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.
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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)
samc25 months ago

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

WRX STI (author)  samc25 months ago
It didn't affect my router. Try and update us, have fun!
Master Maddux5 months ago

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 Maddux5 months ago
Thanks for updating us. I am really happy to hear someone is benefiting! Have fun.
pmn93933 years ago
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 pmn93932 years ago
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.
Or.... buy quality equipment in the first place
onemoroni13 years ago
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.
rjohnson453 years ago
I just plugged in a huge window fan and put it next to my router.
eddles7774 years ago
hey wrx sti, i just got the pix lolz feel free to roflyao
WRX STI (author)  eddles7774 years ago
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
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$.
eddles7774 years ago
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
paqrat4 years ago
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)  paqrat4 years ago
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 WRX STI4 years ago
Yes. Thank you. Your instructable answered the question I had.
gauzz4 years ago
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?
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 :)

legionlabs5 years ago
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)  legionlabs5 years ago
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.
kingofkya5 years ago
A north bridge cooler is much more efficient an dosen't make noise.
WRX STI (author)  kingofkya5 years ago
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)
chadeau5 years ago
chadeau5 years ago
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.
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
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)  bigwhitebear185 years ago
my fan is on the bottom because there is some holes for cooling in the bottom (in my case)
Well if you do that I can see how it is getting airflow. But this is probably not practical.
mikedoth5 years ago
How to Cool your Wireless Network "Router" and make it faster
WRX STI (author)  mikedoth5 years ago
oh forgot it thank you changed to "How to Cool your Wireless Network Router and make it faster
Decepticon5 years ago
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.
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.
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".
OR better yet: "Keep your WiFi connection stable by keeping your router cool"
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 B5 years ago
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.