Wi-Fi Not Working or Slower Than Usual? Check Your Microwave

Microwave Oven Wi Fi Signal Credit: Andrey-Popov
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Wi-Fi not working? Check your microwave. It may not be the first thing that comes to your mind when your internet goes down, but it should be high on the list.

It may not seem obvious, but microwaves and Wi-Fi don’t play nice together. It can be a hidden source of frustration for someone trying to figure out why they keep falling off of their conference calls. 

Your microwave interferes with your Wi-Fi router because they both use the same unlicensed 2.4GHz frequency. In once case, the radio waves are used for cooking food, and in the other, they are carrying data.

Microwave ovens, unfortunately, are not tightly sealed. Their waves leak to the outside and interfere with your Wi-Fi router. Before you blame your internet service provider for your slow internet speeds, check to make sure a loved one in your household isn’t microwaving their lunch.

If someone must use the microwave when you’re online, you can take some steps to reduce the interference.

  1. First, try to move the router away from the microwave. The interference from a leaky microwave only travels so far. Moving your router to the other side of the room may fix the issue.
  2. If you can’t move the router, then move the microwave, even if the relocation is temporary for the time when you are working from home.
  3. These are not the only options. If your computer has an ethernet port, you can plug directly into the router and avoid Wi-Fi altogether.
  4. You also can tether to your iPhone if your plan includes mobile hotspot.
  5. If none of those fixes are possible, then you can reschedule your calls to a time when people aren’t eating.
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