11 Effective Tips to Boost Your Wireless Router Signal

11 Effective Tips to Boost Your Wireless Router Signal

Staying online has become a matter of life and death for most people. Life becomes hell when your house has so many dead zones or the router constantly drops signals. The inability to crawl with the speed of light results in sheer madness and frustration. Although it is important to get online yet it is not as critical as you may think. However, it is always nice to have a wireless router with strong signals because you simply cannot stand next to the router all day long to get a decent reception. 

Best Tips to Boost Your Wi-Fi Router Signal

There are, in fact, many tools to check the speed of your internet if you believe your router isn’t working to its full capacity. On the other hand, the following are the 11 effective tips which will help you considerably boost the strength of your Wi-Fi signal. 

1. Ensure Optimal Physical Placement

It is rather difficult for Wi-Fi signals to penetrate metal and dense objects. Various obstacles such as walls, pipes, and metal objects can seriously restrict the wireless signal’s reach. A large number of obstructions between your computer and router means increased interference ad poor wireless signal. Placing the router in the basement or the corner will only exacerbate the problem. 

The router offers greater efficiency and range when you put it in the open or in the center of your room or house.

2. Purchase a New Router

You cannot expect much from a worn and torn router bought a decade ago. Older routers still have Wi-Fi 802.11n or even 802.11g standard. Obviously, they have low Wi-Fi bandwidths as well. The maximum throughput for 802.11n and 802.11g is 54Mbps and 300Mbps respectively. Therefore, you won’t get the most out of your existing hardware no matter how much tweaking you do.

A latest, high-end router can be your answer to poor Wi-Fi signals and dead zones. Modern routers use the latest 802.11ac standard, offering speeds up to 1Gbps. A new router does not only offer faster internet speed. You can connect it to a wide spectrum of devices. In addition, the best wireless routers have excellent home security features as well. As a result, you can totally automate your home using your router or make your work even easier and secure. 


3. Change Your Wireless Channel

Wireless routers transmit and receive data using one out of 11 specific channels. If more than one router is operating on a certain channel in close proximity, all of them will have slower connections. It is also possible to scan for the Wi-Fi networks in your neighborhood and detect which wireless channel they are operating on. Ultimately, you can switch to a more open and less burdened channel. 

For example, you can switch to channel 2 in case most of the wireless networks are using channel 1 if you don’t want to experience limited power and range. It is also a breeze to change the channel in most cases. All you have to do is to type “ipconfig” in the command line to find the router’s IP address. You can also take help of the router manual if you need to. Subsequently, type the IP address in the browser’s search bar and change the channel from there. 

4. Beware of Wi-Fi Leeches

You must have a password-protected and encrypted router. More and more people are craving for faster yet open Wi-Fi as they get increasingly reliant on Wi-Fi. You live in a fool’s paradise if you think someone will not use your Wi-Fi simply because he has his own connection. The only solution to keep such people away is to use a strong, unbreakable password and encrypt your Wi-Fi. 

It is also a good idea to change your password regularly. Create a separate guest network if you receive a lot of guests. Similarly, protect the guest network with a different password and significantly decrease its range. 

5. Get a Powerful Antenna

You can’t rely on built-in antennas because they are weak and small. One reason for integrating small antennas with routers is that strong Wi-Fi antennas are often very large. For example, a 10-db antenna can be as high as 15 inches compared to a 4-db antenna which is usually a few inches tall. Therefore, a bigger and powerful antenna will provide you the signal strength you are looking for. Compatibility is also not an issue because all built-in and external antennas feature RP-SMA connector.  

6. Change the Antenna Position

Continuing with antennas, your router may have either internal or external antennas. Repositioning external antennas can also have a positive effect on Wi-Fi speed. For instance, position the antennas perpendicular to each other if your router has two external antennas with one positioned horizontally and the other vertically. 

It is important for your receiver and transmitter to operate on the same plane if you want to enhance the reception between your device and the router. You can actually maximize the wireless reception by placing the two antennas perpendicularly to one another. 
Things get a bit more difficult if your router has an internal antenna or only one antenna. It is actually a matter of trial and error. You can position the antenna or entire router either horizontally or vertically to determine which one of them works better. 

7. Buy a Wi-Fi Repeater or Booster

As a matter of fact, there is no difference between Wi-Fi repeaters, extenders, and boosters. What all of them do is to receive the wireless signal from the router, amplify it and retransmit it for your device to catch. In simple words, they boost the power and increase the range of the wireless signal. A good wireless repeater will only cost you about $100. 
It is also very easy to install the repeater. In most cases, you only have to press a WPS button and the repeater will be up and running. Some repeaters require you to install a dedicated app, which makes it easier to adjust settings and use the repeater. In general, the repeaters substantially improve Wi-Fi performance. 

8. Quality of Service (QoS)

Quality of Service (QoS) is an excellent feature which most of the best wireless routers offer to their users. QoS enables you to limit the amount of bandwidth certain apps use to provide more bandwidth to your preferred applications. For example, you may prioritize online games over file downloads or video calls. As a result, your game will run smoothly without any disruptions even if someone is downloading movies from the internet at the same time. You can even prioritize different apps for different times of the day using some QoS settings. 

The administrator interfaces of most routers typically have QoS settings under their Advanced Setting option. Then there are some routers which come with one-click gaming or multimedia settings, making it easier for you to prioritize these applications. 

9. Update Your Router’s Firmware

Firmware is like a router’s nervous system.  It is an essential Software which controls and operates the rest of the router. Companies regularly release updates for firmware and other software which you should keep abreast with. The purpose of these updates is to make their routers extra secure as well as boost their performance. 

You can update the firmware of the most of the routers right from their admin panel. You must consult the manual if you have no idea how to do it or whether or not it is possible. If you don’t find the relevant instructions in the manual, you can always contact your internet service provider (IPS) or the router’s manufacturer. 

10. Use a Mesh-Based Wi-Fi System

Wi-Fi repeaters do provide signals to dead zones. However, you will get only half the bandwidth you will get from the router. Sometimes, you also need to work around two separate administration systems or software to manage range extenders. To make matters worse, you may even have to use two different SSIDs. Upgrading to a Mesh Wi-Fi system, on the other hand, allows you to manage your entire network from a smartphone while enjoying seamless connectivity throughout your home. 

A Mesh Wi-Fi system consists of multiple satellite nodes which you place all-around your house. One of the nodes connects directly to the router. The relevant Wi-Fi app ensures you place each node in the ideal spot by walking you through the setup. In the end, nodes eliminate dead zones, providing you with the best signal possible in all parts of your home. 

11. Change Router’s Frequency

Many modern routers come with both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies. The default frequency is 2.4GHz and most people don’t bother to change it. They simply pull the router out of the box, install it, and keep complaining about slow connection. 

2.4GHz spectrum can’t meet your requirements if you have a lot of electronics in your home. All the wireless peripherals, blue tooth devices, and even microwaves can have a serious toll on the 2.4GHz spectrum, causing a lot of noise and distortion. 

Switching from 2.4GHz to 5GHz is the easiest way to reduce drop-offs and noise. You can easily accomplish the task from your admin panel. Therefore, you must opt for the 5GHz option if it is available in your router. 

To sum up, all the above-mentioned solutions are easy to implement and doesn’t cost you much as well. Some people will still suffer from low bandwidth and slow crawling speed, even after using these methods. However, they will definitely solve majority of problems related to poor Wi-Fi signal for most of you.