Wondering how to change WiFi channel on Spectrum router? Well, this guide is for you!
When we share with someone technically knowledgeable that we’re facing WiFi lag or delay, we’re typically suggested to switch to another WiFi channel.
Well, if you’re unsure of how this works, what is a WiFi channel and how to switch to another one, remain invested in our guide.
Switching to a different WiFi channel on the Spectrum router happens via the control panel that can be accessed from a device connected to the router.
The next step is to locate the WiFi band we would like to tweak and switch to a different WiFi channel.
There is much more to explore so let’s continue reading!
WiFi Channels & Frequency – Explained
The wireless network (WiFi) of your Spectrum router, uses radio waves to send and receive network data packets.
The WiFi frequency is supported by dual-band routers and it’s typically carried by 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz frequencies, which have separate WiFi channels to select from.
- The 2.4 GHz WiFi frequency has 14 non-overlapping channels.
- The 5 GHz WiFi frequency has 25 non-overlapping channels.
Hence, you can change the WiFi channel for both of your WiFi threads, which makes them work on a different frequency.
This way, it’s easy to avoid overwhelmed channels which many other routers are currently using, which sometimes is the only way to solve networking setup issues.
Why Change the WiFi Channel?
The main reason why users often wonder how to change the WiFi channel is due to slow WiFi or interruptions in the wireless network.
Those issues arise when two or more routers that are nearby your setup, also use the same WiFi channel as you do, causing networking conflicts.
For example, when multiple routers are using the same WiFi channel frequency, they have to wait turns to send and receive data.
The speed delay may be so low, even unnoticeable but in some cases, the lag is extreme and we need to take action as soon as possible.
Info: WiFi channel conflicts mainly appear in city blocks, big apartment buildings or spaces where many routers are installed close to each other.
How to Change WiFi Channel on Spectrum in Easy Steps!
Tip: If you’re not familiar with the process, we recommend following all of the steps!
1. Download & Use a WiFi Analyzer
When switching a WiFi channel, you need to be prepared, knowing which channel to select, and to identify an empty channel, you need to download a WiFi Analyzer.
An analyzer is a simple software that uses your device’s WiFi to connect and locate empty WiFi channels to use.
There are available WiFi Analyzers for iOS and Android devices, respectively in the Google Play Store or App Store for free.
- Download the WiFi Analyzer on your mobile device.
- Open the app and you’ll see all the Access Points.
- The access points are the WiFi your mobile sees.
- You can now see the SSID, MAC, and WiFi Channels.
- On the top will be the WiFi you’re currently connected to.
- From the app options, locate the “Channel Rating”.
- You can switch between 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands.
- Then, check which channels have the higher rating.
By selecting your WiFi network on the top and switching between the two router bands you can see their rating and how many access points are currently connected.
In addition, you’ll see the channel numbers for orientation so you find a few channels with high ratings to switch to later.
Tip: Note down at least 2 or 3 channels with higher ratings and “0” access points connected.
2. Access the Spectrum Router GUI
Only when you know which WiFi channels are currently empty, you should access the Spectrum router’s GUI (graphic user interface).
Some people refer to it as a “control panel”, from which you can control all router settings, wireless options, and of course the WiFi channels.
Note: We recommend using a laptop or computer, which must be connected to the Spectrum router via Ethernet or WiFi.
You can access the interface of your Spectrum router in two general ways:
- Acquire Your Spectrum Router IP
If your machine is connected to the internet, open a web browser, go to Google.com and simply ask Google – “what is my IP address”.
This is a public IP so Google will immediately show your IPv4 address, which you need to copy and paste into the online browser’s search field.
- Use the Default Gateway Address
The default gateway is another user portal from which you can access your Spectrum router GUI and can be found in the Command Prompt on Windows computers.
Follow these steps:
- On your Windows computer, click on the Start Menu.
- Type “CMD” and open the prompt as Administrator.
- Then simply type “ipconfig” and press the Enter button.
- Then highlight the Default Gateway IP and copy (CTRL+C).
- Paste the IP address into your browser search field.
Open reaching your Spectrum router’s GUI, you’ll be required to sign in. First, try the default login credentials – Username: “admin”, Password: “password”.
In case this doesn’t work, there would be no other way to sign in but contact Spectrum to receive the login credentials.
Tip: Feel free to check for sign-in credentials on a sticker on the router or in the documentation!
3. Switch to Another WiFi Channel
Once you’re signed into your Spectrum router’s GUI, you’ll be greeted by the user interface and a variety of different options.
Now, based on whether your Spectrum router is dual-band or not you should be able to see only one or both – 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz WiFi bands.
Selecting one of the two WiFi threads, you’ll be reviewed the “Advanced” options, where you’ll need to click on the “WiFi Channel” drop-down menu.
Then you can simply click on a different WiFi channel to switch your WiFi frequency to an emptier channel that you’ve found earlier.
Note: You don’t need to reboot your Spectrum router for the change to take effect!
4. Test your WiFi Connection
That was how to change channel on Spectrum WiFi, so let’s test whether this worked!
To be clear, changing the Spectrum router WiFi channel can only optimize and improve the speed of your WiFi.
Hence, if your computer is connected to the router via an Ethernet cable, you can use this machine to measure the speed of your wireless network.
This is why we strongly recommend using your smartphone to connect to the Spectrum router’s WIFi and perform a free speed test online.
Upon clicking the “GO” button, the internet speed of your device (the WiFi) will be measured and you’ll be provided with the internet speed results.
Tip: Feel free to perform a speed test of your wireless network when connected to a different WiFi channel to observe the changes in the speed.
How Often Can I Switch to a Different WiFi Channel?
The straightforward answer is, indefinitely.
There is no limitation on how frequently you can hop from one channel to another, but of course, the limit is – how many channels there are.
2.4 GHz vs 5 GHz WiFi Channels?
Typically, the 2.4 GHz WiFi channels are more occupied than the 5 GHz channels because there are still many routers, working with only one WiFi band.
So if you’re unable to find an empty 2.4 GHz channel using the WiFi Analyzer, check for a free channel on the 5 GHz band.
WiFi Analyzer for Windows PC?
Yes, the WiFi analyzer is available for Windows machines in the Microsoft Store.
However, before downloading anything you should know that your computer must be able to connect to the WiFi such as laptops, and PC users need a USB WiFi adapter to connect to the WiFi.
Tip: If you’re looking for a WiFi adapter for a PC, follow this link to check the available options!
Here we’ve learned how to change WiFi channel on Spectrum router and we’ve learned that it’s only possible through a device connected to the router.
From there you will need the router’s IP or default gateway to access the GUI and switch to another WiFi channel.
We hope this guide was helpful so follow us for more!