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Broadband connection

What's the best way to manage router wifi channels?

3: Seeker


We've been having problems with our wireless broadband recently and it's down to the wifi channels the router decides to select as the best one. For some reason the option that the router chooses for the channel gives us slower speeds that if I went through the channel options and selected a channel manually. Does anyone know why this is? I thought that the router would analyse signal strengh of the various channels in the area then pick a channel based on that? What process does the router go through to pick a wifi channel?


Also, manually selecting channels leads to another issue. At certain times of the day, the selected channels become bad (maybe someone turns their router on and off at different times). By this I mean the speed on the 2.4GHz and 5GHz used to give great speed for channel 1 and 40, but at some times it gives really bad speeds, so much so I have to set it to auto again.


The reason I took it off auto is because we should be getting 80meg, but only get around 35-40Mbps with channels set to auto, but manually selecting channels boosts this to 70-74Mbps.


So for anyone who is good with these kind of things, do you have any suggestions on how best to manage the wifi channels so they stay on one that gives good speed?



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4: Newbie

The way I'd personally do it is this:

Download a Wifi Stumbler program to one of your wireless devices; laptop preferable.  Use it to see a snapshot of the wireless networks around you at various times of the day, probably better to do this over a few days if as you say someone nearby is turning their router off sometimes and on at others. Make a list of the channels that are most used around you both on 2.5GHz and 5GHz, then manually set your router to channels that are either not being used at all, or ones that are being used the least by others. 

For Windows Netstumbler is good:

or for Mac there is NetSpot

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Hi @thelondonguy It's good to hear that you're already aware of changing channels to help boost your speeds. We can never guarantee a consistently high speed across all channels at all times, as there are many variables which can affect this, including network traffic and the number of devices. Do you notice the speed drops at specific times of day?

I'd recommend following @flilot's steps here. Working out which channels offer the most consistent speeds for you will definitely help optimise your experience moving forwards.

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