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July 11, 2017

Install your WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

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People want to experience fast and reliable wireless Internet at home and as more and more devices use the Internet we want to improve our coverage to help keep everything connected. In March, we published “Install your WiFi In the Attic” as a way to help home owner’s get started with a mesh WiFi environment to help create an ‘umbrella of signal’ in the home.  Our goal today in our article “Install your WiFi Router in the Attic Part II” is to communicate how to add additional WiFi routers to extend the coverage even further distances such as the patio or garage.

Since publishing our article in March, we installed the remaining two UniFi AP AC Pro’s. We now have a total of three UniFi AP AC Pro’s completing our coverage goals. Two in the attic and one in the garage. Here is an example diagram to try and paint a picture of what we are trying to accomplish:

Installing WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

To help readers conceptualize the software configuration we added steps to get the UniFi WiFi routers configured. After physically installing the second UniFi WiFi router the light illuminated orange letting us know the physical connection to the device had been established. Then we logged into the UniFi software management console from our computer. Via the software we clicked on the Devices tab. Here you should see the new WiFi router pending adoption. Example:

Install WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

 

Here are some basic steps to add the second and third devices:

  1. Click Adopt.
  2. The status will change to Adopting. Wait 5-10 minutes for this process to complete.
  3. If the newly added WiFi router is not running the latest firmware version, click Upgrade. Wait 5-10 minutes for this step to complete. The status now will show both devices Connected and the Upgrade option is now gone indicating the devices are running the latest firmware. Example:

Install WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

 

Perform steps 1-3 on the 3rd WiFi router and complete the adoption and firmware upgrade as well. Example:

Install WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

 

One important fact when using this Unifi system is all three devices broadcast the same name. In other words, as you roam around in the home your client devices will find the access point that has the strongest signal and connect to give you the best experience.

When adding the third WiFi router into the garage we had to run Cat5 up into the attic past the other two WiFi routers, then out under the eve, then down into a series of 1” conduit.  Here are some pictures we took during the process that may be useful to have a visual which basically wrapped up our ultimate WiFi coverage project

Install WiFi Router in the Attic Part II

Tip #1:
Once your Unifi WiFi routers are installed make sure to check on them at least once a month to perform firmware upgrades. The controller software needs to be updated as well which runs on a computer or via the UniFi Cloud Key which is a device that allows control of the software vs installing it on a computer.

Tip #2:
If you want to test and troubleshoot your WiFi connections we recommend using the tool Inssidr. Here is a link to learn more: http://www.metageek.com/products/inssider/

We hope this information is helpful.


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