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Every electronic device requires some care to prolong its life and to make sure it works properly. Of course, caring for it doesn’t mean that you will forever have that device. Rather, it is more that you have to spend less as the device lasts longer. Take the simple example of your cell phone. When you buy a new phone, you generally care for it like when you put on a phone cover and a screen protector. You try not to fill up the memory too fast, you don’t overcharge it or use it until it shuts off. Similarly, the same applies to any other device as well.
A router is one of these devices that you need to care for so that it can function properly. Getting a router is naturally a necessity if you want to connect to your internet wirelessly. Whether you choose to get a modem-router hybrid model, or a separate modem and router, you should know that they can both be high maintenance. If you manage them properly, there will be no need to spend so much on them repeatedly.
Today, we will be talking about the importance of restarting or rebooting your router. So, let’s take a look.
We have already gotten an idea of why it is important to care for your electronic devices. If you want no connection failures or other Wi-Fi problems, your router needs to be in tip-top shape. Just like your phone and laptop, the router can overheat. It doesn’t help that the router must be on at all times. However, to tackle all of these problems, there are some things you can do.
What exactly does it mean when we say ‘reboot the router’? While it sounds like it is something technical, it is simply turning the router off and then on. This refreshes the router and if there is any network congestion or blockage, that is also cleared away. Just like how you restart your phone or laptop if it is too slow or not functioning properly, the same applies to the router.
How many times should you restart the router depends on how old your router is. If your router is recently purchased and completely new, then you don’t need to restart it as much and can wait a few months before you reboot it. However, if your router is quite old, about 1-2 years old or more, you might have to reboot it every month, unless it is well-maintained and not causing any problems. You can also reboot the router if you are facing any internet problems.
Rebooting the router will also clear the short-term memory or the cache of the router. This will allow the router to function properly and smoothly. Rebooting the router also means that the next time it turns on, the router will select the least-congested channel for the frequency. That’s why your internet connection seems stronger after a reboot.
So, how can you reboot your router? Well, there are plenty of ways to do so and some of these are described below so take a look.
The simplest way to reboot your router is by pressing the power button or pulling the plug on it. Simply, remove the power cord from the power port present on the back of the router or unplug it from the wall outlet. Wait for a minute and plug it back in. Once you’ve plugged it back in, wait for a few minutes again as the router connects to the network. Ideally, the router will reconnect within a few minutes and you can then use the internet on your devices. If not, there is another issue with the router.
Your service provider will tell you when you need to or how often you need to reboot the router if you have purchased or rented from them. To be sure that you follow that schedule, set multiple alarms or write it down somewhere you can check. We recommend this option only if you don’t have to reboot your router as much, but if you need to do it a lot, then you should consider other options.
Some ISPs, like CenturyLink, offer another way for you to reboot the router and it involves their app. So, using the My CenturyLink app, you just have to click one button and the router will reboot. Using the same app, you can also schedule the reboot, in case you forget or if you have some other engagement at the time. This is efficient especially if you have to reboot the router on a regular basis. You can just reboot it once and as soon as it is done, you schedule the reboot for the next time, and so on.
The best part about this method is that you don’t need to be present next to the router while doing this. You can be in the next room, in your office, in the next city, or even the next country and still reboot and/or schedule the reboot.
If you don’t have the option for an app, then you can use a plug timer or an outlet timer. Just like the timers used for Christmas lights, you can use a plug timer for your router. A piece of advice: try to get an older non-digital timer as they have a lower wattage rating. Also, use the grounded timer with a 3-prong plug as they ensure maximum safety. These will be perfect for managing just the router.
These days, it is much easier to find digital timers that come in the range of 850 to 1800 watts, and they can handle a major appliance too. This much is more than enough for a single router and some additional appliances too. So, if you can’t try the first two options, this one will work just fine.
A smart plug is the last option on this list and it is like an advanced outlet timer mixed with app control. Just like any other smart device, a smart plug will connect to your internet and be paired with a remote controller or an app. This means you can activate the plug or set a schedule as you wish. You can even make changes to the schedule you have set, like if you want to delay the reboot or schedule it earlier. You can cancel the reboot as well, it’s all up to you.
Coming toward the end of the blog, we would like to emphasize once more how it is important to reboot or restart your router. You should always note down the last system restart time and day so that you can reboot on time or as asked by your ISP. We should also make an important distinction between rebooting the router and resetting the WiFi router. Resetting the router would mean restoring it back to its factory settings, whereas rebooting it means refreshing it by turning it off and then on. So you won’t be losing your settings, password, or anything when you reboot.
On average, you should change your router every 3-5 years, depending on how you have maintained it and how it is faring. If you have maintained it well, and it is a good model, you might have to change it after 5 years, otherwise sooner. If you have a CenturyLink router, you can ask for an expert’s advice at 855-349-9310.
To reset the router, you can find a ‘Reset’ button at the back of your router. Press it with a pin and hold that button for 15 seconds. Your router will automatically reset and power on. If you cannot understand or find the button for a CenturyLink router, call us at 855-349-9310.
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