Wi-Fi is a convenient way to wirelessly connect to the internet, and with a Wi-Fi router in your home, you can connect almost anywhere.
However, these routers have a limited range, so if you have a large home or you’d like to connect to Wi-Fi in the yard, garage, upstairs, downstairs, or in a guest house, you may want to consider a Wi-Fi extender.
These devices extend the range of your Wi-Fi service, and they can help you connect where you wouldn’t normally be able to.
So how Many Wi-Fi Extenders Do I Need?
In general, Wi-Fi routers offer a Wi-Fi range of about 150 feet.
It’s often easiest to think of this range not as a circle, but as a sphere. This means that, if you’ve placed your router in the middle of your house, you’ll be able to connect to Wi-Fi anywhere within 150 feet of the router, including upstairs above the router, downstairs below the router, or across the house or yard.
Different Wi-Fi extenders offer different extension limits.
Strong extenders can increase your Wi-Fi range by up to 2,000 feet, while smaller extenders can increase the range by up to 800 feet. If you’re using only one device, or plan to keep your devices in a central area, you may only need one extender. However, if you have several devices at opposites sides of a large house or yard, you may need two or more extenders, placed at different sides of the router Wi-Fi signal.
The exact number you need will depend on the strength of the Wi-Fi extender and the distance between the router and the devices you plan to use. It’s generally best to use as few extenders as possible, since, when the signal is extended, it slows down.
Where Should I Place a Wi-Fi Extender?
Wi-Fi extenders have to be placed within range of both the original Wi-Fi signal emanating from the Wi-Fi router and whatever devices, such as your computer or laptop, that you want to use with the Wi-Fi. This still leaves a wide range of possibilities for where to place the Wi-Fi extender, however.
It’s usually best to place the Wi-Fi extender as close to halfway between your router and your device as possible.
This helps to ensure a strong, even signal. If you can’t place it halfway, however, it’s best to have the Wi-Fi extender closer to the device, as opposed to closer to the router. This keeps your device firmly in a strong Wi-Fi signal.
It’s also a good idea to always try to place your router itself as close to the middle of the house as possible. If you’re attempting to extend your signal to the yard, garage, or a guest house, place the router as close to the center of the area as possible. This helps to offer a more even signal and can make placing various extenders simpler.
Inexpensive Versus High-End Wi-Fi Extenders
Wi-Fi extenders can be found in a range of strengths, all with different features. Extenders also run the gamut when it comes to pricing and can range anywhere from $25 to $200. Inexpensive extenders mean that it’s less pricey to purchase more than one, if necessary, but they may not carry a Wi-Fi signal as well as more high-end models.
Cheaper Wi-Fi extenders also tend to offer slower performance, and they may not offer as many features as their more expensive counterparts.
Less expensive Wi-Fi extenders may also have a smaller range than more expensive options. Purchasing a more expensive extender with a wider range can often mean a stronger, faster signal. Wi-Fi extenders generally slow down the internet signal, at least a little, so it’s a better idea to purchase one strong extender instead of using several smaller, less expensive extenders to stretch the signal.