Ever have to cycle your router when the home Wi-Fi network gets finicky? I do. But I also avoid the switch-off if at all possible. Though I could be using less energy by powering the router down when not in use, I’m irrationally convinced that fooling with it too much will break the thing. As it turns out, whether or not to leave the router on is a common broadband question, so I thought I’d pass along this tip from the UK-based thinkbroadband site.
In short, if you’re going to be away from home for more than eight hours, go ahead and power the router down.
There are two potential issues with shutting off your router. First, if your device is remotely managed by a service provider (as is the case with most telco CPE and will soon be the case with cable CPE), turning it off too often can suggest that your line is unstable. However, an eight-hour window shouldn’t cause any problems. Second, it is possible that too much switching on and off could shorten the life span of your router. However it’s also possible for your router to be damaged by a power surge, which is more likely if the router is left on all the time.
Moral of the story: be a little greener. Turn off that router when you can.