Have you ever had to struggle with faulty wifi? You go into that one room or use a certain device in that one area of your home and find that the signal is far less than optimal. It can be frustrating, feeling like your tablet or phone is tethered to your router while you’re in your own home. That’s why wall-to-wall wifi solutions are so attractive.
Benefits of Wall-to-Wall Wifi for Home Automation
Wall-to-wall wifi can provide increased coverage in your home, eliminating dead or weak spots in your wireless home network and maximizing productivity, entertainment, and convenience.
With wall-to-wall coverage in your home network, the walls (and maybe a little beyond) are the limit. This means you can traverse your entire home with any wireless device and have a clear, consistent signal, keeping you from feeling like you’re tied to that one room where your router is installed. This also helps with home automation devices that may be placed far from your central router or outside to have maximum wifi coverage.
The consistency of a wall-to-wall signal means no interruptions, whether you’re streaming a movie on a tablet or looking up business information on your phone while chatting with a friend. Leaving a room, shutting a door, or going through that one spot where the signal never could quite reach will no longer disrupt your signal. Wall-to-wall means that your home automation devices will receive a signal anywhere in the home at all times.
Achieving Wall-to-Wall Coverage
In order to achieve wall-to-wall coverage with your wifi, there are a few things you’ll need to take into consideration. Each home and device is different, and there will be different factors that could influence how you set up a reliable wireless network.
Concrete and other hard building materials tend to block wifi, making it hard for devices in separate rooms to get a signal.
In addition, the distance of any given device from the router will usually have an impact on how strong the signal is, thereby affecting download and upload speeds, streaming, and so forth.
Strategic central placement of your router will allow for maximum coverage throughout your home, especially when it’s incorporated with other technologies that can extend its effective range.
New Tech, Better Sensitivity
It should be noted that newer devices will have much more sensitive wifi adapters, allowing them to pick up more easily on weaker signals.
Therefore, it’s sound strategy to place older devices nearer the router (or have them hardwired to it) and let newer devices roam around the further reaches of the house.
Of course, sometimes you’ll have an older phone or laptop that you’ll need to use elsewhere in your home. It may be useful to position your router in an office, but if it’s not centrally located, that could result in more areas in your home with less coverage. Additional technologies may be necessary to compensate.
One solution is to use a high-quality router. If you have an old router, it’s likely going to have some issues covering your entire home, so upgrading to a newer model will allow for more reliable connectivity for wireless devices from wall-to-wall. Replacing your stock router from the cable company can do a lot of good, these devices are multi-purpose and aren’t the best at being both the modem and router. Replacing the router that comes from the cable company with a high-quality router or mesh wifi system will enhance your wifi throughout the house tremendously.
Mesh wifi devices replace your existing router to give maximized coverage. They are essentially a collection of routers (rather than just one) that work in conjunction to make sure your home network is as complete as possible. A mesh wifi system is best when dealing with multiple areas of the home and wanting to acheive perfect wall-to-wall wifi. The area of coverage can be overlapped between the devices and can help cover areas of your home that don’t typically get a great signal. These can even help create zones of wifi for your outdoor living areas to give a strong signal to your outdoor lighting, television and sound system.
Sometimes, walls, floors, and other obstacles can get in the way of wifi signals even with a high-quality router, so signal repeaters may be necessary to achieve wall-to-wall coverage. These can be fairly inexpensive, and some models are so simple to install that all you need to do is plug it into an outlet and it’s ready to go.
If you notice some dead spots in your home’s wireless network, a signal repeater in the right place can help extend the network to the deficient area.
Combination of Hardwiring and Wireless
In some cases for wall-to-wall wifi, a combination of hardwiring and wireless solutions may be useful. Some homes have wired networking cable strung throughout the entire structure, and this allows for multiple access points where routers can be plugged in. It also allows your older devices to be plugged in where necessary.
This solution can be expensive for those who don’t have homes optimized for wired networks since it will involve installation of special wiring in the walls. The abovementioned solutions would usually be far more economical in this case.
Other Wifi Factors
Some additional items to consider when designing a wall-to-wall wireless network include:
- Materials in the walls
- What technology you currently use in your network
- What you will be using the network for—streaming and gaming will be more network intensive than simply browsing
- The number of people in your home using the signal
- Whether your house is optimized for smart home technology
Learn more about outfitting your home with fast, reliable wifi by calling 409-833-4800