For years, I struggled with the Wi-Fi in my home. My signal was weak. The Internet on my netbook always dropped off whenever I tried working at the kitchen table. I was getting tired of being locked in my office – the only room with a wired Internet connection.
I couldn’t even cast my phone screen to my TV without using smartphone data (slow and expensive).
After two years of struggling and feeling hopeless, I started researching tips on how to boost your Wi-Fi signal. What I found was surprising. I’m going to share seven ways to boost the Wi-Fi signal in your home without spending more on faster Internet.
1. Change Your Router’s Position
Where is your router located? Initially, I had my router in my office, which was on the far side of my house. It was the most convenient spot for it, but it was also the worst spot for signal strength.
When I was in my master bathroom, on the other side of the house, I had no signal. Nothing. Zilch. My phone data went through the roof because I was never connected to my home Wi-Fi network.
Frustrated at my situation, I searched “how to boost Wi-Fi signal” and found a surprising solution: changing your router’s position. It seems like an obvious thing now, but at the time, changing my router’s position never crossed my mind.
Long story short, I moved my router – to the center of my house. As it just so happens, my living room is in the middle of my home. I have a single-story home, so the signal is able to spread out fairly evenly throughout all of the rooms.
If your router isn’t in the center of your home, move it to be as close to the center as possible. This step alone may be enough to boost your Wi-Fi and get rid of dead zones.
2. Update Router Firmware
When was the last time you updated your router’s firmware? If you’re like me, your answer is “what?” Yeah, I never updated mine either. But here’s the thing, router manufacturers are updating their software all the time. Most of those updates are to fill security holes (another good reason to update often), but some are to improve speeds.
I will be honest – it’s not always easy to update a router’s firmware. The process will depend on your router. Fortunately, many newer models allow you to update right from the admin interface, so you don’t have to jump through hoops to get through this process.
If you have an older router, you may have to go to the manufacturer’s website, download an update file and upload it to the admin interface. It’s a tedious process, but it’s worth it.
I asked my co-workers how to boost Wi-Fi signal in home networks, and their top response was to update the firmware. Who would have thought this simple trick could boost your signal?
Even if it doesn’t boost your Wi-Fi, at least you know that your router is more secure.
3. Change Your Channel
When I first started researching how to boost my Wi-Fi signal, I saw a lot of people talking about frequencies and channels. I had no idea that I could even change any frequencies or channels on my router.
I just assumed that what you see is what you get.
But guess what? Changing the channel on your router can actually make a huge difference in your signal strength and speed. Why? Because interference is a huge issue, particularly if you live in a densely populated area.
Signals from other Wi-Fi networks can affect yours. Even signals from appliances in your home, like your microwave, phone and other electronic devices can interfere with your Wi-Fi.
To change your channel, you’ll have to navigate to your router’s admin interface. From here, there should be the option to change the channel. Don’t forget to save your settings before exiting.
4. Invest in a Wi-Fi Booster
The most reliable way to boost your Wi-Fi, in my opinion, is to invest in a Wi-Fi booster. Boosters are designed to amplify your signal, helping it spread further in your home.
My go-to booster Superboost, is a Wi-Fi signal booster for home. In my personal experience, this is the best way to boost Wi-Fi signal networks.
This Wi-Fi router signal booster takes less than 5 minutes to set-up, and it’s highly effective at strengthening your signal. Once I installed this, my signal problems disappeared.
5. Aluminum Foil
One of the craziest solutions I found for Wi-Fi problems was aluminum foil. Yes, people are asking how to boost Wi-Fi signal with aluminum foil.
Guess what? It actually works. In fact, a study from Dartmouth College found that aluminum foil and even aluminum cans can boost your Wi-Fi signals at home.
The aluminum foil trick is a bit more complicated (you have to build a reflector and wrap it in foil), but for a quick solution, you can cut aluminum drinking cans into a circular shape and point it towards dead areas.
6. Buy a New Router Antenna
Another way to reliably boost your Wi-Fi signal is to upgrade your router’s antenna. Many routers, even new ones, have small, weak antennas, but you can upgrade them pretty easily. Installing a new larger antenna will give you better coverage.
Look for a 9dBi antenna. Routers usually come with antennas that are 5dBi or 2dBi. There’s a big difference between a 5dBi and a 9dBi antenna in terms of signal strength. Bigger is always better when it comes to antennas.
7. Make Your Network More Secure
Network leeches can slow your speeds and weaken your signal. You may not even realize that other people are tapping into your network. Ensuring that your network is secure and encrypted will kick these leeches to the curb, freeing up your network for faster speeds.
Boosting your Wi-Fi signal doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult. I was able to dramatically improve signal strength and speed just by moving my router and buying a Wi-Fi booster. In my experience, these seven tips are the most effective at increasing signal strength with home Wi-Fi networks.