How to Expand Your Wireless Range Using an Old Router

Check out this video to learn how to configure an old router to expand the wireless in your home, garage, pole barn, or greenhouse. I have used this process for many years both professionally and in my own home. This is a great use for that older router that you may have replaced with a new one or picked up from a garage sale or resale shop. Routers have become almost disposable after a few years so they come cheap. The newer routers will offer a better wireless extension and also better security so if you can find one that is at least 2007 or newer that is preferred.

Using an old router to expand your network is a cheap and easy way to at least double the wireless range in your home. It is also a great way to get wireless to outbuildings or other areas that are outside of your home’s wireless signal. This method does require that you have an Ethernet cable run from your main wireless router in your home to the location where you would like to setup the second router (access point). In our home I have one wireless access point configured on each floor and staggered from one end of the home to the other. This means that no matter where I ma in the house I can always connect to a nearby access point and have full signal strength. No buffering, no lag, and in most cases speeds as fast as a wired Ethernet connection.

Here are the basic steps to follow but I would recommend watching the accompanying video to fully understand the process.

1. Reset router to factory default settings
2. Take note of your current network configuration (192.168.1.X
3. Create a new ip address for the access point 192.168.1.220 (example)
4. plug a computer into the newly reset router
5. log into the router using the default ip – normally 192.168.1.1
6. Configure the wireless network name and security
7. Turn off DHCP (take away the router’s ability to assign ip addresses)
8. Configure the router to the previously picked ip address – 192.168.1.220 (example)
9. Connect the router to an Ethernet cable coming from your main router.

Tip – Do not use the “WAN” port at all on this new access point.

Now I know that someone is going to say it so I will answer this question up front. Yes, you can just plug the router into your existing setup using the WAN port on the second router without changing any settings on the router. This will work in most cases however you are setting yourself up for problems down the road as this is not the correct way to configure a second wireless router on an existing network. This is what is called double NAT or network address translation and is like having a double firewall. This will not allow any computers connected to the secondary router to communicate with wireless printers, other computers, will block many gaming sites, vpn’s and other connections. Although it is easier and may work for basic internet browsing it will be slower and will cause other issues down the road.

Recommended Wireless router – http://amzn.to/1CHMp20

Recommended Powerline Ethernet Adapter – http://amzn.to/29GrZB8

All of these products and more recommended items from the SSL Family are available at the Simple Suburban Living General Store – http://astore.amazon.com/simpsubulivi-20

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Comments

Bruno Coelho says:

Finally I got this working. This step-by-step tutorial was flawless. TOP!

Sean Lindsell says:

Did your 2nd router have the same ip address as the primary one as you out it in to your web browser in this process.

Peter Westerman says:

What about using the SAME SSID for the Access Point that is used by the Router? SONOS networks require that remote devices be connected to the same Network in order to share the SONOS profile.

wtf bich says:

It doesnt work when i put the ip adress on internet it doent connect

divyanshu tomar says:

awesome video buddy! really helped me

Brenniman65 says:

Thank you very much for a very well explained and precise tutorial.

DB Life says:

anyone know where the lan setup is on Verizon? I have literally clicked everywhere unsure where to enter new ip and also disable dhcp. I have an Actiontec from Verizon sitting around I wanna setup in garage so I have a wifi signal out there.

Jon Patras says:

Can you do this ants have a switch between the two routers

Mad Gecko says:

If you factory reset the accespoint will it then become a router again?

don fazio says:

Great Video,
thank you so much for making this a simple step by step process, I have been trying to do this for a couple of wks now and all the videos I watched seemed to make this an such over complicated procedure, that I could not accomplish. I have now set up my second router on the other end of my house and have flawless wireless coverage through out.
Kudos to you SSLFamilyDad.

Gayan Shalitha says:

Every time I move towards AP and away from the main router, the phone gets connected again to the AP all fine, but shows no internet icon. I have to restart the AP to use internet from the AP. Can anyone help?

onceafireman says:

TMI

Charlie Rogers says:

he buddy one question if i add more than one router they all have to have same password and if so what password i use the lan or wireless one and if i want to change my router how do i change password with my Cd rom is telling me cd is no good no more because i got windows 10 give me an answer ok thanks

Sprindek Crawford says:

I checked my Belk in it has no it address, what should I do?

Peggy Adams says:

Well done – thanks! Other posts I read did not clearly spell how how important it is to keep the access point on the same subnet. Some said “it didn’t make any difference what IP address you use”, and that is not true!

Samuel Jebarajan says:

Do I need to use a Ethernet cable to make it work?

Elisha Fried says:

when I do this, is it on the same wifi network? or does it create an extra wifi network?

Peter Westerman says:

OK – – let me narrow down that previous question. I have a SONOS BOOST (I think they call it). It’s sort of a separate Router dealing only with communications to my SONOS speakers. THEY don’t have any apparent signal problems. But my cell phone gets a weak signal in our bed/bathroom and I sometimes have to walk back to the living room in order to control my SONOS system. If I can use the same SSIS for the Access Point as for the Router, I may be OK. If not, is there a way to interact directly with the SONOS BOOST???

Kevin Real says:

I’m having issues setting up a linksys e1200 in this manner. I’ve obtained all requisite information. Any help would be greatly appreciated

garrett finch says:

just as a note to help you were saying if you’re trying to run to an outbuilding or through a house that has no existing ethernet cabling an Ethernet over power adapter works really well up to 250 ft / AC for your basic$40 model some go up to 500 ft.. and just remember if your router has a broadcom chipset always do a 30 by 30 by 30 rest to clear nvram properly..

Agapito Cruz says:

how could you connect to router if there is no connection???

Sarah Humlie says:

Every time I apply the change to the IP address, the router admin page basically crashes and fails to load. It says the server fails to load? Help please!

Abed Nego says:

So when you connect a laptop via wifi you get an ip from the router’s dhcp. After you connect the AP to the wifi router and you connect your laptop to the AP, who gives you the IP address if the AP has dhcp disabled?

Brian Earl says:

Works like a dream, and totally easy to follow the steps. I felt like a computer programmer. Great video.

Wesley L says:

Thank you so much for your video! I had a NAS connected to the first router. My second wifi router is upstairs, i couldn’t connect to my NAS via that second wifi router. Your video solved my problem! Thumbs up!

Mark Eagle says:

what if my default gateway’s final digit is already set to 254?

andrey gurevich says:

perfect!!!!

Travis Graves says:

can i add the access point but still use the lan option ?

Melvin Laput says:

then I want to repeat the procedure I can’t access anymore

Jalen Smith says:

NICE! i just subbed.. 2017!

Jordan E says:

I’m still shoveling so I can run the Ethernet cable

Aaron James says:

Thanks man, this was really helpful!!!!

TumbleGamer says:

How do you you use your own router as you main router when ISPs give you a router?

Janet Cullen says:

Hi I have done this but my wireless connection is worse .. help please

Nick StOnge says:

With an access point can i add more devices to wifi since it is stronger? Or will this just expand the range that i can use my wifi with a limited number of devices with good signal strength?

The OAP Biker says:

I have just completed my home network extension using an old router! Always wanted an wireless extension but never thought I would be able to do it but now I have due to your excellent video! I am 65 years old & in the UK so never to late so to speak…lol…once again many thanks as I am over the moon with my wireless extension!

Rodney Henderson says:

Hello i watched your video on how to turn your old netgear routers into access points i have a n600 netgear router i gpt an connection reset error on the last two steps after i click apply Has this happen to you before

Vladimyr Masse says:

Awesome instructions! I really appreciate it, very helpful.

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