9 Things That Make Wi-Fi Networks Slow
9 Things That Make Wi-Fi Networks Slow
Wi-Fi networks being slow is a bummer, indeed with so many wireless devices in our homes connected now, even the slightest glitch can take a toll on performance. Here are 9 things that make your Wi-Fi network slow and how to fix them.
1. Too Many Devices
Indeed, we often have several devices, for example, such as laptops, PCs, or smartphones that are directly connected to our Wi-Fi network. This causes the internet network to slow down because it sends and receives too much data. Moreover, older routers are not designed to handle many registered Wi-Fi devices at once.
Solution: Consider how old your router is, and if you can afford an upgrade to a newer model. Because it can help you so that your internet network runs normally when used with several devices simultaneously.
2. Wireless Network Coverage And Signal Penetration
Where you place your Wi-Fi router is the single most important factor affecting your home Wi-Fi speed. Wi-Fi routers transmit both 2.4Ghz (often referred to as b/g/n) signals, and 5Ghz (ac). The 5GHz network is faster. So why not just disable the 2.4GHz network? It's simple: 2.4GHz signals can pass through walls and other solid objects more easily. A thick concrete floor or wall will stop the 5Ghz network completely.
You don't need to worry about technical differences, just understand that wireless speeds are affected by solid objects, so the more things between your device and router, the worse your network will perform.
Solution: Sometimes the router may not be able to move due to the fiber optic connection or incoming calls. Consider running an Ethernet cable elsewhere in the house to use a different router for Wi-Fi.
3. Too Many Users
Your internet connection isn't that fast, and that speed is shared with every other user in the house and all their devices. Besides the obvious things like computers, phones, and tablets, you'll also find Smart TVs, game consoles, streaming media like YouTube, all of which may be sending or receiving information at some point in time.
You're probably surfing the web on your tablet, while Windows is updating, and the STB is streaming movies on demand. All these activities consume a small amount of the total available bandwidth. And it's not just when you're actively using it, updates can happen silently in the background.
Solution: If there's a particular app or type of activity that you want to make sure you're always performing at its best, see enabling Quality of Service. Your router settings "turn off" a certain amount of throughput for certain devices or certain activities.
4. Old Network Cables
If your computer plugs directly into your router, or if you're lucky enough to have Ethernet cables throughout your house, it's worth checking the cables. While electrical cabling may last 50 years or more, network cabling has undergone several important improvements that impact the speed at which data can be carried. The easiest way to check is to look at the cable. You should look up the Cat number specs somewhere:
* Cat-5 is the oldest and slowest network cable still in use. Performance is limited to 100 Mbps.
* Cat-5e is the most commonly used network cable today; supports Gigabit Ethernet (1000 Mbps).
* Cat-6/6a is the fastest network cabling in general use and supports up to 10 Gigabit (10,000 Mbs).
If Cat-5 cables are used on your computer or as the backbone of your network, your Ethernet cables might slow down Wi-Fi. Network cables can also be very delicate. Use a cable tester to make sure each of the eight wires in the cable is still connected to the other end.
Solution: Replace any rated or damaged Cat-5 rated cable you found with Cat-5e or Cat-6 rated cable.
5. You Use Powerline Or Wi-Fi Extenders
In some cases these tools fail to address the root cause of the problem, and often only make matters worse by adding annoyances. Many people think that an easy solution to their Wi-Fi woes is to buy an extender: a small box that plugs into your power socket and repeats the Wi-Fi signal to the rest of the house. Some even use Powerline technology, an adapter that allows you to send network signals through electrical outlets.
Solution: If you have a large house and your Wi-Fi is nowhere to be found, consider a mesh Wi-Fi system.
6. Very Congested Wi-Fi Channels
For those in urban areas, certain apartment blocks, you may be surrounded by hundreds of Wi-Fi networks. Unfortunately, they all take up quite a bit of the available frequency bandwidth.
Solution: You can try changing the channel number, but modern routers are smart enough to choose the best channel. If you use a device that can be plugged in using Ethernet instead of using Wi-Fi, it will allow for a better use of what little bandwidth you have.
7. Slow ISP DNS Server
Regardless of what internet package you pay for, they all use a domain name system (DNS). DNS is used every time you type a web address in the browser. By default, you use the DNS servers provided by your ISP, but they are often slow and unreliable.
Solution: You can change your DNS server to something much faster. It can give you a small easy boost for all your web browsing activities.
8. ISP Limits Your Bandwidth
This is unlikely unless you are a heavy user, but many ISPs will purposely slow down your internet if it detects the use of file sharing apps or after you reach a certain limit. This is more common on mobile data connections than home broadband but it still happens.
You should have a good idea of your typical internet speed and check it regularly. If you feel a significant reduction and no errors are reported by your ISP, you may have to submit to "bandwidth shaping". Check your terms and conditions, or for the existence of a “fair use policy”.
Solution: If this has happened to you, the options are unfortunately limited. Either limit your activity or see if there are other providers that don't have bandwidth caps.
9. Problem Device or Wireless Client
If you are getting this error on your Router, you may have a device connecting, either by broadcasting too much or causing a race condition to occur on the Router. This can often bring down your entire network, but looks like a normal case of an internet outage.
Solution: Unplug the device and turn off the wireless clients until you find the culprit, then contact the manufacturer for assistance.
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