When you buy a router or a Smart hub, the manufacturer will quote the product’s wireless range. It may sound very impressive but just remember that this range has been tested with the wireless signal following a straight line from one point to another. If it was tested in the Mojave Desert pointing straight at another device with not an obstacle in sight, then the boasted range would probably be correct. However in your home, there are all sorts of obstacles that your wifi has to navigate.
If you think of your hub or router as a parent, it ideally wants to keep all its children, or the devices with which it is trying to communicate, in full sight in order to be the most effective. Of course this rarely happens. In most cases your wifi signal will be reflecting off or going through different surfaces on its way to its destination. The signal can travel through most walls but there are certain physical barriers that may actually stop the signal from penetrating.
Wood, glass, plaster and most synthetic materials offer the least resistance to your wifi signal.
Water, bricks, granite and marble offer medium resistance.
Concrete, metal and mirrors cause the most problems, power loss and interference with your wifi signal.
IMAGINE THE PATHWAY
If you are experiencing a weak signal to some of your smart devices, visualize the path that the signal has to follow. Are there some high barriers in the way? Are you able to reposition the hub or router to give a clearer line of sight? Can you add a booster or repeater to help the signal on its way?
DON’T PLACE YOUR SMART HUB ON A METAL SHELF
Metal is not wifi’s best buddy. It reduces its power and won’t let it pass through. Don’t place your hub on a metal shelf and keep it away from large metal objects. If you have no choice, you may need to use an extender to boost your signal.