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Take Charge of Your Power Cords

Take Charge of Your Power Cords

When it’s time to declutter and reorganize we’ll leave the clothing, books and knick-knacks to you. However, when it comes to your electronics, we have some great ideas to help you spruce up your space, neatly organize power cords and cables, and create functional and protective power centers, so you can focus on what’s most important to you.

We all know that switching out decorative throw pillows can be a simple way to update and brighten any living space. So, why not do the same with your extension cords? If you haven’t already taken the plunge, Westinghouse line of designer extension cords are stylish, tough and tangle-free, and can add a splash of color or blend in with your décor – it’s all up to you and your personal style.

Home and office spaces can quickly be overrun with a multitude of power cords. So, when they get out of hand and make your otherwise neat space look and feel chaotic, bundling and color-coding them can save the day. These reusable Stanley EZ Hook & Loop Fastening Straps are here to help you.

Throughout the year, it’s always a good idea to reassess your power hub needs to determine the best way to maximize outlets and protect your valuable electronics. Expanding an outlet’s capacity at the source is the best solution to minimize the need for extension cords and create a power center where you need it most. Wall taps and power strips can help you do just that, but keep in mind that while each of these options work well, only those with built-in surge protection will safeguard your electronics from power spikes and voltage fluctuations that could otherwise damage your equipment.

These models by Westinghouse and Stanley offer a variety of outlet and USB port configurations. 

Everything You Have to Know About Wi-Fi Devices

WiFi smart sockets are handy gadgets that connect to your home’s wireless internet to manage lights, fans and other fixtures from anywhere. Flipping a light switch becomes a thing of the past thanks to remote control with your smartphone, tablet or other mobile device. Voice command capability through a virtual assistant makes WiFi sockets an even more convenient choice for home automation. It really is a breeze to run a smart home especially with these common tips, tricks and insights to stay connected to WiFi devices.

WiFi is measured in frequency, and there are two main frequencies used for most homes.

  • 2.4GHz
  • 5GHz
     

Each type of WiFi has benefits and drawbacks.

  • 2.4GHz
    • Longer range
    • Passes through walls and other obstructions more easily
    • Doesn’t transmit as much data as quickly
  • 5GHz
    • Faster transfer of more data
    • Shorter range
    • More susceptible to interference from obstructions

All devices work on 2.4GHz WiFi networks, but some equipment, like smart TVs and gaming PCs, operate better with the faster speed of 5GHz networks. Because of this, dual-band routers are a popular option to receive the best of both worlds.

What is a dual-band router?

  • Dual-band routers broadcast 2.4GHz and 5GHz signals at the same time
  • Can appear as two networks
  • Sometimes automatically connects your devices to the strongest network signal

Lighting controls and other devices that don’t require a lot of data, like the Westinghouse Smart socket and the Westinghouse Outdoor Smart Socket and  Westinghouse WiFi Smart Power Strip, only work on 2.4GHz networks, so what can you do to ensure you’re connected to the right type of wireless internet?

  • Best solution – split the signals from your router to appear as two networks
    • Allows you to select which network you want to use at any time
    • Can be done during WiFi setup
    • Process varies by router and internet company
    • Contact your internet service provider for specific assistance
  • Possible quick solution – move away from your router during device setup
    • 5GHz has a shorter reach than 2.4GHz
    • Increase your distance to leave the range of the 5GHz signal while still accessing the 2.4GHz network
    • May need to move to another room approximately 20-30ft. away from the router

So, which should you choose, 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz?

•     If faster speeds are most important to you, 5GHz is usually a better choice than 2.4 GHz.

•     If the wireless range is more important to you, 2.4 GHz is usually a better choice than 5 GHz.

•     If you have a lot of devices that use 2.4 GHz and you are experiencing interference or intermittent connection issues, then 5 GHz is probably a better option.