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How to boost your wifi router signal

Updated on November 26, 2011

Wifi is great, when you can get a signal. However, there is times when concrete walls, steel gurders, etc block your signal. To combat this you can place your wireless router beside you, but that defeats the purpose of having a wireless router. But what if you could extend the range of the router? Well you can. And there are a whole bunch of expensive gadgets out there from wireless boosters, to fancy antennas. But who wants to pay for something you can build for free.

Yup, that I present to you the Beer Can Directional Wifi Antenna!


- x1 tin can (could be a beer or a pop can)

- duct tape (this is optional)


- Utility knife

- Scissors´╗┐

The Build

Disclamer: Do not attempt to do this will drunk. Be careful working with the tools and the sharp edges of the can!

Step 1/2

This is my favorite part...empty the can then rinse it out.

Step 1

Using the utility knife, carefully cut the BOTTOM of the can off.

Step 2

Next cut around the top of the can. DO NOT cut it completely off. Leave about a 1 inch section near the opening.

Step 3

Cut along the spin of the can, OPPOSITE of the 1 inch section that you left.

Step 4

Open up the can (be careful of the sharp edges).

Step 5 (Optional)

Using some duct tape, cover the sharp edges of the can. Try not to put too much of the tape on the inside of the can.

Step 6

Place the can over the router's antenna and turn it towards your laptop.

How it works

The "Beer Can Directional Antenna" works by bouncing the unsed radio waves from the back of the routers antenna to the direction of your choice. Effectively doubling the amount of waves shooting in the same direction. This will increase your range and signal quality for anyone who is in front of the "dish". The shiney tin can creates a parabolic reflector.

Proof is in the pudding

Before this was installed, I was unable to see the wireless network. Too much concrete in the way. After and a quick line of site alingment, I have 3 bars. Not bad for a beer can.

There are commercial boosters and antennas, but why waste the money? That money is better spent on more beer.


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    • sradie profile image

      sradie 5 years ago from Palm Coast FL

      Another helpful and cheap way to get something done. I actually need to relocate my whole wifi transmitter. It is in a place where this useful tip will not work as well as some other location would. If I still need more signal after I relocate it, I'll give it a shot.