Not ready for a Mesh WiFi system yet? No worries! You can buy a WiFi extender and push your coverage out a little. Whatever brand you buy, search YouTube for video instructions on how to setup a WiFi Extender. No matter what brand you buy, these tips should help when you setup a wifi extender.
Steps on how to setup a WiFi Extender:
- Place extender halfway from desired coverage area to current WiFi router. The extender should be far enough towards your dead spots so it actually extends your coverage but not so far that it has a bad connection with your master router. Draw a line between the furthest out you want WiFi and your current WiFi. Use an extension cord if you must to find the perfect location. You’ll need to adjust your placement if the signal is too weak to get to your extender, in which case your target area may not get coverage.
- Buy a decent brand with good reviews. eBay and Amazon are flooded with cheap extenders. Maybe they work. But why take the chance? You need your WiFi to work, right?
- Avoid concrete, brick, mirrors, metal, and microwaves. These things will zap that zip from your WiFi.
- Set extender as high as possible. Again, use an extension cord for best placement. Many extenders block both plug outlets anyway so an extension cord can free up an outlet.
- Got two antennae? We had to look that one up! Sheez. The plural of antenna is antennae. Position one facing up and one facing horizontally for best overall range and direction.
- Resposition. If the coverage is not ideal, reposition.
- Reboot. Having used extenders for years, it doesn’t hurt to reboot them every few months. You’ll find that no matter how good your extender is, at times it will need to be restarted to get everything working again.
- Use different SSIDs. Many suggest you use the same SSID and password on the extender. This allows your devices to jump right back on as you move through the house. However, this could also mean your computer or mobile device gets locked onto a weaker signal. Unless you are moving all over your house constantly, connect to the most appropriate router. We like naming the SSID of the router the same with _ext added. So if your SSID is “Pretty Fly for a Wi-Fi” your extender’s SSID could be “Pretty Fly for a Wi-Fi_ext”. Having the same password for both is ok by us.
- CHANGE ADMIN USERNAMES AND PASSWORDS! Your extender’s default admin passwords are online. Change any admin settings passwords to protect access.
- Use 5GHz channels. If your extender supports 5GHz, use that channel.
Good luck when you setup your wifi extender. Looking forward to a great signal in the entire house!
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