Your Router Is Probably in the Wrong Spot. Move It to Speed Up Your Wi-Fi

This story is part of Home Tips, CNET’s collection of practical advice for getting the most out of your home, inside and out.

I am unable to let you know what number of occasions I’ve nearly misplaced my thoughts as a result of I’ve been in the center of an necessary mission or Zoom meeting and all of a sudden my internet connection glitches. Proper web connectivity is a must have, particularly as many people proceed to make money working from home. Even although I pay the month-to-month charges to an internet service provider and took the time to have a technician set up my router professionally, I nonetheless discover myself spending an excessive amount of time watching my laptop grind… and I wager you’ve got been there too. 

The excellent news is there’s a straightforward repair to these points that can take you only a few, brief minutes. 

There are a lot of factors that determine internet speeds and whereas there is a few methods or tips you may observe
to enhance the total wi-fi speeds and protection in your own home, considered one of the most important elements is the location of your router. And notice, it isn’t at all times the place the technician set it up. So maintain studying to study the greatest place in your own home in your router and different methods for quicker Wi-Fi. 

Read extra: Internet Connection Types Explained

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Check out all of the completely different routers obtainable to you: Wi-Fi routers, mesh networks and extra. 

Chris Monroe/CNET

Start with the proper router

First issues first: It all begins with choosing the right router or different tools. Not all routers are made equal and the measurement and structure of your own home will decide what kind of wi-fi community you want.

For most residences and smaller houses (below 1,500 sq. toes), a single wi-fi entry level ought to suffice. That stated, in case your router is a number of years previous, you might have considered trying to contemplate upgrading to a more recent mannequin with help for wi-fi 802.11ac and dual-band help. This will provide you with the quickest wi-fi speeds attainable and the greatest total protection.

For greater, multilevel houses, it is price contemplating making the upgrade to a mesh network to provide constant protection all through the whole home. Once the principal entry level is put in, when you discover a far nook of your own home does not have stable wi-fi protection, simply add one other node to that space. Problem solved.

To study extra, try our list of the best mesh routers of the year and when you’re undecided the place to start in selecting your subsequent router, seek the advice of our buying guide.

Regardless of whether or not you’ve gotten a single entry level or a mesh community, the place you place the main entry level nonetheless issues.

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Where do you have to place your router?

When you first transfer into a brand new dwelling or condominium, the modem is normally put in alongside the wall in considered one of the far reaches of the home. This is just because that’s the place the line comes into the home and the technician’s job is to arrange the connection — not optimize your community. That half is on you.

It’s tempting to simply go away the whole lot the place the technician set it up. But it is unlikely that that is an optimum location to have your router.

Choose a central location

Routers ship the sign out in all instructions, so if it is left in the nook of your own home, a big share of your wi-fi protection is being despatched outdoors your own home. It’s greatest to transfer the router to a central location to optimize the sign.

Installing a router throughout the home from the modem could show troublesome. It could require manually working a CAT5 cable below the ground or enlisting the assist of powerline community adapters. But the improved wi-fi protection will likely be price it.

Raise the router

Routers have a tendency to unfold indicators downward, so it is best to mount the router as excessive as attainable to maximize protection. Try inserting it excessive on a bookshelf or mounting it on the wall
in an not noticeable place.

Avoid different electronics

Try to decide a location that is away from different electronics and huge metallic objects. The extra partitions, giant obstructions and electronics close to your router, the larger the chances are high that one thing will intervene with the sign. 

One digital to particularly keep away from is the microwave, which emits a powerful sign in the 2.4GHz band, the similar wi-fi band your router operates in.

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Those funny-looking antennas truly matter

Some routers don’t have any antenna in any respect, however some have up to eight. These antennas assist direct the sign. If there are two or extra antennas in your router, do not place all of them in the similar path. 

Instead, make them perpendicular to each other — place one horizontally and the different vertically. Or barely change the place of all the antennas to cowl a variety of angles.

Try mapping the sign

In worst-case state of affairs conditions, it could show helpful to map out the signal in your own home to see the place there could be gaps or issues areas in your protection.

If you are contemplating upgrading your router, ensure to try CNET’s best routers of 2022.

For houses with youngsters, be sure that to explore the parental controls of your router, too.

More on dwelling web, Wi-Fi, ISPs and routers:

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