If you don’t know how can I use 2 routers to extend a wireless range? Then read our 4 steps and easy guide to extend your router range in your home or Office.
A single Wi-Fi router is no match for a larger home. No matter how fast a network connection is, a user is bound to run into a dead zone. That’s a major bummer, clearly! Especially when you are trying to sip on your coffee, sitting on your veranda, trying to stream some soothing music online and the music just stops midway! That has to be annoying! so, the most obvious question is can I use 2 routers to extend my wireless range?
While there are several ways in which Wi-Fi signals can be extended and spread across the house, some are too complex and a few others are not up to the mark.
One of the easiest and most convenient ways to extend the wireless range across a house would be to “bridge” a second router, that is if it supports WDS, with the first one. Bridging is basically a feature that lets two routers connect with each other resulting in a better transmission of a signal across a wide space area.
Sounds a little tacky, but is worth it. Although bridging routers are not as famous as they used to be, thanks to the mesh Wi-Fi system, which is much simpler, they tend to work just as fine in helping to improve network access in larger areas.
There are certain points that need to be kept in mind while bridging two networks together. One of them is that bridging can be done using both wired or wireless access points. While wireless sounds more convenient, a wired network, naturally, tends to have better coverage.
Bridging and Router Bridging – Terms Explained
Before we get into more details of how to bridge two networks, it is important for users to know what the term “bridging”, “router” and “router bridging” means exactly-
In simple words, BRIDGING is described as the action taken by network equipment to allow two or more communication networks, or two or more network segments, to create an aggregate network.
Now, the thing that we all know as “routers” are rather badly named. A ROUTER is a multi-functional device containing (for example) a modem, ethernet switch, router, firewall, NAT translator, DHCP server, and Wi-Fi access points among others. Wi-Fi is availed by access points. An access point is built-in to that thing we call a “router” and have at our homes.
Now talking of ROUTER BRIDGING, it is the process by which two or more routers are connected to extend the range of the WIFI’s network, providing additional ethernet ports and wireless access points.
For the most part, it is not that hard to add a second router to your Wi-Fi, but there are still a few things a user must know before proceeding. Below have been pointed out the steps that you need to follow or take into account while bridging two networks together:
Can I Use 2 Routers to Extend My Wireless Range – Steps Explained
Below are the 4 steps to use 2 routers to extend your wireless range.
Point 1: Ensure the Latter Router Has WDS Or “BRIDGE MODE”:
The router which is to be connected to the main router has to have WDS (wireless distribution system) mandatorily else the bridging will not be successful in any way, hence resulting in an unsuccessful attempt at trying to extend the Wi-Fi network. Therefore, it is really important to make sure from the second router’s documentation to see if it has “bridging mode”, “WDS” or “repeater function”.
Point 2: For Wireless Bridging:
Connecting two routers with an ethernet cable can indeed be a lot of hassle. To add to that, they can also be quite expensive as ethernet cables are not exactly cheap. Although it might leave behind some effect on its performance, the Wi-Fi range can be extended with another router without having to use cables, but instead as a wireless repeater.
Unfortunately, not all Wi-Fi routers can work as repeaters, so it would be sensible to search for and pick out one that can. The wireless repeater then rebroadcasts the signal from the main repeater. In case you fail to find a router that has the ability to work as a repeater, you can replace the stock firmware with DD-WRT, a substitute router firmware with plenty of other features.
This method uses the same network name and security key on the new access point as on the existing router, which is a plus.
CONS– Low performance in comparison to wired bridging.
Point 3: For Wired Bridging:
A better way to extend the range of the network is by using the wired method. If the current router has a free ethernet port it can simply be connected with another router to it. The maximum endorsed length for cat5e cable is 100 meters or 328 feet, which naturally means the router can be placed anywhere in the house, helping in the extension of the wireless range.
It is also to be made sure that the second router is connected to the main router via an ethernet cable in one of its LAN ports and not the WAN port. It is also suggested to disable the TP-LINK DHCP service.
PROS– Extremely budget-friendly.
CONS– The wire is a bit of a hassle. I
Point 4: Different Ways to Connect Routers:
In simple terms, there are two major ways in which routers can be connected.
- A) LAN TO LAN
- B) LAN TO WAN
LAN to LAN is about connecting two routers via ethernet cable, although a LAN to WAN connection can be made in a similar way, it would perform differently.
Benefits And Downsides of Connecting Routers-
Two routers on the same network allow users to have access to all shared files. The user can move, copy and paste files, music, movies, albums, or pictures on any computer or any mobile device that is connected.
But, as we are aware, file sharing comes with security concerns. Therefore, anyone who has access to your wireless network can easily have access to all your files. More connected devices mean more security concerns. Even more viruses!
If you are plagued by poor Wi-Fi performance in certain parts of your home or office, opting for the idea of connecting 2 routers to extend the range of the Wi-Fi, wired or wireless bridging, is a good idea as they help signals reach the dead zones of the building.