Computer repair and networking for the Windom, MN area

How to improve Wi-Fi

This is a question we hear all year long, but we expect to hear it a lot more as the weather finally gets warm.

Wherever you are, it’s always nice to have Wi-Fi coverage. Sure, we always have LTE on our phones we can fall back on, but data can be expensive. If you want to try to use your Wi-Fi outside or even on the porch, you might just need a little boost, even if it worked last year.

Something a lot of people don’t expect is that Wi-Fi routers actually get a little weaker over time. Personally, my oldest router only made it to three years old before I ended up needing a replacement. Of course, the more it’s used, the faster it wears out, so mine wore out fairly quickly.

However, there are other ways to boost range without completely replacing the router.

The more common, and less expensive, option is to use a Wi-Fi Extender. It’s a small box, usually smaller than your router, that repeats the Wi-Fi signal for you. So if you have Wi-Fi in one room and not the next, you put the repeater in the room with Wi-Fi and it catches it for you and sends it back out. You have to put it where the Wi-Fi works, so sometimes placement can be tricky. They can be moved whenever you want, though, so you can try until it works right for you.

The slightly fancier option is a Powerline Wi-Fi Extender. These use the actual electric wiring in your home to transmit internet, so you can place them just about anywhere you’d like. They are a little more expensive as there are actually two parts. One is a small box that plugs into the router and wall socket to transmit internet and the other slightly-larger box receives the signal and turns it into Wi-Fi. You have to be on the same breaker box or fuse box, so many farmhouses and detached garages can’t use these between buildings, but within a home they can work wonders.

If you have any questions concerning computers or tech support contact us at icitizentech@windomnews.com or call the Citizen at 831-3455.

Updated: April 15, 2019 — 9:56 am
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