WiFi expansion options

I need to get WiFi in my garage- the signal is very weak there. I’ve already run a Gb Ethernet cable there from my router. I’m trying to decide if I should just connect an access point to the Ethernet cable or go with something like Eero, Orbi, etc…,

Our house is fairly small (1500 sq ft), but there is a thick wall between the kitchen & garage. The WiFi router is approx 30 ft from that wall.

After reading the docs on the Eero website, it states that users need to replace their router with the Eero box. I have a router with 3 guest networks, I don’t want to sacrifice these as I have them for our IOT devices and visitors.

I would instal a Unify WiFi Access point.


Are you just trying to extend your primary wireless network or are you trying to get all of the guest networks out there as well?

If you just want the primary WiFi SSID out there, pretty much any wireless access point or router set up in bridge mode will work. Just configure the device with the same SSID and password as the primary wireless network and connect the device to the wired connection.

If you’re trying to get all of the WiFi networks extended, you might have fewer options. The same router model as your primary router may be needed to set up all of the extra SSIDs. There may still be problems communicating between guest networks on each access point if those networks block inter-device communications. Some router guest networks have this as a security feature.

Some newer router brands have added support for mesh or quasi-mesh satellite nodes. You may want to check into that just in case they exist. That would make setup and management of the additional access point easier than dealing with two separate devices.

FYI, you can set up an Eero mesh without replacing your existing router. I ran the setup for several months when I first bought the gear. The Eero was connected to my router and set up in bridge mode so all of the DHCP, routing, and DNS work was provided by the router. Another option would have been to leave the Eero set up as a normal router but then create a new network configuration behind the house network (double NAT scenario) but I didn’t want to deal with issues communicating between my wired and wireless devices.

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I’m just trying to extend WiFi coverage into the garage, I don’t need the guest networks out there.

Was the eero in Bridge mode, or your router (I’m guessing the Eero)?

Was the eero connected to your router via WiFi or Ethernet?

Some newer router brands have added support for mesh or quasi-mesh satellite nodes. You may want to check into that just in case they exist.[/quote]

I’ll see if I can find another router of the same brand with that feature.


I would connect a new access point to the Ethernet cable. Set it up to create its own WiFi network, but give that network the same SSIS and password as the existing WiFi in the house.

This is how (using Powerline rather than Ethernet) I get WiFi coverage throughout our 4-storey house.


Why use the same SSID? That might cause people to connect to the wrong network. getting a weaker signal if they are inside the house instead of the garage.

The eero.


The advantage of using the same SSID and password across multiple access points is that the device should automatically switch connections to the stronger signal. There is a chance of the changeover not happening when both signals are of similar strength but my experience is that it tends to work pretty well most of the time.

This is essentially what a mesh network does; multiple access points all running the same SSID(s). The difference between a mesh network and a network comprised of multiple, independent access points relates to centralized management and some backend communications between nodes that can help with steering traffic more efficiently.

If you were to set up a different SSID for the garage network, the phone/tablet/laptop/etc. would most likely hang onto the its current network until the signal was extremely low. Only if the first network went away would the device automatically join the other network. You would likely have to manually select the garage and home networks when moving between locations to change to the stronger signal.

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I’ve left out the fact that the devices that will be connected via WiFi in the garage will stay in the garage- they are not portable like a phone/tablet.

I may use my phone on the garage WiFi when working in there, but that’s a small amount of the time I’m at home.

Do the garage devices need WiFi or can they be connected via Ethernet? I prefer hardwiring any devices I can. Just add a switch and run some cables.

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They need WiFi only.