SLOW home Wi-Fi is a real nuisance and makes streaming a movie or downloading large files an absolute nightmare.
While the blame can often be blamed on your broadband service provider, there are several ways you can overload a slow router.
Mobile electronics like lamps and your TV, for example, can do a lot of good, while reducing the amount of microwave use can improve your connection as well.
That’s because they can slow down your Wi-Fi by interfering with your router’s signal, according to UK watchdog Ofcom.
And these aren’t the only things that threaten to hinder your access to the web.
Aquariums, heaters, cordless phones, and speakers can all cause problems on the internet if placed too close to your Wi-Fi router.
Ofcom has published a list of ways to improve your Wi-Fi as part of a government-backed campaign to help people improve their web speeds.
Move or disconnect your lights and other gadgets
Moving lights, TV, and other gadgets away from your router can do a world of good.
It all has to do with the (harmless) radiation waves used to trigger WiFi around your house.
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Your router sends these electromagnetic signals to your devices to connect to the Internet, but they can be interfered with by other signals.
Objects like your refrigerator or lamps emit their own electromagnetic waves which interfere with your Wi-Fi signal.
Put two and two together and you will see why keeping your router away from other electrical appliances in your home is a good idea.
Ofcom also suggests disconnecting devices that are not in use but are using your Wi-Fi, such as tablets or your smart TV.
“The more devices that are connected to your Wi-Fi, the slower the speed you get,” he said.
“Devices like tablets and smartphones often run in the background, so try to turn off Wi-Fi reception on them when you’re not using them. “
Watch out for your microwave
One of the biggest offenders for slowing down your website speed is the microwave.
It emits a ton of electromagnetic radiation which can interfere with your router’s signals.
“Did you know that microwave ovens can also reduce Wi-Fi signals? Asks Ofcom.
“So don’t use the microwave when making video calls, watching HD videos, or doing anything important online. “
Use landlines when possible
Ofcom suggests giving up mobile for calls and switching to a landline instead.
This is because the large number of people working from home has created additional demand on mobile networks.
“If you need to use your mobile, try using your settings to enable Wi-Fi calling,” Ofcom said.
Likewise, you can make voice calls over the Internet using applications such as Facetime, Skype or WhatsApp.
Move your router
Moving your router to a better location is a sure-fire way to increase your web speeds.
Moving it off the floor and onto a table or shelf (around 5 to 7 feet high is best) can help the signal reach farther throughout your home.
This is because your router sends out signals in a 360 degree arc, like the glow of a light bulb.
Placing it on the ground therefore sends a signal charge directly into the ground.
Keeping it away from other electronic devices can also help.
He doesn’t need to be too isolated, mind. About a yard from any other gadget should do this.
Always make sure your router is plugged into the main outlet rather than an extension cord for it to run faster.
You can also increase website and load time by updating to the latest internet browser.
Change your aquarium
It might sound crazy, but your aquarium can also interfere with your router’s signal.
This is because water easily absorbs the radiation sent from your router, leaving a signalless “black hole” around the tank.
Fortunately, your fish won’t be affected – but your conference calls might.
If your router is near an aquarium, we suggest moving your pets (or the router) elsewhere.
Other tips include:
- When making video calls or meetings, try to turn off video and only use audio
- Rather than starting those calls on the hour or half hour, try making them at less common times.
- Use an Ethernet cable to connect your computer directly to your router for the best web speeds
- Try not to use a telephone extension cord if possible, as this can cause interference that could reduce your speed.
In other news, Samsung is said to have killed its beloved Note smartphone after more than a decade.
Apple has announced that it will let customers repair their own iPhones for the first time starting next year.
The UK is battling an epidemic of hacking attacks targeting consumers and businesses, officials say.
And, NASA slammed Russia after a missile it fired at one of its own satellites forced the space station to perform an emergency diversion.
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