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Are you always having WiFi interference problems? Your microwave may be the cause.
Fixing a microwave interference with your WiFi signal will include, moving your router so that there is a distance between the two devices, changing your WiFi frequency band from 2.5GHz to 5Ghz, deep cleaning your microwave, or replacing it entirely.
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Does Microwave Interfere With WiFi?
Microwave ovens emit the same frequencies as a WiFi signal does. This frequency band is 2.4GHz. Microwaves use around 1200 watts compared to the average 6 watts of WiFi, which completely topples the signal if the two collide.
Microwaves emit frequencies that can interfere with WiFi bands if leaks occur. Since they both contain electromagnetic waves and if collide with one another, interferences with your WiFi signal will happen. Even though this is unlikely, if you are experiencing WiFi interference and cannot pinpoint the problem, it is helpful to consider this as a factor.
The two bands of WiFi are 2.4GHz and 5Ghz. The most common of these two bands is the frequency 2.4GHz. 5GHz is a newer development, and so is less common. It is also more expensive to install as many houses are fitted with the standard 2.5GHz. However, with microwave interference, 5GHz is secured and sheltered from this problem.
This is because many electrical devices transmit on a 2.4GHz frequency band, including microwaves. Therefore, if there is a leak in your microwave oven, it will interfere with the WiFi signal that is also using this band. Microwaves use 1000 Watts which is about 1000x the amount that WiFi signals use. Therefore, if the microwave frequencies leak, they will topple your WiFi signal.
If you have an old microwave oven, then this is more likely to happen, as they have poorer shielding compared to newer models. It may manifest as an interrupted signal of WiFi or a complete blockage of the signal altogether.
With more modern designs of microwave ovens, the chances of the microwave oven interrupting your WiFi signal are slim, but they are not impossible. There may be a fault with your device which is allowing some of the electromagnetic waves to leak.
It is important to remember that newer microwaves have much thicker shielding technology now, and so this is not something that should be happening.
To reiterate, with an older microwave, the frequencies interrupting your WiFi signal are more common because of a weaker shielding. Whereas, with newer models of microwaves, this shows a leakage.
It is also important to note that, although your microwave may emit these frequencies, they usually are not of a high enough level to do any damage to you or anyone else in your home.
With that, you may still want to get your microwave checked over by an electrician to ensure it is not emitting levels of radiation that can be harmful to you or anyone else. You may need to consider the option of replacing your microwave oven if this is the case.
Although microwaves leak radiation, the levels will not pose any danger to people. The radiation emitting from a 2.4GHz frequency is so minute that it goes completely unrecognized apart from the interference with your WiFi.
If you are still worried, then it is recommended to ask a professional to inspect your microwave oven. However, unlike your WiFi signal strength, you are quite safe.
Should A Microwave Interfere With WiFi?
From a design and electrical point of view, microwave ovens should not be interfering with WiFi signals. This is because microwaves are designed to contain the electromagnetic waves they are producing. If they are interfering with WiFi signals in your household, then it means that your microwave may be faulty and/or old and may need replacing.
Other reasons your microwave is interfering with your WiFi may have to do with how close the two are positioned in your home.
If your WiFi router is set up near your microwave oven, then this may be the reason for interference. Your microwave may work perfectly, with no leaks, yet if it is too close to the WiFi signal then this can still cause an issue.
Although microwaves really should not be leaking, they quite often do. These leaks that cause electromagnetic and radio-frequency interference are annoying for your WiFi signal but are not harmful to you.
As mentioned above, if you are worried about this then you can ask a professional to inspect your microwave oven for you. However, it is important to know that it is quite common for your microwave to have small leaks in radiation.
In some extreme cases, the heat from faulty microwaves can cause damage to the skin. These are exceedingly rare cases, though if you want to know how to test your microwave oven at home then you can follow the steps here on WikiHow.
Newer microwave ovens are put through deeper radiation tests before being put on the market nowadays. Many other reasons causing microwave leaks are to do with broken doors, mechanical abuse, dirt build-up, or a faulty door seal.
The design of the microwave can also be the reason for microwave leaks. This is down to poor shielding.
Considering these factors, we can still say that microwaves should not leak and interfer your WiFi. However, it is more common than people may realize.
How Do I Stop My Microwave From Interfering With WiFi?
There are a few things you can do to prevent microwave interference with WiFi. If you do not want to replace your device, then you can try some of these other methods to prevent interference with your WiFi signal.
You can try moving your internet router to the farthest away plug from your microwave. This added distance between the two devices will help in preventing any leaked waves from interfering with the frequency emitted from your router.
You can also try switching your WiFi band to 5GHz instead of using 2.4GHz so that your signal depends on a different frequency to your microwave limiting any interference.
The downsides to this are that installing 5GHz is time and cost-ineffective. Unless you are looking for a new WiFi upgrade anyway, and the interferences have come at the perfect time to do it, I would ponder this option before rushing into it.
Depending on how often and regularly you use your microwave oven, you can also try unplugging the device in between uses. This will prevent your dormant microwave from leaking waves, which has been found to happen when not in use but plugged into the mains.
Unplugging your device may be a hassle if you frequently use your microwave and so trying the above options may be better suited to your situation.
You may also need to deep clean your microwave oven. If your device has a noticeable build-up of dirt and grease, then it needs a good clean. There are many techniques for cleaning this appliance which can include sanitizing, lemon water, sponges, and white vinegar. For a step-by-step guide, you can have a look at this blog post for more information.
Most of the time, if you are not using your microwave, it will not interfere with your WiFi connection. You can use the two separately and your household should run smoothly.
If you live with multiple people and everyone is using the WiFi signal and the microwave is in constant use, then this issue may be more persistent for you.
If this is the case, then you may need to regulate the use of both, or switching your WiFi to 5GHz may be the only option for you here to avoid interference.
Now that you know how to fix a microwave interference with WiFi, you can restore your internet stability and stay connected without the need to sacrifice re-heating your food. If you believe your microwave is leaking more than it should be, ensure you test your device to be safe.