When installing Xfinity services, you have two options (depending on your service). Professional- and self-installation. Throughout this guide, I’ll cover the differences between them. I’ll also go over how to set up Xfinity yourself.
As a previous Comcast user, I went with the self-installation route. I want to help you choose the best path for setting up Xfinity, so I’ve created a comparison between the two. If you go with self-installation, I also wrote what steps you’d need to take.
To help you get started with Xfinity, I’m going to cover these areas:
- Self-installation vs. professional
- What comes in the Xfinity Getting Started Kit
- Self-installation guide
- Whether you should rent or buy a modem
- What to expect from professional installation
- How to schedule professional installation with Xfinity
Keep reading, and you’ll have Xfinity Comcast installed in no time.
Xfinity Comcast Self-Installation vs. Professional Installation
In some instances, you may HAVE to go with professional installation. One scenario includes whether your address has had Xfinity in the past. Ask your landlord, property manager, or whoever’s in charge if this is the case.
This also goes for homes without Xfinity services in 12 months. Because they have to “ensure your cable line fits your home.”
And if your installation requires four or more devices, you’ll need a professional.
When you opt for self-installation, you’ll need some technical knowledge. Information that we’ll cover later in this post.
Explore the advantages and disadvantages of installing Xfinity internet yourself.
Pros of self-installation:
- Best options for those with tight schedules
- Saves you money
Cons of self-installation:
- You’ll have to deal with troubleshooting
Let’s see whether you should use professional installation.
When opting for professional installation, you’ll have to schedule an appointment for a Comcast Xfinity technician to visit your home. And according to Comcast, the installation will take between two and four hours .
Pros of professional installation:
- Technicians will know how to troubleshoot issues
- You don’t have to do anything
Cons of professional installation:
- You pay for an installation fee
- You have to wait for the technician
You’ll want to consider hiring a professional if your home’s wiring doesn’t support Xfinity services. Because either way, you’ll have to wait for someone to come to your home.
What Comes in the Xfinity Self-installation Kit
Every Xfinity self-installation will come with the following:
- Getting Started Guide
- A power cable
- Privacy agreement and notice paper
- Welcome Letter
Each kit also comes with a QR code on a piece of paper. If you’re a visual learner, you can scan it with your phone and watch a video with installation instructions.
Keep in mind that I’ll only cover internet installation in this guide.
But I’d fail my job if I wasn’t thorough.
So here’s what you’ll find in self-installation kits for other Xfinity Comcast services.
What You Will Find in the Xfinity Internet Getting Started Kit
Here’s a list of what you’ll find in the Xfinity Internet Getting Started Kit:
- Ethernet cable: if you’re not using Wi-Fi
- xFi Wireless Gateway: modem/router combination (if you decide to rent it)
- One Coaxial cable
Let’s move on to their television plan Kit.
What’s in the Xfinity TV Getting Started Kit
Here’s what you’ll get in the self-installation kit for Comcast Xfinity TV subscribers:
- Two coaxial cables: only in SD (720p) self-installation kits
- HDMI cable: only in HD Getting Started Kits
- Xfinity TV Box
- Universal Remote
You’ll love this next section if you’re one of the few who use Xfinity Voice.
What You Will Get in the Xfinity Voice Getting Started Kit
Here’s what you’ll find in the Getting Started Kit for Xfinity Voice:
- Ethernet cable
- Two coaxial cables: each has different lengths
- Xfinity Gateway: if you decide to rent it
- Activation information card: device and Comcast account information
- Optional items: coaxial cable splitter and/or cable tacks
I’m almost done. Now let’s check out the X1.
What You’ll Get in the X1 Getting Started Kit
Here’s what you’ll find in the X1 TV box Getting Started Kit:
- Xfinity TV Box
- Xfinity Remote
- Coaxial cable
- HDMI cable
Speaking of TV boxes, here’s the Flex.
What Comes With the Xfinity Flex Getting Started Kit
The Xfinity Flex streaming 4K TV Box costs $5/month with Comcast Xfinity internet plans. If you order one, here’s what you’ll find:
- HDMI cable
- Flex media streaming box
- Xfinity Voice Remote
One more. You can skip it if you won’t ever use Xfinity’s Home Security service.
What Comes in the Xfinity Home Security Getting Started Kit
Since Xfinity Home Security requires professional installation, you can’t get a Getting Started Kit for that service.
Comcast Xfinity Install Guide: Self-installation
Now that you understand what comes in your Getting Started Kit, let’s dive into installing your Xfinity internet. The steps you’ll need to take include:
- Ordering your Getting Started Kit
- Activating your devices
- Testing your connection
Let’s activate your internet.
1. Receive Your Getting Started Kit
When first signing up for Xfinity, they’ll allow you to choose between professional- and self-installation. Choose self-installation, and you will get a Getting Started Kit.
Xfinity’s team members may give you a kit when signing up for your service in a store. If they have kits in stock.
Or you can contact Xfinity’s customer service and have them mail a kit to you through UPS. Shipping and handling fees will vary. If you want to receive your kit sooner, you can pay more for 1- or 2-day expedited shipping.
You can also pick up your kit from a nearby Xfinity store. Contact the store ahead of time before picking it up. To ensure they have kits available.
Shipping a Getting Started Kit using standard shipping will take three to five days (excluding Sunday).
2. Activate Your Devices
Find a place for your modem or gateway and plug it into the wall. Ensure it’s close to a coaxial port. Take one end of your coax cord (it doesn’t matter which end) and connect it to your modem.
Connect the other end to your coaxial wall port.
If you’re using your own modem and router, you’ll need to grab an Ethernet cable and connect the two devices.
Now you’ll need to activate your modem or gateway. Otherwise, you won’t have services.
You have three options to activate your Comcast Xfinity service:
- By phone: call 855-652-3446 (it’s Xfinity’s activation number) and follow the prompts
- Online: follow this link to Xfinity’s activation page and follow their prompts
The fourth option requires a bit more information. So I dedicated the following section to it.
Activate Your Xfinity Service on the Xfinity App
If you’re using the xFi Gateway (or xFi Gateway Complete), follow the above steps and download the Xfinity app.
Open the app and sign in to your Xfinity account. Next, you’ll follow the prompts to activate your device.
One of these prompts includes scanning a QR code. You’ll find it on your Gateway’s sides (or bottom). Check the bottom of the Gateway for a Cable Modem Media Access Control (CM MAC) address if your phone’s camera isn’t scanning the code.
It’s a 12-digit number you’ll need to enter into the app manually.
The app will guide you through connecting your device. It’ll eventually take you to a page where you’ll set up your Wi-Fi network. Set up your wireless network’s username and password.
Once done, the app will set up your xFi Gateway. This should take around 10 minutes. So get yourself a cup of tea and relax.
How To Use My Own Modem With Xfinity?
You can use your own modem and router (or gateway) with Xfinity. While you can use any router, the same doesn’t apply to modems. You’ll need one that’s compatible with Xfinity.
To activate your modem with Xfinity, follow the same steps above. The only difference requires finding your modem’s 12-digit MAC (or CMAC) number at the bottom of your device. You’ll need to enter this when the prompt asks you to.
Should I Buy or Rent a Modem?
In my experience, buying a modem has yielded better-performing internet. It has saved me money and given me more customization options with my internet.
But everyone’s different. So I’ll present the pros and cons of renting versus buying a modem and let you choose.
Pros and cons of renting a gateway from Xfinity.
- Technical support
- Integrates with other Xfinity equipment
- Free replacements
- You don’t have to deal with finding a compatible modem
- You pay $14–$25 per month
- Expensive to replace
- A pain to deal with when returning Comcast’s equipment later
Pros and cons of buying your own modem and router:
- You save $168 per year
- More modem and router choices
- Potentially more features (depending on the devices you buy)
- No worrying about failing to return Xfinity equipment later
- More research required (to find a device)
- No technical support from Comcast
- No free replacements
- Higher up-front cost
If you’re more technically savvy (or know someone who is) and don’t mind putting in a higher upfront investment, buy your own devices. It makes switching to new internet service providers easier, saves money, and more.
3. Test Your Connection
Check your modem and router (or gateway’s) lights. This guide shows you what each light means and what to look for. In short, you’ll want to see EVERY light either blinking green or as solid green LEDs.
If that’s not the case, move on to the troubleshooting section. Once you see every light green, congratulations.
What Are Xfinity Internet Speeds?
You’ll need to ensure your internet service is in working order. Here are the speeds you’ll want to see with each Xfinity plan:
|Plan||Download Speed (Mbps)||Upload Speed (Mbps)|
This table shows the download and upload speeds for each Xfinity internet plan.
* You’ll need to install a 2.5 gigabyte (GB) Ethernet port into your home. Otherwise, you may only see 940 Mbps download speeds.
In my experience, using an Ethernet cable has resulted in the most accurate speed tests. That’s because Wi-Fi signals can degrade because of wireless and physical obstacles.
I also recommend choosing the best speed test website. Some speed test sites may have servers further away from your home. Thus, resulting in inaccurate results.
You have a problem if your download and upload speeds aren’t close to what you subscribed to. You’ll want to read through our guide on fixing slow Comcast internet to see our massive list of solutions.
Troubleshooting Xfinity Modem Self-installation
You may not have seen all of your gateway’s (or modem’s) lights turn on. There are a million issues this could represent. But I have one simple solution you could try.
Networking devices (modems, routers, etc.) store short-term memory as networking instructions. Once in a while, they may store an error. This could cause your connections to drop.
Manually reboot your device. That means unplug your device for at least 30 seconds. Doing so gives your device time to clear its cache and possibly flush out any errors.
And performing this manually, rather than doing it through an app, ensures no software errors could interfere with your device’s memory flush.
Wait a minute or two for the lights to turn back on. If they don’t, check Xfinity’s outage map to see whether there’s a local outage.
Still no luck getting all your modem or router lights to turn on? Sometimes, I’ve just waited an hour or two, and they magically turned on. I couldn’t find any explanation for this.
If you have extra time or need to run an errand, I recommend getting away from your home for a bit.
And once you come back, recheck your device. If the lights are still off, contact Xfinity’s customer service and see whether they can help.
Xfinity Professional Installation: What To Expect
Professional Xfinity Comcast internet installation will cost you $89.99.
So long as you follow the checklist below, you can do your usual daily business (at home) while the technician does their thing.
To prepare for your professional installation appointment, you’ll need to:
- Ensure your homeowner’s association (HOA), landlord, or property manager is available
- Someone 18 and over is available
- All coaxial outlets, networking devices (modem, etc.), and devices are accessible
- Pets remain somewhere where they can’t attack the technician
- TV sets are three to five feet away from your wall (if you’re installing a Flex or TV service)
And again, professional Xfinity internet installation will take two to four hours.
How To Schedule Xfinity Professional Installation
Xfinity doesn’t have a specific link to schedule a professional installation. You’ll need to do so when signing up for your service.
If you receive your Getting Started Kit and change your mind, contact Xfinity Comcast’s customer service and tell them your situation. They’ll set you up with a technician.
Compared to other internet service providers I’ve found, Comcast Xfinity offers the most straightforward self-installation. If you’re in a place with Xfinity services within the last 12 months.
Otherwise, you’ll have to pay a lot for a Comcast technician to visit your home.
If you haven’t ordered your Xfinity internet plan yet, ensure you know what plan your household will need. We’ve compiled all of their plans to give you the most details. Check them out.