I live in an apartment and my landlord who lives in the apartment below me agreed to share internet with me but the router he uses has a terrible Wifi signal, I've tried using a Wifi extender/repeater but I sometimes get lag spikes in games and I think it may be due to the 2 bar signal sent by his router.

My question would be; is it possible to use a powerline adapter from his apartment to mine? I pay my own Electricity bill and he pays his own, would it work? I'm not sure how it works, would somebody be able to answer me?

Thanks a lot.

  • If it's possible entirely depends on the wiring of the apartment. There is no way for us to say one way or another. If you have your own power bill separate from the owners then it's likely it won't be possible. Ask the owner, and buy whatever you purchase, that has a good return policy. – Ramhound Aug 1 '16 at 4:34
  • OP, is there a problem with the top-voted answer here? If not, please accept it. – einpoklum - reinstate Monica Sep 30 '16 at 7:07
  • somehow I couldn't accept it before, now I can – Sartigan Oct 1 '16 at 0:13

I'm sorry to inform you that it wouldn't work.

Power line adapters need to be connected to the same internal circuit. Any electronics components put in between, including an electrical panel, would drastically degrade (or block) the signal.

Passing an Ethernet cable is usually the best solution. This could be as simple to do as drilling a hole in your floor.


From what I've read on the internet, it should be possible. But do keep in mind that anyone else that uses a PLA system like you will be able to also share your landlord's internet the same way. A PLA system basically shares the wiring that used to power the apartment complex, and if there are a bunch of others using PLA systems, then your speeds might still be very bad. After you install the powerline adapters, make sure you use the builtin encryption to keep others from gaining access to your network, there's a reason it exists.

Edit: I found some good information here:

11. How far do powerline networks reach? It's hard to find a good answer to this. One thing that is a given is that powerline networks won't work across transformers. This usually prevents your neighbor's powerline network from connecting to yours. But in apartment buildings there is definitely a chance of your network reaching beyond your unit. So you should take the steps outlined in Question 13 to ensure your network is private. As for distance within your home, some sources quote 300 meters, while others say 200. NETGEAR's powerline FAQ takes an area approach and quotes "5000 square feet or less". In general powerline networking should work in a typical home or apartment and might even work to provide Ethernet to a separate garage or outbuilding, if the distance isn't too far and it is on the same electric service.
  • 3
    Since it sounds like they have separate meters, the chances of getting any good signal across that many junctions would be pretty low. – Mark Stewart Aug 1 '16 at 1:29
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    You obviously haven't had to provide support to people with those or tried them yourself. In a good percentage of the cases, it doesn't even work on separate circuits withing the same home. – Julie Pelletier Aug 1 '16 at 1:58
  • I have three in my house right now, on two separate circuits, and they work fine. I have had problems in the past with them, their speeds would die if I tried to use more than three at a time. Like with wireless, it all depends on the house and numerous other factors. Using a blanket statement that state they're no good is like attaching a wireless router to the main circuit breaker and claiming that wireless can't work anywhere else in the house due to poor signal. – Blerg Aug 1 '16 at 2:10
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    They're not as reliable as ethernet, and much less reliable and troubleshootable as wireless (which is saying that they're nearly useless). Add the cost of two plugs... OP doesn't want non-connectivity, does he? – user400344 Aug 1 '16 at 2:15
  • They're not as reliable as ethernet, but they're way more reliable than ethernet that doesn't exist. – Peter Hanley Nov 1 '17 at 15:21

Buy two cheap 802.11 high-speed routers (supported by openwrt if you want convenience), two directional antennas and make one a client to the other. Most of those powerplug ethernet things fail miserably below spec'ed speeds. Two small yagis will minimize interference. With openwrt you can add extra radios. Bear in mind that on 2.4GHz you should consider only ch 1, 6, 11-13. With yagis you can punch through walls on 5GHz no problem, so consider using that for your PTP link, and 2.4GHz for your apartments. Sorry if off-topic, but I tried powerplug ethernet and ended up doing what I just described instead.

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