Here are several ways to boost the signal of your wireless router so as to extend your wireless network or give your wireless internet or Wi-Fi more coverage.
The most obvious advantage of boosting the signal of your wireless router is that more places on your area can now connect to the wireless network or wireless internet you’ve set-up. This basically means your wireless internet or wireless network would have more coverage.
So if you want to boost your wireless router’s signal, there are several ways to do this:
1. Replace your Antenna
By simply replacing the stock antennas of your wireless router, you can already boost your signal and coverage. If your stock antenna is a 3db antenna and your replaced it with a 7db antenna, you can experience as much as an 80% boost of signal.
Remember though that Linksys and D-Link routers have different sockets for their antennas. Linksys wireless routers use R-TNC (except for a select few), while D-link routers use R-SMA. So don’t buy an R-SMA antenna if you have a Linksys router. Just ask on your local computer store and they should be able to give you the correct one. If you want to be extra sure, bring your router!
2. Use DD-WRT a Free Third Party Firmware
DD-WRT is a FREE third party firmware made for a broad range of wireless routers.
You can replace the previous firmware of your manufacturer by following their instructions at the installation guide or wiki of DD-WRT (http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Installation#Downloading_DD-WRT). It includes links on what routers are supported, what appropriate version to download and lots of other information.
Assuming you’ve successfully installed DD-WRT to your wireless router, just go to the web interface of your router and then go to Wireless -> Advanced Settings and raise the TX Power to a number higher than 70. You can raise it to a number as high as 251, which would definitely increase the signal of your wireless router, but would also lessen its lifespan as it would run hotter.
I put my router to 100mW and my router’s temperature was still ok while increasing the signal of my wireless router. When I put it to 150, I noticed a significant increase in the temperature of my router so I quickly put it back to 100.
DD-WRT is free although it requires a little bit of technical skill and patience to install it to your router. It also has tons of other features. Be sure to try it out.
3. Use a Wireless Range Expander / Extender
Of the previous two methods mentioned, this is the most costly as you have to buy a wireless range expander / extender. Wireless Range Expanders, like the Linksys WRE54G, would boost the signal of your current wireless router.
If for example your router is in point A and its signal only reaches point B and you need the signal to reach point C. Just put the Wireless Range Expander to point B so it could boost the signal up to point C.
A wireless range expander is much cheaper than a wireless router so if you plan on just expanding the range or just boosting the signal of your router, it’s better to just get a wireless range expander instead of buying another router.
4. Use All Three Methods
Using only one of the methods above would already give you a significant boost on your wireless or Wi-Fi signal. Imagine if you used all three!
These are the three most effective and cost efficient ways that I know so you could boost the signal of your wireless router to give you an expanded or extended wireless range.