Using Powerline Adapters to Extend WiFi Range

(Updated in 2016 April15) If you have a big house or office, you might have realized that your WiFi router had limited range, because you might not get network signal or only get weak signal on your 2nd floor or basement if your router was set on 1st floor.

Common Solutions to Resolve WiFi Range Limitation Problem

How to resolve the problem? There are following options you can choose:

1: Buy another internet service, which provides you a newer and stronger WiFi router with new package.

This options will NOT be adopted by most of people since it is really a money wasting solution, and, it does not guarantee you can get extended WiFi range;

2: Buy WiFi Extender, which maybe more and more popular solution (really? not sure actually)

Since WiFi Extenders are cheaper than before, so this option might be easier for you. You can choose it but I will not talk about this option here;

There are multiple good WiFi Extender deals on Amazon now, some models are sold by Amazon itself with more reliability. So you can choose them now, check here.

3: Take advantage of your old WiFi router if you have.

This solution is the most efficient with saving cost compared with other WiFi extending solutions. Of course you might say you have other cheaper ways such as using an empty Cola can, but it is not efficient and not guarantee at all.

So, just using your old router, and a pair of power line adapters, you can get WiFi extended range, it might be better with a cheaper solution than you using a WiFi extender.

A Real Case of Using PowerLine Adapters to Extend Wi-Fi Range

Now let me show how I extended my Wi-Fi range:

1: Firstly I bought a TP-LINK TL-PA4010KIT AV500 Nano Powerline Adapter Starter Kit. You can buy it from any computer stores or from Amazon (Click here to go the page directly), Wal-Mart online etc.;

(Updated on April 15, 2016: This powerline Apapter’s price is keeping updated, The regular price is around $45 to $50, but it could be cheaper. For example, it was $39.98 on April 15 2016)

Why I needed Powerline Adapters because I wanted to use my home power line to connect 2 routers because I have old router which was still working.

Of course if you have existing Ethernet cable and it is long enough, and you do not care that you drag the cable everywhere in your huse, then you do not need to buy this Powerline adapter package, you just use the Ethernet cable to connect your routers (You can skip the step to buy powerline adapter and continue to check the next step);

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2: On my 1st router (my newer router which is running), I adjusted the IP range which it was handling
. Because I would use the IP address 192.168.1.2 as my 2nd router (my old router)’s fixed IP address, so I needed to confirm the 1st router did not use 192.168.1.2, actually my 1st router had already been set the start IP address from 192.168.1.100 by default, I did not need to change it here, but you might have to change due to your router’s settings.

Note:

You might have different router so the user interface should be different with mine, and the default start IP address might be different as well, so please help yourself change the start IP address due to your own router

Also, please know most of router’s default IP address is 192.168.1.1, which let your connect it to change its settings.

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3: Still on my 1st router, I changed its channel to 6. (You can set its channel to 1 or 11). What we should do here is just separating 2 routers’ channels, do not allow them to use the ‘overlapping’ channels.

About Channels of WLAN, please check the below picture which was copied from Wikipedia here, what we need to do is setting Non-Overlapping Channels on 2 routers. For example if the 1st router is set to 1, then the 2nd one should be set to 6 or 11

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At I mentioned, I set the 1st router Channel 6:

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4: I saved above settings on the 1st router, then powered off the router;

 

5: I then connected to my 2nd router which was an old router compared with the 1st router. My old router is a Linksys WRT54G.

I set its IP address to 192.168.1.2

Then I disabled DHCP Server on the second router. The reason is also because I just needed the 2nd router as a local area network switch, all arranged IP addresses should be only handled by the 1st router.

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6: Still on the 2nd router, I set the channel to 11 since I had set the 1st router’s channel to 6;

Also, please remember you’d better to set these 2 routers using the same SSID name, and, set the same wireless password.

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7: The routers settings part done. It was the time I turned to my purchased TP-LINK Powerline adapters. Due to the adapters guide, I plugged the pair of adapters into 2 wall power jacks, then pressed both pair buttons on each adapter  to pair the adapters;

About how to know your adapters are set pair done, check your adapters setting guide.

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8: I turned on the 1st router, and plugged one of Powerline adapters into a wall power jack which was closed to the 1st router, then connected the router and the adapter using an Ethernet cable.

Note: the Ethernet cable is in LAN port on router;

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9: Finally I turned on the 2nd router in my target room which was on another floor, and plugged another Powerline adapter into a wall jack which was closed the 2nd router. Also using an Ethernet cable to connect them.

Note: Ethernet cable should still been plugged into a LAN port on the 2nd router.

 

My home WiFi extending task was set done, and it have been working very well.

 

Note: Some people mentioned if set 2 routers using 2 different SSID might get better WiFi, I have not tried it since my WiFi extending works well. If you do that then you might have to manually change your device’s network access if your device such as laptop and smart phone can not switch the SSID automatically.