Extending the WiFi signal is something that often requires external devices, such as WiFi amplifiers or PLCs. Fortunately, there are many tricks that we can carry out to expand the WiFi at home , and with it, its maximum range, without the need to resort to third-party solutions. This time we have compiled several methods to improve the WiFi signal.
Place the router on a high
It may seem obvious, but the truth is that most routers are not at the recommended height to give signal to the whole house.
Ideally, place the device on a shelf or mounted on a wall with the antennas pointed vertically and horizontally , in such a way that they create a 90º angle to each other. Never on the floor, on a table or together with other electronic devices.
The further away you are from walls, the better
If we live in an old house or with several years behind it, the thickness of the walls is most likely the main cause of a low WiFi signal .
Given this, it is best to place the device as far as possible from the walls. Opting for a shelf or an adaptable base can always help us , although we can also use a table as long as its height is not too low. Ideally, place the device in the center of the house or as close to the rooms where there are devices connected to it.
Use the 2.4 GHz band whenever you can
After the arrival of fiber to a large part of Spanish homes, most routers integrate two types of bands: the 2.4 GHz band and the 5 GHz band.
If the 5 GHz band is characterized by offering all the speed that the router can provide based on the contracted rate, the 2.4 band prioritizes range and signal to the detriment of speed . It is best to use the last one if we are far from the router. If we are a few meters from the device, we can opt for the 5 GHz band.
Update the router firmware or system
Although routers generally update automatically, there are models that require user intervention to update the firmware to the latest version.
Jazztel routers generally update automatically. In this case, we will not find any option that allows us to update the firmware.
To access the router configuration we will have to write the address 192.168.1.1. In the article that we have just linked, we explained some keys to access several of the options that the administration panel offers.
Switch to more optimized frequency channels
The channels, better known as channels in English, are the highways of the router through which information is transmitted in the form of waves.
Like any highway, the greater the number of cars (in this case, neighboring networks), the lower the speed of movement. For this reason, changing the channel to one with less occupancy is essential if we want to increase the WiFi signal at home.
In this case, channel 14 is the most suitable to connect to the WiFi network, as well as channel 13.
Currently there are 14 channels, of which most are occupied by other WiFi networks that adjoin ours. How can we change the WiFi channel? Through the router settings ; specifically through the advanced configuration in a section similar to Channel or Channel. The configuration, of course, may vary depending on the router model.
There are routers that are not compatible with the 14 bands of WiFi.
To see the influx of the 14 channels, we can use applications such as WiFi Analyzer for mobile phones , where a complete map will be shown with all the channels and their occupation. Finally, we will choose the appropriate channel based on its influx: the emptier, the better WiFi signal we will obtain in the rest of the devices.
Cascade multiple routers
If you have recently changed companies, you most likely have two or more routers in the drawer. Taking advantage of one or several Ethernet cables, we can network several different routers to extend the signal to different parts of the house.
This method requires the configuration of both routers through the configuration panel of the two devices. In this article we explain how to proceed step by step to connect two routers at the same time. It is not a simple process, but it is more than recommended, and above all, inexpensive.
The 5 best cheap routers to buy in 2019
If after following all the steps we cannot obtain a substantial improvement in the WiFi signal, it is time to change the router. Generally, company routers tend to leave a lot to be desired.
It is not the best router that we can find in the market but it is one of the cheapest. In addition to having MIMO technology and three independent antennas, it has a 5 GHz network , something that not everyone can boast about.
As far as maximum speed is concerned, it has no less than 450 Mbps . It is compatible with the WPS protocol, and has an independent mobile application. Its price? Only 21 euros.
TP-Link Archer C6 - AC1200
We go up the price range, and this time it's the turn of the Archer C6 from TP-Link. It has four MU-MIMO antennas, four LAN ports, and one WAN port .
It also has a 5G network and a total broadband of 1,200 Mbps with peak speeds of up to 1,000 Mbps . It also has a mobile application. Part of the 47 euros on Amazon
Asus RT-AC1200G +
As the name itself indicates, the Asus router has a total bandwidth of 1,200 Mbp s. Along with the four traditional LAN ports, it has a USB 2.0 port and four external antennas to improve WiFi range.
The USB port, by the way, has multimedia functions to share files (images, videos, music ...) with other devices connected to the network. Its price starts at 60 euros.
Xiaomi Router 4A
Xiaomi could not be missing from this list. With a maximum speed of 1,200 Mbps and compatibility with 5G networks , the Xiaomi router also acts as a signal amplifier.
It has four independent antennas and an application to control from the mobile , like most of the devices on the list. The price of this is located at 29 euros.
Tenda AC6 Router
It is a router very similar to the Archer C6 from TP-Link, both in construction and in possibilities. Perhaps its main characteristic has to do with the energy saver that it integrates as standard , in addition to four external antennas, a parental control and an independent application.
Its price is only 30 euros in Amazon and the rest of stores.
The 5 best cheap WiFi amplifiers of 2019
Opting for a WiFi amplifier to extend your home signal may be a better option not only for convenience, but also for price and flexibility. And is that by not depending on cables, but on the electrical network, we can connect the section anywhere.
The TP Link solution comes as one of the most complete alternatives. With two antennas on the sides of the device and a maximum speed of 300 Mbps, the main advantage of this is that it has a plug , in such a way that we do not lose the connection to the current when we connect it to another socket.
The WiFi repeater also includes an Ethernet port that allows us to make wired networks wireless , although it can also use the home network to take advantage of the maximum speed of the router through the company's own Tether application.
Its price is only 21 euros, and coincidentally it is cheaper than the version without a plug.
TP-Link TL-WPA4220 KIT
A WiFi repeater kit that has two independent devices. With up to 600 Mbps speed , it does not require any additional configuration: connect and go.
It has three Ethernet ports with which we can turn any network into wireless. If we want to extend the WiFi signal, the maximum speed is limited to 300 Mbps .
It has somewhat more advanced versions that allow us to raise the maximum speed, but also its price. A price that currently starts from 50 euros.
Xiaomi WiFi Extender 2
The ideal complement for the Xiaomi router. The main advantage of this is its price: only 12 euros on Amazon . In import stores we can find the repeater for less than 10 euros.
As far as technical characteristics are concerned, it is capable of offering up to 300 Mbps of maximum speed in wireless networks. Fortunately, it is compatible with the 5 GHz network. To configure it, yes, we will have to download the Xiaomi application and indicate China as the main region, as it does not have official support in Europe.
NetGear WiFi EX3700
NetGear's WiFi repeater is advertised as supporting up to eight devices at once and a range of up to three or even four rooms.
The device's maximum speed is 750 Mbps , and it is compatible with both the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands. It also has a wired LAN port with which to turn any network into wireless.
Compatible with the WPA2 and WPS protocol, its price starts from 30 euros, although it has more advanced versions with greater speed and reaches.
NetGear WiFi Mesh EX7300
One of the most advanced versions of the previous model is precisely the EX7300. Its prices rise up to 80 euros, but also its characteristics. And is that the NetGear WiFi repeater supports up to 2,200 Mbps speed, with a maximum limit of up to 15 devices connected at the same time.
As the name itself indicates, the repeater is compatible with Mesh technology (in mesh) with which we can replicate the SSID of the current WiFi network to avoid reconnecting and reconfiguring the devices that currently remain connected to the original WiFi network. Of course, it supports the 2.4 and 5 GHz network.