We’ve already showed you some great tools for testing your Internet speeds, but what if you aren’t happy with the results of said tests? Is there even a way you can increase your Internet speed? Luckily, you have a few different options available to you. Some of these options won’t even cost you a dime!

Follow along and we’ll show you just how you can increase those download speeds at home.

6. Call your ISP

In some cases, getting faster download speeds can be as simple as calling up your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and asking for a bump in speeds. If you’re not getting the advertised download speed, sometimes they’re willing to do some behind-the-scenes magic and give you a higher allotment.

5. It might be time for a new router

If you’re not getting your advertised speeds, it could be on your end and not the fault of your ISP. If you’re still running a router that supports only Wireless A, B and G, it’s time for an upgrade. Wireless N and AC are the new kids on the block that are going to give you the fastest speeds. Of course, in switching to a newer router, you’re going to need a network card in your PC or laptop that supports the new Wireless N and AC standards.

For example, if you only have a network card that supports Wireless N, you’ll still be able to connect to an AC-equipped router, but you may not be able to take full advantage of its benefits on the 5G band. You should still be able to use its 2.4G band fine, though.

4. It’s all about location

One common occurrence is obstructing your router’s Wi-Fi signal. If you’ve hidden it inside a cabinet or put it in a corner, you might actually be making the signal weaker. The best place to have it is out in the open, ideally in the middle of the house so that you can get the best coverage possible throughout your entire house.

3. Try a different wireless channel

If you have a lot of neighbors, the drop in Wi-Fi speeds might be because there’s people around you who are all using the same wireless channels for the routers, causing some congestion. Luckily, routers can run on a number of different channels, so switching it over to a channel with less traffic is fairly easy.

If you own an Android device, you can test which channels are the best with Wi-Fi Analyzer. This tool rates channels with stars. The channel with the lowest amount of stars is the worst for your location and the channel with the highest amount of stars is the best. If you’re on Windows, you can use WiFi Info View.

With the information from these tools, you can head straight into your router’s interface and switch over to what seems to be the best wireless channel for your location.

2. Other applications might be the problem

If you have multiple people in your house that use your Wi-Fi, it could be that another application is causing slowness, such as video chat applications (FaceTime, Skype, etc), video games, torrent downloads, streaming services and so on. You can always try to get people off your Wi-Fi for a little bit, but you can also use Quality of Service (QoS) in your router to prioritize bandwidth. By doing this, you’ll make sure the most important applications to you are getting the most bandwidth before anything else.

1. Or, it could be time to shop around

If none of these methods have worked for you, it might simply be time to start shopping for a new Internet package, whether that’s with your current provider or another one. If you’re currently on something like DSL, upgrading to cable Internet (or even fiber) will give you tons of improvements.

Call up your Internet provider and see what they have available. Or, maybe you’re one of the few lucky people in an area where Verizon’s new Fios plans are available to you. Upgrading to that will give you nearly a gigabit of upload and download speeds. But really, do some shopping around before you settle on something — you might be lucky and find another local company offering a near-gigabit connection package.

Closing

By following the steps above, hopefully we’ve helped you eek out some better speeds out of your current Internet package. By upgrading your router, you should most definitely see a speed increase, but you’ll also see more reliability from it when it comes to maintaining your Wi-Fi connection, keeping congestion at a minimum and so on.

If you’ve got any tips or tricks for increasing Wi-Fi speeds, be sure to leave a comment in the comments section below.