Slow WiFi can be pretty darn frustrating. Especially if you work from home or like to stream a lot of programming.
I’ve got 5 tips that can help speed yours up.
Location, Location, Location
If the WiFi signal in your home isn’t that great and there doesn’t seem to be any technical problem with your router, computer or WiFi provider, it might just be where you have the router located in your house.
If you position your router next to an outside wall, you’ll send part of your signal outside and make it weaker in the rest of your home. Place the device so it is centrally located for the devices that will be accessing the signal. I know routers aren’t the prettiest things in the world. But hiding it in the basement with the cat’s litterbox can weaken the signal. This is a case where you should choose function over form.
Keep it away from metal objects like file cabinets. They can wreck your signal. I once had the experience of having a new whole-house DVR installed. The DVR wasn’t functioning and my WiFi signal was weak. It turned out that my DVR and Wireless Router were too close together and that I’d also plunked a heavy metal candle holder I got for Christmas down beside them. The nice service tech my cable company dispatched to my house said that was probably making it worse.
Short service calls are nice, but I felt a little silly calling someone out to watch me move things farther apart.
Change the Channel
Try to connect using a different channel. There are three recommended channels in WiFi: 1, 6 and 11. You would need to get into the router and configure it to use a different channel. You may need to look at your router’s information for steps on how to do this, or do an Internet search for “router model change channel”, where you insert your router instead of ‘router model’. This has been known to help speeds in many cases.
Try an Extender
Try buying a WiFi extender to extend the reach of the signal in your house. Models that plug right into outlets are available for under $30 online.
Secure Your Network
Make sure your home network is password-protected. Other people hijacking your signal can significantly slow down your speed.
If you’ve handed that password out to friends or neighbors over the years, consider changing it just to make sure no one is taking advantage of your hospitality.
Reboot Your Router
Every now and again, turn your router off for a few minutes and then turn it back on. There’s an old joke about tech support simply telling people to turn things off an on. There’s a reason they do that. A heck of a lot of the time, it works.