Because a good internet connection is essential in our everyday lives, here are five tips on how to optimise your WiFi signal at home.
WiFi connection problems
Imagine, you're on your couch, using your mobile phone or laptop, and your internet connection starts to act up while you’re watching an episode of The Mandalorian on Disney+. A frightening thought, isn't it? Whether it's binge-watching, playing video games, or working from home, we've all experienced this moment and there's nothing more frustrating. So to make sure it doesn't happen again and to make the most of the lockdown, here are 5 tips on how to improve your WiFi connection at home.
A few tips for a better WiFi connection
First of all, check if the problem is in fact the WiFi. To do so, the first test is to connect your device (computer, smartphone) to your router with an Ethernet cable. If your connection gets better, the problem is indeed the WiFi. If you do not have an Ethernet cable, do this test by comparing the network quality with that of another device. If both devices have connection problems, the WiFi is indeed the source of the problem. Now let's try to fix it with a few tips.
1. Watch out for confined spaces
The first trick is not to place your router in a confined space, such as in a cabinet, and not near metal objects. Also, avoid embedding the unit in a piece of furniture, or too close to the TV, TV box, or speaker. The best place for your router is on a piece of furniture, such as a table or a shelf, out in the open and high up. Ideally, it is even advisable to place your router in the middle of your home, equidistant from anywhere where you might need internet access.
2. Distance and obstacles are WiFi’s enemy
Remember that any obstacles or a distance that is too great can negatively affect the quality of your WiFi. A thick wall, a mirror, an aquarium, or a microwave can all be obstacles that will hinder the connection. To solve this problem try changing rooms or moving closer to your router. Also, if you have a router with antennas, here are some tips: if your house is on one level, point all the antennas directly up and down. If you live in a multi-storey home point one antenna vertically but have at least one antenna pointed horizontally.
3. A saturated WiFi channel
Another possibility is that your router’s WiFi channel may be saturated. Change it using your provider’s app, or switch it to automatic mode. There are also several apps that can help you find the least saturated channel.
4. Turn off your TV box
If you are not using your TV box, turn it off with the remote control to free up bandwidth. This is a simple trick that we don’t often consider.
5. Restart the router
If there has been an update, it is possible that the box may encounter problems until it has been installed. In this case, restart your router using the app, or from the TV interface. The update will be done automatically when it is restarted.
Check that the internet speed promised by your provider is being respected
If you find that your internet connection is really slow, you may not have the speed promised by your internet service provider. To be sure, there are a few websites that allow you to check the quality of your access speed. For example, Speedtest.net or Google's internet speed test are recommended.
Make sure nobody is stealing your bandwidth
If your pages are taking longer to display, or a video is taking an extremely long time to start, others may unfortunately be freely using your WiFi signal. If this is the case, here's how to fix the situation: go to the settings page of your router (or from the mobile app) to see which ‘client devices’ are connected to your network. If you don't recognise these users then you can exclude them from the network. Once this is done, you should change your WiFi password, preferably to one that is quite complicated.
Finally, if you think you need a stronger connection in order to play online, start an important download or to participate in a videoconference, connect using an Ethernet cable. The connection will be more stable and devices connected via WiFi will then also have a better connection. If you choose this option one thing to ensure is that the cables are clean. Copper strips and wires should not be crushed, rusted, or damaged. With these tips you’ll be guaranteed fast internet once again!