Why Is My WiFi Slow?

Are you frustrated with a slow, buffering WiFi signal? There can be many causes, some you can fix on your own, others may require the assistance of a professional. The first thing to try is to reboot your router. Simply unplug the power cord, wait 10 seconds and plug back in. This simple action may solve your issue. If it doesn’t, here are some other possible culprits.

Bad router placement

Is your router located in a corner room or another outer edge of your house? If so, your WiFi signal may be too weak to reach the other parts of your house. Is there concrete or metal walls between your router and where you are trying to receive the signal? Heavy barriers can slow or even completely stop your signal. You’ll want your router to be centrally located and free of barriers to get the maximum amount of coverage. Also, place the router high, if possible, to extend the reach.

Old router

If your router is more than five years old, it’s time to replace it. Because of the continual and ever-increasing speed of technology, routers can run out of relevance rather quickly. An old router may not be able to keep up with your newer devices and the speed they demand.

Outdated internet plan

Do you know you can subscribe to different internet speeds? Maybe you do, but what may have gone unnoticed is the ever-increasing number of items using your WiFi signal. Like lanes of road and traffic, the heavier the traffic, the greater need for more lanes or traffic will be slowed. Your household with four smartphones, streaming TVs, laptops, tablets, and gaming systems are all using bandwidth. And newer tech items like WiFi-capable appliances, video chatting, and wireless security systems are eating away at your speed.

WiFi interference

Most WiFi routers in use today are dual-band. This means they have a 2.4 GHz spectrum that runs slower but has a long-range, and a 5GHz spectrum that runs faster, but has a shorter reach. Many household items like microwaves, baby monitors, cordless phones, and Bluetooth devices run on a 2.5 GHz frequency that is very close to 2.4GHz and can sometimes interfere with the signal. For laptops and streaming TVs (that are in close proximity), it makes sense to put them on 5GHz. Cell phones are probably best left on 2.4 GHz.

Device issues

It is also possible it’s time to replace that old computer or tablet. You may have increased your internet speed but still have some items that are not showing speed improvements. The problem may be that they are not capable of reaching those speeds. Also, spyware, viruses, and malware that have been on your devices but have otherwise gone undetected may be slowing your devices. Even a high-level firewall can cause issues and may have to be backed down to allow needed speeds.

If you are unsure about how to fix any of these issues or about technology in general, you’ll want to consider PTCI’s Whole Home WiFi. We’ll provide you with a top-notch router, and if it’s not working the way it should or you just have questions, PTCI will be here to get you back on track.