You Router Is In The Wrong Place
If you have a new router, but youre still experiencing WiFi dead zones, you might want to move your router. Since the signals from your router travel in an outward radius, you will have better coverage if you place your router in a central location rather than in a corner.
WiFi signals travel vertically and horizontally. This means its a good idea to have your router in an elevated position, like the top of a bookshelf or mounted on a wall. However, water and metal objects block WiFi signals, so make sure to place your router away from refrigerators and fish tanks. Finding the ideal router positioning takes trial and error, so check your WiFi signal strength in different areas before picking your routers final location.
If you want to know more about the best place to put your router, check out our article here.
Can Internet Speed Be Affected By The Weather
Small amounts of rain, wind, and snow should not impact your Internet connection. Large storms and high winds, however, are known to cause issues. High winds can knock down power and cable lines, freezing weather can destroy the existing copper lines underground, as well as cause issues for breakers, switches and other electromechanical components. Extreme heat can result in copper lines becoming frayed.
Inclement weather can also indirectly affect Internet speed because if the weather is either uncomfortably hot or cold, people are more likely to stay inside and watch Netflix, play games, download music, etc. resulting in a server overload due to drastically increased usage in the area.
What You’re Testing: Upload And Download Speeds
When it comes time to test your home Wi-Fi network, you’re looking for two basic measurements: Download speed and upload speed. The former measures the speed of data travelling to your home network, which you need to do things like:
- Check your email and open or save attachments.
- Browse the Internet on anything from your laptop to your tablet to your smart TV.
- Stream video on services like Netflix or Amazon Instant Video, or stream music.
- Update software and video games to their latest versions.
- Save files from the cloud to your computer or smart device.
Upload speed measures the inverse of download speedit gauges how fast you can send data from your network to others. Youll use it to:
- Add files to cloud storage services such as Google Drive or OneDrive.
- Attach files to outgoing emails.
- Send out a live video stream, as you would on Skype, FaceTime, or Periscope.
- Uploading pictures from your phone to Facebook or Instagram.
When you run a speed test, you’ll also see a measurement of your ping, which is basically your Wi-Fi’s response time. For all you hardcore PS4, Wii U, and Xbox One fans, this is a crucial measurement for online gaming. Ping is measured in milliseconds, so a low number is good news.
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What Are Fast Internet Upload Speeds
Upload speeds of 10 Mbps or higher are generally considered fast internet speeds for upload because they can easily handle the common activities of the average user. For example, Skype recommends upload speeds of 1.2 Mbps or higher for HD video calling. Uploading a large file, like 700MB file document, should take less than 10 minutes with a 10 Mbps upload connection.
Measure Wired Internet Performance
If youve tried the 10 above-described tips for improving wireless internet performance without any success, then its time to shift your focus from your WiFi and measure wired internet performance. To do that, you need an Ethernet cable and a laptop or desktop computer with an Ethernet port.
We recommend you repeat the wired internet performance test several times, preferably at different times of the day. Once youre certain that your internet service provider is to blame, send them the results of your tests and ask them to fix the problem. If they fail to do so, then its probably time to switch to a different internet service provider because even the best tips on how to increase WiFi signal wont help you.
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How To Make It Faster
When it comes to internet speed, one thing to consider is the proximity of your device to your router. The further away from the router, the worse its Wi-Fi connection and the slower its speed is going to be. A good way to see the difference is to run a speed test right by your router and then another speed test where you need a fast Wi-Fi connection. If theres a stark difference, Id recommend investing in a Wi-Fi extender if you have a small home, or a mesh router system like Nest Wifi or eero if you have a larger home.
The more devices connected to Wi-Fi and running at the same time, the more of your internets bandwidth gets subdivided, which could hurt the internet speed of any given device. You can check how many devices are connected to your internet and how much bandwidth each is taking via your routers settings .
The other good thing is that most routers these days come with dual-band technology. This allows them to set up two frequency channels, one 2.4GHz and one 5GHz , and you can control which devices are connected to each network. In addition to freeing up some bandwidth, connecting devices that need the best Wi-Fi connection to the 5GHz network should ensure that they get the best internet speed.
Use The Latest Wifi Technologies
The newest wireless technology, IEEE 802.11ac, offers superior download and upload speeds as well as improved range compared to older WiFi technologies, such as IEEE 802.11b, g, and others. To take advantage of the latest WiFi technologies to boost home WiFi, you need to make sure that both your home router and your WiFi-enabled devices, such as smartphones and laptops, support them.
When selecting a new WiFi router with support for IEEE 802.11ac, dont pick the most affordable model you can find. Unless your budget is very strict, its always worth spending extra to purchase a router with excellent range and modern features such as MU-MIMO, Quality of Service, guest networks, gigabit Ethernet ports, and replaceable external antennas.
A good router should be able to serve you well for at least five years, which is approximately how long it usually takes for a major new WiFi technology to become mainstream. Near the end of this article, we recommend five best WiFi routers from leading manufacturers, so all you need to do is pick one that fits your budget.
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What Is Upload Speed
Upload speed refers to how fast your device can send data over the internet, which is measured in megabits per second . You will need a fast upload speed for live-streaming videos, sending large files over email, and video-chatting.
Your upload speed will usually be much lower than your download speed unless you get a symmetrical internet plan.
What is a Good Upload Speed?
A good upload speed for most households is 3 Mbps. The FCC defines this as a fast upload speed, so it is good enough for most activities online, even if you have multiple connected devices. However, if you want to live stream, you will need a higher upload speed.
To live stream video in HD on YouTube, recommends you have an upload speed of 5 Mbps. To live stream in 4K, you should have an upload speed of at least 35 to 45 Mbps. If you want to live stream in 4K at 60 frames per second, you will need an upload speed of 53 to 68 Mbps.
To video call in HD on Skype, you need an upload speed of at least 1.2 Mbps. However, to video chat with high-quality video, you only need an upload speed of 0.4 Mbps. If you use Zoom, it is recommended you have an upload speed of 1 Mbps for group video chats or 3 Mbps for HD group video chats.
The average upload speed for fixed internet in the US is currently around 60 Mbps, based on recent data from Ookla.
How Does My Gateway Impact Internet Speed
Your home WiFi connection is only as good as your Gateway , since all devices connect through it. We upgrade our smartphones regularly, but often neglect to upgrade the actual devices that connect us to the Internet. A Gateway that’s a generation or two behind may not be able to deliver the fastest broadband speeds to the latest devices. If you have an older Gateway consider an upgrade.
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How Can I Make Wifi Fast
If youve just found out that you dont exactly have a fast WiFi connection at home, dont panic. Unlike wired internet connections, WiFi speeds fluctuate quite a lot depending on many factors, some of which are hard to control.
The distance from your WiFi router is arguably the biggest factor of them all. The farther away from it you are, the slower speeds you can expect. If you want fast WiFi everywhere, you can:
- purchase a WiFi repeater,
- replace your router with a more powerful model.
We highly recommend you use NetSpot to check for dead zones, which are areas of signal weakness.
In addition to the distance separating your WiFi-enabled devices and your WiFi router, there are several other important things that can affect your home WiFi network performance that you should keep in mind as well.
Interference happens when signals outside of your WiFi network impair its operation. Such signals may come from other WiFi networks, different kinds of communication networks, and also large electronic appliances, such as your refrigerator or microwave oven. Again, choosing a good place for your WiFi router helps a lot, but you should also switch to the least cluttered WiFi channel in your area and possibly also to the 5 GHz frequency. Read How to select the best WiFi channel with NetSpot.
Last but not least, the fact that youre not getting the speeds youre paying for may actually have everything to do with your WiFi router.
How To Check Network Adapter Speed Using Powershell
To check the Ethernet or Wi-Fi connection speed on Windows 10 with PowerShell, use these steps:
Type the following command to determine the connection speed for all the Ethernet and Wi-Fi adapters and press Enter:
Get-NetAdapter | select interfaceDescription, name, status, linkSpeed
After you complete the steps, the PowerShell output will display the connection speeds in a user-friendly format .
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Let’s Test The Speed To Your Device
This test will measure the speed from secured third party test servers to this computer. Results are often lower than plan speeds due to Wifi conditions and device specific capabilities.
1.Use one device. Before you start the test, make sure that any other devices in your home that are connected to the Internet, like an iPad, Xbox, or a Smart TV are turned off. Testing your speed while using other devices simultaneously may impact the accuracy of the results.
2.Connect directly to your modem. For the best test result, make sure your computer is connected directly to your modem, rather than your router. Accessing the Internet on a wireless device via a router may impact the speed of your connection.
3.Stay up-to-date. If you have a computer running an older version of a Windows or Mac operating system, this may impact your test results. You may want to consider updating.
Update Your Routers Firmware
Since youve already logged in to your routers interface to check your Wi-Fi channel from step six, you might as well check to see if there are any available firmware updates. Updating your router keeps it as secure as possible and up to date with the latest software fixes for known problems.
Many newer routers have automatic firmware updates, but if your router doesnt, you should periodically check for them to make sure your router works as fast as possible.
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Move Closer To Your Router
As you get further from your router, the quality of the signal will decrease. This means that more of the data packets will get lost, and your device wont receive all the information the router tries to send it. Sending the data again takes time, so the overall speed decreases.
A typical home router on the 2.4 GHz frequency will have a clear range of around 300 feet. However, the walls, doors and furniture in your house can easily drop this by half or more. Even if youre in this area, fewer data packets will be lost if youre closer to the router, so its worth trying this before you continue.
You can also try moving the router to a more central location, rather than, for example, the corner of your house, which decreases its effectiveness.
How Much Of A Difference Does A Good Internet Speed Make
Small speed increments, such as 15 to 25 Mbps, likely wont result in a noticeable difference in performance, but larger jumps, say 10 to 100 Mbps, can give you a totally different experience.
To give you an idea of how much speed can play a role in downloading and uploading, weve listed the estimated time it would take to download a two-hour HD movie and upload a 10-minute video with various speeds below.
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What Is Considered Fast Internet
Internet download speeds of 100 Mbps or higher are often considered fast internet because they can handle multiple online activities for multiple users at once without major interruptions in service. If you need a little help determining the best internet speeds for your needs, weve got you covered.
Youre Using The Wrong Spectrum Band
Wireless networks use two main frequency bands: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. These frequency bands affect how far and how fast data can travel over WiFi. The 2.4 GHz band gives you slower speeds at a longer range, while the 5 GHz band gives you faster speeds at a shorter range.
So, if you want the fastest WiFi speeds, you should always use the 5 GHz band. However, the more devices you have on one band, the slower your WiFi will be. So, you should reserve the 5 GHz band for your most important devices, such as your laptop.
To find out more about the difference between 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz, check out our article here.
You can only use both frequency bands if you have a dual-band router. This type of router will let you have two different WiFi networks one for each band. You can set up these different networks to each have their own name and password.
To find out if your router supports both WiFi bands, you have to log in to your routers settings page. Then make sure both your bands are turned on. From here, you can also find the name and password for your 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks.
If you want to know how to log in to your routers settings page, check out our step-by-step guide here.
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