Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. These trips can help you solve the most frustrating annoyance of the modern era.
Wondering why is my internet so slow? If you’re reading this it’s probably because you’re having problems with your internet. Chances are you speeds are much slower than you’re used to.
And while this is very much a first-world problem, it’s annoying nevertheless – especially if you rely on the internet to keep in touch with vulnerable friends or family in this COVID world we live in or need it to work and thus maintain your livelihood.
The good news is, if you have slow internet it’s relatively easy to track down the problem. Below, we’ve laid out five ways to do just that.
Reboot Your Modem/Router
The first thing you should do is check your modem/wireless router. Note that your modem is probably built into your wireless router, so they are one and the same. The only exception to this is if you have had the same internet hardware for close to a decade. In that case, you might have a separate modem and wireless router, though it’s unlikely nowadays.
Ninety percent of all internet problems can be solved by tinkering with your wireless router. Wireless routers are often the source of slow internet speeds because they can sometimes get overloaded with data.
The good news is, if this is the problem, it’s easy to fix. Try doing one or both of these:
- Press the power button to turn off the wireless router, wait ten seconds, then turn it back on.
- Completely unplug the wireless router from power, wait ten seconds, and then plug it back in.
Chances are this will have fixed most internet connection problems.
Check For Coaxial Splitters
Speaking of roueters…if you get your internet via a cable connection, the router will be connected to a coaxial cable coming from your wall. However, sometimes when a technician installs your router, they’ll use a coaxial cable splitter.
This cable splitter ensures data can run to two different sources: your TV and other devices like a router. However, the cable splitter can act as a bottleneck, slowing your data transmission.
To check if the cable splitter is the source of your trouble, unplug the cable splitter and connect your router right to the coaxial cable coming from your wall. If your internet speeds up after this, the cable splitter was likely the source of the problem.
Don’t Overwhelm Your Network
Another big reason for slow internet speeds? More than one device is downloading a MASSIVe amount of data at the same time. This will definitely slow down all devices on your network.
Check if this is the case is easy. Just ask everyone else in the household if they are streaming or downloading large amounts of data. If one person is streaming Netflix 4K video and another is downloading a 100GB game installer, it’s no wonder your browsing speeds are slowing.
Switch DNS Providers
A DNS, or domain name server, is a fundamental part of the internet. When you type in a URL, such as www.knowyourmobile.com, your computer sends this to your router, which sends it to your ISP which sends it to a DNS server. This DNS server converts the worded URL address into the numeric IP address of the site you are trying to access. This all happens in a split second.
But because DNS’s are constantly doing this for billions of web addresses, they can become overloaded, which can slow down connection speeds. If the DNS is the source of your problem, switching to a new DNS could help.
There are tons od DNS’s you can tell your router to send URLs to. The most popular include 188.8.131.52 and OpenDNS.
Get a Mesh Wi-Fi System
Finally, it’s worth noting that your internet speed could be slow because of your location relative to your wireless router. The farther away you are from it, the weaker your signal will be, and thus the speeds will be slower.
If your house is very very large, this could be the main problem. So, how to get around it? Invest in a mesh Wi-Fi system. This is a system that puts multiple wireless base stations around your house boosting your internet signal – and thus speed – all over it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can laptops use 5G?
Yes. A laptop can access a 5G network in one of three ways:
- If the laptop has a built-in 5G modem.
- If the laptop is connected to a 5G hub.
- If the laptop is tethered to the internet connection from a 5G phone.
Q: Is wireless or an ethernet connection faster?
It depends on the sped of your wireless modem and ethernet, but generally, an ethernet connection will always have faster internet speeds.
Q: Does streaming slow down internet?
Streaming 4K movies can slow down your internet – especially if multiple devices on the same wireless network are streaming at the same time.
Apple expert and novelist, Michael Grothaus has been covering tech on KnowYourMobile for the best part of 10 years. Prior to this, he worked at Apple. And before that, he was a film journalist. Michael is a published author; his book Epiphany Jones was voted as one of the best novels about Hollywood by Entertainment Weekly. Michael is also a writer at other publications including VICE and Fast Company.