[SOLVED] Major drops in wireless speeds

Nov 23, 2019
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I’ve been troubleshooting major drops in wireless speeds and coming up blank. The throughput speed of my service on WiFi will go from around 28-32mbps (roughly what I’d expect depending on distance, walls etc) and plummet to 2mbps or even 700kbps... then ramp back up to between 5-10mbps and stay there. I cannot achieve a consistent speed of over 25mbps which is poor when the average throughput should be 36.

On ethernet I do get an average of 36 so something is up with wireless.

I’ve done the usual things, used my computer to find out which channel is least congested, moved the router around the corner on an extension lead to remove a wall obstacle, used another router (plugged into the my service provider’s one as a second network since the original one doesn’t have a modem mode) which has better range and signal strength on a range of channels and settings. No change.

What kinds of things can cause these drops? Some kind of interference? Fault with the service provider’s hardware?

Not sure what else I can try! The service provider isn’t interested since the ethernet speeds are as would be expected... I ran a diagnostic on my computer and the only thing it flagged was that someone else’s router in range is German and could possibly interfere with British routers... not sure how likely that is to cause major issues!
 
It could be interference. It does not matter what language a router runs the all use the same radio frequencies so they overlap. In many cases you can not actually see what radio channels are used because all you can actually see are the broadcast messages from the router not the actual end devices using it.

The other thing is the channel numbers on routers are very misleading. On 2.4g a channel is only 5mhz wide but wifi uses 20mhz or more likely 40mhz...so either 4 or 8 of the so called channels. There is only room for 60mhz total so it is impossible to fit 2 40mhz "channels" without overlap. On 5g it is a little better. There the channels are 20mhz wide BUT 802.11ac uses 80mhz so blocks of 4 channels. There are only 2 blocks of 80mhz in most countries. On of the fancy tri-band routers can use all the bandwidth with one device.

Your problem likely is your end device. You can hear the router but it can not hear you or more likely it can hear a lot of interfering signal with the weak signals.

There is not much you can do. You do what you have been doing. Moving stuff around and changing the channels. You could try to force 20mhz channels but that can greatly cut your speed, but if you only have a 36mbp maximum it may still be more and with less radio range the interference causes less issues.

If it continues to happen I would recommend you buy powerline network devices. The newer av2 device tend to work well in most houses.
 
It could be interference. It does not matter what language a router runs the all use the same radio frequencies so they overlap. In many cases you can not actually see what radio channels are used because all you can actually see are the broadcast messages from the router not the actual end devices using it.

The other thing is the channel numbers on routers are very misleading. On 2.4g a channel is only 5mhz wide but wifi uses 20mhz or more likely 40mhz...so either 4 or 8 of the so called channels. There is only room for 60mhz total so it is impossible to fit 2 40mhz "channels" without overlap. On 5g it is a little better. There the channels are 20mhz wide BUT 802.11ac uses 80mhz so blocks of 4 channels. There are only 2 blocks of 80mhz in most countries. On of the fancy tri-band routers can use all the bandwidth with one device.

Your problem likely is your end device. You can hear the router but it can not hear you or more likely it can hear a lot of interfering signal with the weak signals.

There is not much you can do. You do what you have been doing. Moving stuff around and changing the channels. You could try to force 20mhz channels but that can greatly cut your speed, but if you only have a 36mbp maximum it may still be more and with less radio range the interference causes less issues.

If it continues to happen I would recommend you buy powerline network devices. The newer av2 device tend to work well in most houses.
 

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