Why the microwave can interfere with your Wi-Fi

If the WLAN falters, household appliances may be the cause of the problems. Baby monitors, microwaves or wireless mice generate radio waves that can cause interference.

If users can no longer receive the WLAN properly in their apartment or house, the cause may be lurking in the kitchen. A microwave oven, for example, generates radio waves in an area that is also used by the router and can therefore influence WLAN reception. The trade magazine "Connect" (7/2018) reports that other household appliances and devices that work with radio waves also use frequencies that can affect the WLAN. Baby monitors or wireless mice can also interfere with the WLAN.

How to prevent interference

Modern routers use two frequency bands, which means that you can simply switch to another frequency if there is too much interference. Routers usually transmit at a frequency of 2.4 gigahertz (Ghz), but since this is also the frequency of microwaves or Playstation controllers, interference can occur. Switching to the second frequency band of 5 Ghz can therefore prevent the problems. Caution: The 5 Ghz band is not as busy, but it also doesn't have as much range as the 2.4 Ghz band. It also does not penetrate obstacles like walls as strongly.

Some routers support automatic switching between the two radio bands (band steering). This function can be easily activated in the router menu to use the better frequency.

Setting up the router correctly

If the WLAN router is in the wrong place in the home, this can also cause interference. It is best to place it away from other devices, even a printer. In addition, the optimal place for a router is in an elevated position, as this allows the radio signal to propagate better. Since the WLAN signal has a hard time penetrating obstacles like walls, users should rather place it near a door instead of against a wall.