Have you ever been working and all of a sudden your WIFI signal drops? Maybe it doesn’t completely go away, but slows down tremendously. What is causing this? Is your internet service provider (ISP) having issues?
Before you call your ISP, let’s take a look at some other common causes.
What is interference? Our friends over at Hospitality Wifi have an excellent definition:
“Wi-Fi interference is any signal outside of the configured Wi-Fi network that impairs normal operation of the Wi-Fi network. Typically, wifi users will detect slower speeds… frequent disconnects … and sometimes a complete inability to connect to a Wi-Fi signal.”
So what could be interfering with your signal?
Appliances – Yes, you read that right. Things in your kitchen, such as your microwave can affect your WIFI signal. Also, some fluorescent lights can cause issues too.
Your home/office – The materials in your home/office such as concrete, brick, metal, stone, and even certain types of insulation can block your signal. While not a source of radio frequency static/interference, these will degrade your signal.
Low-power wireless devices – Everything from a baby monitor to a wireless keyboard can interfere with your WIFI. This also includes devices such as activity trackers, cordless phones, headphones, mice, and really any other wireless device that emits a wireless signal.
Surrounding networks – Your neighbor’s wifi’s network can actually interfere with your network. There are different bands that are used to send out a signal, and if you have neighbors who are using the same bands, this could cause interference.
Security – Your security cameras/system can also interfere with your WIFI signal.
Now that you have an idea of several things that could interfere with your wifi signal, let’s take a look at a few tips on how to avoid wifi interference.
Move your router – This might seem like a real hassle, but in the end, it might be the best option.
Switch which bands and frequency you use – Things like 2.4GHz vs. 5GHz networks can make all the difference. If you are in the configuration settings of your router/wifi device, ensure you are using “auto” for the frequency band. Also, 5ghz usually performs better than 2.4.
Unplug appliances – From a troubleshooting standpoint, try and get away from electrical appliances. While you certainly can’t move your clothes dryer or refrigerator, working away from them (and making sure they are not between you and your router) can help when troubleshooting connection issues.
Instead of living with a poor or weak wifi signal due to interference, take some time to see if you have appliances, low-power wireless devices, security devices, surrounding networks, or even building materials that are causing issues with your networks.
Let us know if any of these solutions helped you fix any interference issues in the comments below.