There was a time when being on the road in an RV used to be synonymous with going offline for a few days. But that is not the case anymore, thanks to the invention of specialized Wi-Fi boosters, extenders, and repeaters for RVs.
As their name indicates, their work is to boost, extend, and repeat or forward the Wi-Fi router’s signals.
When hitting the road, it becomes challenging to get good network connections. Sometimes, you may even resort to the mobile internet to fulfill your needs.
Well, mobile connections are not as reliable as Wi-Fi. Even Wi-Fi can not be a dependable source of the internet while riding your motorhomes. In such cases, one solution that many campers go with is Wi-Fi boosters.
What Are RV Wi-Fi Boosters?
Typically, a Wi-Fi booster for your recreational vehicle would improve the original signal speed and strength, which can often deteriorate the farther you get from the router.
Many people often confuse these boosters with wireless routers. They may look similar, but their jobs are different. For instance, a wireless router will provide connections to your RV. On the other hand, a Wi-Fi booster’s primary job is to catch the network signals present and enhance their strength.
How Does It Work?
Like any mobile device or computer, a Wi-Fi booster also needs to connect to the network you are using. As soon as a connection gets established, the best RV Wi-Fi boosters will push the signals toward the nearby connected devices.
Without a booster, not all signals reach the far-off devices in your RV. Hence, no matter where you are, a Wi-Fi booster will ensure that you get the best connectivity throughout.
When you purchase a Wi-Fi booster, it makes a big difference to the speed and quality of the internet. One point to note is that not every booster works at the same rate. The best ones for RVs are fast and make you feel like you are sitting just next to the wireless routers.
On the contrary, some do not work fast enough, which can cause delays, and it may become difficult to browse social media, let alone stream videos online.
Since we have a basic understanding of what boosters are and how they work, it will help us choose the best RV Wi-Fi booster that will enhance your on-road experience by ten folds. Now let’s dive in to look at our top picks for the extenders you can buy for your motorhomes.
1. Securifi Almond RV Wi-Fi Booster (2.4 GHz)
Our first pick comes from a well-recognized brand called Securifi. It is a highly versatile Wi-Fi router that is easy to set up. 95% of the pre-existing users admitted that they were able to set up the Securifi RV Wi-Fi booster within 3 minutes. It does not even need a computer for setup.
Nowadays, finding a Wi-Fi extender that has a user-friendly interface is challenging. If you want one that fulfills this requirement, Securifi is the right choice. This device also acts as a primary router and a range extender in your existing setup.
When used purely as a Wi-Fi extender, it works well with practically any existing router. This includes all popular routers like NETGEAR, Linksys, and Belkin.
If you wish to modify the device’s configurations, Securifi also provides a dedicated smartphone application that allows you to do the same.
On top of it, the device offers a 300 Mbps data transfer rate and gets supported by a 2.4 GHz frequency band. In addition, it does not take much space in your vehicle as it measures just 1.9 x 4.8 x 4.3 in total. These features make the Securifi Wi-Fi booster the best RV Wi-Fi extender you can find on the internet.
- Convenient touchscreen interface
- No PC or CD needed for setup
- Compact build
- Average hardware construction can damage the Ethernet ports easily, leading to inconsistent speeds
2. Winegard 434719 RV Wi-Fi Booster (2.4 GHz)
Winegard 434719 is known for its efficiency as a Wi-Fi booster. Depending on how you choose to run it, it can serve both as a wireless router and a booster.
These are specially dedicated to RV and similar types of vehicles. Coming as a premium choice for customers, the Winegard 434719 is a device for those who want it for a long time. This RV Wi-Fi booster provides an extended network coverage area throughout your vehicle, enabling you to connect several devices.
As far as security concerns, Winegard has provided WPA and WPA2-PSK security protocols for your router. With a speed of up to 450 Mbps bandwidth, it works wonders, making it a far better option than other 2.4 GHz products.
Although it provides an excellent coverage range, being on the road can sometimes trigger instability in your Wi-Fi signals. Hence, many people prefer switching over to 4G LTE services. Fortunately, the Winegard 434719 RV Wi-Fi booster provides a SIM slot for you to insert SIM cards.
If you already are on a 4G LTE network, feel free to use it as a network extender. If not, Winegard itself provides 4G LTE plans at affordable costs.
- Long, 20 ft. power cable
- Supports both Winegard packages and own SIM Internet
- It also connects to an external Wi-Fi router signal
- It only operates with a mini SIM (25mm x 15mm x 0.76mm)
- Large, non-compact design
3. Bearifi RV Wi-Fi Booster(2.4 and 5 GHz)
Not every Wi-Fi extender has to be wireless to fulfill its job. Some devices like the Bearifi Bear Extender will get the work done for you. It uses a sturdy and reliable USB cable to connect your PC and the router. The cable is 16 feet long and protected with integrated premium shielding.
Bearifi is for dual purpose as it provides both 2.4 and 5 GHz networks. Although, in most cases, 2.4 GHz is enough for you to stream videos and movies online. But, if you strictly need a 5 GHz connection that is secure and sturdy, Bearifi is the right choice for you.
This device works best where your regular router’s connections are heavily compromised. Also, keep in mind that the Bearifi RV Wi-Fi booster is designed for single computer usage only.
Although it does provide a stable connection on one device, it can cause inconvenience for others present in the RV. Another vital piece of information is that it doesn’t support Android, iOS, or Mac OS. Feel free to use it with Windows software like Vista, 7, 8, 8.1, 10, etc.
- IP65 certified water-resistant body
- Anti-UV and anti-corrosion device coating
- Multiple mounting options: tripod mount, velcro strap railing attachment, and adjustable metal pole mounting option
- Limited to 16 ft. range
- Only works with 1 PC at a time
4. NETGEAR N300 Wall Plug Version Wi-Fi Range Extender
Do you want an extender that outranges even your RVs dimensions? Then NETGEAR N300 is the ideal choice for you. It provides an outstanding range of 600 square feet, which is easily far more than a regular RV.
The law has mandated that an RV can not be larger than 400 square feet. Hence, making the NETGEAR N300 the ideal Wi-Fi booster.
In addition, the NETGEAR Wi-Fi range extender comes with external antennas, which help to ensure that its broadcasted signals are evenly arranged throughout the room.
This device is a reliable and trustworthy source of the internet as it provides a network speed of up to 300 Mbps. Therefore, you can download files fast and stream videos without any interruptions.
You will not have to worry about compatibility issues as this device can support a range of host devices, including PlayStations, Apple products, and Android devices. You can get this RV Wi-Fi booster for under $100, making it affordable for many people.
- Excellent Wi-Fi signal range
- Fast data transfer rate
- Troublesome setup
- It may require regular reboots
RV Extender Buyer’s Principle
The market is virtually overflowing with Wi-Fi boosters. Most of them are not worth considering, and some are undeniably better. So, which one should you buy for your RV?
We have provided a few pointers containing every piece of information you need to choose the best RV Wi-Fi booster.
Data Transfer Rate (Supported Internet Speed)
As we know, the sole purpose of a Wi-Fi extender is to improve the quality of your connection. The device must maintain a strong link with the network without sacrificing bandwidth. It is one of the most vital aspects of buying an RV Wi-Fi booster.
Usually, the data transfer rate gets measured in megabits per second (Mbps). The higher the Mbps, the faster the rate of your network. Most of the devices deliver 300 Mbps as their upper limit. Although, some even provide speeds up to 500 Mbps or more.
When you surf the internet, there are high chances of your network getting hacked by third parties. It may result in them seeing your sensitive data, such as bank passwords and credit card information.
Hence, your RV Wi-Fi booster must contain a supported security protocol system, like WEP, WPA, WPA2, and WPA-Enterprise.
The odds of someone hacking your system are even higher when you travel in an RV. Why? Because during your journey, you will find many strangers. You will need to be careful as ascertaining the intentions of someone is challenging.
However, if you have a strong Wi-Fi password and a reliable security protocol (like WPA), you will not have to worry about your system getting hacked. So, make sure that you select a booster device that contains these safety measures!
Getting the range that meets the conditions of your RV is a must. Before buying an extender, look at its maximum range allowance.
If you are going to stay within the four walls of the vehicle while surfing the internet, look for a casual Wi-Fi booster that allows a minimum 300 sq. ft. extension range. As mentioned above, RVs cannot be larger than 400 sq. ft. by law, and only a fraction of them even reach that size.
On the other side of the spectrum, if you plan to camp at RV basecamps and surf the internet outside the four walls of an RV, an extender that outranges 400 sq. ft. is a necessity.
The size of the booster does not matter much when you are installing it within your RV. However, the dimensions of the extender become vital when installing it outside. So, when you are about to purchase it, you need to carefully check the required space for installation and make sure it is not affected by external factors.
Many extenders have antennas attached, which can get damaged easily by external factors. So, you will have to keep in mind the added height of the antenna. In these cases, compact options are generally better because they are protected from external elements.
Although, you will have to compromise the added functionality and extended range capacity of larger devices.
While you surf the internet in the quest to get the best RV Wi-Fi booster, you will come across hundreds of different options. These may include wireless routers, boosters, and even a combination of both.
These devices affect the overall performance of your network, which in turn impacts your experience in an RV and your internal RV entertainment system.
For most of us, de-stressing methods include binge-watching series, scrolling the internet, or watching a favorite movie. You can only enjoy them all if you have a stable connection.
Therefore, these Wi-Fi extenders reduce the frustration associated with a disrupted internet connection, providing the freedom of entertainment and communication. We hope that you got to know all the necessary details of a Wi-Fi extender and that this helps you pick the best one for your RV!