If you are looking for the best cell-phone booster for rural areas, you are on the right path. In this article, you will learn how to get a good signal in the wilderness with a convenient signal booster, far away from the nearest telephone tower. You will have no dead zones and the signal strength will be sufficient in any survival situation. Read on to dig the details.
Can you imagine your life without a little thing called a “cell phone”? Most likely, you can’t. And there is nothing bad about it, really. We all are used to living in a world of mobile networks and cell phones. In a way, it made us dependent. But what’s the big deal, some would say?
Being dependent on cell phones is no worse than being dependent on other technological conveniences of modern life, right? After all, that’s what progress is about – it makes our everyday life easier. And we get used to such positive changes quite fast. This is all true, and the progress is really about all that, but that is the downside of it – we are dependent indeed.
Picture this, your cell phone signal gets weaker, and then it’s gone. Feeling lonely yet? Getting nervous? Feeling detached from your loved ones, your friends, and the rest of the world? Starting to get uncomfortable and unsafe?
Losing a cell phone signal can really get that bad. If there is no cell signal, we can’t call, we can’t send a text message, can’t check on weather reports or navigate our route, we can’t even pay via a cell phone. It seems like we can’t do anything if the outside signal is lost.
It gets even scarier if having a cell phone signal is a matter of survival. A cell phone is not the best of emergency communication devices to start with, but at least if there is still a cell signal, you can find help or stay in touch with the outer world. When the signal’s gone, you’re left alone by yourself and your problems.
That is why it is so important to get a cell phone booster – a device that improves cell phone signal strength. Many people choose to get signal boosters not only for survivalist purposes but as a means of cell signal boosting for rural areas and other remote areas living too far from cell towers.
Read our article, and you will find out more about cell phone signals and how to boost them. We will also tell you about the best three signal boosters on the market and how to choose the best cell phone signal booster for yourself.
- But before that, make sure you bookmark our Camping Essentials guide on twenty-one camping items you will definitely need.
Why Do You Need a Signal Booster?
First of all, you’re going to need a signal booster if you live far from the central part of a coverage area. For example, you will definitely need a signal booster for rural areas. In such remote areas, cell towers may be installed too far away from your location, so a signal boost for your cell phone may be essential.
Another thing is living off the grid and trying to get self-reliant. A signal booster works fine for survivalist or prepper purposes. It will come in handy if you’re hiding out in your emergency shelter and there is not a single cell tower in sight, but you still need to get through to the outer world. In this case, to get a stronger signal, a high-quality cell phone booster will be just perfect.
If you’re seriously into emergency preparedness, our recommendation is to get a cell booster for your bug-out-bag or your bug-out-vehicle so you could have a strong in-vehicle signal while you’re moving around or escaping to your shelter far away from the coverage area.
While cell phones are not the best option for emergency communication, especially during a worst-scenario event, they are still fine for everyday use. They will work great if there is still a network connection. And we don’t say that you just have to dump your cell phone in favor of a ham radio setup. Our idea is that even if you don’t mind about survivalist stuff, you should get a signal booster. After all, you never know when and where you’re going to need to boost cell phone signal quality.
Read on to find out more about the best signal boosters for rural areas, cars, and offices.
Measuring Cell Phone Signal Strength
Wait up and take your time answering this question:
- Are you sure you have a weak cellular signal in your area?
Because if you’re not and your area has a next to perfect cell signal quality, you are at risk of wasting time and money on a useless purchase. But how do you measure a cellular signal at your home or office? Well, you will need your cell phone to do that.
Most modern smartphones are equipped with a field test function. This mode will let you run an outside signal strength test to see any signal problems in your area. The test will show outside signal strength quality in decibels (not bars), so mind that.
Turning the field test mode on is different for various smartphone models. Our recommendation is to Google how to do that on your device. But if you use an iPhone, here’s a quite how-to video for you:
Now that you have found your way with turning field test mode on, what do you do next? You will have to read them properly.
The test uses a decibel logarithmic scale. This means that with -80dB signal strength, it is ten times stronger the -90dB. So mind that and don’t be confused with the negative numbers – they are supposed to be like that. So the “lower” the number, the stronger the singular strength is. Simply put, -80 is way better than -90.
So as soon and you’re through with signal testing, and you know that there are problems receiving cell signals in your home or office, it’s time to do something about it.
Read on, and you will learn how what causes a weak cell phone signal and how you can fix it.
Amplifying Outer Signal Strength
If you a weak cell phone signal due to your house’s construction or because you live in a rural area, there is virtually nothing you can do to increase the signal. To improve cell phone connection quality, you will have to amplify your cell phone signal using a cell phone booster.
But there is one thing you should remember:
- A cell phone booster only amplifies the cell phone signal, but it cannot create it.
That is why, before buying a cell phone booster, we highly recommend running a mobile connection test. If it shows that your location is out of coverage area and there is no cell signal to boost in the first place, there is no sense in purchasing a signal booster.
But if there is a signal but it’s too weak to provide a strong connection so you can’t make long phone calls or send text messages, buying a cell phone booster will be a good idea.
So the bottom line is:
- With no cell signal at all, not even the best cell phone booster will help.
For such cases, we would recommend alternative solutions. For instance, you could try IP telephony that will involve the Internet connection.
- Make sure you bookmark our Camping Essentials guide on twenty-one camping items you will definitely need.
How Do Cell Phone Signal Boosters Work?
Now it’s just about time we shed some light on how cell phone signal boosters work.
Think of a signal booster as your personal cell tower right at your home. This device is designed to increase the signal gain of your mobile phone. A booster will get the cell phone signal in and out, delivering it to the nearest cell tower.
A booster typically has a three-part construction that includes an outside antenna, an inside antenna, and a signal amplifier.
1) An outside antenna is installed outside your house. It is placed in the location with the strongest mobile signal. This location could be a roof or a spot at any other outside part of your house. Quite often, an outside antenna is installed near a window.
Remember that antennas differ in design. Some of them can receive and send signals in all directions and are called omnidirectional. Such models are also called multi-carrier antennas because they can connect to towers and carriers in multiple locations.
Another type of outside antenna is directional. Such antennas must be installed strictly to face one particular direction. If you have a directional outside antenna, it must be set to receive and send signals to the nearest cell tower. Such a setup ensures the best connection quality: signal and distance-wise.
2) An inside antenna (or indoor antenna) is an antenna that receives the signal from the outdoor antenna and then sends it to your mobile phone. An inside antenna must be installed inside your home or office. Inside antennas are multidirectional, which means they broadcast and receive signals in all directions.
3) Signal amplifier (or a signal booster) is a device that receives the weak outgoing signal, strips it from noise, and then redirects it to the cell phone. It also receives the signal from the cell phone and then redirects it to the nearest cell tower.
- Have you checked out our Ultimate Camping guide yet? We advise you do it right after you’ve finished this post about the best cell phone signal boosters for rural areas, homes, and vehicles.
How to Choose a Cell Phone Booster?
Before you open your wallet to buy a signal booster, first of all, you should know what kind of booster you are looking for and what exactly you are expecting from your future signal booster. Just ask yourself these simple questions:
1) How strong is your “unboosted” signal?
Have you run a test of your cell signal quality? Do it before running to a local radio shack for a signal booster. Because if it turns out to be that there is no mobile signal at all, buying a signal booster will be useless. Again, cell signal boosters don’t create cell signals – they only amplify them.
2) How large is your weak cell coverage area?
This is important because the square footage of your low-signal cell coverage area will affect the type of a signal booster and its price. The larger the area is, the more powerful booster you will need. For instance, if you have to cover remote areas around your location like a garage or a barn. But if you need to boost cell phone signal quality only within your house of, for instance, fifteen hundred square feet, you will only need a 5 000 square feet phone booster. But for large homes or homes with remote areas, you will need to look for a more powerful signal booster.
3) How many cell phones do you plan to use?
Not every cell phone booster will provide higher-quality cell coverage for several devices at a time. So if you are going to use multiple mobile devices that will need an improved cell phone reception, you will have to get a more technically advanced cell signal booster. In comparison, signal boosters that work with only one device are more affordable.
4) Do you need a single-carrier or a multi-carrier cell signal booster model?
When choosing a signal booster, you will have to decide what type of model you need: a booster with an omnidirectional outside antenna or a cell phone booster with a directional antenna. Omnidirectional antennas a good for more than one carrier. A directional antenna will work fine with a single carrier.
5) Do you need a signal strength booster for your home or a vehicle?
If you need an outside signal booster for camping, your best bet is to go with a vehicle signal booster model—more on this type of cell phone signal boosters later in our article.
- Before we continue, make sure to bookmark our 78 item Survival Checklist, the ultimate emergency gear list you will ever need.
The Best Cell Phone Signal Boosters
So now that you know what type of cell phone signal booster you need, it’s right about time to see what the signal booster market has in store for you.
This section will look at the best cell phone signal boosters for rural areas, homes, offices, and vehicles.
The Best Cell Phone Signal Booster Kits for Vehicles
While traveling in your car, you will get across many remote areas with weak cell coverage. So you will have to make sure that even if there are no cell towers in sight, you will still be enjoying a decent cell phone reception. A vehicle signal booster is a perfect way to make your vehicle a moving cell phone tower.
Just as regular cell phone booster for homes and officers, vehicle signal boosters are comprised of the same components but are smaller in size. This is not only due to their portable design but is also an FCC requirement.
1) Wilson WeBoost Drive 4G-X
WeBoost Drive 4G-X by Wilson is a high-quality vehicle signal booster that provides a 32dB cell phone reception gain.
WeBoost Drive 4G-X is a multi-device model, so it is designed to work with more than one device and network. The installation is quite easy. The only thing you may find difficult is hiding cables so they would not hang around loosely. But as soon as you find your way with it, finding a secure location for antenna cables will no longer be a problem.
When installing, make sure you choose the optimal location for the antennas and the booster itself so that everyone in the car could enjoy maximum outside signal strength.
WeBoost Drive 4G-X is perfect for camping or traveling through rural areas or other remote areas where you may be having difficulties finding a strong cell phone signal. Practically, WeBoost signal booster’s users have reported that it’s capable of boosting cell signal up to three or four bars on your iPhone.
WeBoost Drive, 4G-X by Wilson, is one of the best vehicle cell phone signal boosters and is definitely worth checking out.
However, if you would like to compare WeBoost Drive 4G-X with other cell phone signal boosters, here is a couple of alternatives:
2) SureCall FusionTrek 4G LTE Signal Booster
SureCall FusionTrek cell phone signal booster for vehicles is an FCC and IC certified model that supports most US and Canada’s service providers.
SureCall FusionTrek’s main feature is a combo-antenna that houses the outside antenna and the signal booster in one device. Although the result is somewhat bulky, so you will have to find a secure spot for it in your car. Still, an average customer would find this design solution convenient.
When the antenna is installed, all you will have to do is connect its cable to a cell phone cradle and attach it to the dashboard’s vent. The installation of SureCall’s signal booster will not damage your car’s interiors and will take almost no time. You can even install this cell signal booster in a rented car.
But there are a few downsides to SureCall’s cell phone signal booster:
- For the best cell phone signal connection, you will have to keep your cell phone attached to the phone cradle or at least keep it close to it. So your best bet, in this case, is using a hands-free device, which is fine for an average customer. But the thing is, you will not be able to freely walk around your car and have a strong cell signal.
- This cell phone signal booster is only a one-device model. That means that you will boose the outside signal for only one cell phone at a time.
As a wrap-up, while not the best cell phone booster, SureCall’s 4G LTE signal booster is a high-quality, portable device for camping and traveling to remote areas with fewer cell towers. Although it has a couple of downsides, you will have to mind should you choose this booster.
The Best Cell Phone Booster for Homes and Offices
While there are many signal boosters for homes out there, we chose only one for our guide. This is not just the best signal booster for homes and offices but also a model representing the general idea of home cell phone boosters and how such boosters work.
WeBoost 4G LTE Booster by Wilson
4G-X booster is the best model in the Wilson Electronics’ WeBoost line. WeBoost home signal booster is said to provide thirty-two dB of gain, which is an excellent characteristic. Its square feet coverage is also impressive – WeBoost home 4G-X can provide outside signal strength boost for 7 500 sq ft, which makes this model perfect for large homes. Thanks to its characteristics, this 4G LTE booster may well also be the best cell phone booster for rural areas.
The WeBoost home signal amplifier is a multi-carrier model and can work with several cell phones at a time. So its capacity is enough to go around for the whole family.
WeBoost home cell phone signal booster has a traditional construction:
- an outside antenna,
- an inside antenna,
- an amplifier.
The installation is easy. It is best to install an outdoor antenna on the roof and then run its cable down into a house to connect it to an amplifier. Then you will have to connect the amplifier to an inside antenna.
The whole chain will work like that:
- The outdoor antenna will receive a weak outside signal;
- Then it will send it to the amplifier (or “the booster”);
- The cell phone signal booster part will amplify the signal to send it to the indoor antenna;
- After that, the indoor antenna will transmit the booster signal to all the zones in your home.
You may want to direct the WeBoost Home 4G LTE booster’s outdoor antenna towards the nearest cell tower for the best results.
Watch the video below to grasp an idea of the WeBoost home cell phone signal booster, its design, and specifics.
Wilson Electronics company is one of the top-rated companies to produce the best cell phone signal boosters. We believe that you may look no further if you need the best cell phone booster for rural areas. This booster is also an amazing option for large homes and business offices.
Feel free to visit the WeBoost home 4g LTE signal booster product webpage or contact the Wilson Electronics customer service team for more information.
But still, if you want more options, you may want to look at signal boosters from Phonelex or HiBoost. There are also simpler single-carrier solutions like those from the Cisco AT&T company. Among other models, one of the most prominent is Cel-Fi Go X by Nextivity.
- Our guide on cell phone signal boosters is almost through. But don’t be quick to leave our website. There is still a lot we can tell you. For instance, check out our Ultimate Camping checklist on the top-priority camping items you will definitely need.
A high-quality 3G & 4G LTE signal booster is a perfect solution for rural areas and large houses located in remote areas. It is also a good investment for a business, as well. Cell phone boosters are must-haves for preppers and survival enthusiasts. Because when you’re out there hiking or building a shelter, you will not have to worry about how far the nearest cell tower is.
But when you’re choosing your first 3G/4G signal booster, you have to remember that boosters don’t create a cell signal. They only amplify it. So before spending money on a top-rated signal booster for your home or office, we recommend running a field test to see if there is a cell signal in the first place. Because if your home is far off a coverage area so that there is no signal at all, any signal booster will be a useless waste of money.
How to Improve My Mobile Signal Strength in Rural Areas?
If you live in remote areas, such as rural areas, and your cell phone signal strength is low, you can improve it by using a cell phone signal booster.
A signal booster is a three-piece device that will receive a weak 3G/4G signal from the nearest cell tower, amplify it and then transmit it to your mobile phone.
Usually, a cell phone signal booster consists of three components: an exterior antenna, an interior antenna, and a cell signal amplifier. An outdoor antenna is installed on a roof or near the windows of your house. It receives the signal and then sends it to the booster. After that, when the weak signal is amplified, it goes to the indoor antenna located inside your house. In its turn, this antenna transmits the boosted 3G/4G cell signal to any place in your home.
When choosing the right booster for yourself, consider your house’s size because signal boosters differ in square feet coverage. There are boosters for large homes and boosters for smaller buildings. This is especially important for rural areas since a customer will need a strong signal inside a home and in remote areas around it, such as a barn or a field.
Besides, living in rural areas often involves a lot of driving. So our next recommendation is getting a vehicle signal booster. Such boosters just the same as home models but are designed to be installed and used in cars and trucks.
With a vehicle cell phone signal booster, you will mind driving around remote areas because you will still have a strong cell connection.
Do Cell Phone Signal Boosters Work in Rural Areas?
When choosing a 3G/4G cell booster for rural areas, you will have to mind that not always will a booster help. If you live in a rural area and are concerned about improving the outer signal strength, you must first make sure that there is cell coverage in your area in the first place.
To find that out, you will have to run a field test for your phone. If the test shows no connection, then chances are there is no need to purchase a booster. The thing is that 3G/4G boosters don’t create signals – they only improve them. So while signal boosters work in most rural areas, a booster may not help in some particular rural area if it is out of coverage.
What is the Best Cell Phone Booster for Rural Areas?
First of all, it is important to mention that cell phone boosters divide into two main categories:
- Home signal boosters;
- Vehicle signal boosters.
So if you’re choosing a booster for rural areas, you will have to decide whether you’re planning to improve cell signals in fro your home or your vehicle while you’re driving.
Among the best home signal boosters for rural areas are:
1) WeBoost 4G-LTE. It may well be called the top-rated home signal amplifier that works perfectly for home and business use. WeBoost 4G LTE gives almost a thirty-two dB signal gain and supports multiple cell service providers. This booster will also work with several mobile devices simultaneously.
2) SureCall Fusion4Home. This home booster model is perfect for a mid-sized home. SureCall Fusion4Home boosts 3G/4G signals on the area up to 5 000 square feet. The booster is FCC approved and supports all carriers.
3) CEL-Fi GO X by Nextivity. It is another popular signal booster for home and business that amplifies 3G, 4G, and LTE signals. Cel-Fi Go X will work fine for rural areas and as well as for office buildings in remote urban areas, improving the signal strength for areas up to 12 500 sq ft. This square footage makes Cel-Fi Go X one of the most powerful home signal boosters for rural areas.
4) At&T MicroCell by Cisco. This is a wireless signal booster. AT&T booster has a coverage range of 5 000 square feet and will work great for home and office. But to operate it you will need a broadband internet connection.
The best vehicle signal booster for rural areas is:
WeBoost Drive Reach. Another Wilson Electronics model, WeBoost Drive Reach, is a vehicle cell amplifier that works with all US carriers and is ready to boost the 5G signal. WeBoost Drive Reach meets all the FCC standards and is perfect for rural areas. With the Drive Reach mobile amplifier, you will not have to worry about losing the signal.
Are Cell Phone Signal Boosters Worth It?
The short answer to the question “Are cell phone booster worth it?” is “Yes, they are.” Cell phone boosters work fine in remote areas providing signal amplification where it is needed. The only thing a customer must keep in mind that not even the best signal booster will make a cell signal out of nothing. In other words, they will not work for areas with no network service at all. So before buying a booster, you must make sure that your area has a signal to boost.