routers

Are WiFi Extenders a good idea?

Episode 1600

David from Anaheim, CA

David needs to extend the WIFI in his apartment building. Will an extender do the job? Leo says it will, but at the cost of cutting your bandwidth speed in half, because the basestation is relaying the signal and spending half the time talking to your router. Leo recommends going with a MESH router. Eero is a good one, as is NetGear Orbi. But there are plenty more. Just about every router company makes a mesh model now. 

Can I have a static IP with my mesh router?

Eero

Episode 1555

Tom from Orange, CA

Tom updated his Wi-Fi to an Eero mesh router system, but it changed his static IP address and it's causing problems. How can he fix that? Leo says that all he'll need to do is reserve the IP for those devices. It's in the Eero settings. But the fact that Eero keeps an eye on his network worries him from a security point of view. Leo says that they do that for quality of service, as they are always adjusting the router for the best possible performance. If he doesn't trust Eero to do that securely, then he shouldn't be using it.

Can my mesh router work with my Comcast router/modem?

Eero

Episode 1555

Bobby from Plymouth, MA

Bobby wants to know how he can get his Eero mesh router to work with his Comcast modem/router. Leo says that's called Double NAT and it's problematic. Leo recommends getting his own modem and using that. Comcast has a list of modems that are supported and they cost under $100. He'll want one that supports DOCSIS III or better. The added benefit is that he'll save on the rental of the modem.

(Disclaimer: Eero is a sponsor)

Should I buy a new router?

ASUS Tri-Band Gigabit (AC3200) WiFi Router

Episode 1548

Gordon from Long Island, NY

Gordon hears that after about 3 years, routers become less secure and outdated. So does he have to replace his ASUS AC3200 router? Leo says often, news agencies read copy from an electronic press kit. Routers are getting hacked, but if he bought a good router from a company that updates the firmware regularly, then he's OK. ASUS uses DD-WRT, which is updated regularly. So all he has to do is keep them updated.

Why wouldn't my old routers work with a new cable internet installation?

Netgear Nighthawk AC2300

Episode 1546

Mikah from Maine

Mikah left Spectrum internet service, but a recent deal they offered him got him back into the fold. The deal, however, had to include their phone service as well. He was able to continue using his own modem for the internet. He was using an older router before they arrived, but after they came, his router wouldn't work anymore. He had a brand new router, but that wouldn't work at all. He went and got a Netgear Nighthawk AC2300 router, but he's wondering why his other two routers wouldn't work.

Why is my broadband speed so inconsistent?

Network cable

Episode 1542

Don from Mission Viejo, CA

Don wants to put a flat screen in his back yard, and he wants to use the internet to get content on it. That means he'll need to improve his Wi-Fi. He bought the Google Wi-Fi mesh system to do just that, and he likes it. Leo says Mesh is an improvement for every home, and it's worth the price. But Don wants to know why his speed tests are always different. How can he get a true reading on internet bandwidth speeds? Leo says his ISP will always tell him the maximum possible speeds, not a consistent bandwidth speed from day to day.