The 5 Worst Places to Put your Wi-Fi Router


WiFi Router

Have you been having trouble with slow wifi speeds, even though you know for a fact that you have a quality router? Maybe you’ve tried everything to get a better signal from your wifi router – or so you thought.

The answer to what is impeding your wifi signal could be as simple as nudging your wi-fi router to a slightly different location.  In conjunction with tech guru Trevor Cooke, from EarthWeb, we share some expert advice on where to put your wifi router for the best signal. 

Who Knew a Wifi Router Needed a Sight Line

A wifi router probably isn’t the prettiest accessory in the room, which is why many tend to hide them away in a more inconspicuous spot. However, what many people don’t know is that wifi routers need a clear “line of sight” in order to work properly. What exactly does this mean? 

That question can be answered by exploring five of the worst spots you can put your wifi router, and why:

Under the Stairs

As said before, people tend to hide their ugly routers out of sight. However, hiding them behind a closed door or wall can greatly weaken the signal. Additionally, putting your wifi router in an enclosed space could cause it to overheat and also run slower than it should.

Think of it like this: if you can’t see the router, it can’t see your electronic device, and the signal won’t be as good as it could be.

In the Kitchen

Maybe you have a central kitchen, and it seems like the best spot. However, something that really interferes with the wifi signal are the radio waves certain appliances emit. The biggest offender being your microwave, which produces radio waves that most definitely will tamper with the reliability of your wifi router’s signal. 

Windows & Exterior Walls

Putting your wifi router on the windowsill is a bad idea because it can easily be affected by weather or other nearby networks. The same rule goes for any other exterior walls lining your house. The more central your router is inside the house, the better! 

By a Water Source

Keep your router away from the laundry room, nearby bathrooms, or any other location where it can come into contact with water. This list includes aquariums, fish tanks, or even vases! The first reason why is obvious: electronics and water together are a big no-no. 

However, as Trevor Cooke puts it, “many people don’t know that water can be a great hindrance to your wifi signal, essentially acting as a barricade. Not to mention, the humidity from these types of locations damages the router over time.”

In a Corner

Wifi routers are made to emit their signals in every direction. Therefore, by hiding your router away in the corner, it will basically only be able to reach half of its full capability. The other half of the signal will be absorbed by the wall, therefore greatly reducing your signal strength. This could mean that some areas of your house may experience “dead zones” or a weaker connection.

Cooke suggests keeping your wifi router in a central, ground floor room of the house so its signal can reach all the rooms in the house. Another option is to prop it up on a high shelf closer to the ceiling. That way it’s still tucked out of sight, being above your sight line, while still having an open area where the signal is unobstructed by walls, furniture, etc.

Chris Price