In our instantaneous world, there are few things more frustrating than that spinning circle in the middle of our tablet, phone or laptop screen. Like Veruca Salt in Willie Wonka & The Chocolate Factory, we want it now! There are a number of factors that can affect the performance of your home wireless network, including your equipment, the number of connected devices in your home and the size of your home.
The physical location of your router can also have a huge impact on your Wi-Fi performance. Here are a few tips for selecting the best placement for your router.
- Centralize It – Your signal loses strength the further you get from your router, so your router should be placed near the area where you use Wi-Fi the most. For example, if you never work out of the second-floor office in your home, you probably shouldn’t house your router there. The family room or another common lounging area is probably more appropriate.
While you can freely move your router, your modem should remain where it was when your technician installed it. Your router has to be connected to your modem, but you can purchase an Ethernet Cat 5 Cable that will allow you to move your router while keeping it connected.
- Open It Up – Your signal needs room to “breath” so it can spread throughout your house. Windows, closets and cramped quarters can slow it down. Additionally, building materials such as sheetrock, brick and plywood can impede the progress of your signal, so find a wide open area to place your router.
- Lift It Up – We recommend you place your router five to seven feet off the ground with a clean line of sight. Your router emits radio waves that spread out and down from their source. Placing your router a good distance off the ground improves the range of your signal.
- Don’t Zap It – The kitchen is the worst location you can place your router because many appliances, such as your microwave or a cordless phone emit signals that can interfere with your Wi-Fi. Metal can also cause your signal to dissipate, so avoid positioning the router on or too close to anything that might negatively impact its performance.
Our Right by You Insights blog has a number of resources to help you learn more about technology and help you get the most out of your internet service. Click below for more articles you may find useful.