sony tablet. In comparison, my aging smart phone (Samsung S3) could manage only 5 Mb/s.

  5. This worked a treat for me with the HomeHub 4.0 type A. Only problem with mines is that it has the flashing B icon to indicate their is no connection coming through the WAN port. Your able to dim this in the admin CP, but can’t seem to get it to turn off completely yet. Going to do a bit more digging.

    • Hi Boseman. You have re-purposed a Home Hub 4.0 A as a second wairelss access point, and the orange B icon flashes? Hmm. I wasn’t aware of that, as I have only done it with a Hub 1 and Hub 3. Perhaps a bit of insulation tape is in order!

  6. Hi, My main router is a HH5 and I am using the HH3 as the WAP. I am using a long ethernet cable from the HH5 (plugged into a yellow port) to the HH3 (plugged into the red port), I have followed the instructions and many others as well. The broadband light is just a steady bright orange, I cannot connect to the internet. help??

    • Hi Aaron. If you have followed the procedure above, your Ethernet cable should be running from a yellow port on the HH5 to a yellow port on the HH3. Please don’t use the red port. It is not for Ethernet.

    • Hi Haano. There isn’t really enough information in the question to give a sensible answer. All I can suggest is: try it and see. Cheers, Jim.

  7. Have successfully set this up, used to have a buffalo wired bridge,but lost the password and couldn’t access the hub. My problem is that it occasionally drops my internet signal. Should I assign a static ip address? I only have to unplug and plug back in again to reconnect, and the main plus net hub is fine.

    • Hi Jill. I don’t think that assigning a static IP address would help the problem of Internet drop outs. It is more likely to be your main router that is responsible. Are all devices in your home cut off from Internet when this happens?

      You could try looking at the “event log” on your main router. This will show Internet drop outs (eg. for the BT Home Hub 5: go to Troubleshooting->Event Log. Then select “WAN” events on the drop-down menu. Any Internet disconnections will be displayed. (Other non-BT hubs will have a similar function.)

      If the main hub is not dropping the Internet connection (and BT Hub 5’s do it all the time, annoyingly), it might be the link between the main router and your re-purposed, “spare” hub. Is the link provided by powerline adapters ?

      Cheers,
      Jim.

      • Thanks for the swift reply. I am now on a plus net hub,which looks just like the hub 5 I will log on and investigate. I am hard wired from the main hub.We have a rambling house with thick brick walls and more than one ring main so never found the power line adapters worked.
        I think all devices drop signal,mainly apple ipads and phones and the sky box as I said I only have to unplug it and re connect and its fine. If i had to walk to the main hub that would be different!

        • 21:50:48, 02 Oct. (1455872.890000) PPP LCP Send Configuration Request
          21:50:14, 02 Oct. (1455838.880000) PPPoE is down after 3 minutes uptime [Disconnected]
          21:50:12, 02 Oct. (1455836.550000) PPP LCP Send Termination Request [PPPoE PADT received]
          21:46:45, 02 Oct. (1455629.930000) WAN operating mode is VDSL
          21:46:45, 02 Oct. (1455629.930000) Last WAN operating mode was VDSL
          21:46:44, 02 Oct. (1455628.640000) PPP IPCP Receive Configuration ACK
          21:46:44, 02 Oct. (1455628.630000) PPP IPCP Send Configuration Request

          is this what you would expect to see on the log,its a very busy log!

  8. 21:50:48, 02 Oct. (1455872.890000) PPP LCP Send Configuration Request
    21:50:14, 02 Oct. (1455838.880000) PPPoE is down after 3 minutes uptime [Disconnected]
    21:50:12, 02 Oct. (1455836.550000) PPP LCP Send Termination Request [PPPoE PADT received]
    21:46:45, 02 Oct. (1455629.930000) WAN operating mode is VDSL
    21:46:45, 02 Oct. (1455629.930000) Last WAN operating mode was VDSL
    21:46:44, 02 Oct. (1455628.640000) PPP IPCP Receive Configuration ACK
    21:46:44, 02 Oct. (1455628.630000) PPP IPCP Send Configuration Request

    is this what you would expect to see on the log,its a very busy log!

    • Hi Jill. I assume those logs are from your main router, in which case it looks like the Internet connection for your whole house is being dropped now and again. This is a common problem, but there isn’t much advice I can give unfortunately. I have the same issue and in my case it is because the ISP supplied router is of poor quality. Some people replace their ISP routers with a third party products and that is what I intend to do. However in your case the cause could well be very different. I would seek advice from Plusnet themselves, or look on the Plusnet forums for more help.

  9. Thanks for this. I have just managed to set it up with a BT Smart Hub (HH6?). It took a while as DHCP really didn’t want to turnoff, and after a power cycle it had forgotten to stay off, so I still have some issues with that.
    Other observations are that the BT browser interface reports an orange warning for internet (even though it is working on pass through) which consequently means you cannot completely turn off the lights as it recognises it as an error and overwrites any off setting. Bit of black tape will fix that 😉

  10. Hi Jim, thank you for posting this tutorial. I have a HH3 as my main router, I followed your guide and connected another HH3 via a cable and set it up as an AP with no problems. However, I am trying to set up another HH3 as another AP via a cabled connection. I have followed your guide and can connect to the second HH3 AP with cable and wirelessly but there is no internet access. The cable from the main router to the second HH3 AP gives internet access if plugged directly into my computer but not when plugged into the second HH3 AP. Do you know how I can get internet access at my second HH3 AP? Do you have any advice or suggest anything that I can try? I would be very grateful for any suggestions. Many thanks.

    • Hi Gavin. Well everything seems correct in your setup. I can’t think why Internet access is not possible from the third HH3, especially since wireless access is working. A couple of questions:

      – Did you remember to give all 3 home hubs different IP addresses ? That is, when adding the third HH, did you give it a unique IP address ? Make sure you didn’t give it the same IP address you gave the second one.

      – When attached to the third hub (the one with no Internet access), try these tests in a DOS window (command window):
      ping 192.168.1.254

      If you see something like this, the test was a success and proves you can “see” your main hub:
      64 bytes from 192.168.1.254: icmp_seq=1 ttl=64 time=0.985 ms
      64 bytes from 192.168.1.254: icmp_seq=2 ttl=64 time=0.972 ms

      Next type:
      ping bbc.co.uk

      If you see something similar to the above, everything is working. If it says instead something like “ping: unknown host bbc.co.uk” then the issue might be with DNS.

  11. I have an HH6 and am hoping to use an HH5 as a second AP. However, when I change the IP address of the HH5, and remove the DCHP I cannot access the home hub management page on my browser by typing in the new IP address or the old one. Does anyone know what I can do to change this?

  12. Connected my old HH3 to HH6 and it works fine, thanks for your clear instructions. I was surprised to see the blue b did not light up, a definite advantage!.

  13. thank you,
    i followed your guide and all went well. my isp is vodafone and the second router is a hh5. i did sit around waiting for a while for the front lights on the hh5 to go blue before i realised i was connected to “network”.
    thank you for your guide really appreciated.

  14. I have setup a HH6 / Smart Hub, connected as an AP, slaved from teh primary HH6 router. 2 observations I have:

    1) Once setup, I can connect my PC to the AP fine, but when I connect any of our iPhones, it does connect and shows a tick next to the SSID, but the WiFi signal strength in the top left, never shows on the iPhones and the connection is not used – Any help appreciated.

    2) The HH6 keeps flashing purple, even when I turn the lights off in the admin screens. Apart from black tape, any ideas to turn off this annoying feature?

  15. Hi Adam. Very impressive that you have 2 x HH6!

    If you have entered the wireless password of the AP into the phone, I am not sure why it doesn’t connect. My Android phone and tablet connect fine, but I have no iPhone to do a test unfortunately. But it sounds like a phone thing.

    Yuk. Hub lights and the way you can’t turn them off. Many people’s pet peeve. Why do ISPs do this ? I have to plaster tape all over the HH5 any time somebody sleeps in the spare room. And the HH5 can be noisy in a quiet room, too. Anyway – sorry I don’t know a way or turning the lights off.

  16. Thanks so much for this! I’ve just adapted a BT Home Hub 3 as you suggest (my main system is currently using a BT Home Hub 5); following your excellent instructions to the letter, it all worked perfectly for me first time. Brilliant! I’m most grateful.

  17. Ive run through this but when i connect to the extension it just keeps saying obtaining ip address and then nothing.
    Any ideas please

    • Hi Stephen. You are trying to connect a wireless device to the newly created wireless access point but the device just hangs with an “obtaining IP address” image. Hmm. I am not sure what that would be. Perhaps try rebooting the device (smart phone or whatever it is). Make sure you are choosing the right wireless point from the device’s list. As another test, try connecting it straight to the wireless on your main router – does that work ?

  18. Hi, I tried to get this to work and was getting problems with upload from the AP and thought I would share this as I might not be the only person that thinks they have it set up correctly only to find that there is a missing component.

    I have a home office setup using the main Hub5 in the office remote from the house it is routed through a switch in the house at point of entry going to the various access points for the rooms, in the main sitting room I have the Hub3 set up as a wireless AP.

    We recently upgraded to fibre ( not full fibre, copper to the street box and fibre from there) this caused some problems that BT technical weren’t interested in helping with because the main Hub5 worked and that was that.

    After much testing, head scratching and re-configuring I decided to change a few things, tested it on a short lead and it worked, when I used in it the room that I wanted it in it still had no upload speed I then traced it to a switch that wasn’t fibre compatible.

    After changing to a new netgear switch all works well, thanks for the instructions very easy to follow.

  19. Hi – thanks for the post. Tried instructions from elsewhere but yours worked after a bit of fiddling around with power line adapters. Most grateful and much appreciated.

  20. Hello Jim Great article will this work with virgin media hub3.
    i have spare Bt Hub3 so i want to try this.
    My ip for Virgin is 192.168.0.1 so what shall i use in the bt hub as my ip address

    thanks

    • Hi Ajay. Well for the ip address you should select something which is outside of the default DHCP range (scope) of the Virgin Media Hub 3. Unfortunately I don’t have a Virgin hub so I can’t tell you what that range is. You should be able to find it from the Virgin Hub. Then just select something outside it. For example of the Virgin default DHCP range was 192.168.0.2 – 192.168.0.128, you could select 192.168.0.129 upwards.

  21. Successfully solved a longstanding coverage problem by repurposing an old HH3 and connecting via powerline adaptors to main HH4 router. Seems to be working fine – I’m really glad I found the original post – many thanks. One possible minor tweak to the instructions: my main computer is an iMac. After switching off the wifi on this machine and connecting the HH3 via Ethernet cable the browser would not connect to the HH3 via 192.168.1.254. I had to restart the iMac to get this step to work. Incidentally, I have set up the HH4 & HH3 with the same SSID and access password and this seems to be working fine all over the house.

  22. Hi Jim, great tutorial, I’ve successfully done this off another tutorial (that has now disappeared) and it all works fine. BUT my HH5 has started blocking ubuntu updates since I installed Plex, so I want to reset it and start again.

    Just to confirm, if I reset the HH5 (unplugged from the HH3) once reset all I have to do is plug the two back together and it will all function again?

    That’s pretty much what you said in your tutorial, just want to check I haven’t missed something. Cheers

  23. Currently I am using a power line plug sys running to my Sky box. If I use the hh3 as an access point from the power line plug to give me a wifi signal can I use the hh3 as a switch as well. i.e. Can I still run a cable from the hh3 to my sky box with the wifi system active as well?

    • Hi Colin, there should be just one connection between your managing router (the Sky box) and your re-purposed wireless access point (the HH3). Either connect the two via the powerline, or with a cable, but not both at the same time.

  24. I followed these steps but I still have connection drops every day – and to fix the problem sometimes all I need to do sometimes is disconnect the ethernet cable from my ‘repeater router’ and reconnect it.

    My router is a Home Hub 5 and my repeater router is a TP Link Wr1043nd 300mbps

    • Hi Josh, sounds like a frustrating problem. You don’t say exactly which connection it is that is being dropped, so it is difficult to advise. For example, is it the connection to a wireless device (eg. smartphone), or your whole Internet service, or the connection between the routers ?

        • i also tried replacing the tplink with a bt business hub 5 (second router) – worked fine for a couple of days, but then again it went offline (main router and internet still working). had to restart the second router – my PC kept saying through the troubleshoot ‘ethernet doesnt have a valid ip, and default gateway not available’

          • Hmmm. That shouldn’t be happening Josh. I would try replacing the cable between the routers (cables do sometimes break). If that doesn’t fix it, the secondary router might be faulty.

          • i have actually found the problem… it’s either the electrics or the router.
            everytime that plug sockets areused, (say someone chargees their phone next to the router), it will trip/disconnect ONLY the network cable running to my second router. very odd. anyone heard of this before?

          • Hi Josh, I have never heard of that. It doesn’t really make sense. If the router is being affected simply by somebody using a mains socket nearby, it doesn’t seem to be related to the procedure above, and sounds more like an issue with house wiring. Perhaps get it checked by a qualified electrician.

  25. I have a large and sprawling property and have successfully used this procedure to dot four BT HH3s around, providing full wifi cover and acting as bridges to split the original four rg45 outlets on my HH5 master.

    I used all secondhand HH3s, purchased via eBay, for less than £5 each. Result. I did have one unit that kept locking me out and losing its password, and in the end just replaced it, so if you’re having problems it might be a dodgy hub.

    My question is, when I reset the IP address, should each of my hubs have different ones, e.g. 57, 58, 59, as I have now, or would they be better all the same? I have currently got all the slave hubs set up with the same SSID and password, for simplicity; but I sometimes find my devices hang on a distant point with poor signal rather than jump to a nearer strong one. Is that something I’m just going to have to live with?

    Cheers, Glen.

    • Hi Glen, wow 4 WAPs, an impressive setup. Regarding IP addresses – yes, they must all be different. This is important.

      Regarding the devices that hang on to a weaker/more distant connection, that is entirely down to the device. To fix it, look at the configuration on the device (eg. tablet, smart phone).

      Generally, I recommend making the SSID on each hub different. There is no harm in making them all the same, it’s just that when they are different, it makes it easy to tell which one you are connected to.

  26. Genius!

    My TP link extender broke, was about to buy another but also thinking of linking up some POE cameras away from the house hub. Just switched to BT and had not used their HUb4. followed these destructions 3 times before they worked (took me 3 times to follow them correctly!) and woohoo, I’m switching between the 2 wifi signals in the house. This can now go in the workshop, feed some PoE cameras and stream the radio for me. Like I said… GENIUS! and all from a free Hub!

    Thank you that man/ woman/ child!

  27. Hi.
    Its like a new lease of life. The BTHubs works great as AP, i found EE one even better.
    My point is, does anyone know how to make the BTHub have a static IP of 10,0,0.0 address ?, EE ones and everyone elses routers are ok and work great)) Just the BT ones look sleek…

    Thanks

  28. Hi, I’m using 2 Smart Hub 6s but the secondary router flashes pink as if its not connected despite it being connected to the first router via a cat5 cable. Any help?

  29. Hi great post. I’ve got 2 BT hh6 and have followed the above instructions. However I’m having a problem with the slave. I can connect to it once but if I then connect to the master I’m unable to connect back to the slave. Just keeps saying obtaining IP address. Any idea?

    • Hi Cm. You follow the whole procedure and it all works, but if you wirelessly connect a device to the master router, then try to connect the same device instead to the “slave” wireless, it just keeps saying “obtaining IP address”. That should not happen. Try rebooting the client device (smart phone, tablet or whatever it is), and try again. Is it happening with all client devices or just one ?

  30. Thank you so much for this article, it’s been a lifesaver as we are in a big dorm a bungalow and can’t get wifi past the room we are in so I’ve set up 4 hubs in total. After running the network like this perfectly for 6 months or so we now seem to be getting interference on our network so I was wandering can the salve hubs run off 5ghz or will it need to remain on 2.4?
    Thank you in advance.

    • Hi Caroline, 4 hubs, good stuff! To answer your question, the “slave” hubs should run on both frequencies, if they are capable of it. For example, the home hub 5 and 6 (“smart hub”) both do this and will probably do it by default. Older equipment (eg the home hub 3) does not support 5GHz and will only run at 2.4.

  31. Hi,

    Attempting to use my old HH5 as a WAP. My SkyQ Hub is my master hub.

    I’ve followed the instructions above but the HH5 will not allow me to change the IP address to one in the Sky Q range. I’m attempting to change from 192.168.1.254 (BT) to 192.168.0.254 (Sky)

    Whenever I try this I cannot reloads the HH5’s home page again to test that the new IP address works.

    Is it actually possible to use a HH5 on a SkyQHub network? If so should I be changing to a different IP address than the one above.

    I’m nearly bald now! Please help!

    • Hi Anthony. I am sure other people on here will have got the procedure working with the Sky Q hub. I don’t have a Sky Q hub to play with but according to Google, Sky’s IP range runs up to 192.168.0.244. You have tried to change the HH5 IP address to 192.168.0.254 and it won’t let you.

      I suggest trying a slightly lower address – for example, try 192.168.0.250 instead. (.254 is often reserved, or something else on your network might already be in .254). Apart from that, you should be able to change the IP address. Does it give any error message ?

  32. Hi Jim,

    I used this great article to set up a home office last year without any problems. I’m now trying to add a wifi printer to the AP and whatever I do it just seems to fail. The printer finds the wifi network but when trying to add the printer to my mac it sometimes finds it and sometimes it doesn’t. When it does find it and I can add it the connection just keeps dropping out when I try and print. I’m totally stumped and now considering just attach it to the AP via cat5, which is not ideal. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Steve

    • Hi Steve

      The wireless printer should work fine on the extra AP. You will have to go through the printer’s procedure for connecting to a new WAP, like you must have once done to connect it to your original WiFi point. The printer needs to know the identity of the wireless network and the wireless key (password). Sometimes it is set on the printer itself (with buttons), sometimes you do it by pressing the “WPS” button on your (second, re-purposed) router, or sometimes there is a web interface to the printer and you have to temporarily use a cable. Check the procedure for your particular printer. It isn’t usually a difficult process.

      If you have done all the above and can connect, but it tends to drop out, do a test by running a cable fro the AP (re-purposed router) to the printer. If the printer connection then becomes stable and reliable, it will indicate a problem with the wireless connection between the printer and the AP. Also move any large bits of metal away from the printer (and the AP).

      Also, when the printer is connected to the AP (over wireless or wired), the Web interface on your *main* router should show the printer under “connected devices”.

  33. I need help please. I tried this and got to the last stage. As soon as I plugged the router to router it made my main hub flash orange and disconnect. When I disconnected the hub extension and completely reset the main router it restarted. After I reset my password it now works ok but not with the extension plugged in. Any help please ?

    • Hi Scott. I am not sure why your main router would disconnect from the Internet in this way. In the above procedure, you shouldn’t have to touch or change your main router in any way (other then plugging in an Ethernet cable). Something is not right. I would recommend starting the procedure again from the beginning.

  34. I’ve just switched from BT to Plusnet. At first BT told me they were going to charge me to use their modem and hub so I told them they could have them back. Then they decided they didn’t want them, so I’ve used the hub as a WAP in another part of the house. My rather rusty technical knowledge means I could have worked it out myself eventually, but following your checklist got me there in about 3 minutes.

  35. Great instructions, took about five minutes to set up an old home hub 3. I’d tried to do this a while ago without your site and got nowhere!

    I work from an office in my garden and now have wireless in there for the first time!

  36. Hi Guys
    Having just successfully created one slave using HH4 TO HH4 I am going to attempt a second slave. I set the IP address for the first slave as 192.168.1.63. and was going to set the second at the other end of the Master hubs range, say 183.168.1.254, Would that work?
    Thanks
    Eric

  37. thanks for all the info, eventually I worked it out following the instructions and I now have a connection in my summer house at the bottom of the garden using my old hub connected to my new hub via Ethernet cable, I am now on line in the hut – yiipppeee, thanks for all the great advice

  38. Hello Jim, thank you for your article. I’m about to try today to add a HH3 as an AP for our HH5. I saw another article which says that you need to change the Channel on the AP so it is not the same as the Channel on the main Router. Do you advise that? Thank you T

    • Hi Teresa, your HH3 and HH5 should work fine together. Both of these hubs select the best channel themselves, and will switch channels automatically if there is too much interference. BT calls it Smart Wireless. I wouldn’t recommend changing the channel numbers yourself. Just leave it to the Smart Wireless thing.

  39. Thank you so much for this blog. Your instructions were exact and I was able to get my Home Hub 5 working as an access point. Flawless guide, I’m so impressed.

  40. Just found this article and it’s pretty much the only one that breaks this down in easy to follow terms. Thanks so much!! Keep this post live please for future users…. 👌

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