How to Boost Cell Phone Signal Strength for Free

You might be wondering how to boost cell phone signal strength for free before deciding if you really need a cell phone booster. First, you should understand the multitude of factors that affect your cell phone signal, and then follow these tips to eliminate those factors that cause obstruction or interference.

Improve Cell Signal Without a Cell Booster

1. Don’t Obstruct the Internal Antenna

Phone Cases/Accessories: Remove your cell phone case or accessory to see if your signal improves. Sometimes cases obstruct cell signal from reaching the internal antenna. Check your bars, read dBs, or try making calls in a location where you normally have cell phone signal problems and see if it improves when the case or accessory isn’t on it.

Your Hand: You might remember older phones having external antennas – early cell phones had an antenna you could pull out, and later phones had fixed antennas on the phone exterior. These days the antenna is inside your phone, and you could block it with your hand. Experiment to see how your signal changes when you hold it differently.

2. Connect to WiFi

All smartphones and tablets are able to connect to WiFi with the service supported by their cell carrier. You can use apps to utilize WiFi calling (audio and video) and WiFi messaging. When WiFi signal is strong but your cell signal isn’t, connecting to it can improve your call and messaging quality, and increase data speeds.

If WiFi is available, use it to save data. Even on unlimited data plans, some carriers throttle your data speeds after a certain limit is reached, so using WiFi whenever possible can ensure you have access to high-speed data when you’re not able to connect to WiFi. Most phones have automatic switching capabilities and will alert you when WiFi is available when turned on.

3. Find a Nearby Cell Tower

You can use apps and websites, or our blog post, to locate nearby cell towers. Knowing where your cell signal is originating from can help you determine the best location for unobstructed signal retrieval.

4. Consult Friends, Neighbors & Coworkers

Every cellular device is different, but talking to people you interact with every day can help you get a better pulse on how cell signal service works in those locations on different network carriers and devices.

5. Switch Between 2G, 3G, 4G & LTE

Your network might broadcast different types of signal depending on your location. Go to Settings > Networks and see how switching between 2G, 3G, 4G, LTE changes cell reception. Which technology is being utilized will depend on your network carrier, phone model, and the cell tower.

6. Keep Your Battery Charged

If your phone battery is at less than 25%, it might not have enough power to effectively utilize cell signal. A better charge gives the phone more power to acquire and hold cell signal.

7. Call Your Network Carrier

Do a little research beforehand and then call your carrier to give them specific information about your cell phone signal problems. They can give you valuable information about outages or construction in your area, or specific details about your device, such as issues with the antenna or SIM card. If the problem is the fault of your carrier, you might be able to get out of your contract and switch to a different carrier for free.

8. Move Around (or Don’t)!

Confused? You might need to change location, or stop moving at all, depending on the situation, to boost your cell phone signal. When you’re moving around or driving, your cell signal is being received from one cell tower until you’re handed off to another as your proximity to and from them changes. Your phone and network will be making constant adjustments to adapt to changing cell signal and GPS location.

On the other hand, if you’re having bad cell signal in a certain section of a building or home, moving closer to a window, especially an open one, could significantly improve your cell phone signal. When possible, moving outside is another way to get a better signal.

Moving to a higher position in a building or on terrain, such as a hill, could eliminate obstructions like other buildings and trees.

If you’re at a site that is covered or surrounded by structures/natural elements made of cement or wood, like a parking lot or campsite, the structures could block your cell signal. Try moving to a more open area.

How to Boost Cell Phone Signal Strength for Free - Blonde business woman upset on phone

Fix Chronic Cell Phone Signal Problems

Bad cell signal could be the result of many environmental or technological factors. The solutions listed above are a good place to start understanding how to boost cell phone signal strength for free, and how your device and network operate most effectively. With a little time, attention, and patience, you could improve your cell signal without a cell booster.

Cell phone signal boosters are a permanent, consistently reliable solution for cell phone signal problems. Going outside or standing at a window any time you need to use your phone can become a chronic annoyance in your everyday life, which can be eliminated with little investment of time and money.

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