What Factors Can Impact WiFi Signal Strength?
There are a number of factors that can impact the strength of your network and WiFi signal. You can use our Wifi App to find the best spots and the worst spots at your location.
Choosing a Router Location
There are several different aspects of your router location that can impact its ability to deliver a good signal throughout your intended coverage area. These include:
- The height of the router: You should locate your router as high as possible. Placing it on the floor or on low shelves will impede its ability to provide a strong signal.
- Central location: You will obtain the best WiFi coverage if your router is located centrally in your home or office. Placing it in a corner of the house will result in WiFi leakage and reduced signal in your coverage area.
- Interference from other devices: Microwaves and cordless phones and other wireless devices may use the same frequency band as your WiFi router and contribute background noise that impacts the signal level.
- Walls and floors: The best WiFi signal will be obtained if the devices that will be using the router have a clear line of sight to it. Signals that travel through walls and floors will have their strength negatively affected.
- Distance From the Router:
Devices that require strong signals such as those that will be used for gaming or streaming may obtain better performance by being located close to the router. In some cases, you may need to boost or extend the WiFi signal by employing additional equipment such as additional wired access points (AP) or mesh / wired extenders to extend your WiFi’s range.
- Wifi Mesh Wireless Backhaul extenders:You are paying your ISP for a package speed and that is the speed that is delivered to your router. A wire to your wifi extender or to your next wifi access point (AP) insures you get that same speed delivered to your wifi extender. If you use a mesh wireless extender, keep in mind it works just like wifi its a radio), so your signal delivered as a backhaul will certainly be degraded. Therefore your speed tests will be lower and streaming can buffer.
Wired connections or even better, fiber optic connections are better than WiFi connections. WiFi and radio connections should be used at the last resort where it is impossible to run a cable because of ostacles or cost. WiFi is a radio and it does not, by its nature, go through walls, fire places, metal roofs and through the trees; but what signal does make it through will certainly be degraded. Degraded signal means: slow speeds or no speeds, buffering and a generally poorer internet experience. Use the Wifi Signal Tool app to find the best place to use your Wifi router and you will save yourself a lot of grief.
It is also a good practice to periodically do a proper reboot your router and testing with a Wifi app to notice any interference or degradation.