Easy home Wi-Fi improvements

You don’t always have to spend big money for better wireless connectivity.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
You don’t always have to spend big money for better wireless connectivity.
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Recommending newer routers, installing repeaters, and upgrading Internet plans are pretty straightforward methods to getting a better wireless connection. However, not all problems require new hardware or an IT administrator to fix. Here are some life hacks for improving your home Wi-Fi -no extra cost or technical knowledge required.


Assuming that you use your tablet or smartphone in many places around the house, the best spot for a wireless router would be the center of your home with a clear line of sight to your device. If you’re living in a place with two levels, placing the Wi-Fi on top of a first-floor cupboard can help boost coverage for the second level. It also helps if the router is not near any other electrical appliances.


If your router has two or more adjustable antennas, rotate them perpendicularly to form an “L”. This is because radio reception is stronger when both router and client device have the same antenna orientation plane. Since you cannot always control antenna orientation for devices in your home, pointing your router antennas both ways will help to maximize radio reception.


Here’s a trick to “help” focus the Wi-Fi signal. Wash out an empty soda can, and use a pair of scissors to cut the can’s bottom away. Proceed to cut the can length- wise on one side until you reach the top, and cut just enough of it so that you open can out into an aluminum sheet. Place your little satellite dish over the antenna by looping into the ex- drinking hole.


Like most tech support problems, a reboot can give your router a break, clear up memory and get it back to its best condition. To do that, unplug your AC/DC connection to your router after safely turning it off. Wait for the router to fully discharge – the duration varies anywhere from a minute to five, so find what works – before turning it back on.

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