The Big Question: how can I boost my home Wi-Fi?

Find out how to go from dial-up drudgery to high-speed surfing in eight steps...

Having a sluggish home Wi-Fi network can feel like trying to eat a delicious fruitcake one raisin at a time.

Luckily, there are ways to improve the speed and range of your home internet connection to help you take a full bite out of those tasty browser games without knocking down all of your home's internal walls. 

Sometimes just a small tweak is all that's required to boost your Wi-Fi speeds, so we kick off with some free quick fixes - before moving onto the relative merits of more heavy duty solutions like powerlines, boosters and repeaters further down.

Time to don those biggles goggles and get tinkering...

The quick fixes

1. Change the channel

If your connection is unfathomably bad, it’s probably because everyone within 100m is using the same Wi-Fi channel. That’s a bit like 600 radio stations all trying to use the same frequency.

You can fix this in about 30 seconds by logging into your router. Find your router's address on the bottom of the case (it's usually something like and type it into your browser window. Your channel settings will be in a Wi-Fi settings menu. To help decide which channel to change to, use an app like Wi-Fi Analyzer (£free, Android) to see the Wi-Fi channels being used around you.

2. Take the cable route

If there’s a gaming PC or set-top box that needs bulletproof internet, why not move your router nearby and use an Ethernet cable? 

Long cables like this one only cost a few pounds and flat ones are also dead easy to hide in and around carpet. Cables are always faster than Wi-Fi.

3. Move away from the TV

Some gadgets don’t like other gadgets. And routers make almost no friends.

RF and electrical interference from other tech, and even some cables, can trip-up your router, sending your wireless reliability down the tubes. Keep your router away from your TV and other home entertainment gear to be sure.

4. Stay centered

Wi-Fi signal blooms out in all directions, so your best bet is to try and position your router as close to the middle of your house as possible.

Bunging the thing in one corner and hoping for the best is a one-way ticket to dead zone hell. An extension cable costs just a few quid: it’s worth it.

Next steps

Tried those tips but still experiencing death by patchy Wi-Fi? Time to draft in the heavy hardware artillery...