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10 tips to improve your home WiFi signal and speed

Bored of buffering? Boost your WiFi with these tips and tricks.

The internet is an essential ingredient in the recipe of modern living. We use it for everything from stalking our exes on Facebook, to booking a cheeky last-minute break.

So, if you have a rubbish WiFi connection in your home, it can be a real pain. Luckily, there are a few simple ways you can improve your WiFi with ease. Try these for yourself:

1) Boost Your WiFi Range Using Beer

If you have a large home, you may find that your router doesn’t reach every room. Nightmare.

Luckily, there are a couple of DIY tricks to help solve the problem. For example, you can use an old beer can (no, really!) to help extend the range yourself.

All you need to do is cut the can in some strategic places and use it to amplify the range of your antenna. Check out the video above and you should have no problem!

2) Stop People Stealing Your WiFi

Psst… Did you know that there could be people out there stealing your WiFi?

When your connectivity levels suddenly drop, it could well be because your neighbours have logged onto your service for free. So, how can you stop this from happening?

Ensuring that your security is top notch could be the answer. Changing your password on a regular basis will mean that, even if people are using your network, they won’t be for much longer.

3) Prioritise Your Bandwidth Like a Boss

Things like games, video calls, and *gasp* Netflix use up a whole load of bandwidth. That means that when you use these services, you could find that your connection runs slowly on other devices.

Prioritising which applications get the most bandwidth will mean that you get the highest quality network for the things you care most about.

For example, you can stop your housemate’s needless and sickly hour-long Skype call to their boyfriend from interrupting your binges on Crazy Ex-Girlfriend*. Watch the video above to figure out how to use QoS to make this dream a reality.

*Not based on my own experiences… Okay, maybe just a bit.

4) Upgrade Your Router to the Next Level

 

Another way to enhance your router is by hacking it, and installing the DD-WRT Firmware onto it. Obviously, this tip is quite technical, so don’t attempt it if you’re not quite comfortable with it.

The idea is that the new firmware can help boost your router by up to 70 mW (improving the signal). Still, whether this will work and not damage your current connection depends entirely on what type of router you have. Make sure that you do your research first.

5) Get on the Latest Tech

Of course, if you’re not using the latest technology when it comes to WiFi, there’s no way that you can expect your connection to be performing at a high level.

Every now and then, it’s worth replacing your hardware to make sure that you’ve got the newest system. You can always get in touch with your WiFi provider to enquire about this. They should help you get the latest routers and so on for your home. Easy!

6) Find the Goldilocks Zone

 

Where you position your router really does matter. If you’re struggling when it comes to the range of your WiFi, this simple tip could be just the thing.

To get the best signal, make sure the router is near the room where you’ll most often use the connection. You should also place it out in the open so that there is nothing blocking it or causing any problems with it.

The centre of your home may be the ideal place, for example, as most rooms will then get the signal they need.

7) Switch the Channel, Duh.

Should you live in a busy area, such as a city centre, you may find that your signal always seems low. That’s because a load of people are trying to use the internet at the same time.

Switching to a less busy channel (yes, that’s a thing!) may mean that your connection is faster than ever. You can use apps, such as WiFi Analyzer, to find the channel that’s right for you, easily and quickly. It doesn’t hurt to try, right?

8) Location, Location, Location.

If anyone knows anything about location, it’s Channel 4’s Kirstie Allsopp and Phil Spencer from Location, Location, Location

You may never have thought of this, but your home appliances could be interfering with your router. If you have the device fitted near things like microwaves or home phones, you could find that the connection cuts in and out.

The solution is pretty simple: Just move your router (or, indeed, your appliances). The further these things are away from one another, the better your connection should be.

9) Regular Router Reboots

If you don’t reboot your router on a regular basis, you may find that it drops out from time to time. It can be a real pain, but what’s the solution?

Well, you can actually schedule your router to reboot automatically, without you having to manually intervene. You just need an outlet timer to do it, but it could be worth your time and money!

10) Use an old router as a WiFi repeater

If you’ve upgraded your hardware at some point, you may well have an old router lying around. Why not put it to use? You can convert the old router into a WiFi repeater, which will mean that you get a better connection all throughout your home. Sure, it takes a little time to master this project, but if you follow the video here, it shouldn’t be all that hard. Good luck!

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