You may have a fast internet connection at home, yet sometimes you’d experience your browsing slowing to a crawl, a movie you’re watching would buffer or worse a video call gets dropped because you’re in a corner of the house farthest from the WiFi router. Checking on your device it’s barely getting a signal. A minor issue that could be really frustrating.
Here are a few practical tips to improve your WiFi network. Practical in the sense that you’d be able to avoid spending on additional gear.
Location, location, location
WiFi routers are essentially radio transmitters so it works best in open spaces where there are fewer objects that block its signals. Concrete walls or even drywalls with electrical wires within could cause interference. The fewer objects between your device and the WiFi router the better.
Ideally if you can mount your WiFi router high on the wall or from the ceiling, the better. This is why in offices or public places you’d see WiFi routers hanging from the ceiling or high on the walls. Avoid placing it inside cabinets, behind books, or in the corner of a room.
Placing it near or at the top of the stairwell would help ensure its signals reach all floors of the house. Keep it away from other wireless devices like the base of your cordless phones to avoid interference.
Optimize your WiFi Router
Update the firmware of your WiFi router as device makers routinely provide updates that improve performance. If you’re unsure how to do this, either check its user manual or get in touch with your ISP if the device came with your internet service.
Make sure that the antennas are vertical to ensure good coverage. It also helps if the air ducts are free of dust and dirt so as to keep it from running too hot.
Almost all routers nowadays are dual-band, operating on both 5GHz and 2.4GHz. You can configure your router to use the same SSID or network name on both bands so that you’re devices would have alternative bands to connect to. Again, consult with your ISP for help in setting this up.
Get a WiFi repeater or extender
This tip requires spending a little extra as your house may be too big for just one WiFi router to provide sufficient coverage. There are plenty of choices available and as always, it’s best to check with your ISP first to know which ones would work best with your router.
Lastly, you can also check with your ISP if they offer newer routers that are have better coverage or performance at no additional charge to your existing service. Routers are so ubiquitous nowadays, it’s easy to forget that you’re still using an older model.
I hope you find these tips helpful and if you have a few of your own, please share them on the comments below or send it my way. I would love to hear from you.