If you’ve set up a wireless network in your home and are still having issues accessing the network from some areas of the home, there are ways to increase your wireless signal and make your wireless network more accessible. Some of these options are totally free, some are not.
- Update your firmware router and network adapter. This is one of your free options and definitely one you should try first. Routers and network adapters each comes with factory installed firmware. Just like other types of software and operating systems, firmware is continually being improved and updated. Simply updating the firmware in your router and network adapters to the newest version may improve your wireless signal to the strength you need.
- DD-WRT. This is another free option. DD-WRT is a form of firmware that is advertised to boost your routers signal. There are some issues with using this solution, however. One, it doesn’t work with all types of routers. Two, it may invalidate your router’s warranty since it is not the manufacturer’s recommended firmware. If your router isn’t new, then you really have nothing to lose by trying this as an option, though.
- Add a second router. Now we’re done with the free options, but this one is still fairly simple. You can add a second router to serve as a relay station. You simply position the second router where it can catch and then project the signal of the first router in the direction that it is needed in your home. Most routers now come with the option to change their settings to ‘access point’, which is what you would want to do with your second router. It is also preferable to use the same manufacturer for your second router as you did for the first router. This will ensure a stronger compatibility between the two.
- Booster antennas. This option may cost some money, but they are generally fairly affordable. A booster or hi-gain antenna plugs into the external antenna connection of your router. You then point the antenna in the direction that you need your signal boosted. Manufacturers of these antennas make claims of being able to multiply your wireless signal several times over.
- Repeaters/extenders. This will tend to be your most expensive option. Repeaters and extenders are, of course, designed specifically for this purpose. They work by picking up the signal from the existing router and then re-broadcasting it from their location. If you choose to go this route, you should attempt to find one produced by the same vendor as your router.
You do have some options for trying to strengthen or improve your wireless signal. Sometimes the solution can be much simpler than these, however. Before resorting to these other options, try simply repositioning your router. It may be that there are barriers or appliances that are interfering with your signal. If this is the case, you may find your solution is not only free, but simplified, as well.