Routers have improved dramatically over the last few years, but their WiFi range can still be limited if you’re trying to cover too large of an area with just one router.
Fortunately, there are several ways you can extend your WiFi coverage without investing in new hardware, including using things that you might already have at home or buying products that cost less than $20. Find out how to extend your WiFi range by using these 10 tips.
1) Place the router in a central location
It is not always possible for your router to be in a central location. But if you are able, try to place it that way. If this is not an option, try the following:
- Place the router on its back on the floor or on top of furniture. This will allow it to broadcast in all directions instead of just up into the air like most routers do.
- Use a power line extender that has WiFi capability so that you don’t have as many cords running around your house and/or office space. It also eliminates any interference with other electronics such as microwaves and televisions.
2) Use an Ethernet cable
Install an Ethernet cable. Use an Ethernet cable and plug it into your router and the other end of the Ethernet cable into your computer. Open up your browser (e.g., Google Chrome) or use another device that is connected wirelessly to the internet, then enter 192.168.1.1 in the address bar and hit enter on your keyboard.
Once you have done this, you will be prompted for credentials in order to access the router’s control panel; these are usually found in small print on the bottom of either side of the router, or printed on a sticker somewhere near it.
3) Update your router’s firmware
First, you’ll need to find out what type of router you have and if there is an update available. Some routers are easy to find the firmware version; others require more work.
Once you’ve determined your router type and found the latest firmware update, you can install it right on your device. Next time your router reboots, it will be on the latest firmware version!
4) Change your router’s antenna
One easy way to increase your router’s range is to replace the antenna. The antenna that comes with the router is usually an omni-directional one, which means it transmits wireless signals in every direction.
This can be helpful for smaller areas, but if you want your signal to travel further, you’ll need a directional antenna. Directional antennas are usually pointed in one direction, and have more power than an omni-directional one.
You can either buy a new antenna or simply remove your old one and attach it elsewhere on the device. If you’re not sure which type of antenna you need, check with your manufacturer or do some research before buying any parts.
5) Use a WiFi repeater
WiFi repeaters are an affordable and easy way to extend the range of your wireless network. They work by receiving the wireless signal from your primary router, amplifying it, and then broadcasting it out in another area. This is perfect for boosting the signal strength in remote areas like basements or outdoor patios.
6) Use a WiFi extender
If you’re experiencing slow or spotty internet on your phone, laptop, or tablet even though the signal is strong on your router, it could be that the signal isn’t able to reach all the way to where you are. One way to solve this problem is by using a WiFi extender.
A WiFi extender will make your existing router’s signal stronger by repeating it. They work like repeaters in that they amplify and repeat the signal from your router but unlike repeaters, they don’t need an Ethernet connection and can be plugged into any outlet in your home.
7) Last but not the least, use a powerline adapter
Powerline adapters can turn your electrical circuits into high-speed data lines. You plug one adapter into an outlet near your router and then plug the other adapter into an outlet anywhere in your home or office. The two devices create a network connection over existing wires, so you don’t have any messy cables running from room to room.
However, there are some drawbacks with this solution: first, it can be expensive because you’ll need two powerline adapters for every outlet you want to cover with Internet access; second, you’ll need sufficient bandwidth in your electrical circuit; third, the powerline adapters aren’t always compatible with all routers and home networks; and fourth, they’re not available at all places where people live or work.