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Speed up Wi-Fi

how to speed up wifi

Speed up your Wi-Fi in 9 easy steps

If your Wi-Fi isn’t giving you speeds you need, there’s probably an easy fix you can do yourself. Just try these steps and boost your internet connection in a flash.

Quick tips

9 ways to speed up your Wi-Fi:

1. Restart your router.

2. Move your router to a better spot.

3. Adjust your router antennas.

4. Enable 5GHz Wi-Fi and 2.4GHz Wi-Fi.

5. Add a Wi-Fi extender.

6. Remove unnecessary devices.

7. Update your equipment.

8. Update your router firmware.

9. Get a faster plan.

Get connected today! Select from NodeOne’s lightning-fast internet plans.

Find the best internet plans for your address here.

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First steps

Start by determining your current internet speed. Establish a baseline measurement using the Speedtest tool. Reassess your speed after implementing each solution to gauge improvements.

Compare your actual speeds with the advertised speed outlined in your internet plan. This will help identify if there’s an issue that requires attention or if upgrading your plan is necessary.

It’s expected that your actual speeds will be slightly lower than the advertised figures and your provider will likely provide an actual peak-hours anticipated speed. However, if the deviation is significant, the following fixes are likely to address the issue.

Now, let’s explore these solutions…

1) How to speed up your Wi-Fi: Restart 

It sounds obvious but the first step is to turn it off and on again. Try these steps:

  • Unplug your modem
  • Leave it for 30 seconds or so
  • Plug it back in. 

There’s a very good reason you’ll always hear IT experts ask if you’ve tried turning it off then turning it back on again. 

Start the troubleshooting process by power cycling your equipment. Begin by unplugging your modem, leaving it disconnected for approximately 30 seconds, and then reconnecting it. Monitor the progress by observing the lights on the side of the box; it may take a few minutes for everything to resume normal operation.

This method, commonly referred to as power cycling, is effective in resolving many typical connection issues.

If you have a separate router, perform the same power cycling routine. Additionally, power off your devices – simply disabling Wi-Fi might suffice, but in certain cases, a complete shutdown is more effective.

On restarting your devices, reconnect them to the Wi-Fi network and assess if there’s an improvement.

This approach is the fastest and easiest way to enhance your connection. Just inform everyone in the household that the internet will be unavailable for a few minutes.

2) Move your router

Tip: for optimal performance, position your router centrally in your house or close to where Wi-Fi is frequently utilised, in an open and elevated spot.

Wi-Fi signals can only traverse a limited distance and navigate limited obstacles. Placing your wireless router at one end of your house might result in connectivity issues when you’re at the opposite end.

Obstacles like metal, tile, stone, and water hinder Wi-Fi signals. Therefore, hiding your router in a closet, placing it in the basement, behind furniture or on the far side of the bathroom worsens connectivity challenges.

Keep in mind that Wi-Fi signals can face interference from radio waves emitted by other devices such as cordless phones, baby monitors, microwaves and Bluetooth speakers. Check the area around your router to identify potential sources of signal disruption and move things around as necessary.

3) Adjust your antennas

Tip: to extend coverage between rooms, position the antenna vertically; to extend coverage between floors, position it horizontally.

While most contemporary wireless routers and gateways come equipped with internal antennas, if your router features external, and therefore adjustable antennas, consider this your next troubleshooting step.

Adjustable antennas typically emit signals in directions perpendicular to the antenna itself. In other words, a vertical antenna transmits signals horizontally, while a horizontal antenna transmits signals vertically.

4) Switch your Wi-Fi frequency band

Did you know? Your Wi-Fi works over two radio frequency bands – changing the one you use could speed up your internet.

Modern wireless routers work on two radio frequency bands: 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. 

  • 2.4 GHz is used in wireless communications, including Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. It provides a wider coverage area and better connectivity through walls and other solid objects, due to its lower frequency.
  • 5 GHz generally offers faster data transmission speeds than 2.4 GHz, but at a shorter range. 

You can switch your frequency band to better suit your needs. Here’s how:

  1. Access router settings

Open a web browser and enter your router’s IP address (commonly or into the address bar. If you’re unsure of the IP address, check the back of your router or the manual.

  1. Login to your router

Enter the username and password. These are often set to default values like ‘admin’ and ‘password’, unless you have changed them. Again, if you don’t know them, they are usually written on the router itself. 

  1. Locate Wi-Fi settings

Navigate to the Wi-Fi settings section. This may be called ‘Wireless Settings’, ‘Wi-Fi Settings’ or similar.

  1. Select frequency band

Look for an option to change the frequency band. You might find separate settings for 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks, and you may need to enable the 5 GHz network if it isn’t already active.

  1. Adjust settings

If you have the option, set up both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks. This way, devices that support only 2.4 GHz can still connect, while others can benefit from the faster 5 GHz band. You may be able to set different SSIDs (network names) and passwords for each band, which can help you easily identify and connect to the preferred network. You may need to restart your router for changes to take effect.

  1. Connect your devices

On your device (phone, laptop, etc.), turn Wi-Fi off and on again to refresh the list of networks. Connect to the newly configured network (2.4 GHz or 5 GHz), depending on which one you want to use.

Remember, not all devices support the 5 GHz band, so it’s good to have both options available. Refer to your router’s manual for specific instructions, as models can vary.

5) Extend your Wi-Fi network

Explore the range of gadgets that can help extend your network.

So, if your router’s in the right spot and the antenna’s doing its thing but you’re still grappling with slow speeds or dodgy connections in certain corners of your place, it’s time to give your network a bit of a boost.

Check it out – there are a bunch of gadgets available to extend and improve your network’s coverage:

Wi-Fi boosters

These little devices sit between your router and the tricky spot, amplifying or redistributing the existing Wi-Fi signals to cover more ground.

Wired access points

These connect to your router with an Ethernet cable, sending out both Wi-Fi and LAN signals like an extension of your router. 

Powerline extender kits

This is a two-piece set: one connects to your router via Ethernet and plugs into an outlet, and the other sets up in the spot where you need a Wi-Fi boost. Internet signals travel through your electrical wiring to get where they need to be.

Mesh Wi-Fi systems

These rely on a network of devices working together to cover your whole house in Wi-Fi connectivity. Perfect for big homes or places with a tricky layout.

Picking the right fix depends on your setup. Got one annoying dead zone? A Wi-Fi booster’s your go-to. Got a sprawling layout or a complex floorplan? Mesh systems are your best bet. Got Ethernet lines running through your place? Grab an access point and call it a day. The right addition will improve the connection in the whole house.

6) Ditch unnecessary connections

Tip: disconnect all devices you aren’t using. 

For the most efficient disconnection of all nonessential devices, just change your Wi-Fi password and reboot your router. You will then need to re-enter your network using the updated password on each actively used device. This neatly gets rid of all connections, including any unauthorised users (like cheeky neighbours) attempting to access your Wi-Fi network.

Certain routers are equipped with home networking apps, giving you an overview of the devices connected to your network. If you have access to such an application, identifying and disconnecting any unauthorised connections can be easily done without disrupting your entire Wi-Fi network. Your router’s web interface usually offers a similar feature, providing a comprehensive map of all devices linked to your network.

7) Update your equipment

Tip: buy new, up-to-date equipment.

If your router and modem are a few years (or more) old, there’s a chance they’re to blame for your slow connection.

Upgrading to new devices will likely also upgrade your speed – as well as giving you more features that improve your control over your Wi-Fi. 

8) Update your firmware

Tip: make sure your firmware is updated and turn on automatic updates. 

Router firmware is computer software that helps your router to function properly, keeps it secure and allows the appropriate users access to data from your network. Keeping your firmware up to date is vital for performance and security reasons. 

A modem/router unit (also called a gateway) usually gets updated automatically, but if you use a separate router, it may be worth checking for updates.

Log in to your router and check that automatic updates are toggled on. If not, update the firmware immediately and then switch on automatic updates.

9) Get a faster plan

Tip: If you’ve tried all these tricks and your internet still isn’t keeping pace with your needs, it’s possible you just need to upgrade your plan. 

Check our guide to choosing a good internet speed for your needs.

Keep in mind that the advertised speed isn’t always the speed you’ll get (though your provider should give you an idea of the peak time speeds), so if you’re tossing up between two speed tiers, you’re probably better to go for the faster plan rather than the slower.

Explore our available nbn® plans here to find the one that’s right for you.

Happy customers

Hopefully this article has provided a comprehensive guide on how to enhance Wi-Fi speed. Our 9 straightforward steps offer solutions for common issues that may be hindering internet performance.

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Get connected today! Select from NodeOne’s lightning-fast internet plans.

Find the best internet plans for your address here.

View Plans Here

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