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With Christmas just a week away, your home broadband is about to get a serious hammering. With families at home and new gadgets – such as smart speakers, console and games – being opened this has to be one of the toughest periods for Wi-Fi and having a dire signal on December 25 is sure to cause some serious frustration. Ahead of the festive period, Virgin Media has issued a fresh email warning about where NOT to put your router and following some simple tips could help to make sure your speeds don’t stutter on Christmas Day.
According to the latest advice from the Internet Service Provider (ISP), the worst place to pop your router is in the kitchen as the signal it beams out can suffer serious interference due to all the appliances that clog up this room.
The worst offender is the microwave oven which can bring your broadband to a shuddering halt when heating up the lunchtime gravy.
Explaining more, Virgin Media said, “It’s not just electronics that interfere with your WiFi signal: metal can also wreak havoc with your connection. Kitchens are often home to heavy-duty metal appliances (think ovens, fridges and washing machines), as well as signal-emitting electronics like microwaves, making them a particularly inhospitable environment for your router.”
If your flashing black internet box happens to be placed next to the oven it’s a good idea to try and find somewhere else to position it if you want to stream movies and binge on boxsets without fear of interruptions.
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Along with finding the right room, there are some other things you can do to improve the signal before the big day.
Virgin also says that it’s best to keep the router clear of other objects and, if possible, placed right in the heart of the home. That will make sure every room gets a decent connection and will help rid the home of annoying dead spots.
Other things to avoid are fish tanks and mirrors as these can also wreak havoc with the signal it emits.
The final thing to be aware of this month is your Christmas Tree. Yes, that glowing decoration in the corner of the room might look fun and festive but your Wi-Fi really hates it.
“Whether you’re going for a real tree this year or a pretend one, we bet there’s going to be twinkling lights all over it,” the Virgin said in an email to users.
“But did you know that fairy lights can actually obscure your router’s wireless signals? Yep, if your router ends up stuffed behind the tree, you’ll likely see a reduction in your WiFi speeds.”
Top 5 Wi-Fi tips
• Don’t place your router in a cupboard or behind the TV as this can block the signal
• Don’t switch your router off overnight as it won’t get vital updates to keep things up to speed
• Switch your router off once a month then reboot it as this will help clear any issues
• Check your speed using services such as Ookla. If it’s not what you are paying for call your ISP
• Don’t lie the router on its side. Keep things upright if you want the best speeds
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