Whether you use your wifi for a spot of online gaming, streaming your favourite movies and TV shows, or chatting to your friends and family, a weak connection can be frustrating.
But before you switch supplier or give up on the idea of getting a great connection, there are a few things you can try to boost your wifi signal.
1. Check your router’s on the right channel
Wireless routers can work on a number of different channels and some channels are clearer than others, depending on where you live. If your neighbours are using different wireless channels to you, this can cause interference too.
Try switching to a different channel to see if you can get a clearer, stronger signal. Switching channels is fairly easy and most UK ISPs include sections on how to do it on their websites.
2. Think about where to place your router
Moving your wireless router can make a big difference to the signal you’re receiving too. For the best results, try to place your router as near to the centre of your home as you can, and don’t put it behind other equipment or furniture, as this can block the signal.
Make sure it’s not too close to anything that could interfere with the signal either, such as your mobile phone, cordless phone, microwave, or metal objects like filing cabinets.
3. Upgrade your antenna
You may be able to improve your wifi signal by simply replacing the antenna on your router with a more powerful one. Most standard wireless router antennae are designed to broadcast signals in all directions, but you can buy antennae that will enable you to focus your signal in one direction. This can help you to get a stronger signal, improving your wifi connection.
4. Try using a wireless repeater
You can buy wireless repeaters from many computer hardware stores and using one can make a real difference to the strength of your wifi signal.
Just place the wireless repeater between your router and your PC or laptop, and it will pick up the signal and boost it.
5. Upgrade your router
When you sign up for a home broadband package, your ISP will usually send you a wireless router. These are usually fine for home use but, if you’ve tried the rest of our suggestions and you’re still having trouble getting a decent signal, you might want to consider upgrading to a better router.
There are some excellent routers on the market and you should be able to get one from your local computer shop or online. Although higher spec wireless routers can be a little pricey, upgrading to one could mean that you get a much stronger signal.
Other things to think about
As far as home broadband goes, there are still discrepancies to the sort of speeds and signal quality you can get depending on where you are in the country. If you live in a rural area, you may find that whatever you do, you won’t be able to get the same sort of service as your friends and family members in major cities can. You can check out how the speeds you’re likely to get in your area compare to the national average by using an impartial online speed checker, like Uswitch’s.
And these days, it’s not just home broadband connectivity that’s important to us. With laptops, smartphones and tablets all changing the way we use the internet, we’re looking for strong signals wherever we are.
Thankfully, most ISPs and some online services have their own wifi hotspots, making it simple for you to get a signal when you’re on the go. Just take a look at your ISP, or individual service provider’s website or use an impartial wifi hotspot website to find out where you can get a strong signal.
Have you got any tips for boosting your home wifi signal? Do you use wifi hotspots when you’re travelling? Let us know…