Google WiFi can’t take the heat

TL;DR: Google WiFi pucks can’t take heat at all. If everything is setup right and the WiFi sucks make sure a puck isn’t hot.

The other night as I was laying in bed trying to go to sleep I heard my wife grumbling about the internet. I rolled over to find her staring at the TV frustrated. After I watched the Netflix spinner go on and on for about 5 minutes I grabbed my phone. I pulled up the speed test and set it loose. The results were heartbreaking, 3 down and 5 up … WTF! I have fiber even WiFi should be in the 200s. I switched apps and pulled up the Google WiFi app and started running tests. The download was so-so 600 and 800 and the mesh result was weak on point in the kitchen and laundry room. My bedroom has to get data jumped from both these so I figured I would go see what was wrong.

When I setup my mesh network I had made sure to plan the locations of the points based on coverage. I also made sure to test the network and got great results on the two points so what was up now.

When I got to my basement and checked my media rack ( yea I’m that big a nerd ) I found my Google WiFi with a white light sitting on top of a small 6 port switch were I left it. Visually everything looked fine and the white lights told me it was good. I was suspicious though because both the closer node and one that connected to it showed weak so I knew something was up. My first thought was to power cycle the puck ( fancy way of saying turn it off and back on ). When I picked it up to turn it off is when I noticed it. The unit wasn’t hot, but it was pretty warm. At that moment I kinda chuckled. I ran up popped in my freezer for a quick cool down and went back to re-arrange things to make sure it was on a cold surface. I setup it up with a spot on the back corner of a raid with much bigger fans than it needs which makes the metal cool. I grabbed the puck and plugged it in and waited. Sure enough PRESTO everything was reading great again and working fine.

It has now been a full 24 hours since I moved it and the speeds wired and wireless are notably faster. The concerning part is that the puck was not hot. It was just warm. My advice for anyone else using Google Wifi is to make sure you have your pucks in a cool place that gets no direct sunlight. I can only imagine the nightmare of trying to track down an issue if you have a puck that only gets direct sunlight a few times a day and starts to slow down…

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