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Wifi not strong enough, wireless problem

Discussion in 'General Wireless Discussion' started by sinthari, Oct 26, 2018.

  1. sinthari

    sinthari New Around Here

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2018
    Messages:
    3
    Hi there,

    First of all, I was not entirely sure on where to post it, so if it's in the wrong place I'm really sorry.

    I'd also like to mention I'm not familiar with networking so dont mind my poor wording about it all. I just dont understand 95% of stuff around here.

    Basically our wifi is not strong enough. The router is set up in the living room, and being wireless in the dining room just one and a half room away is pain. As long as you are wired with Ethernet, it's alright, but wireless-wise the signal is really weak. Router always has one PC wired with Ethernet cable at all times, and it is upstairs working without any problem. When you are just a few feet away from the router, the internet speed goes down drastically, to like 1MBps.

    Here is my question - how can I extend the wifi in the house? I was thinking of getting a wifi extender with Ethernet ports, so I could potentially wire my PC and a laptop in the dining room with an Ethernet cable. If this is possible, how would it work? Would I have to set it up the same way as a router or would it just be like a plug and go?

    I also want to avoid putting Ethernet cables through my entire house because my animals might chew on them or god knows what else.

    Notes:
    The router is a Virgin Media Super Hub 3.0 (vmdg505/tg2492lg-vm)
    The machines that are having issues with wifi is Lenovo g510 Laptop and AIO Lenovo PC.
    Lenovo laptop uses Broadcom 1x1 11b/g/n Wireless LAN PCI Express Half Mini Card Adapter
    AIO PC uses Realtek RTL8723BE Wireless LAN 802.11n PCI-E NIC

    And occasionally a NETGEAR N300 Wi-Fi USB Adapter (WNA3100-100ENS). Now, when we use this, the internet speed usually goes up to 20/10, but stability is poor. Doesnt matter if we use netgear or not, wifi signal shows max, but is very unstable and tends to disconnect or go REALLY low very often.

    I checked the DNS and the ones Im using seem to be the best ones for me.

    If more information is needed, please tell me and I will do my best to provide it!
     
  2. degrub

    degrub Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2015
    Messages:
    797
    A plan view sketch of your house with rough dimensions would help.
    What are the walls made of ?
    Do your have neighbors with wifi on 2.4 Ghz channels ?
    How close are they ?
    What are the wireless channels they are broadcasting on ?
    You want to be on different channels In the US we have channels 1 through 11. The best choices here are 1 or 6 (usually everyone's default so major issues) or 11.
    If you had wireless AC adapters on your devices, you could use 5 Ghz channels which should have less interference issues as they do not pass through as many walls.

    It sounds like you have interference with other wifi signals or perhaps reflections inside your house (too high power setting) as a start.
    Also, wireless is a team effort - both the device and the router/ap have to give strong enough signals. Usually the device is the issue as you saw when you switched to the Netgear adapter. The weaker one determines the throughput.
    Have you looked for other wifi signals when you are trying to connect to your home network ?
    That ISP modem/router has the Puma chipset which has known serious issues with bandwidth and lag. See if Virgin will replace it with a different model (maybe docsis 3.1 ? ) or has issued a new firmware that at least partially fixes the issue.

    Your devices are using the older N standard, so they will not be very fast even with different wireless router/access point. 10-20 mbit/sec would be not unusual.
     
    sinthari likes this.
  3. sinthari

    sinthari New Around Here

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2018
    Messages:
    3
    I will answer as much as I can right now and edit the post with the rest information when I get home.

    I have noticed a lot of my neighbours are using 2.4 Ghz channels, and only 3-4 are using 5 Ghz. I know both these devices of mine are not able to run 5 Ghz by default, but my friend will drop off two of his ac usb dongles and will see how they act withing our 5 Ghz channels, so it's funny that you mentioned these.

    My neighbours are really close, as these are those small houses in England that are glued to eachother.
    Now about the channels, I keep checking them every now and then and pick the best one manually every few days.

    I did acknowledge that being wireless would be some hassle, but I actually didnt think it would be that bad. I honestly think it's either an unfortunate house, or Virgin Media actually screwed something up. I'd stick to the second option, lol. We've been on verge with them lately, honestly thinking of changing to something else, but for now have to deal with that.

    On the other side, my phone connected to 2.4 Ghz is getting 30up, while on 5 Ghz its just skyrocketting.

    About the router - I have read tons of posts about it being faulty and bad in general, but we sort of didnt bother, as its been just only recently when we had to start using two more devices.
     
  4. degrub

    degrub Very Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2015
    Messages:
    797
    Sounds like your issue is interference on the 2.4 GHz band and older N adapters then. If you are getting good rates on 5GHz, then it is not likely completely the routers AP issue
     
    sinthari likes this.
  5. Ken Atkinson

    Ken Atkinson Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2018
    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    Buy a router and use its WiFi and switch your hub3 to modem mode this will improve things considerably

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
     
    sinthari likes this.
  6. sfx2000

    sfx2000 Part of the Furniture

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2011
    Messages:
    14,025
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    I think this must be common in the UK - as the forum gets many inquiries on the similar topic...

    Residences over there must be more robust in construction than what we have over here in the US, esp, in SoCal, where construction is cheap and prices are still high... wood and sheetrock compared to bricks and plaster perhaps - also goes to show that many years ago, the UK was bombed to hell I suppose...

    In any event - performance with WiFi is always going to be relative to the location of the client to the AP (or repeater, and a repeater is going to halve the bandwidth the the end-point)...

    One would think that BT/Sky installers would be more sensitive to location of their equipment they put into the residence - I know that in the US, most Cable/Telco installers do have the training and equipment to verify/validate the install before they leave the premises...
     
    sinthari likes this.
  7. Ken Atkinson

    Ken Atkinson Regular Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2018
    Messages:
    65
    Location:
    Edinburgh, Scotland
    you can currently buy Asus AC86U from Amazon £190 , or the bigger AC88U £180 (currently reduced more) switch the hub 3 to run in modem mode and you will notice a big improvement using a stand alone router for the wifi...
     
    sinthari likes this.
  8. sinthari

    sinthari New Around Here

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2018
    Messages:
    3
    Currently the two AC usb adapters that we got are working like a charm. Letting us get the 5 Ghz channel, we did not encounter any disconnect or any inconvenience with the wifi. We indeed decided to switch from Virgin to Sky, as our contract ends on the beginning of next year. Thank you all for the help, the usb dongles will work for now :)