Tiger Speed: Suggestions for improving your home WiFi network

With more members of your household working from home and sharing Wi-Fi bandwidth, your once adequate Internet service may be experiencing drastically reduced speeds and performance. Following are several troubleshooting steps and suggestions that can improve Wi-Fi network performance.

Note: We recommend you run the Tiger Speed test after completing each step to determine whether the action has improved your Internet performance.

Reboot your router and modem

Like your computer, sometimes your network equipment can benefit from a reboot.  Reboot both your Wi-Fi router and cable modem, also known as the gateway.

Connect your computer and router with an ethernet cable

If possible, connect your computer to your router with an ethernet cable. If your Internet service subsequently improves, this may be an indicator that the Wi-Fi service is indeed causing the slow performance.

Disable VPN applications

Using VPN applications, such as GlobalProtect, SonicWall, NordVPN, ExpressVPN, and IPVanish, can significantly affect your Internet performance and reduce your overall internet speed. While required to access specific resources, these applications are not required for general computing. Please be certain that you are using VPN only when needed. Refer to Remote Access to Protected Resources (VPN) for the applications that require VPN for access. If you don't need VPN for what you are doing, disconnect from it. 

Check if others are using the home network

Multiple users on the Wi-Fi at the same time can affect your network performance, especially if others are playing online games or streaming movies (Netflix, Hulu, etc.). Check with others to see if they are consuming more bandwidth with these types of activities.  

Test other devices on the network

Test the Wi-Fi on multiple devices (computer, tablet, smartphone, etc.) in your home. Do you experience similar issues of slower speeds? If so, this may indicate that your Wi-Fi network is causing the slow Internet performance.

Check your router location

Are you near your WiFi router? The further away you are, the slower your WiFi speed will be. To provide optimal coverage, your router should be located as close as possible to the center of your home. You’ll also want to ensure that it isn’t next to any large metal objects (such as a filing cabinet or HVAC ductwork), as these can greatly reduce or completely block the wireless signal.

Relocate your home office

Have you relocated your “office” to a different room in your home that is farther from your network router? This will cause a reduced signal strength to your computer and slower Internet performance. To improve performance, try moving your laptop to a new location within the room, move closer to your router, or purchase a network “extender” from your Internet Service Provider (ISP) if available.

Upgrade your router

Check with your Internet Service Provider (ISP) to see if you have the latest router (a.k.a. gateway or modem). If you have had your home internet package for many years, your router may be outdated. Contact your ISP and ask them if you have the latest equipment; if not, they may provide you with the newest model for free or at a reduced cost.

Install a mesh WiFi network

Disclaimer: The information below does not represent an endorsement of a particular product or service.

Many homes would benefit from a mesh network, especially large homes or older ones with plaster over wire-lath construction. A mesh network consists of several wireless access points (APs) that are placed in strategic locations throughout your home. The APs communicate with each other to provide increased coverage to your devices without signal loss due to distance from your router.

There are a number of mesh network products available on the market, such as “eero Mesh WiFi” (or “eero Pro”), “Google WiFi” (or “Nest WiFi”), “Netgear Orbi,” “Linksys Velop,” “Xfinity xFi Pod," etc. These systems come with three or more access points that allow you to expand the coverage across your home and outdoor areas.

Consider upgrading your technology

Some older devices (laptop, tablet, phone, etc.) don't have the ability to connect to newer wireless networks, so you won’t likely see an improvement in those devices even if you upgrade your router. Upgrading your computer equipment may help improve Internet performance.

Need help?

We can offer help to troubleshoot your connectivity issue. When reaching out to us, the following information about your network and computing setup is helpful to have to provide more specific guidance:

To request a consultation: Contact Us