Introduction: How to Cool Your Wireless Network Router and Prevent It From Slowing Down

Picture of How to Cool Your Wireless Network Router and Prevent It From Slowing Down

This is an Instructable showing you how to cool your wireless network router and avoid slowing down.
I used computer's fan to cool the wireless, attach the fan to the wireless and will use the same power source of the wireless (wireless NO fan ON, wireless OFF fan OFF)

Maybe you will ask me why should I cool my wireless network router?
The answer is: by cooling your router you are avoiding slowing down (especially while downloading big files) because if you are using the router too much (such as downloading big files. you can notice that by seeing the LED's in the router) it will get hot, and you know that Electronic devices will not be efficient if it's not working in the right temperature.

Also because I live in a hot country and I am noticing that the heat is affecting the wireless.

Step 1: Things You Will Need

Picture of Things You Will Need

To make this project you will need:

1. Fan (I used Desktop PC's fan).
2. Male jack that is similar to your wireless jack(I found it in an old adapter).
3. Female jack that is similar to your wireless jack.
4. Some glue.
5. you will need to solder some wires.

Step 2: Connecting Wires

Picture of Connecting Wires

As you can see in the pic the center pin in the female jack is the (+) and the other one is the (-)
Connect the red wire in the fan to the center pin in the female jack (+) and the black wire to the other pin (-)
now you should connect the male jack with the fan in parallel (as shown in the pic)
In my case the male jack has two wires inside each other. The (+) wire is in the middle (inner wire) and the (-) wire (outer wire) is surrounding the (+) wire. Separate the two wires and connect them to the right pin
And don't forget to insulate them so it won't be short circuited (I used gun glue)

Step 3: Gluing

Picture of Gluing

Finally, make sure that the power source of the router is suitable for the fan (in my case it's 15 V for wireless and 12 V for fan) it should not be exactly the same.

now connect router's male jack to our female jack, the fan will start and you should notice which side of the fan is sucking and which side is blowing.

Glue the blowing side to the wireless (glue it in a side that has many hols)


I hope you have enjoyed this instructable, if you like it please do it and share the pics.


tunamarkin (author)2017-01-08

i have used Belkin wireless n300 router for more than 4 years and the best thing it it was never slow . but recently it has been slow and router is getting hot . i have used few steps like updating the latest firmware , restart the router once in a day for 5 min . and checkout some setting to speed up your belkin router . follow ans see if this works and speed up your router . thanks

MatthewJ81 made it! (author)2016-05-19

This worked better than I thought it would. Two 140mm case fans connected to a 2 pin to USB adapter. It has the added benefit of being whisper quite as my last idea was to sit it atop an air purifier.

WRX STI (author)MatthewJ812016-05-27

oh thats great! I am happy to hear that.

RakayS (author)2016-05-19

How do I get the fan to start and stop working with the router and should the fan send air in the router or out of it?

WRX STI (author)RakayS2016-05-27

by following the wiring shown in the picture, the power going to the router will be shared with the fan, so whenever you switch on the power supply of the router, the fan will start. you can do in or out, butter send the air in, it will cool better but will make the router dirty after sometime.

TaylorL2 (author)2015-12-03

Here is what I did, Parts: 80mm case fan, power switch, usb A connector.

took an old 80x80x25mm case fan and cut off connector soldered it to a switch i used an old one out of one of those window alarms (see in lower left). and soldered a usb A head to it, plug the usb into one of the routers usb ports for power (could of also used a usb port on my STB right next to it or a usb wall adapter), and poof cooler router.

JadenH1 (author)TaylorL22016-05-10

What I did

rjohnson45 (author)2011-11-06

I just plugged in a huge window fan and put it next to my router.

EricP125 (author)rjohnson452016-04-21

works like a charm... ive been doing this for years and I have experienced much faster upload and download speeds as a result of this simple hack. i imagine mounting a fan to your router would create similar results...this is just way simpler for me

Joshuaa21 (author)2015-10-26

I connected two fans and the router in parallel, both fans are 12v ,and router is 9v and powersupply is 9v, will there be any problem because i connected two fans???

gomibakou (author)Joshuaa212015-11-01

I assume you are using PC fans, so NO problem at all. The fans won't be running at the max rpm and their torque will be reduced (aka, you can stop the blades easily with no effort), but for cooling a router that's ok. You only concern should be the current: these fans normally need around 100-120mA each, check the power of your router and if your supply can deal with the router+2fans power demands with a 20% of margin, basicly to avoid overheating of the supply over the time. Normally it shouldn't be a problem.

Joshuaa21 (author)gomibakou2015-11-01

Thanks man! :-) yeah its working all fine :-)

samc2 (author)2014-10-17

Does the magnet from the fan be able to disrupt signals???

WRX STI (author)samc22014-10-17

It didn't affect my router. Try and update us, have fun!

Master Maddux (author)2014-10-08

I bought my own modem with built in wi-fi for Time Warner Cable and it suffered the heat problem as well. I just happened to have a old cracked laptop cooler pad sitting around that had 3 small 5v fans in it and I put two and two together and borrowed the fans from the pad and hot glued them to the large vent hole at the top and it's been puuring like a kitten ever since :) The modem has a built in USB port in the back (not sure what for) but the fans had a USb cord built on so I just plugged them in and it has been working fine for close to a year now. Netgear model CG3000D fyi.

WRX STI (author)Master Maddux2014-10-17

Thanks for updating us. I am really happy to hear someone is benefiting! Have fun.

pmn9393 (author)2012-03-15

This is bad for the router. It throws off the power supply since its getting less power than its expecting. It would be better to find one of the 5 volt lines and solder it into that so it would just have a bigger draw from somewhere within the circuit. Real wold effectively speaking it doesn't matter and this method is better for an average joe. I'm just a perfectionist though and like everything running at peak efficiency.

awmt102 (author)pmn93932012-07-18

This would not be bad for the router at all. As long as the power supply can output enough current (power) to run both the fan and the router it will have absolutely no impact on the router.

In fact if you were to attach it to a 5V line within the router this would be far less efficient and more likely to upset the router, depending on how that 5V is sourced. E.g. if the 5V comes from a linear regulator (as is likely) the fan will draw the same amount of current from the 15V supply but will run much slower since the power delivered to the fan is at 5V, not 15V (P=IV). This is why linear regulators are inefficent - the current drawn always stays the same but the voltage drop requires a drop in power which manifests itself as heat in the regulator. This will of course mean that your router is running hotter than it was before, further adding to the inefficiency.

Whats more - if the linear regulator is a low power variant, e.g. a 78L05, then it may not be able to deliver the required additional current demanded by the fan. In this case, depending on the regulator, the 5V may start to droop, or cut out entirely. This could lead to some components within the router shutting down.

If the router is of a higher build standard it may source the 5V from a DC-DC converter. These are much more efficient in that they attempt to convert all of the input power to output power and waste little in heat, generally achieving 90%+ power transfer. This would mean that your router doesn't get significantly hotter, however it will still be less efficient than running it straight from the 15V line (albeit ~90% efficient compared to ~33% of the linear regulator). But the same over current situation as with the regulator still exists.

In short - as long as your power supply can provide PowerOfRouter+PowerOfFan in Watts the method described in this instructable is the most efficient. NOTE: most electronic devices are rated in voltage and current, not power so here are the formulae you need: PowerOfRouter = VoltageOfRouter*CurrentOfRouter and PowerOfFan = VoltageOfFan*CurrentOfFan.

frickinstein (author)2012-05-08

Or.... buy quality equipment in the first place

onemoroni1 (author)2012-03-18

It looks like you just paralleled the fan into the power supply which would divide the amps, but I don't think it is a problem. I might suggest using an electrical fitting called scotch locks to accomplish the same thing in a simpler procedure. Good idea, I didn't know router heat was an issue.

eddles777 (author)2010-11-28

hey wrx sti, i just got the pix lolz feel free to roflyao

WRX STI (author)eddles7772010-11-28

nice one, you are doing it in a way that you will keep your router brand new!
But try to keep the fan as close as much to make it as efficient as much.
Please comment your impression after testing it for some time. Cheers

eddles777 (author)WRX STI2010-11-29

hey wrx sti,

ive been using it for a week now and its been keeping quiet and cool.

Im planning on making a modular design to fit the modem/router's and the case fans that is easy to move around. Nothing a trip to the hardware store can't fix for a budget of 20$.

eddles777 (author)2010-11-28

hey wrx sti, cheers for posting this. My modem is the netgear dgnd3300 and it helped with me setting it up with two case fans (80 and 92mm fans from old psu sitting wedged in a styrofoam holder from a discarded toilet knobs lol). The two fans are powered by a 3 pin to molex adapter powered by my pc (ill post the pictures soon so you get what i mean) I'll get some photos up of it soon. Cheers eddles

paqrat (author)2010-11-09

Thank you for this instructable. It answers a question regarding two different internet connections that would slow down seemingly at random. Work arounds were found but I never got an answer for why it was slowing down.

WRX STI (author)paqrat2010-11-09

as I sad I noticed that the router is slowing down while downloading big files or heavy usage (some times restarting) in addition to an increase in the router's temperature. So I knew that the temperature is causing the problem. And after assembelling everything the router is working perfectly all the time without slowing down or restarting.
The answer is: the electronic components will not work properly in a high temperature.

paqrat (author)WRX STI2010-11-09

Yes. Thank you. Your instructable answered the question I had.

gauzz (author)2010-07-14

I guess this is for people that doesn't wants to open the router and solder the fan to the board but how does the fan sucking voltage affects the router?

NostalgicStone (author)2010-04-26

I'm going to have to agree with mr Decepticon and error32.
This post should have a title that reflects the end result.
By preventing it from slowing down, you are not effectively speeding it up in comparison to default settings.
This is a useful Instructable but should have a title closer to "Prevent router lag due to overheating" or the likes.
Otherwise great Instructable :)

Good new title, and great Instructable!
Way to think outside the router :)

legionlabs (author)2010-03-28

I once had a linksys wireless bridge that would cause a kernel panic/BSOD when it overheated under even moderate bandwidth usage.

I put it in a plastic bag and wrapped frozen peas around it whenever I needed to transfer large files.

Worked surprisingly well. Should have used it to defrost dinner more often.

WRX STI (author)legionlabs2010-03-29

I had linksys and it was really depending on the temperature, if I started a big download it will restart for sure after a while.

kingofkya (author)2010-03-05

A north bridge cooler is much more efficient an dosen't make noise.

WRX STI (author)kingofkya2010-03-29

It's a simpler and faster solution, but I think that I should stay with my solution because I live in Dubai which is extremely hot in the summer (around 50 °C = 122 °F)

chadeau (author)2009-11-17


chadeau (author)2009-09-25

Some people are never happy....oh,wrong comment box ;)-this also applies to hardline routers/modems,also.Local SP contacted us on what they thot was a prob with their box-they said box is OK,just running too 'warm'.So I laid it on top the tower where there is a factory fan blowing vertical. The reason your signal dropped with the metal rod is because of reflectivity-the sig w/wireless was being reflected away from PC receiver-antennas use radial transmission,and a common addition is a reflector-to aim or shield rf transmission in a particular direction.

kingofkya (author)chadeau2009-11-16

The bigest prob with consumer grade routers is the over heating its always the wireless card i found a northbridge cooler worked really well on it

bigwhitebear18 (author)2009-09-24

If you lay this router on the fan like most of the pictures show, how exactly is it getting any airflow? Wouldn't it be better to put the fan on top with a guard.

WRX STI (author)bigwhitebear182009-09-26

my fan is on the bottom because there is some holes for cooling in the bottom (in my case)

bigwhitebear18 (author)WRX STI2009-09-26

Well if you do that I can see how it is getting airflow. But this is probably not practical.

mikedoth (author)2009-09-24

How to Cool your Wireless Network "Router" and make it faster

WRX STI (author)mikedoth2009-09-26

oh forgot it thank you changed to "How to Cool your Wireless Network Router and make it faster

Decepticon (author)2009-09-24

Forgive me for being...skeptical. But, just by cooling your wifi chipset...this will not make it faster. If you maybe hacked the firmware to overclock it, then yes that will make it run faster...but not your wifi connection. The only thing that will make your wifi connection rates faster, is a less noisy signal or get closer to the source. This may prevent overheating due to technical issues with your particular router and in effect may prevent outtages due to the overheating of the chipset.

Phil B (author)Decepticon2009-09-24

The point is not to make it faster than factory specs, but to keep it from slowing to a crawl because of excess heat. As the owner of a Belkin router, I have seen that kind of slowing from overheating.

Decepticon (author)Phil B2009-09-25

Then that should be reflected in the title. To the casual user, it looks as though you are making the router's wifi connection faster just by cooling it. Maybe it should read "Stop your Wifi connection from slowing to a crawl by keeping it cool".

Decepticon (author)Decepticon2009-09-25

OR better yet: "Keep your WiFi connection stable by keeping your router cool"

error32 (author)Decepticon2009-09-24

I have to agree with you, this can in no real way help to make it faster. Just imagine, if you put you pc in a fridge with liquid nitrogen it will not make any difference, however if you overclock you'd probably want to put some extra fans in to keep it from overheating...

Phil B (author)2009-09-24

I have a similar Belkin wireless router. Reviews on Amazon indicate heat is often a problem. So far, I have used a Dremel to make the air slots larger and I made an "X" support from two strips of Plexiglas cut to fit over one another. This raises the router off of the table surface and allows better air flow. It also helps to keep the router as far from other electronic hardware as possible. Earlier I used a support of steel rod and it soaked up the signal. I wonder if the metal and the wire in the fan coils might suck up some signal, too. Your Instructable addresses a legitimate problem and concern. Thank you for it.

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