This is why you should switch off the wifi router every now and then
WLAN routers are often in continuous operation in private households. The wide world of the Internet is available to you around the clock – even at night or in the early hours of the morning. Often this is not necessary and also has disadvantages for four areas.
Power consumption : A router only works with electricity. Speedport, Fritzbox and Co. consume between six and 20 watts per hour. A kilowatt hour costs around 25 cents, depending on the region. Continuous operation of the router can therefore cost you eleven to 44 euros in electricity costs per year. These are certainly not huge sums, but you certainly don’t want to give your money away either. You save electricity and money if you switch off the device when it is not in use.
Environmental pollution : You protect the environment if you generate less electrosmog and reduce CO2 emissions. In continuous operation, routers produce 53 kilograms of greenhouse gas emissions per year from energy consumption (with an average consumption of 13 watts per hour).
Security : For security reasons, too, you should give the router a break from time to time. Private households are usually not the main targets of cyber criminals, but in the past there have been attacks on home networks as well.
Tip: Check regularly who is actually using your WLAN. You can check which devices are currently connected to the router in the router’s user interface; alternatively, the Wireless Network Watcher program (available for download) helps track down devices that are active in the same network.
Radiation exposure : Do something good for your health and switch off the router when you don’t need it. A certain amount of radiation emanates from wireless technology. The Federal Office for Radiation Protection (BfS) recommends keeping personal radiation exposure as low as possible. In this way, you can minimize possible health risks, albeit previously unknown. In general, the BfS advises avoiding WLAN if possible and rather using the good old LAN cable .
Switch off the wireless router during these times
If you work from home or if your youngsters are streaming their favorite series, it does not make much sense to switch off the router. However, there are certain times when you can give the router, and therefore yourself and your family, a break.
Simply switch off your router with the switch-off button. Many devices also have a timer. This allows you to specify periods of time in which either only the WLAN or the entire device switches off automatically.
- As a rule, the router does not have to be on at night. When you sleep, you usually don’t need the internet. Therefore, switch off the device when you go to bed.
- The same applies if you are not at home during the day.
- You should also switch off the wireless router when you go on vacation. The savings on electricity costs are particularly worthwhile on longer trips.
- Tip: Introduce an internet-free day on the weekend. This gives you the opportunity to deal more intensively with other things in the offline world.
These disadvantages come with turning off your router at night
Of course, switching off the router at night also has some disadvantages. IT expert Jörg Geiger names the following:
No telephone availability : Because the standard today is IP connections, telephony runs via the router. If this is off, you cannot be reached on the landline and cannot use the landline in an emergency.
Update problems : Many devices now postpone their updates into the night, Windows likes to do the same with smartphones. This is difficult without an internet connection.
Smart home does not work : If you have a lot of smart home devices in use at home, you should think twice about switching off the router, otherwise the Alexa alarm clock will not work or the coffee machine will preheat.
Problems with the provider : If the router is switched off, the remote stations of the provider register this. This can lead to problems because the provider’s diagnostic systems could incorrectly assume that the connection is disrupted. Then it can happen that the bandwidth is regulated down.
Device durability : A router is designed for continuous operation. That doesn’t mean you can’t turn it off and on, but you could run into problems with wear and tear if you do this every day for years.