Nothing is more frustrating than watching a Netflix video buffer or waiting for an email attachment that’s taking ages to load. Who likes waiting in this fast-paced world? If your home’s wireless internet is making you suffer, take action. With a few simple tweaks, you can fix a slow Wi-Fi connection in minutes.
1) Isolate the Router
Most households don’t think about where they put their router. Routers get put near the telephone, the TV, and other electronics. What they don’t know is that those devices are actually inhibiting the wireless signal.
2) Empty a Beer Can
Beer can?? Getting wasted may make you forget about your slow wireless internet, but that’s not what we’re suggesting. Did you know that you can use an empty beer can as a parabolic antenna (a reflective case that eliminates signal from other devices and boosts the router’s)? Not bad, right?
To begin, remove the top and bottom of the can then cut it down the middle. It should now look like a simple sheet of metal. Next, wrap it around the back of the router’s antenna, forming a dome while leaving the router’s front area exposed. That, my friend, is how you turn trash into treasure.
3) Reposition the Router
In theory, the best place to put a router is in the central part of a building. It has to be placed somewhere that’s free from any physical obstructions e.g. walls and doors. Plus, the antenna has to point straight up at all times.
With the basics in mind, try to see where your router is currently located. Is it in the optimal location within the home? Have you put it on a shelf rather than the floor? If there are several dead zones in your place, you will have to relocate your router.
4) Set Up a Password
Besides putting up the first line of defense against hackers, protecting your broadband network with a password can help speed it up. Remember, your internet speed significantly slows down when there’s a lot of devices connected to it.
With a password in place, you can keep a close eye on all the devices that are using your network at any given time and keep them to a minimum if necessary. If you want to see who’s using your Wi-Fi network, check out this site.
5) Use Signal Boosters
When relocating your router isn’t a feasible option, the fastest way to boost your wireless internet’s speed is to use signal boosters. In most cases, their high-gain antennas send signals stronger than those that come with the router so they consequently increase the strength and range your Wi-Fi connection.
If you’re unsure about the kind of signal booster you should be getting, you may want to try ZyXEL Wireless Access Point. We recommend it because it’s easy to set up (even for non-techies) and it can double as an access point and WLAN bridge aside from its Wi-Fi extender capabilities.
6) Steer Clear of Any Wireless Interference
If you have baby monitors and Bluetooth speakers at home, chances are that your Wi-Fi router may slow down. Why? Because those gadgets often hamper wireless signals.
To communicate between devices, Bluetooth devices send signals over a 2.4GHz radio frequency—often the same signal used for your Wi-Fi connection. When that happens, they both end up interfering with the other’s signal.
Keep your router away from these devices as much as possible. If you have no choice, use one that has a dual band so your wireless internet can use a different frequency than that of Bluetooth-enabled accessories.
7) Switch to a Different Channel
By default, your router detects the least crowded channel when it’s first set up. Sadly, once new neighbors (and offices) arrive in your location, they may potentially be routed to the same channel. This will start to slow down your wireless internet.
To know whether you should change Wi-Fi channels or not, use software like NirSoft and InSSIDer to analyze the entire Wi-Fi spectrum and assess your home network and channel usage. If they indicate that you’re on a busy channel, it may be time to switch.
8) Update Your Router
To get the fastest possible connectivity for your Wi-Fi connection, it has to run on either 802.11ac or 802.11n standards. Those two are the latest and most ideal for wireless internet nowadays.
When your router is running on 802.11b or 802.11g standards, you probably need a new router . To know if you’re still using those old standards on Windows, do these:
- Click the Wi-Fi shortcut found on the system tray (bottom right area of the taskbar).
- Hover the cursor over the wireless connection you are using.
- Look at the ‘Radio Type’ line to see the Wi-Fi standard.
On Mac, see what standards your Wi-Fi is running on using these steps:
- Once you’re connected to the Wi-Fi network, hold down the option button.
- Click the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar.
- Afterward, look for the item labeled ‘PHY Mode’ to know your current Wi-Fi standard.
Aside from using an old hardware, check if your router’s drivers and software aren’t updated. They may be another possible explanation why your wireless signal inexplicably lags.
Getting work done or bingeing on Hulu movies on a slow Wi-Fi connection can turn the most saintly individuals into raging demons. So if your Wi-Fi is getting on your nerves, take a step back and make time to try these useful tips—rest assured, they won’t break the bank!