I find that all home user routers eventually "give up the ghost" after a year or two. I have a cable broadband connection with an SMC 7008ABR, an 8-port router. My first one failed after 8 months, the second one just failed now after 1 year. Up until then they functioned fine, with the occasional reset.
I guess at the price point for home routers that's what you can expect. I drool after the Cisco routers (see the review on the Cisco 806 router at http://www.modemhelp.org/reviews/august2002.html). At least their tech support is in the US, not India (SMC) or the Philippines (Linksys), but of course they are 4X the price.
One suggestion to ameliorate router failure is that you have two routers, the first one as your main router and the second one as a spare, and using the spare router as a "switch" for the main router until the main router fails.