Having reliable internet access is more critical than ever with orders to stay at home due to the coronavirus. You need to make the most of your WiFi, whether you’re using it for work or keeping yourself calm while streaming and gaming.
Regrettably, this isn’t always the case. It can feel like nothing you can do when your home WiFi goes down or stops working correctly. This isn’t the case at all. Depending on how much money you want to invest, you can improve your WiFi condition in a pretty short amount of time.
How to Fix WiFi
Even if you don’t want to spend money, there are a few things you can do right now to fix your broken WiFi.
Things you can do for free
Keep your router out in the open and use those ethernet ports. Credit: Getty Images/Tetra Images RF
As you probably know, WiFi only works if your router is up and running. However, you can’t just stick a router anyplace and expect it to work well. It would be ideal if everything worked that way, but we live in a world where wireless signals can only go so far on their own, so we must assist them as much as possible.
Is your router in the basement, a cupboard, or otherwise out of reach of your devices? If that’s the case, think about repairing it. Your router should be placed as centrally as feasible. My modem is at the far end of a long apartment because that’s where the cable is, so it’s not always easy. You can, however, make it work if you have a long ethernet wire lying around.
Even if you can’t, you can strengthen your signal by elevating the router and ensuring there’s enough clear space between it and any devices you’re using. If at all possible, avoid putting it on the floor. Wireless signals can be affected by walls, incredibly thick ones. Other electronic gadgets close to the router may also interfere with the movement.
Keep the router away from other devices, avoid passing through too many walls, and keep the signal as high as possible. You might also try restricting the number of devices connected to your WiFi network. All of these things should be beneficial.
Things you can’t do for free but could help a lot
Google Nest Wifi is a router/mesh system that can significantly boost your internet’s range. Credit: Google
The problem may extend beyond router installation. That would be dreadful in our current situation, but if you have the financial means, there are some steps you can take to fix your lousy wifi by opening your wallet.
You might obtain some inexpensive ethernet cables and try to connect as many of your devices as possible. I understand how inconvenient this is and how it will undoubtedly lead to cable clutter. A direct connection between your device and your network may help if you’re having signal issues.
If you’re still having trouble after doing everything above, it’s possible that you need a new router. Our friends at PCMag have prepared a list of the best routers on the market right now, based on price and performance. D-Link sells this router for roughly $60, or you may spend a little more and get a more costly model.
If you decide to get a new router, be sure it has a sufficient number of ethernet ports. You don’t want to be fiddling around with cables in and out of a few ports. If a router you’re considering is “Wifi 6” certified, consider it a plus. It’s a newer, faster wifi standard that will only help you in the future as more devices support it.
Even if you have a high-quality router, it will not be sufficient to cover your entire home. In this case, mesh wifi networks, or wifi extenders can help. These are small gadgets that can lock on to your router’s wifi signal and broadcast a weaker but still usable version across the home. Although it’s a bit pricey, I reviewed Google Nest wifi last year and found it a pretty good solution to cover an apartment with no WiFi.
If your signal strength is sufficient, but your internet speed is insufficient, paying for faster internet is an alternative. We hope that no one is compelled to do so at this time, but it is a possibility. You’ll need to check with your Internet service provider to determine what speeds you’re already paying for and if you’re eligible for a speed boost.
Hopefully, a combination of the suggestions we’ve offered may prove helpful. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.
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