Wifi & Internet Problems

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Is your internet problem truly your carrier, or is it something you can actually control and fix yourself.

We will start by saying that everyone’s particular issue or issues will be different than the next persons, but we wanted to shed some light on the topic in hopes of helping everyone out a bit. Also, there are a lot of variables in this. While it seems like a straight forward and simple fix, it often requires multiple troubleshooting steps to identify and correct the problem.

The first thing to recognize is that your internet providers are truly only concerned about making sure you show as “connected” to their service. Often times this translates to the company making sure they can “see” the modem on their network. And in most cases that is where the interest ends. They may help with some light technical troubleshooting, but ultimately it is not their specialty or interest.

  1. Are you actually getting what you are paying for?
    • You might feel your internet is slow, and so you call or login on line to upgrade your service. But have you ever checked to make sure you are actually getting those speeds? While often times you will not get the exact speeds advertised, you should at-least be fairly close. 
    • We have seen times where you have paid for an upgrade, but the upgrade wasn’t completed on the carrier’s end and so you are still getting your previous speeds.
    • How do you check this?
      • The true way to check the speed you are getting is to go to the cable modem or router and connect your laptop to it directly using an ethernet cable. Then visit a speed test website such as SpeedTest (https://www.speedtest.net/)
      •  If you do not have an ethernet cable, grab one online, you can get them off Amazon for pretty cheap. And usually can get it quickly with Prime shipping.
  2. Is the wiring correct in the house?
    • Houses starting in the 2000’s often were built with a wiring box that ends up in a closet (usually the Master Bedroom closet) or a laundry room. Part of your internet is often wired in there. This is especially common when paying for higher internet speeds as it runs through the ethernet cable (Cat5 or Cat6) that is running through the house. 
    • If these connections are not wired correctly, they can be seriously impacting your speeds.
    • A perfect example, we had a client who was paying for 1gbs (1000mbs) service from their internet carrier. However their speeds and service in the house was still terrible. When we came out we began by ensuring they were getting the 1gbs service to their modem, which they were. So our next step was to check the wiring in the house. We found an improperly wired connector in the wiring box. The result was they were receiving 97mbs of their 1000mbs service. Roughly 10% of the speed they were paying for. We changed out the connection and they got 100% of their internet speeds in the house!
    • Another client’s house we went to had no wifi because the installer did not configure the wireless part of the internet properly. Once we configured the devices properly the internet began working within minutes through the wifi. 
    • So how do you check this?
      • First, check your speed at your modem. Then check the speed at your router in the house. Make sure they match or are only off by a few mbs. If they are not, then there could be a wiring problem causing the slow down.
  3. Routers rented from the internet company / Routers that are years old can cause you problems.
    • While many people are happy with the router / wifi they rent from their internet carrier, they can often be the root of your problems. This equipment is generally not new when you receive it, it is cleaned up, refurbished, and sent back out for use. So why does this matter, if the router is old or damaged, it can cause random outages, and slow downs in your speed. It can also be the reason your internet randomly drops from wifi devices. 
    • Other people prefer to purchase a router/wifi on their own so they do not have to pay to rent it from the cable company. However, low end units, or devices that are 5+ years old could be holding you back without you knowing. Many times we have seen people using older routers that are failing, or are lower end and they are not built for the speeds you may be paying for. 
    • Invest in your own Router
      • While we recommend this route to our clients, we do want to stress you get what you pay for in this category.  While you do not need to go off an buy a top of the line router/wifi, you do need to invest some money into it to see fast speeds. The mid to higher end devices also often have a much longer life span to them as they have newer technology and are built better. 
      • For clients who we provide ongoing residential support services we often recommend they invest in a device such as the Ubiquiti UniFi Dream Machine.   
      • However there are many fine devices out there to choose from. Just take a moment to review its specifications and make sure they meet your needs.
  4. Wifi Connectivity Issues
    • The signal coming from any router is only but so strong, and if not centrally located in your house, it could not be sending a strong enough signal to keep you connected. 
    • The location and the materials that your house is made of greatly affect the ability for a router to deliver wifi and how far that signal can go.
    • In larger houses you may actually need a mesh network or an access point to increase your signal strength and improve your wifi connectivity. 

While this is just an overview we hope it helps with troubleshooting some of your internet issues in your home. While we mainly covered homes this all applies equally to businesses and commercial spaces as well.

We are always happy to help out if you want some professional help!

We can be reached at 813-669-5400 or contact@foreststrategicsolutions.com

 

 

*Please always consult a professional. Forest Strategic Solutions hereby declines any liability whatsoever for losses and/or damages of whatever kind (and sustained by whomever) that might result from the above.

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