The modern home requires more than just shelter, education, food, water, and a bed to sleep in to survive. It also requires a reliable Internet connection. Luckily, service provider bundles available nowadays are both efficient and affordable.
However, in some cases, a 50 megabyte-per-second (MBPS) connection, which is reliable enough to watch 720-pixel high-definition videos on the Internet, offers hiccups upon connection. In fact, these symptoms even appear on higher-end household and business broadbands.
Some broadband connection problems are easy to find. However, some issues take a while to see. However, these six steps will help you identify if your home broadband has any problems at all and smoothen them out accordingly.
Speed Tests Are a Must
Upon experiencing a slowdown, resist the urge to call the service provider’s customer centre. Instead, try to access a speed testing site.
You can do this by using any of these accurate Internet speed-testing sites with servers ready to test your download and upload speed anywhere in the world:
A single speed test will show you your average download and upload speed. If the figures slightly fall below the advertised figure, do not be alarmed; most services fail to deliver the final 10% of the advertised Internet speeds.
However, performing a string of tests and finding the average yourself helps you see whether you have a service slowdown that requires the customer centre’s attention.
Fully Secure Your Wi-Fi (And Not Just With a Random Password)
With some hard work on their end, hackers can find your Wi-Fi password. Even complicated strings of characters left unchanged for two weeks are left at their mercy. Your Internet might be slowing down due to unsolicited network access. In fact, they can monitor devices in your home and retrieve delicate information from you.
To ensure you protect this information and maintain your home’s internet access, secure your home Wi-Fi by changing passwords every two weeks.
Another way to add layers of security is only to allow registered devices to access the Internet. Most Wi-FI routers have a facility that will enable them to identify and store a specific device’s information. Hiding your Wi-Fi from devices searching for connections also helps keep your network secure.
Change Routers and Hardware
An old-model router with a 11MBPS limit will slow down a superior 50MBPS broadband connection. If you have a decade-old router, replacing it might remove this bottleneck and give you the speeds you pay for.
If you are still using RJ45 standard cables, switching to Category 5 (Cat5) cables ensures the consistency of your data connection while securing your network from outside interference with its shielding and superior components.
A household with modern Internet hardware with a slow connection might likely have interference issues or damaged cables. Be sure to check your cable connections regularly.
Use a Signal Repeater
Aside from cables, multiple layers of concrete or wooden walls and floors could be hampering Wi-Fi signals. Indeed, in some rooms, the Wi-Fi connection is weak while it is stronger in others. The location of the Wi-Fi transmitter itself plays a huge role in the connection quality your computer or smartphone device receives.
Signal repeaters receive your existing Wi-Fi signal. Then it uses its hardware to amplify it, boosting the signal in different areas of your home. They are easy to set up and can be useful when handling multiple devices at a single given time.
Think of Wi-Fi frequencies as roads and highways. If there is a car in front, then the car at the back cannot move. A highway traffic jam means slow movement.
Most devices connect to the Wi-Fi router using the 2.4GHz frequency band. Unfortunately, other routers from other homes or offices also use the same transmission signal. If you thought of the routers as cars, then the analogy serves as an explanation.
But if you can take another road away from the others, you can travel faster indeed. The 5GHz signal allows you to access your Internet faster because there is no interference from other routing devices. Make sure to set this right using your router’s firmware access.
Check The Household’s Usage (and Switch Providers)
Now that you have completed the items on this list, you should have a decent connection that almost meets the advertised connection speeds.
If not, then you can check the household’s data usage as a last resort.
Even with repeaters accommodating dozens of devices in your home, a small bandwidth cannot allow all devices to stream high-definition videos or play online games at the same time. In fact, browsing becomes intermittent if 12 devices try to access pages on a 5MBPS network.
If your household uses data heavily, then it might be time to switch providers.
It’s easy to maximise your home broadband connection if you follow these six steps. In some cases, a small fix can improve the house’s Internet connection, but it never pays to invest in long-term solutions that genuinely guarantee a pleasant experience surfing the web.