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10 Science-Backed Tricks to Improve Your Wi-Fi Signal at Home

10 Science-Backed Tricks to Improve Your Wi-Fi Signal at Home

Life without reliable internet access is like a taxi driver without a reliable car. Living in the digital age where information is given and received at a fast pace, reliable internet accessibility is vital in almost any set of circumstances. With this great demand, Wi-Fi has become a very useful technology to transfer and share data farther, faster, and with less hassle. In addition to linking multiple electronic devices to one internet connection, a wireless router is needed to access Wi-Fi in most homes for mobile devices. Whether connected to a cable/DSL modem for broadband internet or VSAT system for satellite internet, every Wi-Fi router provides a limited range of wireless internet access within the home.

Nevertheless, there are 10 different ways to enhance the signal strength of the Wi-Fi router in your home. Each of these booster tricks can be done using materials you probably already have.

If you’re in need of a better Wi-Fi signal, try one or more of the following:

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1. Place your router in an open, centralized location.

Wi-Fi signals are radio waves that can travel throughout your home with ease. However, Wi-Fi signals can’t fully penetrate through walls, doors and other objects inside your home. If you place your router in an open area that is in the middle of all the rooms in your home, then the wireless signal should dissipate more evenly.

2. Place the router in an elevated position.

Generally, from the router antenna, Wi-Fi signals travel lateral and downward. Thus, it would be ideal for you to place your router on top of a shelf, tall chest, or mounted near the ceiling, preferably in an open space.

3. Keep the router away from other electronics.

Wi-Fi signals may experience interference when placed near the TV, computer, or other electronic devices. Try to keep your router away from such devices for better signal strength.

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4. Point the antenna in different directions.

Try pointing the router antenna in various directions to determine which achieves the best signal reception. It is suggested that one router antenna face outward vertically and the other antenna face outward horizontally.

5. Build a simple parabolic antenna to place over your wireless router antenna.

If your router comes with antennas, you can place a small, home-made, curve-shaped metal antenna over one of the router’s antennae. The handcrafted parabolic-shaped antenna concentrates the signal given off by the wireless router; thus, it helps to increase signal strength.

Download the Windsurfer antenna online template or build a simple antenna with a soda/beer can. (You can find a how-to on YouTube for this.)

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6. Change the wireless router configurations using DD-WRT firmware.

All routers are always preset with certain factory settings. You can change some of those configurations on your router, including signal strength and speed, using this software. It is free and downloadable to your computer to improve your router’s performance.

7. Transform an old router into a Wi-Fi repeater.

If you have an old wireless router at home, don’t throw it away. Recycle it by using the DD-WRT firmware to transform it into a Wi-Fi repeater (i.e., a device that extends the Wi-Fi signal from your newer router). Use the software to align both routers to the same internet connection in your home. Then, place the old router in another area of your home and connect it to your computer. There are plenty of online resources to teach you how to do this.

Of course, you can always buy a brand new and costly Wi-Fi repeater device; but why do that when you have an old router that can be reused to do the same thing?

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8. Build a Wi-Fi Booster using a small metal strainer and a Wi-Fi adapter.

Cut a hole inside a strainer that is big enough for the Wi-Fi adapter to fit in. Place the adapter in the hole with its USB-end sticking out of the strainer. Using a USB extender, connect the adapter to your computer. The parabolic shape of the strainer will magnify the Wi-Fi signal strength coming from the adapter, thus extending the signal.

9. Measure your signal strength using Wi-Fi signal map apps.

There are several free mobile apps available to map the Wi-Fi signal from your wireless router throughout the home. This can help you to find an ideal place for the router in your home for better reception.

10. Change wireless channels on your router.

To minimize interference from neighboring Wi-Fi signals outside of your home, simply change the wireless channels within your router using Wi-Fi stumbler/analyzer mobile apps and software. Most of these apps or software are free or low-cost; they can help you find the optimum channel for a better signal reception.

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Paisley Hansen

Freelance Writer

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Last Updated on December 30, 2018

18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2019 Updated)

18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2019 Updated)

No one can dispute the countless benefits technology has brought us. It’s undoubtedly allowed us to connect, perform, improve and leverage our resources beyond what was once imaginable.

If you’re not taking advantage of one of the hundreds of time management apps and tools out there, you’re definitely missing a trick.

But with so many apps to choose from, how do you know which ones to use? Well, this will depend on your needs, but we’ve put together a list of 18 of the very best time management apps that can help you with the most common time management challenges.

Let’s dive straight into the list…

1. Rescue Time — Use your time wisely

    If you have doubts that you’re using your time sensibly, this app will send you weekly reports to indicate what things are stealing your time. You may be shocked to discover how much time you’re actually wasting.

    Download Rescue Time

    2. Remember The Milk — Keep on top of all your tasks

      If you’re struggling to manage everything you have to do, and you work with many different devices, then this is the app for you. It’s a great free tool which is compatible with your mobile, computer, Gmail, Outlook, etc. It helps you to manage your tasks easily, and reminds you of them – wherever you are.

      Download Remember the Milk

      3. Focus Booster – Boost motivation to complete tasks

        This app is based on the principles of the Pomodoro Technique, and is aimed at individuals who procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by tasks. It’s designed to enhance your focus and remove any anxiety you might have with time pressures.

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        Download Focus Booster

        4. Toggl – Keep track of time spent on projects and tasks

          This is a great alternative to time-sheets, if you need to track how much time you spend on different projects. Effective time management starts with being clear on exactly how much time you actually spend on your projects and tasks, and then through analysis, working out how you can manage them more effectively.

          Download Toggl

          5. Dropbox — Store and send large files easily

            There are many apps that allow you to transfer content from your computer to other devices – but Dropbox is free and easier to use than the others. With the Dropbox app, you can even access and share important files on the go.

            Download Dropbox

            6. Evernote — Keep all your notes in one place

              Evernote is a free productivity tool that allows you to capture all your ideas, thoughts and images in many different ways (e.g., with voice, notes or images).  You can even record your meetings, interviews, speeches and ideas, create lists, add voice or text attachments, and share your files with friends. You can also sync Remember The Milk with Evernote to really optimize your time.

              Download Evernote

              7. Mind42 — Focus on tasks at hand with mind mapping

                Mind mapping is a great productivity technique, and Mind42 is the best free mind mapping app currently available. It helps you to become more organized by focusing your thoughts – thereby gaining clarity on what needs to be done.

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                Download Mind42

                8. SyncBackFree — Back up and sync your files effortlessly

                  This free software allows you to back up, restore and synchronize your files easily. It not only saves you time now – but also in the future. If you have never backed up your files before, you should definitely take a look at this pivotal tool.

                  Download SnycBackFree

                  9. MyLifeOrganized (MLO) — Manage your to-do lists effectively

                    Check this out if you find it difficult to manage all your tasks, to work with your to-do lists, and to organize your goals. This task management system helps you to target what you should be focusing on to reach your objectives. It automatically generates to-do lists, with priority actions for your immediate attention so that you can track your progress methodically.

                    Download MyLifeOrganized (MLO)

                    10. 1Password — Have all your passwords remembered

                      This app allows you to keep all your passwords in one encrypted database, protected by one password. This saves you time when you forget your passwords and need to retrieve them. It also allows you to use various passwords for different accounts so you don’t compromise on security.

                      Download 1Password

                      11. Pocket — Keep your eye on the ball

                        When you’re surfing the web, it’s easy to get distracted by enticing and fascinating websites. Use this tool to save your ‘finds’ to access and read later on at a convenient time which will not impact on your immediate work.

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                        Download Pocket

                        12. [email protected] — Boost your attention span

                          This amazing app combines neuroscience and music to boost your productivity. According to the developers, it’s possible to increase your attention span by up to 400%! Ideal for those who find it difficult to focus while studying, working or reading.

                          Download [email protected]

                          13. Launchy — Interact with your computer in a smart way

                            This small and simple tool allows you to launch your documents, project files, folders, and bookmarks with just a few keystrokes. This makes life so much easier as you don’t need to go through the start menu to access what you want.

                            Download Launchy

                            14. Forest — Boost your focus by growing a forest

                              This unique and fun app helps you stay focused and on-track. The concept is simple: whenever you want to focus, plant a virtual tree. If you stay focused, the tree will grow. If you lose focus, the tree will die. As the app’s name implies, you can grow multiple trees to create a virtual forest!

                              Download Forest

                              15. Trello — Track your projects in a highly visual way

                                This is a hugely popular app that you may already be familiar with. It works by allowing you to create cards for tasks that you need to complete. Each card moves across the Trello board (which is typically broken into columns such as To Do, In Progress, and Completed) as your start, work on and complete the associated task.

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                                Download Trello

                                16. Wunderlist — Digitalize your to-do lists

                                  Purchased by Microsoft in 2015, Wunderlist is an easy to use, feature-packed to-do list app. From planning a holiday, to sharing a shopping list with a partner, or managing multiple work projects, Wunderlist will keep you on top of all your tasks.

                                  Download Wunderlist

                                  17. TimeTree — Have a shared calendar with your family

                                    This app allows families or teams to share multiple calendars and appointments. So, whether you’re planning a party, or run a local sports team, Time Tree can keep everyone up-to-date with all current and upcoming activities and events.

                                    Download Time Tree

                                    18. Todoist — Capture and order all your tasks and activities easily

                                      Todoist is close to being the ultimate digital to-do list. It’s available via browsers and apps, and lets you schedule all your tasks and activities. Each item can be flagged for priority as well as given a due date. There is also a neat option to add notes to any of your tasks.

                                      Download Todoist

                                      The above list covers what we consider to be the very best time management apps and tools. And the good news is – that many of them are completely free of charge! So, what are you waiting for? Select the ones that will be the most valuable to you – and begin boosting your productivity now!

                                      Oh, and one more thing… Take a look at a couple of our other articles that will help further streamline your time management:

                                      40 Top Productivity Apps for iPhone and 20 Quick Tips For Better Time Management

                                      More Recommended Productivity Experts on Lifehack

                                      • Leon Ho — The Founder and CEO of Lifehack, which he share productivity hacks to make life easier
                                      • Carl Pullein — A renowned productivity and time management coach
                                      • Mark Pettit — A Business Coach for ambitious entrepreneurs who want to achieve more by working less

                                      Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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