Whether at home or at work, staying connected to the internet is important for improving productivity. Connecting a single computer to the internet is easily done with a modem. However, keeping multiple devices connected to the internet requires more than just a modem - hence the need for a wireless router. A wireless router broadcasts the modem’s signal to different devices at different corners of a building so that they can stay connected to the internet wirelessly.
The ease of internet access that a router affords multiple users is defeated when the router’s wifi signal becomes spotty and fails to reach certain areas in the building. This article explores six ways to boost your wifi signal.
Optimal Router Placement
The solution to your poor wifi signal could be the placement of the wireless router. For optimal wifi reception, the router should be positioned centrally. Placing the router in the corner of the house or office will hinder the signal strength in other parts of the building.
Also, you should find a spot that effectively eliminates wifi roadblocks like refrigerators and microwaves. Materials like glass also block wifi signals. Essentially, you should find a central spot in the building that sits high above these wifi roadblocks to place the router.
Install a Wifi Extender
It is possible that the building is simply too big for your router to adequately cover. In this case, you should consider a wifi extender. With a wifi extender, you can amplify wifi signals to reach wifi dead zones in the office or home. Also referred to as wifi repeaters, wifi extenders improve wifi signal by receiving the existing signal from the router before amplifying it and finally rebroadcasting it to remote areas in the building.
Install a Wifi Mesh Network
Like wifi extenders, a wifi mesh network extends your wifi signal to every part of the building. A wifi mesh network consists of the main router and multiple satellite routers. These satellite routers are placed at strategic places called mesh points. The main router sends out wifi signals that the satellite routers pick up for onward distribution to dead zones in the building. Depending on the building’s size, you can have a single mesh point or multiple mesh points. Compared to wifi extenders, installing a wifi mesh network is a more expensive option.
Get an Aluminum Foil Reflector
An aluminum foil reflector is a cheaper alternative to wifi extenders and mesh network in boosting wifi signal. Research has shown that aluminum can be used to boost wireless signals. To do this, you get a piece of aluminum foil and fold it into a curved shape. Place the aluminum foil around the router’s antenna so that the aluminum foil faces the direction you want to send more wifi signal to.
Get an External Antenna
You should consider getting an external antenna for your router if it uses an internal antenna. An internal antenna may not be able to send out signals as well as an external antenna will. External antennas are of two types; omnidirectional and directional antenna. An omnidirectional antenna spreads signal in different directions, while a directional antenna spreads signal to a particular direction. Since the weak wifi signal is usually in a particular direction, a directional antenna will work better in getting the wifi signal to the desired area.
A wifi router operating on a 2.4GHz frequency band is more likely to witness interference because home appliances like microwaves operate on the same frequency band. To avoid such interference, the router should be switched to the 5GHz frequency band if it's equipped with one.
The identified tips for boosting wifi signals have varying levels of success. Ideally, the less expensive methods should be tried out first before moving on to the more expensive ones.