Networking

Problems connecting to WiFi at home: how to fix them

When we have a Wi-Fi router or access point, problems may appear when trying to connect wirelessly with our computer, laptop, ultrabook, smartphone, tablet and other devices that have Wi-Fi. Depending on the error message provided by the operating system, we will have to fix them in one way or another. Today in RedesZone we are going to help you solve the most typical problems that usually appear when we connect to a wireless network.

Today there are routers and access points that broadcast in the 2.4GHz band, in the 5GHz band with “low” channels (from 36 to 48, and if it allows DFS channels, from 36 to 64), and also a 5GHz band with “high” channels (100 to 140). The first thing we need to know is the model of the Wi-Fi card, as it may not support some of these frequency bands, and it may not even support the DFS channels of the 5GHz bands.

WiFi coverage problems

2.4GHz has more range than the 5GHz bands

One of the main limitations of WiFi networks is the coverage it provides in our home. Under the same conditions, the 2.4GHz band will go further than the 5GHz band, but it will do so at a slower speed due to the standard used and the wireless channel width. If you have connected to your router (in any of its frequency bands), but you have very little coverage, you will need to buy a Wi-Fi repeater, or better yet, buy a Mesh Wi-Fi system for your home that will allow you move from one node to another without a cut in the Wi-Fi connection. If you are going to connect from very remote places, you can only use this type of device, or PLCs with Wi-Fi.

Smart Connect

Currently many routers have Smart Connect technology , this allows them to broadcast in both frequency bands with the same Wi-Fi network name (SSID) and password. In this way, the router will manage which frequency band to connect the wireless clients to. If you have coverage problems, we recommend deactivating this option, because it is possible that the router is “forcing” the Wi-Fi card to connect in the 5GHz band to provide you with more speed, however, being so far from the router or AP, it is very possible that if you connect to the 2.4GHz band the wireless connection will work better for you.

WiFi channels in automatic

The latest routers always select wireless channels automatically, to avoid interference with neighboring networks that it detects. However, it is possible that this functionality is not well programmed in the routers, and it only checks the Wi-Fi networks when restarting the router, and not every so often to “avoid” this interference. For this reason, it would be very positive if you check yourself the channels that your neighbors use, we recommend Acrylic WiFi Home to use it on a Windows computer, and WiFi Analyzer if you use an Android smartphone.

WiFi speed issues

Further, slower speed

One of the common problems in Wi-Fi wireless networks is speed. The first thing to know is that the further away we are from the router or AP, the speed will be lower. If you have speed problems, but have poor wireless coverage, this is why you cannot download or upload data quickly. A possible solution to this is to buy a Wi-Fi repeater, Wi-Fi Mesh system or a few PLC devices.

Make sure you connect in 5GHz for higher speed

If you are near the router or AP, with good coverage (more than 75%), and the wireless connection does not work quickly, it is very possible that you are connected to the 2.4GHz band, try to connect to the 5GHz band whenever it is possible as it will give you a higher speed when you are relatively “close” to the router or access point. If you only have a Wi-Fi network name (SSID), the router takes care of placing you in one band or another, it is recommended that you verify the wireless synchronization speed, since it is very possible that it is placing you in 2.4GHz instead 5GHz. When the Smart Connect functionality is not well programmed in the router, or you experience this type of problem, it is recommended to deactivate the Smart Connect to choose which frequency bands to connect to.

Number of WiFi antennas of your device

Another speed problem can be due to the number of Wi-Fi antennas that your device has, if it has a single antenna you will not get more than 250Mbps real in the 5GHz band or more than about 90Mbps in the 2.4GHz band. If you were expecting to receive the symmetric 600Mbps via Wi-Fi, you will have to buy a network card with three antennas and connect to the 5GHz band. Normally mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets have 1 or 2 internal antennas, so don’t expect to get too much speed, although this will depend on many factors. We recommend you read our tutorial on the maximum WiFi speed you can get.

Many devices connected at the same time

Another problem with Wi-Fi networks is that the more wireless devices you have connected, the slower the wireless network will go, because the router and AP must avoid collisions whenever possible, and this makes the overall network work more slowly. Technologies such as OFDMA in Wi-Fi 6 and MU-MIMO, allow us to optimize the wireless network as best as possible, but as long as the clients you use support these two technologies, otherwise, we will not gain anything.

Another important aspect is that slow Wi-Fi clients (those with 1 antenna), harm faster clients (those with 3 antennas or more), so it would be ideal for slow clients to place them in a band of frequencies, and the fastest in another. If your router or AP has the “Airtime Fairness” function, you will mitigate this problem, since the router will assign a certain “time” to each device connected at the same time.

It is advisable to disconnect the devices that we are not using from the wireless network, with the aim of leaving the frequency band “free”, and that current clients can obtain the maximum speed.

Problems connecting to the 5GHz band

Unsupported device

If our device is not able to “see” the 5GHz band, it is very possible that either it is not compatible with this frequency band, or that the router or wireless access point is using DFS channels that are not compatible with your equipment. You should always make sure that the channels used by the 5GHz band are from 36 to 48, since they are the standard channels of this band, and even older devices with Wi-Fi 5 can connect on these channels. We must remember that the DFS channels go from 52 to 64, and from 100 onwards.

Too far from the router or band off

Another possible problem is that we are too far from the router or AP to receive the SSID of the 5GHz band, the only solution is to approach the wireless node, or buy a Wi-Fi repeater that amplifies the Wi-Fi signal and reaches us. . We must also make sure that the 5GHz band is activated, otherwise we will not be able to connect. You must go directly to the administration website of your router to see if it is activated.

Outdated drivers

Manufacturers often release driver updates for their Wi-Fi cards, especially Intel, the WiFi card that the vast majority of laptops and ultrabooks carry. Make sure you have the latest drivers installed, you just have to access the official Intel website and look for the model of your Wi-Fi card to download the latest software available. With these updates, it is possible that they will add support to DFS channels, and even fix problems that you had before.

Today, it is highly recommended to purchase a Wi-Fi Mesh system to have seamless WiFi coverage throughout our home, thanks to this type of device, we will have all the latest wireless technologies to provide us with the best coverage, speed and user experience possible. . Remember that there are two types of Wi-Fi Mesh systems, those that use the WiFi where the clients connect for their connection, and those that have a frequency band specifically dedicated to the interconnection of the different nodes. These last devices are the most recommended because they will provide you with great wired and wireless performance in your home local network.

Problems connecting to the Wi-Fi network

“Could not get IP”

This message is very typical when we connect to the Wi-Fi wireless network, this means that the router’s DHCP server is not working properly, it has the entire pool of IP addresses occupied, or that you are simply connected so far from the router or AP that is barely able to send and receive data. Try moving closer to the router or AP, and if this persists, try turning your wireless router off and on. If you still cannot connect, you can try setting a fixed private IP, accessing “Control Panel / Network and Sharing Center / Change adapter settings / Properties of your network card and double click on” IPv4 network protocol “” .

SSID saved, but not connecting

When we save (remember) the wireless network, what we have to be very clear about is that we cannot modify its configuration in the router, that is, if once we save (remember) the wireless network on our computer, we change the SSID, type authentication or authentication password, it will give us an error in the connection, because the basic parameters have changed. This is easily solved by deleting the remembered network and reconnecting. We recommend reading our tutorial on how to configure Windows 10 to connect automatically.

I am connected well but I do not have Internet

If you have connected to the Wi-Fi network and you do not have Internet, try connecting via cable to the router to check if it is a problem with the Wi-Fi network or directly with your Internet connection. If the router does not work via cable, it is very possible that the incident is from your operator’s Internet service.

I can’t see the WiFi network with my new WiFi 6 router

The new WiFi 6 standard is present in current WiFi routers and access points, this new standard makes use of new 802.11 frames that are not compatible with old wireless clients. If you just bought a WiFi 6 router or a WiFi 6 AP and you do not see the WiFi network, then it is because your wireless clients are very old and are not compatible.

This has two solutions, the first solution is to look at the official website of the manufacturer of your WiFi card and see if there are driver updates, if you have an Intel card you will have to update the drivers to the latest version to be able to see the WiFi network, and the same goes for other manufacturers like Broadcom or Realtek. If you are trying to connect with a smartphone or tablet, check if there are new versions of the Android or iOS operating system, if there are no updates, then you will not be able to connect to the new router using WiFi 6. The second solution is to disable the 802.11ax frames , and have the usual WiFi 5 frames, in this way, wireless clients that are not compatible will be able to connect without problems. The negative part of this last solution,

As you can see, there can be many problems when using the Wi-Fi wireless network in our home, however, we can solve them quickly if we detect where the problem is. If you have not solved your problem, you can give us a comment to help isolate the problem and solve it, when you do, indicate what your home network is like in as much detail as possible to try to find this problem.

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