A WiFi antennas transmits signals over the airwaves. And by now most of us know that wireless connection, in comparison to being hard-wired, is most prone to interference.
If interference occurs, two possible scenarios are waiting to happen — your connection will be disrupted, or you’d be completely disconnected. This is the reason why a wireless connection is unstable and not secure. Good thing that there is a workaround in this kind of connectivity issue.
Interference in a wireless network can be brought about by a gamut of reasons. It can come from your own or your neighbor’s. Or it can be induced by nearby pieces of equipment such as microwave machines and radar systems.
Non-WiFi wireless devices can cause interference, too. Indeed, many possibilities can be taken into account.
This is the reason why tracking down the root cause of interference or fixing the same can be quite a task. However, knowing where you should start may be the first big step you need to take.
Identifying Interference Issues Using WiFi Survey
One way to verify that your network has some kind of network issue is by conducting site surveying work. There are many ways to do that. All of which, though, would necessitate you to walk through the coverage areas of the network.
While walking yourself around the coverage areas, you can do a spot check by making use of wireless adapters and the right apps for the job.
Alternatively, you can check out some professional surveying programs for this purpose. Such applications will help you analyze the data you were able to gather.
In the end, surveying programs will create substantial noise and signal heat maps, as well as SNR, overlaid on the coverage area floor plans.
Interference Caused by Your Own Access Point
There are occasions that the issue is within the network itself. This, by far, is considered a major interference problem with WiFi networks. A wireless network that is not properly configured runs the risks of the AP signs getting in the way of each other.
What you’d want to have is 15% to 20% coverage to overlap between AP cells. Should it be less than that or there is completely no overlapping at all between the AP cells, it increases the odds of your network having bad signal spots.
On the other hand, if either band has too much overlapping between its AP cells, it will induce co-channel interruptions along with a handful of other concerns.
Migrating Other Clients to the 5 GHz Band
In general, a 2.4 GHz band would be best described as having more congestion issues and interference. This brings us to think that the 5 GHz band can assist clients to move away from interference issues, thus further enhancing the network’s overall performance.
Aside from seeing to it that clients and APs can provide support to both bands, take into account also the possibility of using a band-steering functionality which the APs can provide.
This functionality will have dual-band devices to make connections to nearby 5 GHz bands of the APs as opposed to leaving things up to the client itself or the user.
Some APs allow you to enable or disable band steering. Others would allow the configuration of signal thresholds so that dual-band devices are not forced into having to use 5 GHz.
Increasing a WiFi antenna’s transmission rate would substantially put to a minimum the level of interference that may occur. The working idea behind this is that the faster you send and receive the communication, the less interference will likely take place.