Check out these rapid tips to an increase your wireless signal from her router, extend and optimize her Wi-Fi coverage, and also speed up your surfing.

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Before friend blame the Wi-Fi, make sure the net coming into your home is performing together it should. Find an Ethernet cable and also plug your computer directly into your modem—you may need a USB to Ethernet adapter if her laptop doesn’t have an Ethernet port.

Run a speed test to check out your web speed. If it doesn’t enhance the speed on your internet bill, you may need to contact your ISP or replace your modem. If your speed test does complement your net bill, however it still appears slow, it may be time to pony up because that a much better plan. (My grandmother was convinced her Wi-Fi was faulty, only for me come tell she she to be subscribed come a snail’s-pace 3Mbps connection.)

If the modem seems okay, try running the check again wirelessly, was standing right beside the router. If you get similarly good speeds next to the router, but not in other places in the house, then your Wi-Fi coverage might be to blame. If your net is still sluggish standing right alongside the router, friend may have actually some outdated gear that demands an upgrade.

Update her Router Firmware


Before you start tweaking things, it’s a great idea to update your router. Router manufacturers are constantly improving software to eke the end a bit more speed. Just how easy—or how hard—it is come upgrade your firmware depends totally on your device’s manufacturer and also model.

Most current routers have actually the update procedure built right into the administration interface, so it"s simply a matter of hitting a firmware update button. Various other models, specifically if they"re older, still call for you come visit the manufacturer"s website, download a firmware paper from your router"s support page, and upload it to the management interface. It"s tedious, yet still a great thing come do because it would certainly be together a an easy fix.

In fact, even if your wireless network isn"t ailing, you need to make it a allude to update your firmware ~ above a constant basis for power improvements, better features, and also security updates. For assist with this, we have actually a guide on accessing her router’s settings.

If friend really desire to obtain the many out that your present router, the adventurous should look at a third-party firmware, prefer the open-source DD-WRT. This have the right to ramp up performance and give you access to much more advanced networking features, consisting of the capacity to install a virtual personal network (VPN) ideal onto your router. It’s a little bit more facility to set up, however for tech-savvy users, it may be worthwhile.

Achieve Optimal Router Placement


Not all residences will distribute Wi-Fi signal equally. The fact is, where you location the router deserve to hugely affect your wireless coverage. It may seem reasonable to have the router inside a cabinet and also out of the way, or ideal by the home window where the cable come in, however that"s not constantly the case. Fairly than relegating it come a far finish of your home, the router must be in the center of her house, if possible, therefore its signal have the right to reach to each edge with ease.

In addition, wireless routers need open spaces, away from walls and obstructions. So while it"s tempting to placed that ugly black box in a closet or behind a bunch of books, you"ll get a better signal if it"s surrounded by open up air (which must prevent the router indigenous overheating, too). Store it far from heavy-duty appliances or electronic devices as well, because running those in nearby proximity can influence Wi-Fi performance. If friend can eliminate even one wall surface between her workspace and the router, friend can substantially improve performance.

If your router has exterior antennas, orient lock vertically to bang up coverage. If you can, it also helps come elevate the router—mount the high on the wall or on the top shelf to obtain a far better signal. There are plenty of devices to help you visualize her network coverage. We like Ekahau"s Heatmapper or MetaGeek"s inSSIDer, which present you both the weak and strong spots in your Wi-Fi network. There are plenty of cell phone apps, too, such as Netgear"s WiFi Analytics.

(Editors" Note: Ekahau is own by Ziff Davis, the parent firm of

What"s your Frequency?


Take a look at at her network"s administrator interface and also make certain you have actually it configured because that optimum performance. If you have a dual-band router, you"ll most likely get far better throughput by convert to the 5GHz band instead of utilizing the an ext common 2.4GHz band.

Not only does 5GHz offer faster speeds, but you"ll likely encounter much less interference from other wireless networks and devices, due to the fact that the 5GHz frequency is no as typically used. (It doesn"t take care of obstructions and distances quite as well, though, so it won"t necessarily with as much as a 2.4GHz signal does.)

Most modern-day dual-band routers should offer you the option to use the exact same network name, or SSID, top top both bands. Examine your router"s administration interface, look because that the 5GHz network option, and give it the exact same SSID and also password together your 2.4GHz network. The way, your devices will instantly choose the finest signal whenever lock can.

(If your router doesn"t offer you the alternative to use the same SSID, just give it another name—like SmithHouse-5GHz—and try to attach to that one manually at any time possible.)

Change the Channel


Interference is a huge issue, especially for those that live in densely populated areas. Signal from various other wireless networks can affect speeds, not to point out some cordless call systems, microwaves, and also other digital devices.

Ever play v walkie-talkies together a kid? You might remember exactly how the units necessary to it is in on the very same "channel" in order for you come hear every other. And if you happened to be on the exact same channel together your neighbors, you could listen in on who else"s conversation, even if they were making use of a completely different set. In that exact same vein, all contemporary routers deserve to switch throughout different channels when communicating with your devices.

Most routers will pick the channel for you, however if bordering wireless networks are also using the same channel, you"ll encounter signal congestion. A good router collection to automatic will shot to select the least congested channel, but older or cheaper routers might just choose a predefined channel, also if the isn"t the ideal one. That might be a problem.

On Windows-based PCs, you have the right to see what networks neighboring Wi-Fi networks room using. From the command prompt kind netsh wlan show all, and also you"ll watch a perform of all wireless networks and the networks being supplied in her vicinity. The previously mentioned network analyzers can additionally show you this information, frequently in an easier-to-read graphical format.

At the office, because that instance, many of our networks and also those of our neighbors are using channels 6 and 11. In general, for 2.4GHz you want to pole to networks 1, 6, and also 11 since they"re the just ones the don"t overlap v other networks (which have the right to degrade performance). 5GHz usually uses non-overlapping channels, however, which should make choosing the best one lot easier.

If you discover the Auto setting isn"t functioning well for you, sign right into your router"s administrator interface, head come the straightforward wireless category, and try selecting one manually (ideally, one the isn"t in use by countless networks in her area). Run one more speed check to view if that gives a better signal and faster speeds end the Automatic setting in your problem areas.

Keep in mind the channel congestion can readjust over time, so if you pick a channel manually, you might want to check in when in a while come make sure it"s still the finest one.

Kick turn off Wi-Fi Intruders


It"s entirely feasible the difficulty has nothing to perform with interference or Wi-Fi range. If your network is open, or has actually a weak password, you might have an unwanted guest or two piggybacking on her network. If the neighborhood is downloading multiple 4K movie on your Wi-Fi, your video clip chats will certainly suffer.

These devices can help you find a perform of gadgets on your Wi-Fi, i m sorry may assist you sniff the end uninvited neighbors. Her router’s admin interface may additionally be a web traffic analyzer that some sort that will certainly tell girlfriend which tools are using numerous data—you might even discover one of your own kids is sucking increase bandwidth without you establish it. (If so, here’s just how to absent them off).

Once you discover the intruder and also remedy the problem, secure your network v a solid password—preferably WPA2, as WEP is notoriously straightforward to crack—so rather can"t join in.

Control Quality


Most modern routers come with high quality of company (QoS) devices to border the amount of bandwidth that apps use, prefer the Netgear food selection above. Because that example, you could use QoS come prioritize video clip calls over file downloads—that way, your speak to with grandma won"t drop just because someone rather is grabbing a big file from Dropbox. (Sure, their paper will take longer, yet grandma is much more important.) part QoS setups even permit you to prioritize different apps at different times of day.

QoS settings can frequently be discovered under progressed settings in the network"s administrator interface. Some routers may also make it less complicated by giving a one-click multimedia or gaming setting, therefore you recognize those applications will certainly be prioritized. If you"re trying come stream games while sharing a network, there are measures you deserve to take come make things better.

Replace your Antenna


If her router offers an internal antenna, adding an outside one would certainly be a an excellent idea, as the latter tends come send a more powerful signal. Your router may have come through antennas you can include on yourself, yet if not (or if you threw lock away lengthy ago), numerous router manufacturers sell antennas separately.




In numerous cases, you can choose in between omnidirectional antennas, which send a signal to every directions, or directional ones, which send a signal in one specific direction. Most integrated antennas tend to it is in omnidirectional, therefore if you are buying an exterior one, it have to be marked "high-gain" to actually make a difference.

A directional antenna has tendency to be a far better option, because odds space that friend aren"t experiencing weak clues in your network in every direction. Point your exterior antenna in the direction of her weak spot, and also it will certainly broadcast the signal accordingly. Inspect your router manufacturer"s website because that details top top what to buy.

Upgrade Your obsolete Hardware


It"s a good idea to obtain the many out of her existing equipment, but if you’re to run old hardware, girlfriend can"t mean the best performance. We have a tendency to subscribe to the "if that ain"t broke, don"t deal with it" mentality through back-end devices, especially networking gear. However, if you bought her router years ago, you could still be using the older, slower 802.11n standard (or God forbid, 802.11g).

Older routers may cap at reasonably low bandwidths, and also may also have shorter ranges. Thus, all the tweaking we"ve outlined above will only acquire you so far—the maximum throughput because that 802.11g is 54Mbps, while 802.11n caps the end at 300Mbps.The recent 802.11ac supports 1Gbps, if next-gen Wi-Fi 6 routers deserve to theoretically struggle 10Gbps. Our list of the finest wireless routers is a an excellent place to begin the search for a quicker router.

Even if her router is new, you can have some ancient devices that are falling back to older, slower standards. If you bought a pc within the last pair of years, you likely have an 802.11ac wireless adapter, or at the very least 802.11n. Yet the older your devices, the less likely they space to have modern tech constructed in. (You might have the ability to buy a USB Wi-Fi adapter that provides things a bit better on those old machines, though.)

Remember, a higher-quality router won"t simply support those much faster standards—it"ll likewise do all the points we"ve outlined over better. It"ll have much better channel selection, perform better band steering because that 5GHz devices, and include much better QoS features.

Others might have features like Multi User-Multiple entry Multiple output (MU-MIMO), like the Editors" choice TP-Link Archer AX11000 tri-band gaming router. MU-MIMO routers can send and also receive lot of data streams all at once to multiple devices without bandwidth degradation and require dedicated testing through multiple clients, yet the clients must be MU-MIMO compatible.

If friend do finish up buying a new router, the setup process won"t be as well scary. We have a guide on exactly how to set up and configure the device.

Reach more With a selection Extender or Mesh Wi-Fi


Some newer routers may have far better range 보다 your old beater, but in numerous homes, you may still not gain the variety you need. If the network has to cover one area larger than the router is capable of transmitting to, or if there are lots of corners to walk around and also walls come penetrate, performance will inevitably take it a hit. If all of the over tips fail, it"s possible that your home is simply too large for a solitary router come send a great signal everywhere. In that case, you"d require another maker to expand your signal.

Range extenders obtain a signal from her router, then rebroadcast the to her devices, and also vice-versa. However, while they’re inexpensive, they’re frequently not as reliable as mesh Wi-Fi systems, which replace your currently router entirely. Instead of merely repeating a router’s signal, multiple units occupational together come intelligently course traffic earlier to your modem, blanketing your home in a solitary Wi-Fi network the reaches anywhere you need.

When setting up this mesh points, you need to still use the same rules for figuring out placement: one node will be connected to your modem, and also each of the various other nodes need to be close sufficient to choose up a hard signal, while tho far sufficient to prolong coverage to her dead zones.

The classic downside come Wi-Fi mesh systems has actually been that they"re generally an ext expensive than simply adding a variety extender to her existing router. However, we intend to view that change in the close to future, spurred byAmazon"s Eero 6andEero pro 6, which come in around $100 come $200 much less than lot of your mesh compete while offering Wi-Fi 6 compatibility and also even a Zigbee clever home an equipment hub built into the main router.

Even through a mesh system, however, note that you may still incur some performance loss on the far ends of her house, particularly if your Wi-Fi has to make many “hops”—again, placing the key unit in the center of your residence is best, and also connecting the nodes through Ethernet will develop the best results. Trust me: if you truly want problem-free Wi-Fi, it’s worth having actually an electrician operation a couple of Ethernet cables to every mesh unit, because in my experience, anything rather is a compromise that might or may not measure as much as your standards.

Mesh Wi-Fi solution aren"t cheap, particularly if you have actually a large home, i m sorry will need multiple nodes. However, if you"re in the market for a brand-new router anyway, they’re absolutely precious considering together an alternative. If you’re tech-savvy, girlfriend might be able to save some money by setup up a couple of cheaper-but-more-complex Ubiquiti UniFi Lite access points.

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