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Fix slow Wi-FI with this router settings tweak

Sometimes a little bit software program adjustment is all it takes to repair your Wi-Fi issues.

I spotted this a lot after I purchased a brand-new router, a hulking monstrosity with assist for the most recent Wi-Fi 6 normal. What ought to have been a significant community improve as an alternative develop into a hair-pulling expertise as I attempted to determine why its obtain speeds have been so unreliable.

It seems the answer was easy: Just change the router’s channel and bandwidth settings to keep away from potential sources of interference.

Out of the field, most routers will choose a management channel robotically. I assumed this may be superb as a result of I’m in a suburban space with out a whole lot of different Wi-Fi networks close by. Interference can come from a whole lot of sources, nevertheless, and your router’s default choice won’t be the most effective. With a little bit of trial and error, I discovered a channel that will get me near wired ethernet speeds from just about anyplace in the home.

The strategy to change your channel and bandwidth settings varies by router producer, however you may both strive visiting in your net browser or viewing your producer’s assist pages. (Here are some for Asus, TP-Link, Netgear, and Linksys.)

As for which channel to select, Android customers can take a look at an app known as Wi-Fi Analyzer to scan for potential congestion sources on every channel, however I’ve discovered that it’s finest to only experiment. If you have got a dual-band router, you may strive any channel on the 5GHz band, however for the two.4GHz band, follow channels 1, 6, or 11 if doable.

You also can strive deciding on 20MHz-channel bandwidth on the two.4GHz band, which may additional cut back interference at a small price to hurry. In my case, that made a giant distinction as effectively. (If any of this sounds intimidating, write down or take an image in case your present settings earlier than you begin making adjustments, so you may change them again if something goes flawed.)

wifiroutersettings Jared Newman / IDG

Changing your Wi-Fi channel and bandwidth could make a giant distinction.

Once you’ve chosen a channel, strive working some pace checks on no matter gadgets are supplying you with hassle. Netflix’s is a useful pace take a look at instrument you may go to in any browser, even in your cellphone, or you may simply search Google for the phrase “speed test” and hit the blue “Speed Test’ button on the prime of the outcomes. Stick with no matter channel offers you constant speeds throughout a number of checks.

A phrase of warning, although: While tweaking your Wi-Fi channel would possibly assist with inconsistent speeds, it gained’t magically give your router higher vary or eradicate useless zones. If your speeds are dropping off as you get farther away from the router, it could be time for a new router or range extender as an alternative.

This column initially appeared in Advisorator, Jared’s weekly e-newsletter for serving to of us make sense of know-how. Sign up to get ideas despatched straight to your inbox (hopefully with none Wi-Fi points alongside the best way).

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