Can a Mesh Network Be Your Solution for Wi-Fi Problems at Home?

Mohammed Emran /
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Wouldn’t it be great if there was a permanent way of fixing your Wi-Fi issues at home? 

Despite Wi-Fi technology advancing more and more each day, most households still have to deal with a lot of difficulties that seem unfixable.

In order for Wi-Fi networks to work, users use the help of a wireless router. That means that it’s a single access point that we normally place wherever the primary connection is, which could be through fiber, cable, or DSL. 

Even though a wireless router allows us to have access to Wi-Fi through most of the house, it also limits the range in certain areas and creates dead zones in which there is limited or no connection at all. 

Common areas include garages, basements, and backyards. So, if you are planning to have a big BBQ and watch a movie outside, it’s possible that your Wi-Fi connection won’t deliver the service you’re expecting because you’re too far away from the crucial point of connection. 

This can become frustrating. 

Of course, there are plenty of ways you can try to remedy the situation. You could get a Wi-Fi booster or a Wi-Fi extender to widen the range of the Wi-Fi. 

The problem with that is that you’ll essentially have to place an extender in each zone that you’re looking to extend the network to and it can get costly with all the equipment. 

This is where a mesh network can be really helpful. Though it’s a lesser-known solution, mesh networks are increasing in popularity for the convenience and reliability they provide for users looking to permanently fix Wi-Fi connectivity issues throughout the home.

Here, running some ethernet lines and plugging them into a mesh Wi-Fi system might be the answer to all your problems and solve all Wi-Fi issues once and for all. 

What is a Mesh Network?

A wireless mesh network, or as it’s most commonly known, a “mesh Wi-Fi” network is basically a network that uses multiple network devices to cover a larger area. 

As previously mentioned, most Wi-Fi connections are set up through one access point. Mesh Wi-Fi networks were built around this issue and they use a single unified wireless network to prevent dead zones around certain areas of the household. 

Mesh Wi-Fi systems have multiple access points that are called nodes. One node connects to the main router to ensure that there’s Wi-Fi in place. The other nodes can go to different locations, expanding your coverage, and easily connecting to other nodes within range—a sure way to ensure you never lose coverage anywhere.

The significant thing about mesh networks is that they’re flexible and can adjust to your needs. So, if you feel you need more nodes to extend coverage into a remote part of your house, you can do so without a problem. 

Though mesh networks are most commonly used in commercial areas like airports and shopping malls, you can also install them in households and small companies or organizations. There’re no limitations to where they can go. 

Things to Consider Before Switching to Mesh

As tempting as it probably is to switch to a mesh network right away, there are a few things you should consider before making the big change.

  • Consider Improving Your Wi-Fi First
    Yes, you may be feeling incredibly frustrated at the lack of consistency with your Wi-Fi network. However, switching to a mesh network (though user-friendly and an upgrade in the long run) can be a costly change. If you’re able to fix your current Wi-Fi with general troubleshooting, that will prove to be the cheapest option if you’re worried about costs.
  • Remove Obstacles
    Remember that Wi-Fi is sensitive to anything blocking its signal. Because regular Wi-Fi networks are set up through one major access point, it’s important to keep the wireless router away from any objects that could block the signal. For example, if the router is on the floor, make sure there are no big objects in front of it that could prevent it from extending its range to the maximum.
  • Replace Outdated Equipment
    If you rent your equipment from your Internet service provider, they will more than likely be keeping you up to date with any changes to software, running updates, or providing you with new equipment if yours becomes too outdated for the connection to run seamlessly. However, if you own your equipment, make sure that you change it every three to four years to make sure that it’s able to keep up with new Wi-Fi systems. Sometimes updating the equipment can fix any issues you may have with your at-home Wi-Fi. 

When to Use a Mesh Network

Mesh networks are the most useful when you’re trying to cover wide areas. That’s why mesh networks are normally used at airports or shopping malls, where a reliable connection is needed in every corner. 

Mesh networks are also better equipped to handle multiple devices and users since they’re also expected to be used in extensive areas covering not just a lot of ground, but many people at the same time. 

If you live in a huge house, with multiple rooms and areas that you want to make sure the Wi-Fi covers without hiccups, then it’s possible that a mesh network could be the best solution for you and your household.

One main positive of having a mesh network is that you don’t have to be tech-savvy in order to make it work. Mesh networks are incredibly user-friendly and easy to set up.

The downside, however, is that mesh networks can be costly. A basic router with a repeater or Wi-Fi extender will still be cheaper than adding a mesh network to your household. It’s something to consider if the cost of the system is something that worries you. 

The Best Mesh Wi-Fi Systems Available on the Market

You’ve made up your mind and you’re now ready to shop for the best mesh Wi-Fi system out there.

Mesh networks are still fairly new on the market, but there are some reputable options you can go with if you really want to add this system to your household.

  • Google Wi-Fi: Probably the most popular and recognizable of all the mesh networks right now. It comes in a discounted pack of three and all you need to set it up is a Google account, a smartphone, and a Google Wi-Fi app.
  • Eero Pro Wi-Fi System: This is the second most popular option available. It comes in a large package to better suit large households. The great thing about this system is that the company offers subscriptions for users that can also scan for threats and filter websites.
  • Orbi from Netgear: This is a great option because it comes in a pack of four and covers up to 10,000 square feet. It can cover up to 100 devices and can offer speeds of 6Gbps. 

The benefits from a mesh network are many. The fundamental things to consider are cost and space. If your house is big enough to benefit from a mesh network and you’re flexible with costs, then this might be the best option for you.

However, if the cost is too much and you prefer to stay with your current Wi-Fi connection, just know that there are ways to enhance it and make it better without making you spend too much more on what you already have.