Your router is a crucial component of your home’s connectivity, so it only makes sense that you would want to ensure it’s in the best spot possible for the best connection. The placement of a router can have a major impact on the quality and reliability of your Wi-Fi signal, so it’s important to make sure it’s in the best spot possible to maximize your connectivity. Keep in mind that moving your router won’t do anything to affect the speeds of your internet, simply increase its stability and reliability.
Tips for Router Placement
Image courtesy of Pixabay
In order to get the best Wi-Fi signal possible, you’ll want to follow a few tips and tricks for placement.
First, place the router centrally, as wireless broadband routers transmit from all directions in a circle. The more centrally you can locate the router, the better your signal will be in all areas of your home. If you want to get signal while enjoying your yard, you can try placing the router near a window to ensure adequate coverage.
Another benefit of placing your router in the center of your home is that it helps to prevent anyone else from accessing your Wi-Fi. Your connection is less likely to be compromised if devices from outside your home cannot pick up its signal.1
Next, ensure your router is elevated. Placing your router on the ground will quite literally send signals into the ground, which isn’t very useful. By placing the router on an elevated surface, you can provide more comprehensive coverage.
You’ll also want to ensure your router is placed away from any walls, as thick walls can make it difficult for signal to travel. Placing it near open doorways will allow your wireless signal unobstructed passage to the rest of your home. It’s important to keep your router out in the open, rather than in a cupboard if you want the best signal. It is best to always have your router visible, as placing it in a hidden area can dampen its effectiveness, which translates into a poor connection.
Placing your router near any devices that use it can also help to ensure a stable, reliable connection. This is especially true for devices like modems for gaming, which require a significant amount of bandwidth in order to run properly. Keeping your router near your gaming modem can ensure you don’t drop off in the middle of the action.
Finally, don’t be afraid to experiment with different locations, as you may not know how your router and Wi-Fi connectivity react until you try them. Trying your router in various spots will allow you to find the best area for the most stable, reliable connection.2
Additionally, don’t be afraid to adjust your router’s antennas, if it comes with adjustable ones. If you want to achieve better horizontal reach, consider positioning your router’s antennas upward. To get a better signal upstairs, give sideways antenna positioning a try. If that doesn’t do the trick, you can also consider replacing your router’s antennas with larger, high-gain alternatives.
Don’t forget to update your router regularly or, better yet, configure it to update itself automatically at night.
Places to Avoid
Image courtesy of Pixabay
Now that we’ve talked about the best places to put a router for better Wi-Fi, let’s talk about where not to place it. First, avoid the kitchen, as it could not only get messy, but the large metal appliances within the cooking room can cause interference. Of particular note, microwaves use the same 2.4 GHz channel as Wi-Fi routers, and will actively compete with your wireless signal when used.
Next, avoid placing your router near any other electronic devices within the home. Cordless phones, baby monitors, and other devices that use radio signals to communicate can crowd the channel and compete with your wireless connection.3
Finally, be mindful of fish tanks or mirrors when placing your router. Water from a fish tank — especially a large unit — inhibits Wi-Fi signal, so placing your router next to one will more than likely have a negative impact on its stability. Flat, reflective surfaces such as mirrors can also have a negative impact on your router’s performance. This is because it causes radio waves to reflect off the surface, resulting in scattered and ultimately distorted signal.
The placement of a router can have a major impact on the quality and reliability of your Wi-Fi signal, so it’s important to make sure it’s in the best spot possible to maximize your connectivity. Following a few simple steps can help you ensure you’re getting the best possible signal from your router. Don’t be afraid to experiment with various spots in order to get the best Wi-Fi connection. Trying your router in various spots will allow you to find the best area for the most stable, reliable connection.
Tech Pro Daily uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
- Alanezi MA, Bouchekara HREH, Javaid MS. Optimizing Router Placement of Indoor Wireless Sensor Networks in Smart Buildings for IoT Applications. Sensors. 2020; 20(21):6212. https://doi.org/10.3390/s20216212.
- Cole, Jason. WiFi strife. Almost Looks Like Work. Published July 12, 2014. Accessed September 13, 2021.
- Maidah, Nova & Hardja, Ivan & , Slamin. (2018). Determination of Router Location for Optimizing Computer Network Using Dominating Set Methods. Proceeding of the Electrical Engineering Computer Science and Informatics. 5. 10.11591/eecsi.v5i5.1647.