Is your Wi-Fi slowing down? Does it keep dropping connection or slowing to a crawl?
You’re not alone. With more people than ever working from home and more everyday tasks requiring an internet connection, we depend more than ever on Wi-Fi. This makes any slowdowns or interruptions even more annoying!
Fortunately, there are some simple tweaks you can make to speed up Wi-Fi, or make it more reliable.
Wi-Fi in your home
For most of us, Wi-Fi is delivered by the wireless router provided by our ISP.
It will be positioned where the engineer placed it and never move. It connects to the wall and broadcasts radio signals across your home to provide Wi-Fi.
It’s a simple device that usually does what it does very well. Most of the time!
How to improve the Wi-Fi signal in your home
As we all depend so much on fast Wi-Fi, we’ve put together some simple ways to improve its speed, reliability, or both!
Most Wi-Fi routers are placed against the front wall of our home, closest to the broadband wall socket.
This is okay for new, smaller, homes or properties without thick walls.
Ideally, your Wi-Fi router should be in the middle of the home as it broadcasts signal in 360 degrees. Place it in the middle, and more areas should get a stronger signal.
Move larger appliances away from your router
Large appliances such as fridges, freezers and air conditioners can emit frequencies close to Wi-Fi, interfering with them.
If your Wi-Fi router is in a cupboard, next to a refrigerator, or on the wall by an air conditioner, your wireless signal might suffer.
Move the router away from the appliance and you should see a definite improvement in signal strength.
Change the channel
Wi-Fi uses channels to describe different frequency ranges. If your neighbour’s Wi-Fi uses similar channels, or it’s close to other devices using similar frequencies, they can clash.
Log into your router and change the Wi-Fi up or down 1 or 2 channels.
You can also use a free Wi-Fi analyser app to find out who’s using what channel. Then you can select one between those busier channels.
Use a repeater or mesh kit
A Wi-Fi repeater is a device that boosts the signal to help connectivity. You can use repeaters to help overcome thick walls or in larger homes where the signal struggles.
Mesh kits work in a similar way to repeaters, but they’re more reliable. They’re also more expensive, but provide a very stable Wi-Fi network.
Use a powerline network
If you live in an older house with thicker walls, Wi-Fi may not work whatever you do. That’s where a powerline network comes in.
A powerline network uses your home’s electricity grid as the network. Plug one end into your router and the other end close to where you need connectivity and the hardware will do the rest!
Upgrade your router
Upgrading your router is the last option because it’s also the most expensive, although you may be able to source one second-hand. While ISPs do provide routers, they can often deliver poor Wi-Fi performance.
You could purchase your own router with stronger Wi-Fi, then switch your ISP router into ‘passthrough’ or modem mode so they don’t act as a router and use your new, stronger router to deliver Wi-Fi.
You don’t have to suffer slow Wi-Fi
As you can see, there are some simple fixes to slow Wi-Fi that don’t cost a penny.
There are also a couple of solutions that can make a big difference but can end up costing you.
We would suggest trying the free options first and only buy new equipment if you really need it. Beyond signal strength, upgrading to a faster contract will improve your broadband speed. It’s likely you’ll be able to upgrade at little or no extra cost. After all, why spend money if you really don’t need to?