Disguising your wireless router

Sure, we all love technology, but even devices that bring you wireless Internet need to plug in somewhere and they’re not exactly a pretty accent piece for your décor. I’ve gathered a few great projects found on the interwebs and Pinterest (I can’t let McLean have all the fun!) for helping your tech look a tad more tidy—and possibly even stylish!

For example, hiding your router like this looks both subtle, and awesome:

Wireless router hidden by book

I like this idea because it leaves room for air circulation (although some small spacers between the book the router wouldn’t be a bad idea) keeps the antenna open.

A twist on this same idea is to use a binder like in Buzzfeed’s instructions and take your router vertical.

Another neat solution that is both literary and would allow for air circulation for your router would be to use old books to make this:

Sewingbarefoot router

There’s s another idea that’s popular on Pinterest—using cardboard photo boxes to hide your router….but don’t fall for temptation.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Sure, closed boxes hide your router well, but they pose two problems:

  1. See how the antennas are crossed? That’s not good for reception (at all).
  2. The heat that can build up inside a closed box. If your router overheats, you could fry it (and, in case it needs to be said, don’t use a metal box [see #2 below]).

Of course, with all of these clever techniques to hide your router, you should always do your best to follow the cardinal rules of router placement:

1. Place your router in the relative open (not in a corner), so you can see it from the device you’re trying to use wirelessly. At least do your best to put it in the center of your house, as best you can. If it’s not, the signal could be blocked by just about any physical object including glass doors, walls (especially cement), fish tanks, ventilation ducts, etc.

2. Don’t put your router in a metal box or something else with reflective surfaces. Some Wi-Fi signals will bounce of shiny objects, reducing the strength of the signal.

3. Try to place your router at least 3 feet away from other appliances that send wireless signals. This can include things like microwaves, cordless telephones, and baby monitors.

4. Install the router away from other electrical equipment that could produce interference. Keep the router from power supplies, fans, motors, other Bluetooth devices, and fluorescent lighting.

Good luck, and if you have any other ideas for making your router more décor-friendly, pass them along!

About Missy Kellor

Missy works on the Corporate Communications team and reports stories to TDS employees and customers. This is right up her alley because she’s an extrovert and also a big fan of research (really, she’ll look up just about anything that strikes her interest). Missy is a native of Madison, Wis. with an undergraduate in Anthropology and a master’s degree in Life Sciences Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her interest in the Internet as a mass media shaped her work towards a PhD in Journalism and Mass Communications. She’s also worked as an editorial assistant, copywriter, and production artist. In her off hours, Missy is a crafter, Pinterest addict, reader, wife, and mom of two kids. You can find Missy on G+ and on Twitter.

2 Responses to Disguising your wireless router

  1. Sandra March 21, 2014 at 10:45 pm #

    How do I get a router installed in my home?

    • Missy March 24, 2014 at 7:59 am #

      Hi Sandra,

      TDS offers wireless modems, but if you’d like a router you’ll have to purchase one and install it yourself. There should be installation instructions in the box of the router you choose, but I also found an article from PC World with general router installation instructions: http://www.pcworld.com/article/249185/how_to_set_up_a_wireless_router.html

      If you’re looking for more help than that, TDS offers Remote PC Support (tdstelecom.com/rpcs), a full tech support service. Our techs would be able to help you install a router (and much more!).

      MK

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