Products Covered

Peplink Routers.


Adding/ upgrading mobile internet equipment in an Airstream can be quite tricky and poses some unique problems. Fortunately, these problems are basically identical for all of our Airstream customers, so this is something that we deal with pretty frequently. In this article,  you'll find a list of common problems and some ideas on what you can do to solve them. You'll also find instructions for how to program a new/upgraded Peplink router to work with your Airstream Smart Control system. 

Before We Get Started, The Breakdown

You may be wondering why it would even be necessary to purchase a new Peplink router when your Airstream came with one to begin with. This is a fair question to ask. The main reason is that the mobile internet equipment that Airstream installs at the factory is old, outdated technology that is limited in several ways. In most cases they include a Peplink BR1 Mini (Cat 6) and a 5 in 1 Poynting antenna. This setup is single modem, 4G only, and cannot connect to T-Mobile's band 71. 

Peplink has made several advancements since this hardware came out that would give you more flexibility, performance and reliability if you were to upgrade to it. In this article we'll provide instructions for how to program your new/upgraded Peplink to work with your Airstream connect system. 

If you're interested in upgrading to a dual modem, a 5G capable device, and/or you want access to using all of the major cellular carriers while you're traveling in your Airstream then this article is for you!

Common Problems and MMH Solutions

Problems to overcome:

Outdated Equipment-

  • The standard for most Airstream Connect customers is that their Airstream came with an older (Cat 6) BR1 mini and an older Poynting 5 in 1 antenna. This equipment is 4G only, the router is not compatible with T-Mobile's band 71 (their rural band) and will only allow you to connect to one sim card at a time. You need 2 modems to connect to 2 sim cards at the same time.

The Prewired cables leave no room to upgrade-

  • All dual modem and/or 5G routers have 7 (or more) antenna ports, meaning that they need to be connected to a 7 in 1 antenna to work properly. 5 prewired cables leaves you with no room to upgrade or future proof.
  • You really can't use 5 cables with a router that has 7 antenna ports without sacrificing a significant amount of performance (40-50%).

Connecting the prewired cables to an upgraded antenna isn't really an option-

  • All of our antennas, including the Poynting antennas that we carry, come with hard wired cabling. The cables are permanently connected inside the housing of the antenna, so there is no option to unscrew leads and reconnect to preinstalled wiring. 
  • Splicing cables breaks the warranty. If you were to cut the antenna cables and splice them into the prewires, you would no longer be covered if your antenna came up defective.
  • Adding additional cabling will inhibit the performance of the antenna. You stand to lose 1-2 db. of gain for every 10 ft of cabling that you use, so connecting hardwired antenna cables to the Airstream prewires is not recommended.

Manufacturer upgrades are extremely expensive-

  • Airstream generally charges around $5,000 to replace preinstalled equipment with new equipment.

Faraday Cage Effect-

  • Airstream's are wrapped in an aluminum coating, which looks great, but also acts as a faraday cage, preventing outside Wi-Fi signals from entering your RV.

Potential Solutions:

Utilize the prewired cabling-
  • We carry a router called the BR1 Mini (Cat 7). It's a single modem/ 4G only router, but it can connect to band 71. You won't be able to use 5G or multiple sim cards at the same time, but you will be able to connect to all of the major cell providers.
  • Connect the prewired cables to a Peplink that has 7 antenna ports anyway and enable "2 antenna mode" on the Peplink. This will work, but the equipment will function at about 50% capacity.

Replace the prewired cabling-

  • Find an installer who is willing to replace the Airstream prewired equipment for less than $5,000. To be clear, this isn't exactly common, but we have talked to customers who've found installers that are willing to do this. 

Ignore the prewired cabling-

  • Ignore the prewires altogether and install the antenna like most of our customers do it: drill a new hole in the roof, drop the antenna cables through it, and seal the hole with the antenna. This may seem counterintuitive when you have prewiring, but the fact of the matter is that all of the best/ most optimal mobile routers require 7 antenna cables (or more) to function.

Add an Access Point-

  • Adding an Access Point to your mobile internet setup can help you work around the Faraday Cage problem. Our technical support team can help you program your new Peplink in such a way that you'll be able to use outside Wi-Fi, as long as you have an access point connected to the new Peplink.

TOP TIP: Check out the link below, where Erik and Andy discuss different considerations and options for mounting antennas. They provide a lot of good info on the topic!
Mobile Antenna Mounting Options - What Antenna Is Best? - YouTube

Airstream Smart Control

Airstream Smart Control is Airstream's smart connect technology that allows you to control different features in your RV such as temperature, lighting, and ventilation. The issue that people run into is that their Airstream Smart Control system is programmed to work specifically with the Peplink router that came with their Airstream. So, if you want to upgrade to a more optimal mobile internet setup, you'll have to program the new router to work with Airstream Smart Control.

Before you remove the old system, connect to the Airstream Wi-Fi and verify what the IP scheme is. In the factory, Airstream changed it from the default IP (192.168.50.x) to something different. 

NOTE: You will need to make note of what they changed it to so that you can program that IP scheme into the new router.


You can find out the IP range by looking under settings, under Wi-Fi once you are connected to the router's Wi-Fi. It will show the IP address that the old Peplink is giving out. In the example below the router is giving out a 192.178.20.xx range as shown here:

Step 2: Program the old Peplink's IP scheme into your new routers Dashboard

In the new Peplink, you'll need to add the network range from the old router. Then you just need to uplink the ethernet cable from the Airstream kit and it will come online. Under network tab, click on the untagged default network:

Then click the little question mark on the pop up and select configure additional LAN option.

Next, enter the network range that you find on your phone, that matches the old Peplink unit, unless it was .50 (which is the default), in which case you can skip this step all together. In the example below we added the .20.1 network.

Hit the plus sign to add it. 

Finally, hit save and save apply. 

Now the old IP network that was on the Airstream and the new default 192.168.50.x network will both be able to talk out to each other and the internet. In other words, you now have a much better mobile internet setup that will work with your Airstream Smart Control system! 

Requesting Assistance

If you feel you are not getting anywhere or there is another issue you can always reach out to our team directly by initiating a ticket here on the support portal or by emailing

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