Recently I upgraded my devices that can run 5Ghz band WiFi, and I wanted to ensure that my Xfinity WiFi router is having 5Ghz support or not. To understand where it has a 5GHz band I dig deeper to understand the technology behind it in this article.
Even though none of your devices are capable of using 5 GHz Wi-Fi, Xfinity will only rent you a router that supports both frequencies.
This is beneficial because it means users can take advantage of faster internet speeds as they upgrade their devices.
This is why Xfinity promotes the use of 5 GHz on their router, despite the fact that actual performance has been subpar. My devices had trouble remaining on the 5 GHz bands, and the gateway would occasionally force them down to the 2.4 GHz band.
I went online to the Xfinity user forums to see if this was a common problem and how others had solved it.
I decided to begin troubleshooting the gateway after reading a few troubleshooting posts and reviewing the gateway’s user manual.
In under an hour, I had the gateway working properly again, and all of my devices that could use it were able to establish 5 GHz connections.
This article provides a concise summary of my research so that you, too, can restore the 5 GHz bands on your Xfinity gateway.
If you have Xfinity Wi-Fi and you don’t see 5 GHz, check to see if your device is compatible with that frequency. If so, try relocating closer to the gateway; if that doesn’t work, try restarting or resetting the gateway.
Learn why and how relocating your physical location closer to the gateway can improve your internet speed.
Why Am I Unable To Connect To 5 GHz Via Xfinity?
There are a few reasons why your device might not be able to connect to your gateway over the 5 GHz bands.
The most common reason is that your device does not support this frequency range. Not all electronic gadgets are 5 GHz compatible because it is a more recent band.
This is especially likely to occur at greater distances from the router, as the 5 GHz frequency has a much shorter range than the 2.4 GHz frequency.
Problems with making a connection can also be caused by problems with the gateway itself, like bugs or other software problems. The following sections are where I’ll talk about how to fix each of these problems.
Verify that your gadget is 5 GHz compatible.
The 5 GHz Wi-Fi band is relatively new, so it’s possible that some of your devices don’t have the necessary radio chipsets to communicate over this frequency.
Refer to the device’s user manual to see if the 802.11a or 802.11n Wi-Fi standards are supported, which will tell you if the device is 5GHz compatible.
If it does, then the device is compatible with 5 GHz and the problem may not be with the frequency itself. If you want to use 5 GHz Wi-Fi, you’ll need a newer device that’s compatible with the standard.
Get Nearer The Gateway
To put it simply, 5 GHz has a shorter range than 2.4 GHz because of the way it operates. That means that even though you may achieve greater speeds, your effective range will be reduced.
In order to prevent interference, Xfinity gateways will automatically switch you to the slower 2.4 GHz band if you stray too far from the device.
If you’re having trouble connecting on the 5 GHz bands, try moving closer to the gateway. Make sure you’re on the right frequency by running a speed test.
You can also check the network settings on your device to see which manufacturer you’re using.
Restart The Gateway
If you’ve already tried moving closer to the gateway but still can’t connect to the 5 GHz network, the problem may lie with the gateway. The good news is that restarting the gateway usually resolves such problems instantly.
How to do it:
- Switch off the Xfinity gateway.
- Cut off the power to it.
- Before plugging the gateway back in, wait anywhere between 30 and 60 seconds.
- Reconnect the gateway.
Try to connect your device to the network when the gateway is turned on, and then check your device’s network settings to make sure you are connected to the 5 GHz bands.
You need to reset the gateway
If restarting the gateway does not solve the problem, then performing a factory reset on the device is another option for resolving the connection issue.
If you perform a factory reset on the gateway, it will return to the state it was in when it was first installed.
This means that any custom Wi-Fi names and passwords will be removed, and you will need to configure them again.
To reset the gateway, you will need to:
- Find the button labeled “Reset” that is located on the back of the gateway. It ought to be labeled in such a manner.
- Find a thin, long object that is not made of metal and can fit into the recessed area of the reset button.
- Hold down the button for at least 30 seconds or until the gateway restarts.
- When the gateway lights up again, the reset is done.
Attempt a connection to the gateway, and if that fails, double-check that you’ve selected the 5 GHz bands.
Make contact with Xfinity Customer Service
Please contact Xfinity support if none of these solutions helps, or if you need assistance with any of the methods I’ve described.
If they are unable to resolve the issue over the phone, they will suggest additional troubleshooting steps based on your information and offer to arrange for a technician to come and look at the gateway.
The Xfinity gateway will automatically switch your device between the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands, making it difficult to determine which band you are actually connected to.
In the past, the SSID of the WiFi network you were connected to could tell you which band you were using.
Most adapters, including Qualcomm Atheros, are compatible with 5GHz Wi-Fi networks.
There are two possible outcomes: if the number ends in a 5, you’re using the 5 GHz bands, and if it ends in 2.4, you’re using the 2.4 GHz band. While the 5 GHz band of your router has a shorter range, it can be expanded with a Wi-Fi extender.
Replace your Xfinity gateway with a Wi-Fi repeater, such as the xFi Pods, and connect to that instead.