Interference: Sneaky Suspects that Slow Your Speeds

We’ve all experienced occasional slower internet speeds from time to time.

And too often, this happens at the worst times, like when you’ve finally gotten a moment to binge that show everyone is always talking about! For some of us, though, slower internet speeds and poor streaming are regular occurrences.

We get the frustration. And just because you have fast and reliable fiber internet provided by CoastConnect, there can be many reasons why you experience slower speeds and poor performance.

With a few simple changes, you’ll experience consistently faster internet speeds.

Older Routers Don’t Handle Higher Internet Speed Capabilities

Let’s start with the most common culprit for WiFi problems and slower internet speeds: an outdated router.

The best option is to use the routers we provide during your home installation. There is no charge for the router when we install your service and you are guaranteed to have the latest technology.

If you prefer to use your own router, keep in mind that newer WiFi routers, especially those made after 2019, can handle and disperse much higher internet speeds than older models. Specifically, be sure to look for routers that utilize at least 802.11ac technology, more commonly called Wireless AC or WiFi 5.

WiFi Router Placement Problems Due to Physical Interference

Poor WiFi router placement is one of the most common problems that plague homes with slow internet.

To begin with, it’s important to remember that WiFi disperses its signal both horizontally and vertically (straight ahead and up and down).

Objects that are physically “in the way” of that signal can interfere with the quality and strength of the WiFi signal before it reaches your devices. Below are the most common physical interferences in many homes that lead to slow internet speeds.

Glass and Windows

One of the biggest slow internet speed culprits is glass and windows.

Glass and windows can cause significant interference. Avoid WiFi router placement too close to windows or other glass, as that can “deplete” too much signal and waste precious internet speed your smart TV needs to stream your favorite content.

Walls and Similar Obstructions

Fireplaces, wall units, cabinets and similar obstructions will interfere with the WiFi signal. Reinforced concrete, which some walls in your home may consist of, is a particularly obstructing material. With this in mind, choose your WiFi router’s location, and try to minimize interference with these sneaky speed-stealing objects.

Televisions and Other Electronic Equipment

A TV is another typical problem for WiFi.

In many homes the WiFi router is located near the television. This is a big no-no, as your television is loaded with electronic equipment that blocks the WiFi signal and its ability to spread throughout your home.

Give your router as wide a berth as possible from your television and other equipment like receivers and DVD players.

Signal Interference

Beyond the physical objects that interfere with WiFi, other items in your home put off signals that can cause slower internet speeds, too. Three of the most common are highlighted below, and you should take care when placing your WiFi router close to any of them.

 Microwave Ovens

In many homes, the WiFi router is in the kitchen. And it’s likely your microwave oven is slowing down your WiFi.

Microwaves operate at the same frequency as many WiFi routers — 2.4GHz. That means that microwaves can interfere with your WiFi signal. Provide your router with as much distance from your microwave as possible and consider relocating it if the interference continues.

Bluetooth Devices

Bluetooth devices can obstruct WiFi signals and slow down internet speeds as they “hop” around different frequencies.

There may be many more Bluetooth devices active in your home than the common ones you’re probably thinking of, such as your smartphone and tablet. A Bluetooth mouse, ear buds, speakers and even toothbrushes are typical in nearly every home. Be mindful of using too many Bluetooth devices simultaneously if your internet speeds are slow.

Baby Monitors and Walkie-Talkies

This one surprises many people, but baby monitors and similar devices that transmit sound waves over a distance can interfere with WiFi!

Like microwave ovens, baby monitors and walkie-talkies operate on the same frequency as WiFi. Be careful where you place baby monitors or consider moving your router if the interference persists.

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