Your ‘Christmas Vacation’ Lights Bonanza Could Be Slowing Down Your Wi-Fi Network

We get it, you're the king of the block when it comes to Christmas lights and decorating for the holiday season. Everyone in the neighborhood knows it, everyone except Bob from across the street. He's new and he's been stocking up on strings of lights and glowing yard stands. Now you have to up your game and put Bob in his place, but in doing so, don't be surprised if your wireless network suffers.

That's the warning from Ofcom, the communications regulator in the U.K. Ofcom released a new mobile application designed to test in-home Wi-Fi connections and in the accompanying announcement, U.K.'s communications regulator lists several examples of products that could interfere with and degrade wireless signals.

Christmas Lights

"It could be down to something as simple as interference from other electronic devices, such as a microwave oven, baby monitor, a lamp - or even Christmas fairy lights," Ofcom said.

According to Ofcom, wireless broadband might not be firing on all cylinders in more than a quarter of a million homes and offices across Wales, and in more than five million U.K. homes. In many cases, it's because of how Wi-Fi is set-up in the house.

Ofcom Wi-Fi Checker

The organization didn't specific any stats for the U.S., but if it's true that common household items like baby monitors and Christmas lights are interfering with wireless signals in the U.K., then it stands to reason the same would true everywhere else.

If you want to check the health of your own wireless network, Ofcom's Wi-Fi Checker is free to download for iOS (here) and Android (here).