8 Tips to Improve the Performance of your Wi-Fi Network
Few things are more annoying than a snail-paced internet connection. Imagine trying to watch your favorite movie –may be the newly released season of Game of Thrones- on Amazon Prime and all you get are frequent interruptions and the buffering icon. This can be extremely frustrating and take a toll on your patience. Fortunately, if your Wi-Fi network is not meeting your expectations, there are several things you can do to boost its signal, optimize its coverage, and speed up surfing. Below are eight tips to improve the performance of your Wi-Fi network.
1. Choose a good place for your router
Distance is a common problem that affects the strength of your Wi-Fi signal. The most common distance-related problem is accessing the internet in a different room than the one with the router. This makes the internet connection poor because the signal has to penetrate various obstructions ranging from corners to walls to reach you. Also, if you live in a densely populated area, the signals of other electronics and Wi-Fi networks can reduce the strength of your Wi-Fi signal. So, what should you do?
- Don't hide your router behind the TV cabinet. Place it in an open space away from walls and obstructions. Preferably, raise your router above the floor level and place it in a central location. This will greatly improve the strength of the signal and hence boost the performance of your internet connection.
- Avoid positioning your router near metal objects and appliances because they discharge electromagnetic waves.
- If the strength of your signal is still poor, consider adding a wireless range extender to it. This will strengthen the Wi-Fi signal by allowing coverage to a larger area.
2. Use the latest Wi-Fi Technology
You can improve the speed of your Wi-Fi connection by using the latest software in your router. While some routers have an in-built update process in the administration interface, others, especially older models require you to download an update from the router's manufacturer website. Updating your router's firmware not only improves the speed of your internet connection but also ensures you get security updates, advanced features, and performance improvements. However, ensure that your router and Wi-Fi enabled devices support the latest Wi-Fi technologies.
3. Eliminate Wi-Fi Leeches
Nowadays, an encrypted and password protected Wi-Fi is no longer a good-to-have but a must-have. Many people rely on Wi-Fi for internet connection and a good number of these people are hungry for open and fast Wi-Fi connections. Even if your neighbors have their own Wi-Fi networks, nothing will stop them from using your Wi-Fi if you don't protect it. In some instances, the more the number of people using a Wi-Fi network, the slower the connection. Therefore, cut off Wi-Fi leeches to improve your home Wi-Fi connection. If you have many guests, you can create a guest network that is equally protected.
4. Replace your antenna
Many routers have an in-built and omnidirectional antenna that sends signals to all directions. Unfortunately, many of these antennas are small and weak. You can boost the strength of your signal by buying a stronger antenna. Although stronger Wi-Fi antennas are large and powerful, they can be hideously large. If you don't mind the size, you can purchase a strong Wi-Fi antenna to boost Wi-Fi connection at home or in the office without purchasing a new router. Ensure you check your router manufacturer's website for help on buying the right antenna.
5. Keep your router updated
You can't teach an old dog new tricks, right? If you are using an old device, you can only tweak and optimize it so much. For example, if you are using the 802.11g that offers 54Mbps, you can't expect it to have excellent signal and speed like the most recent 802.11ac that offers 1Gbps. Hence, do not wait until your router is broken to fix it, just update your hardware and you will be amazed by the great speed you get. Notably, an updated router protects against malware attacks that are very costly.
6. Control Bandwidth-hungry Applications
A single bandwidth-hungry application can cause lag on the internet connection for all users on a Wi-Fi network. It can make download and upload speeds decrease significantly. Fortunately, contemporary routers have support services such as built-in Quality-of-service (QoS) tools in the network administrator interface. QoS limits the bandwidth usage of various applications and allows you to prioritize certain applications over others. You can improve your Wi-Fi speed by specifying the apps and services that the device should prioritize depending on your needs. With QoS, your online gaming session won't be interrupted by someone downloading a video from YouTube or another one streaming a movie on Hulu.
7. Change to a different Wi-Fi channel
You can compare Wi-Fi channels to lanes in a highway. You don't have to stick to one lane; if one is crowded or going slow, you can switch to another lane. There are numerous Wi-Fi channels that a Wi-Fi router can broadcast. Most nations have 6 non-overlapping channels. However, many users let their Wi-Fi routers work on default channel –either channel 1 or 6- causing a Wi-Fi traffic jam since all users want to use the same line. Rather than relying on a default channel, you can switch to least occupied channels. Buckeye Broadband can help you make this switch and improve your Wi-Fi network.
"If it doesn't work, try rebooting it" is a common IT phrase. The same applies to Wi-Fi routers. If your Wi-Fi speed is slow, you don't have to bear with it. You can reboot it to improve the speed. Rebooting helps to clear the router's memory and install updates.
Lag on your internet connection is not only annoying but also counter-productive. Fortunately, you don't have to keep up with slow speed, bad reception, and other Wi-Fi issues. Use these seven tips to improve the performance of your Wi-Fi network at home or in your office. Additionally, you can use SmartNet rather than HomeNet to optimize your wireless connection at home. If the problem persists, kindly contact Buckeye Brainiacs on 419-724-9888 for help.