Should you replace your router? Maybe!
Should you replace your router? Maybe!
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Should you replace your router? Maybe!

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For a lot of people routers can be confusing or intimidating. So how do you know when the time has come for an upgrade? Look again, maybe you set your router up a few years ago and you just haven't thought about it since. But router technology is always evolving and experts recommend getting a new one every five years or Yourself. Make that every three years if you buy a lot of smart home gadgets or have a regular habit of upgrading to the latest computers and phones. In this video, I'll let you know how to tell if your router is indeed selling you short when it comes to range or speed or even security. [MUSIC] Let's start with the obvious, if your home internet connection stinks, then yeah, it might be time for a new router. But before you buy anything, you need to make sure that your router is indeed the problem. Understand that your router won't be able to move data any faster than your internet plan allows. Whatever speed you're paying for, that's the speed limit. Still, a good router should be able to hit those top speeds or roughly close to it, especially if you're at close range. Here's how to tell if that's the case. First, reboot both the modem and the router as well as the Wi Fi drivers on your most important network devices like your phone and your laptop. Experts I've talked to tell me that's one of the biggest things people can do to fix their Wi Fi woes, so be sure to give that a shot before you buy anything. From there you're gonna want to connect your laptop to the router using an Ethernet. At cable and then run some speed tests using a free speed testing site like Ookla or fast dot com. Your download speeds should be at or even slightly above what you're paying for from your ISP. That goes for your upload speeds as well. Just keep in mind that upload speeds are often a lot lower than download speeds depending on what kind of internet connection Can you have, especially if you have a cable internet connection. Next disconnect, the ethernet cable and stay within 10 feet or so of the router and run those speed tests again. On most devices those close range wireless speeds should be pretty close to the speeds you see when you're wired. If they're noticeably lower, that's a really good sign that your router isn't living up. To your home network potential. Maybe speeds are fine when you are close to the router but you gotta a room on the other end of the house where you just can't connect. It's a dead zone beyond your router's range. A router then to do when powerful might offer a better range and make it easier stay connected from a far. But in a lot of cases dead zones like those exist cuz of the way your home is laid out and constructed. The best strategy is to look for a hardware that It's specifically designed to boost speeds in situations like that. Your top two options are to upgrade to a mesh router or to go with a simple plug in range extender like this one. If it's just one deadzone we're talking about then a range extender might be all you need. Alright, so let's say that this rather crudely drawn floor plan is the floor plan for your home. Your router is sitting right over here by the door to the garage, and this master bathroom here is a total dead zone. You can't listen to your podcast in the shower and it's really bumming you out, and that's a skull and crossbones, you just have to take my word for it. So what do you do with this dead zone? First thing you want to do is you want to run speed tests in that room, see just how bad it is and then start moving around nearby takes, Speed test in the adjacent rooms. And keep doing that until you find a spot where you've got a good signal. Maybe it's right outside of this concrete wall here that's blocking things off. That's where you want to put the range extender the closest spot to the dead zone where you've got a pretty decent signal. It'll relay the signal from that router right to the dead zone and you'll be able to listen to your podcast in the shower. A lot. [INAUDIBLE] For even better results grab an ethernet cable and wire whatever device is trying to connect directly back to that range extender. This works really well. If you've got something like a media streamer in a back TV room. Okay. So it's not just one route. It's an entire section of your house where you can't reliably connect. For a giant dead zone like that. You really need a mesh router. A mesh router is a router that comes with its own matching range extended. Yours are satellites. Mesh routers are the best at optimizing internet speeds throughout an entire home. Because your wireless signal never has to travel too far to get to a network node. In recent years, upgrading to Mesh was pretty expensive. But the cost has come down significantly in the last year or so and you've got a lot of good options now that, Better available at prices that are pretty reasonable. That makes it a very good time to buy in. Instead of waiting for your home network to feel underpowered and out of date. Experts recommend upgrading it fairly regularly. And that's because Wi Fi technology is always improving not just with regards to speed, but also with regards to security. Now is an especially good time to upgrade because you'll find lots of routers in mesh routers Support, Wi Fi six and even Wi Fi six II like this one. Those are the latest generations of Wi Fi. It's still very early for Wi Fi six evil Wi Fi six is getting more and more prevalent. It's very good at managing dense, crowded networks. With lots of devices trying to connect at once, and that means it might be able to help if you struggled to maintain a strong connection during your work calls while the kids are upstairs streaming Disney+. And if you've purchased a new phone or a new computer in the past year, then there's a very good chance that If you're already using a Wi Fi six device that will benefit from a more advanced router capable of unlocking its full potential. On the security side, Wi Fi six also boasts better support for WPA three, which is the latest encryption standard for keeping your network traffic secure against things like brute force hacks. Those are the kinds of generational advancements that are worth buying into as soon as it makes sense to do so. So, if it's been a while since you've upgraded your home network, that alone might be reason enough to consider something new. You'll find all sorts of options if you're shopping for a router these days. If it gets overwhelming our reviews and guides on CNET can help point you in the right Direction. Thanks for watching, be sure to like this video if you found it helpful. Subscribe if you want to see more, and leave a comment letting us know how your last router upgrade went. Or if you just think that the dead zone is an underrated part of the Christopher Walken cannon The zone is dead [UNKNOWN] The dead zone, what? Wow. Wow, that was great. Good job, Robert video doing fantastic work.

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