Is your Internet router next to your television? If so, we have some bad news for you!

Is your Internet router next to your television? If so, we have some bad news for you!

Have you installed your router right next to your television, or even inside the TV cabinet? Whilst this is a practical and aesthetic location for your router, it is absolutely not ideal for your Wi-Fi network and for the connection to your other devices.

Like many people, you are probably paying for and using a home Wi-Fi network. This is a permanent connection which goes through the router provided by your operator. If you watch TV or video streaming services, you probably have this precious box in your living room, right next to your TV. A location which seems "natural" and logical, but which is actually not the best... and can even prove counterproductive by causing connection and flow problems, in particular with the older, most widespread models. The potential problems are increased if you have the box inside the TV cabinet!

The modem-router is a device that fulfils two functions: the modem part ensures the connection to the Internet, fiber or ADSL while the router part is responsible for connecting all the devices that you connect to the network, in wired mode (with cables). Ethernet) or wireless (Wi-Fi). It is the combination of these two roles that allows you to share your Internet connection between your computers, smartphones, tablets, televisions and other connected objects in your home.

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However, if Ethernet connections do not pose any problems other than the passage of cables, not always simple or graceful with their seemingly endless lengths of wires, Wi-Fi is much more capricious. Indeed, this mode of communication is based on radio waves which are very sensitive to the environment in which they propagate. And, according to the immutable laws of physics, these invisible signals have many things that can harm their performance and therefore the quality of the Internet connection.

What to avoid when setting up your router?

Wi-Fi waves are poorly diffused through thick walls, whether stone, concrete or brick, which absorb them without returning them. They also don't like ceramic (tiles), water (aquariums, for example) and hate the obstacles they find in their path (furniture and humans) as well as all metal bodies, including thin layers of metal used in mirrors and some windows. And they do not mix well with domestic appliances that emit waves or radiation: microwave ovens, washing machines, dishwashers, induction hobs, but also hi-fi or home cinema amplifiers, unshielded speakers, Bluetooth devices, baby monitors or cordless phones. In general, anything that generates an electromagnetic field, such as lamps or power supplies. This is why placing your router next to your television – which itself contains a metal frame, a power supply and numerous electronic components and which is certainly surrounded by this type of wave-disrupting objects – is one of the worst possible places for it. This is especially so if the router is housed inside a TV cabinet.

Where to position your router?

It is therefore in your best interest to move your router away from the screen to avoid disruption to the Wi-Fi in your home, preferably using an Ethernet cable to connect it to the TV decoder that accompanies it. And even if you prefer to connect your television connected to your box via Wi-Fi, it is better to separate them by a meter or two so that the waves are fully diffused. Ideally, a Wi-Fi router should be installed in a "neutral" and open place, in the center of the home, in order to best serve all the rooms, the waves attenuating with distance. It must also be placed at a height, more than 1m from the ground, and without any obstacles nearby: it must therefore not be placed directly on the floor, next to a concrete or stone wall, and even less so, lock it inside some piece of furniture, even it's more aesthetic. And that is not mentioning that a router stored in a cabinet risks over heating and breaking down… you've been warned!