You might have a Wi-Fi router in your house and it helps you access the internet from a certain point in your office or home, but you soon realize that the range of the network is not as big as you hoped. In such a case, you will require multiple access points – but it is not as simple as you might think, unfortunately.
Having these access points does not just involve putting wireless routers in all the areas where you want stronger signals or on every floor. There are certain things that you must keep in mind when doing so, or else you will be creating more problems when you are trying to access the internet in the future. It is possible to have multiple wireless access points for one channel, but there are a number of things you must do as well.
What are these access points?
These are a method of Wi-Fi network extension that you use when you want to connect the router to an internet source through a cable. This is quite different from the usual method of Internet connection – while the usual method will rely on direct plugging to the internet, Access Point instead uses a cable that you can use to connect to another router as well.
It also works well if you want to extend the Wi-Fi range, but there is a catch: the main router itself should not be too far away from the router you want to connect. The cable will do the rest for you, as it ensures the best speeds you can get from the access point to the central router, and this is where it beats the other two methods: you will not need to worry about signal losses.
In addition this makes it a very good option if you want to increase the scope of your internet connection past obstacles like solid walls and doors.
What you need to do
Conduct a survey of your wireless site before setting up your network
Regardless of the situation, one of the best practices is having a wireless site survey done before you install a Wi-Fi router. This will remove the guesswork from the setup process, and will give you a clear plan on where your access points will eventually be.
To manage all of these access points, make sure to have a controller
There are numerous versions of wireless access point controllers that you can get. For instance, you can decide to use an on-site controller wherever your access points are, while you can also use cloud-based types that allow you to control everything across multiple places.
It does not matter the controller type you use, as the benefits are roughly the same – it gives you the access to change the password and SSID from a central place instead of joining different networks when you move between rooms or floors.
Select the optimal access point placement
The survey in step 1 should tell you of the best places to put your access points. However, in case you did not do one, the general rule is placing them in the center of the room where you need a Wi-Fi network (although this is not the best method if you rely heavily on these networks).
When connecting access points, keep the Ethernet cable below 328 feet
Once you know where the points will be, you then require a Cat6 or Cat5 Ethernet cable to connect these points. Regardless of the cable, make sure the cable is below 328 feet – otherwise, there will be a high risk of dropping packets that will negatively impact your internet speeds and performance.
However, if the cable must go above328 feet, you can mitigate future problems by installing a small switch or another active component in order to allow you to run the cable. You can also use fiber optic cables that can run for several miles.
Maintain the correct access points
In some cases, you might need some outdoor coverage in your Wi-Fi network, so you will need outdoor points for the job. If the indoor access points are not enough, then outdoor ones can still help because they can ignore the elements and remain resilient regardless of external temperatures.
Select the correct channels
For you to get the best coverage, you need to have the proper channel selections – and the access point controller can help you pick the best ones. There is one point to keep in mind though – neighboring access points might overlap as long as they are in one area, but this should not cause issues as long as the channels are non-overlapping.
Wireless access points can go a long way to helping you increase your Wi-Fi coverage, especially in a large area, and you can have multiple ones using the same channel. In addition, the tips above will help you set up these channels in the correct way, and ensure you get the most out of your network.