I’ve spent a lot of time researching the harmful effects of wifi radiation lately.
If you’d like to learn more, check out these:
- Should You Turn Off Wifi at Night for Your Health?
- What is a Safe Distance from a Wifi Router?
- How to Turn Off WiFi – Step by Step Instructions
- Is a WiFi Router Near a Baby Crib Safe
Almost always, the recommendation at the end of these articles is to turn your router off or use a router guard.
I’d never heard of a wifi router guard until I started doing my research on how to protect my family and house from wifi radiation.
So that’s where I’m starting this article. The beginning. First we’ll start by learning what wifi router guards are, how they work, and why the work.
Next we’ll take a look at some good options on the market and cover some other common questions, including is wifi safe?
Let’s get started!
|Product||RF Radiation Reduction||Usability||Purchase|
|Smart Meter Covers - Wifi Router Cover||up to 90%||Very easy to use. Cut out for cables.|
|TitanRF Faraday Fabric||up to 90%||Medium. Will have to wrap the router manually.|
|Signal Tamer - RF Shielding Pouch for Wi-Fi Routers||up to 90-95%||Easy to use but no opening for cables|
|Router Guard - Large WiFi Router Guard||up to 90%||Great ease of use and fits taller routers|
In a Hurry? Here is the Best Router Cover on the Market
The Smart Meter Cover Wifi Router Cover comes out on top of our ranking criteria – effectiveness, ease of use and full coverage of the router for maximum protection.
- 90% reduction of RF Radiation
- Full coverage of router
- Cut out for cables
- High quality stainless steel
What is a Wifi Router Guard?
A wifi router guard blocks and shields everyone in your home from most of the electromagnetic radiation (EMF) your Wifi router emits 24 hours a day.
These guards require no assembly.
All you have to do is to unplug your router, place it in the guard, feed the cords through the small hole in the back of the Wifi router guard, and plug them back in so it reboots and you are good to go.
The most complicated thing about using a router guard is making sure the guard box is large enough to fits.
How does a router guard box work?
A router guard is a small Faraday cage. The concept of Faraday cages is nothing new. Faraday cages have been around since the time of, well, Michael Faraday, who invented them in 1836. You probably have a Faraday cage in your home already. Every microwave is a Faraday cage!
A Faraday cage is constructed of mesh of a highly conductive metal, usually copper. When the pulsating EMF generated by your wireless internet comes in contact with the metal mesh of your router box, tiny amounts of electrical current dissipate it so most of the EMF radiation your router generates is shielded from your family.
Your Wifi router guard, of course, doesn’t block all of the radiation generated. If it did, you wouldn’t get a signal. Wifi router guard boxes attenuate EMF radiation but they don’t completely block it.
About 90 percent of EMF is absorbed by the mesh.
Why Should I have a Wifi Router Guard?
To understand why you need a Wifi router guard, you need to know a little about radio frequency radiation.
Wifi routers emit radio frequency (RF) radiation. Having Wifi is like having a little radio station broadcasting the Internet into your home.
Everyone is exposed to small amounts of radio frequency radiation nearly all the time. If you are able to pick up a station on your radio, that’s because your radio is tuned into ambient RF radiation. The amount of RF radiation your radio — or your body — absorbs depends on three things, the power of the transmitter, your distance from the source of the RF radiation, and the frequency of the radio waves.
Routers don’t generate a lot of power. Wireless routers consume between 2 and 20 watts, the average around 6 watts. That’s less power than a light bulb, but you are exposed to it 24 hours a day. By comparison, AM radio stations generate –a maximum of 50 kilowatts of power and FM radio stations generate up to 80 kilowatts, but they are much farther away.
The amount of energy your body absorbs from any radiofrequency source is inversely proportional to the square of your distance from that radiofrequency source. You can think of RF radiation as spreading out in a circle from the transmitter. The farther the radiofrequency radiation goes out, the more territory it has to cover.
The area of a circle is computed by multiplying pi times the square of the radius of the circle, so radiofrequency energy falls off with the square of the distance from the transmitter. To help with wifi router radiation safe distance, consider:
When you are twice as far away from the transmitter, your body receive one-fourth as much radiation.
When you are three times as far away from the transmitter, your body receives one-ninth as much radiation.
And the amount of energy your body receives from RF radiation depends on the frequency of the radiation. The higher the frequency, the greater the amount of radiation your body absorbs.
An AM radio station broadcasts at a frequency measured in kilohertz (kHz), thousands of pulses per second. An FM station broadcasts at a frequency measured in megahertz (mHz), millions of pulses per second.
But your wireless internet broadcasts at a frequency measured in gigahertz (gHz), billions of pulses per second, over a million times the frequency of the lowest possible AM frequencies.
The combination of 24-hour-a-day exposure, close proximity to the transmitter, and extremely high frequency makes RF radiation a significant factor in your health.
How Does RF Radiation Affect my Health?
When RF radiation is absorbed by living tissues, it is transformed to heat. It’s possible to put this principle to use in treating disease. Radiofrequency probes can be used to heat and kill cancer cells. Cardiovascular surgeons can use radiofrequency to remove dysfunctional heart tissue.
But it’s also possible to get burns from uncontrolled exposure to radiofrequency radiation. People who wander too close to some radar installations can get severe burns through their bodies, as they are literally microwaved.
People who are exposed to lower amounts of RF radiation from radar and repeater stations may hear clicking noises as the tissues inside their heads are heated by pulsed radiation so these tissues expand and contract.
It’s not going to give you visible burns. If you hear clicking sounds inside your head, they aren’t due to it. But that doesn’t that the levels of radiofrequency you receive from your router have no effects at all.
Wifi radiofrequency radiation may increase your body temperature 0.1 to 2.0 ° C (about 0.2 to 3.6 ° F) if you are close enough. When your cells are heated, their enzymes work faster.
That’s a major problem for dividing cells. Enzymes don’t do their job at the right time, so cells are created with defective DNA. And when there are DNA errors, the cell may be dysfunctional, it may be removed by the immune system along with some surrounding healthy cells, or it may become cancerous.
Of course, the more dividing cells there are in the body, the greater the damage that can be done by heat. That’s why it is so important for pregnant women, infants, and small children to be shielded from excessive radiofrequency radiation.
Symptoms similar to ADHD. The firing of neurons in the brain depends on the movement of calcium in and out of cells. The processes that move calcium so brain cells “light up” in an orderly fashion can be disrupted by the frequencies used for Wifi.
The 29 experts who wrote the Bioinitiative Report state that children who spend extended periods of time within 3 meters (about 10 feet) of a router are at increased risk for this kind of disruption.
5G routers and mobile hotspots connected to 5G expose everyone in the home to about 250,000 times as much radiation as 4G and 3G routers.
Laboratory experiments show that exposure to this type of radiation has some of the same effects on the brain as consuming too much sugar does. Radiofrequency radiation from wireless internet increases the formation of free radicals of oxygen in the brain, which in turn increases the sensation of anxiety regardless of external events.
This does not mean that if you have an unshielded router in your home, everyone in the family will suffer a generalized anxiety disorder. But it does mean that general levels of anxiety, insomnia, and feeling out of sorts will tend to increase until radiofrequency radiation exposure is reduced.
Constant exposure to radiofrequency radiation makes it harder for rats to find their way out of a maze. No scientist is going to drop people into a maze to find out if radiofrequency radiation makes it harder for them to find their way out, but the implication seems to be that the kind of radiation your wireless internet puts out probably interferes with learning abilities.
This effect has been observed at frequencies of 900 megahertz and higher. It is due to the effects of increased heat in the brain, not radiation’s causing chemical changes in the brain.
Still more laboratory experiments find that exposure to EMF from wireless internet increases brain activity in mice that have a brain condition analogous to Alzheimer’s disease. At first glance, that would seem to be a good thing, right? But there’s a major problem.
Increasing brain activity without restoring cognitive abilities is often disastrous in people who have Alzheimer’s disease.
People get just better enough to wander away. Or their ability to perceive the world around them increases just enough to cause them to become argumentative and combative with caretakers. Increased “activity” is not usually desirable for Alzheimer’s patients.
There is no clear evidence that wireless internet exposure causes Alzheimer’s, but that may be because people who are old enough today to have the disease have not had lifetime exposure.
The official line on Wifi and cancer is it’s “possibly carcinogenic.” Not everyone whose home has wireles internet is going to develop cancer. But the risk of cancer, which is a disease caused by errors in the division of cells, seems to be higher for people exposed to Wifi. Scientists note that these DNA errors accumulate in both the brain and the heart.
Sperm exposed to Wifi radiation lose their “swimming ability.” Men who are constantly exposed to Wifi radiation continue to produce sperm, but those sperm are disoriented and do not reach their destination.
An Italian study found that spending four hours within one meter (3 feet) or either a router or a laptop computer exposed sperm to enough EMF to become inactive. A man’s body is constantly producing more sperm, but optimal fertility requires either Wifi radiation shielding or spending at least 48 hours away from Wifi before sex with the intention of pregnancy.
Safe levels of exposure
Radiation experts set the maximum safe exposure to radiofrequency radiation at 30 microwatts per square meter of body surface. If you have unprotected Wifi, there are many places in your house where your exposure is only 30 microwatts per square meter or even less.
But a study published in the Bioinitiative Report found that spending more than about six minutes within a meter (3 feet) of a router or other Wifi source will expose you to up to 3000 microwatts per square meter, 100 times the safe level of radiofrequency radiation. And your exposure will be much greater if your Wifi is 5G.
So does this mean you need to yank its connections and smash it with a sledgehammer?
Of course not!
Let’s find out how to make it safer in your home!
The Best Wifi Router Covers and Guards
If you’re interested in purchasing a cover for Wifi router EMF protection, you’re in the right place. We’re going to look at the top options, including using faraday fabric if you want to DIY this a little.
Smart Meter Covers – Wifi Router Cover (Top Pick)
When you are looking for a simple solution for reducing exposure to Wifi radiation, this Wifi router guard checks all the boxes.
At 12 x 9 x 4 inches, this router cover is large enough to hold almost any router.
(You still need to measure your router before you order this product or any other router guard to make sure your router will fit. (If it has antennas, you will need to make sure they fold down.)
The Smart Meter Guard is very easy to use. Just unplug your router, place your it in the box, push the cords through the opening in the back, plug the power cord and the Internet cable connection back into the wall, close the lid, and you are set. There is nothing else you have to do.
This product’s stainless steel construction blocks about 90 percent of radiation like copper, but unlike copper, the metal will not tarnish.
The cover will stay sleek and shiny far beyond the life of the router. In household settings, provided the box is not exposed to salt water, it should not show any signs of corrosion for at least 50 years.
And because the smart meter guard is made from stainless steel mesh, not woven wire, there is no danger of getting poked with a frayed end of a broken wire.
This product reduces the range by 10 to 25 percent.
You might not, for example, be able to get a good connection in the back yard or in some far corner of your house, or in the basement. But it has no effect on connection speed or on download/upload speed.
TitanRF Faraday Fabric (Budget Pick)
When you are looking for an inexpensive material not just for shielding your router but also for general EMF protection, TitanRF Faraday Fabric is an excellent choice. Also a great option if you have a one that doesn’t fit the normal 12 x 9 x 4 inches.
This fabric comes in a cut that is about 1.2 square yards, 44 inches wide by 36 inches long.
You can wrap it around any model to make a Faraday pouch.
But you can also use this product to protect all of your electronic devices against damage from EMF pulses (which can occur during thunderstorms, not just during military operations) and to create a space free of electronic intrusions.
Just cut and sew enough of this fabric to create an EMF-protective tent and you can block EMF pulses and cell phone Bluetooth, GPS, and RFID signals from coming into the protected space.
Or make a smaller protected space that keeps about 90 percent of your router’s radiation from going out.
TitanRF fabric is not intended for elegant household design. Every piece of cloth comes with a roll of a special kind of duct tape to hold it in place in lieu of cutting and sewing fabric.
Since the fabric is imbedded with copper and nickel, you may need heavy shears and stronger needles for cutting and sewing.
But for low-cost rf radiation protection, TitanRF fabric is a great buy.
Signal Tamer – RF Shielding Pouch for Wi-Fi Routers
As we mentioned earlier, a Faraday cage doesn’t have to be a box. Sometimes it can be a pouch. The Signal Tamer RF Shielding Pouch for Wifi Routers is constructed of shielding cloth that also blocks over 90 percent of Wifi radiation with minimal effects on signal.
There is no need to unplug the power cable or the Internet connection.
There is no interruption of service. Just cover it with the cloth, making a pouch of dimensions you choose, and you have Wifi radiation protection in seconds.
The advantage of a shielding pouch over a shielding cage is accommodating antennas and larger routers. If antennas won’t fold down so you can be put your it in a metal mesh box, you can just put the entire setup in the pouch.
The cloth is long enough to accommodate the next generation of the Apple time capsule or a d-link dir-868l wireless ac1750 dual band gigabit cloud router. For a 10-1/2 inch Comcast you may need the larger, 20 x 24 inch version of this product.
This shielding cloth product has no effect on the speed of your connection or how much data you can upload or download.
However, it will reduce the range of your Wifi coverage about 50 percent to about 20 feet — and if you are concerned about establishing Wifi-free safe zones for children and pets, that may be exactly what you want.
Router Guard – Large WiFi Router Guard
What do you do if you want the sleek design of a box-style Wifi router guard with the convenience of a pouch-style Wifi router guard?
Or if your model is a tower, standing vertically, rather than a box, lying flat?
Or if you have one of the large routers like those provided by ATT Uverse, Comcast, Excede, or Xfinity?
A great choice is the Router Guard Large WiFi Router Guard.
This large router guard consists of a base and a removable open metal mesh cage that slips into it.
This is another easy to use option. Just take off the cage that rests on top of the base, slip in your box, still plugged in, feed the connection cable and power cord out the side, place the metal cage back onto the base and you have instant protection.
The product manufacturer promises that this product will block 90 percent of EMF radiation even for 5G routers.
It won’t have any effect on your connection speed, although your distance from your router will.
It is made for modems that operate in an upright, vertical, tower configuration. But it’s not ideal for modems that rest horizontally.
The lower tray is made of galvanized steel, and will not tarnish.
The upper tray is made of two kinds of painted steel, and may need a touchup in about 20 years.
If you need to secure your it from tampering by teens and older children, it’s possible to wrap the unit with a lock strap.
Things to Look for When Choosing Router Protection
- Ease of Use
- Full Coverage
The basic principle of Faraday cages is that they use metal to block electromagnetic fields. The protection should always incorporates metal into its design. Classical Faraday cages are constructed from copper, but copper tends to tarnish. Many protectors use stainless steel. Fabric for Wifi protection may incorporate steel and nickel along with cotton for flexibility.
An effective radiation shield for your router is never a total radiation shield. Completely shielding your router would block all of its signal and make it useless.
Router protection attenuates radiation, it doesn’t eliminate it.
Any protection that blocks 90 percent of radiation will reduce the range of your signal, but there are no products on the market that reduce range more than 50 percent. Wifi protection never affects speed, only range.
Ease of use
No option should require anything more difficult than unplugging, replugging, and rebooting your modem, and most guards don’t even require that. You do, however, have to be sure you get the right size to fit.
Full coverage of the router
If you get the right size, you will have optimal attenuation of your its radiation. You may be concerned about leakage of radiation at the back where cables pass out. Just buy a larger router guard and move it so it’s entirely behind mesh.
How Much Radiation Does a Router Shield Block?
They should block at least 90 percent.
Here’s another way to understand that figure: If you stand very close to a router, you may receive as much as 3000 microwatts per square meter in radiofrequency radiation, 100 times the safe dosage of radiofrequency for constant exposure.
But if you block 90 percent of the radiofrequency radiation output, and you stay at least 1 meter (approximately three feet) away from your it, you will get no more than 30 microwatts per square meter of radiation, which has no effects on your body or the bodies of your children and pets.
Even with protection, you should avoid direct contact with your router for more than six minutes at a time.
Wifi router guard FAQs
Q. How can I make my own Wifi router guard?
A. The simplest way to make your own Wifi router guard is to wrap it in TitanRF fabric? Here are the steps:
- Measure your its length, height, and width.
- Then do a little math to figure out how big a piece of TitanRF fabric you will need to wrap your router’s top, sides, and bottom. You will need a piece of fabric that is twice the width of your router plus twice the height of your router wide, and twice the length of your router plus twice the height of your router long. For instance, if it measures 12 inches long, 9 inches wide, and 4 inches tall, the absolute minimum dimensions of cloth you will need to cover it will be 24 plus 8 or 32 inches long and 18 plus 8 or 26 inches wide. TitanRF fabric comes in squares larger than this, so you won’t usually have to worry about taping fabric together. (Never solder TitanRF fabric, you will burn the cotton fiber holding it together.)
- Then just wrap your router in the cloth, taping the cloth around any cables r cords.
Welding stainless steel is a specialized skill, so we don’t recommend you try to make a box-style Faraday cage for your router unless you are very familiar with welding.
Q. How can I protect myself from my Wifi router without using a router cover?
A. There are several simple ways you can shield yourself from EMF from your router while still enjoying the freedom of a wireless Internet connection.
One approach is simply to turn your it off when you are not using the Internet. If you live alone, this is probably a workable solution. And if you have children who spend too much time on the Internet or whose Internet use you want to supervise, simply turning it off both takes care of Internet access and reduces exposure to radiofrequency radiation.
You may still want to use a locking feature to limit your children’s access to the Internet.
Another approach to reducing the impact on your health is to place it as far away as possible from the part of your home where you use your computers and as far away as possible from sleeping rooms, particularly for small children and small pets.
The amount of radiation your body receives falls off exponentially the farther you are located away from your router. Simply keeping the it 12 feet away instead of 3 feet away reduces your radiation exposure by a factor of 16.
You can limit radiation exposure by not adopting 5G as soon as it is available, or at least not until you have a guard. The higher the frequency, the greater the radiation exposure.
But the surest way to limit your exposure to Wifi radiation is to use Ethernet instead of a wireless modem: No modem, very limited radiofrequency radiation.
Q. How far from a Wifi router is safe?
A. The greatest-danger zone for routers is the first meter (about the first three feet) from the device. If you can simply stay a meter away from a it all the time, except when you are turning it off, turning it on, are adjusting it, you will eliminate about half of your risk of biological damage from the device. Ideally, you need to be about 20 feet or more (6 meters or more) to reduce health risk. But as far as you can go and still get an acceptable signal is always ideal.
In a 5G world, router guards are essential for maintaining good health. And in apartment living situations, placing protection around your router is simply being a good neighbor. Options exist for every budget and every interior design. There is no reason you need to expose yourself, your family, your pets, and your neighbors to unhealthy levels of radiofrequency radiation.
Continue reading: How Much Radiation a Laptop Emits (and what to do about it)