WiFi Issues Got You Down? Here’s Help!

If you’re like me, you live in a building. You also have wireless Internet or WiFi in your house. So, just like me, you’ve got parts of your house where you just can’t connect to your WiFi. Why is that?

WiFi is a way of connecting your computer to your modem by radio waves. All radio waves work best in wide open sky on a dry day or night.

Once you start putting walls in the way, the radio gets weaker. Then you start put wires and other radio signals in the way, and it gets weaker yet. Then water or humidity in the way and you might just lose your signal altogether.

Solid things, like walls, weaken radio signals. You can’t really move your walls, but you can put your WiFi router closer to the middle of the house.  That helps balance out the signal.

Electrical wires have a magnetic field when current is flowing. This can interfere with radio signals. You can’t really pull the wires out of the walls, but you can keep your WiFi router away from items that have lots of electricity going through them, like your fuse box.

Linksys Wireless G Router

Other radio waves are going to fly through your house no matter what. Most of those won’t make much of a difference. But, did you know, that your microwave is a giant radio? Oddly enough, it operates in the same range as WiFi. Almost all of your microwave’s waves stay inside of it, but if you have a microwave oven running between your computer and your WiFi, the oven might interrupt the signal. It’s easy to test. Just turn on the microwave. If you lose signal immediately, turn the microwave off. If you get signal back right away, then you know it’s the microwave

What does water have to do with it? Ever been in the tub and tapped the side with your fingernail? The sound is much lower than in the air. That’s the water slowing down the sound wave. High humidity in the air can have a similar effect on WiFi. Also note that humans are basically big bags of water. If you’re between your computer and the router, you could be blocking the signal.

Knowing what you know now, you can start to figure out ways to make your WiFi work better in your home. Next thing you know, you’ll be on the Internet in every room.

First Published: The Guysborough Journal, Vol . 21, No. 24, June 17, 2015

Image Credit: Linksys Wireless G Router, via Wikimedia.

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