- Check your internet connectionFirst of all, to verify that the problem does indeed lie with your Wi-Fi network and not your broadband connection, connect a PC directly to your router using an Ethernet cable and run an internet speed test. Run it several times to determine the kind of speeds you can reasonably expect from your broadband service.
Note: This will often be considerably lower than the maximum speed quoted by your broadband service provider, and this is usually stated in their small print. If this is unacceptably slower though, you should contact your service provider for support and assistance. If the speed is acceptable, but drops dramatically when connected over Wi-Fi, then read on…
- Check the wireless connectionConsider moving the Wi-Fi router to a more open, central location, and if possible remove any direct obstructions (e.g. furniture, pot plants, etc.) between the router and your access devices – these can weaken the received signal. Also try to position the Wi-Fi router away from potential sources of interference, such as cordless phones, baby monitors, video senders, microwave ovens or other electronic equipment.
- Upgrade your routerIf, having carried out steps 1 and 2, your Wi-Fi connectivity is still poor – even when the PC is just a few metres away from the router – it’s time to consider upgrading.
- Check antenna orientationIf your Wi-Fi router has an external moveable antenna, then try changing its orientation. Usually, the best signal is achieved when the antenna is pointing straight up, but the connection can also vary according to the orientation of the receiving device. If the router has two antennas, then try turning them to 10 o’clock and 2 o’clock respectively.
- Check the bandsIf your Wi-Fi router is dual band, but broadcasts on both using the same SSID (like the BT Homehub 5 for instance), try splitting the bands across two SSIDs and seeing if your remote devices can connect more reliably on the 2.4GHz band. Although slower and more prone to interference, it has a longer range than 5GHz.