If you see low to medium Wi-Fi bars on your phone out near your smoker it's likely your Wi-Fi reception isn't great. Checkout this article first on some tips on how to improve your Wi-Fi reception for your Smartfire and everything else in the house!
If pain persists, a good solution is a Wi-Fi extender. They work by connecting to your existing wireless network and then providing a new signal that devices can connect to. This really helps when you have a big house (or yard!) or if the main Wi-Fi router has to be at the front of the house and you're getting poor coverage out the back.
This guide is a walkthrough of how to setup a typical wall plug Wi-Fi Extender. The steps may vary slightly between brands but the principals will be the same and you can be encouraged that it's fairly cheap and easy to do!
What you want is an extender that works on the 'B/G/N' wireless standard. You don't need anything particularly fancy as Smartfire isn't high throughput and the older standards have further range than the newer faster 'AC' standard. We chose this $25 AUD one from Kogan
(By the way, the 'AC' in the name is a bit misleading as this particular extender only works on 2.4ghz so it's not actually the newer faster 'AC' wireless standard!)
You'll need to pair your Smartfire to the new Wi-Fi network. I found that if the extender and Smartfire were on the same table the Smartfire wouldn't connect, so I suggest you keep them a few metres apart during setup!
Note, if you have a prior generation Wi-Fi only unit, you're best off to manually clear the Wi-Fi credentials and then perform setup again.
If your smoker is a fair distance from the house, the likely best placement is just inside the house or undercover just outside. Basically the extender is best placed around the halfway to two thirds point between your Wi-Fi router and the smoker.
Borrowing a diagram from the Kogan user manual, you should also pay attention to the signal strength lights on the extender to know the extender has a good connection to the main router.
Last consideration is height off the ground. As we covered in our article on Wi-Fi optimisation, putting Wi-Fi routers near the ground is far less than ideal as half the signal is simply hitting the ground and bouncing around. It's much better to be bench height or above so look for a suitable powerpoint. You could also potentially use a short extension lead to add some height if all your power sockets are low. Hiding it on top of a cupboard is a pretty good idea! You can always resort to plugging it straight in to a near ground power point if it's direct line of sight with no obstructions from the extender to the Smartfire's smoker location.
Just pay attention to the wireless strength lights on the extender and as reported by the Smartfire app to know how your tuning is working out!
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