Confused about your poor WiFi access? Sick of waiting for video streams to load? Fed up of only ever having one bar of signal on your phone or laptop?
According to the WiFi experts you need to look mainly at two things – your speed and your range. It’s no good having a super speedy network if you have to sit by the router to get it!
Distance – you need internet access in the most far reaching room of your house and you are just not getting it.
Interference – other people’s signals or even your microwave might be getting in the way.
Software – you might be behind and need a bit of an update.
So how can you solve the problem of poor WiFi access?
- Change the channel on your router to a less crowded one. To do this you would need to scan the area you are in with a WiFi scanner like inSSIDeror WiFi Analyzer, by using these apps you can see which wireless channel is the least crowded and then change the settings on your router to use these channels. You can then access your router’s configuration page address, choose a new channel and wait a few minutes to see if there has been any improvement in signal. Newer 802.11n routers and 802.11ac routers should do this automatically for you.
- Update router/ laptop firmware when prompted and keep it up to date. This can be done by going to the manufacturers website and looking up your model to see if there is a firmware update available.
- Change the position of your router. WiFi signals are sent equally in every direction so, routers work best when they are in a central location in your house and not near any external walls. Definitely don’t put it on the floor if your signal isn’t strong.
- Make sure that your router sends and receives signal from the most up to date standard (802.11ac). Or you could even set up a second router, look into a range extender or Wi-Fi booster. If your router is 802.11g or an older 802.11n, you should probably just upgrade.
- Update your antenna. A double antenna will pick up both the main WiFi frequencies, check to see if you have a router that will allow an additional one. You may alternatively be able to replace it with a high gain antenna if you have a removable router. Select a router that supports MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) as this allows greater throughput on your WiFi
- Upgrade your router to one which runs on a 5GHz band frequencies as well as the standard 2.4GHz, a dual band router covers a lot more devices frequencies.
- Keep it away from metal, a microwave or a cordless telephone, as they can run on the same frequency.
- Finally, make sure your network is locked down – this will stop neighbours from stealing your connection.