A reliable connection to the internet makes everyone happy, especially when paying for a premium WiFi package. Keeping things stable is simple enough if you have a general idea of the problem. Home internet connects multiple devices simultaneously, so a stable connection is required. To get the most out of your internet, use the eight hacks below to get a stable WiFi connection at home finally.
1. Move it closer
Signal degradation can sometimes be caused by the wireless signal being strained from the distance. This happens when there is a lot of interference from point to point, like walls or doors.
Any obstruction will lower the signal strength, so the placement of your wireless hardware is vital on both ends. Try to position your wireless hardware with the least resistance in homes with multiple floors.
That means finding a middle ground between the two floors where all connecting equipment can get an equal distance. The location may not be ideal depending on how your home is set up, but it will be the strongest. We had to do this in our home, which took a while to figure out for location but now that it’s in place it’s working well.
There is also a good chance that placing the wireless equipment upstairs will provide a much better signal for all connecting devices. Wireless strength tests are built into most mainstream home equipment, so you can use that to get a general idea of placement.
Once you’ve found the correct position, it never has to be moved again within the home. The only thing that would lessen the reliability of the new position is if a new obstruction was introduced within the home. And that’s the first of the household hacks here!
2. Switch to 5GHz for a more stable WiFi connection
Wireless equipment can be single-band or dual-band. The single band is usually 2.4GHz, while dual band incorporates the massive strength of 5GHz. Tri-band setups are available, but they are less common in consumer homes.
With 2.4GHz, you are getting a wireless connection that is considered one of the most reliable in the world. It has the greatest reach of the two bands, and is the most compatible with hardware.
More hardware supports 2.4 than 5GHz bands. The downside to 2.4GHz is that everyone has it, which means it is more likely that you’ll get interference with the line. Everything uses 2.4 GHZ, so even a running microwave can degrade the signal.
With 5GHz, you get a massive signal boost that increases speed, but you sacrifice distance and compatibility. Less people will be on 5GHz, and even if crowded, the signal won’t be nearly as degraded as the alternative. Consider the benefits of wifi vs LTE.
The best way to get the benefits of both connections is by using a dual-band router since it simultaneously transmits both signals. Profiles can be set up so that the hardware will automatically switch you to the stronger band if one connection is weak.
3. Change equipment
Using old and outdated equipment will cause your connection to be low quality. This makes no sense for most consumers paying top dollar for fast internet. You are using equipment that caps your maximum speed, yet paying for the fastest speed possible.
In short, using outdated wireless equipment is a waste of money. Older equipment also exposes you to security flaws and holes, which can seriously slow down your connection. Besides the chance of wreaking havoc on all connected devices, older equipment can slow you down even if it stops wireless threats.
Older hardware and software firewall protocols slow down even the fastest connection. If your WiFi suffers from random drops, disconnects, or buffering issues, chances are the outdated hardware is choking the connection. By trying to do a good job protecting your network, it is degrading it to a slower speed.
4. For a stable WiFi connection, use separate equipment
The two most common types of setups for a home connection are a modem/router all-in-one or a modem and router combination. The two accomplish the same thing, but the difference is minor based on the location it is used in. These minor differences can decide whether you have a strong or weak connection.
A modem/router all in one is a space saver but usually lacks an internal antenna. Thankfully, that won’t matter for most homes, and the connection will be strong on both bands.
Switching to a modem and router combination may prove helpful if you have this type of equipment and the connection is weak. You get a boosted signal from the antenna on the router but sacrifice space as a result.
There is also the issue of navigating two different software interfaces to make changes. As a last fault, other router and modem combo brands may not play nicely together. This is a lot to take in for someone that wants a simple connection, yet it is something to consider if you’ve been having consistent problems.
5. Encryption can sometimes cause problems
The type of encryption you use will directly affect how fast your network is. It’s no secret that WPA2 usage will sap some speed from your overall connection. You’ll have a better-protected network, but the tradeoff is high. Other types of encryption don’t have the same impact on your connection and offer superior protection.
WPA3 is one example. And it’s a massive upgrade from the previous generation. The only issue with encryption is that the hardware needs to support it from both ends.
That means even if you have the latest and greatest wireless equipment, there is still a chance the client devices will be outdated. That can get in the way of a stable WiFi connection. Encryption support relies on wireless equipment and client devices to support the security features.
Homes with older client devices must give in to the lowest common denominator. If every piece of hardware in your home is up to date except for a single smartphone, then the wireless hardware has to downgrade its encryption to support the smartphone.
One way around this is using different types of encryption for each band. Keep older client devices on the 2.4 GHZ connection while using the updated encryption on the 5 GHZ network.
6. Move it higher
When you’ve done everything right to ensure a good signal, what else is there left to do? Here’s another household hack. Consider moving your wireless setup higher.
A common mistake when using wireless hardware in homes is not to factor in vertical positioning. The higher you place it, the better the coverage will be. Some wireless equipment even comes with mounting tools to position it on a wall. Be careful with vertical placement since it can hurt you as much as it helps.
Placement on the wall should be well thought out, especially since it requires access to power. Make sure to run a wireless signal test to note any improvements after moving it.
If the gains are significant enough, you can adjust to get the most out of the wireless signal. Remember, you are testing for stability above anything else.
7. Update the firmware for a stable WiFi connection
Not all firmware updates are automatic, so users have to log into the wireless equipment’s interface to do it manually. Homes that lease or buy equipment from an internet service provider are more likely to have automatic push updates from their company.
This includes important security fixes, software bug patches, and speed improvements. Whenever an internet company updates its service in an area, it requires hardware that supports it. You won’t get improved speeds on up-to-date hardware if the firmware is old.
Always check the webpage of the internet equipment provider to see if there are any important firmware updates. Be careful installing manually, as a bad install can brick the device and make it unusable. This is rare and more likely to happen if the power goes out during an upgrade.
8. Sometimes, the issue is not on your end
Websites that have a lot of web traffic have to prioritize loads. When everything is perfect on your end but the speed is abysmal, then it is probably the server. It’s completely out of your hands at that point, so don’t fret over your personal connection.
Repeated issues with the same website should be reported to the webmaster. This is a common issue with websites that stream video or with popular social media websites. Loads of media and high traffic will always equal a slower connection from the server, even if it is prepared for the hit.
Homes that run a private media server can expect the same type of slowdown, but not on the level of more prominent websites. A private home media server is limited by equipment rather than connection speed.
If you want to increase satellite internet speed, check out this guide.
Wrap up on getting a stable WiFi connection
Lackluster WiFi can always be fixed with the right mindset, as you can see from the offered solutions above. If you keep a stable connection, you’ll never have to worry about drops ruining your daily use.
Keep your hardware in good shape with these household hacks. Then you’ve already won half the battle.