How Construction Materials Attenuates Cellular Signals?

Cell Phone Service Booster
Cell Phone Service Booster
Cell Phone Service Booster
Cell Phone Service Booster

Quite often, people think that the drop in cellular connectivity at their home or office is due to bad network coverage. But this is not always true, as other factors can also cause this. For example, rain significantly attenuates cellular signals because water is a bad conductor of radio frequency signals. Likewise, construction materials have a similar effect, and this varies according to the type of material used. One of the effective ways to overcome this is to use a cell phone service booster.

The Effect Of Environment On Cellular Signal Attenuation

The attenuation of cellular signals by mother nature ranges from -5dB to -25dB, and the effect of rain is between -2dB to -5dB. Apart from this, the attenuation effect of trees and other foliage is between -1dB to -25db. This, when combined with the attenuation by construction materials can further weaken cellular signals resulting in poor network connectivity at home or office. In such a situation, people use a cell phone service booster to boost signal strength. It receives a weak outside signal with the outside antenna, boosts it with the amplifier, and broadcasts the boosted signal to your cellular phone.

The Attenuation By Different Construction Materials

Clear Glass

Most people do not know that glass bounces off cellular signals, i.e. radio waves. Without knowing this fact, people go to their windows or balcony doors in the hope of getting good signal reception. However, only keeping the windows open ensures good enough cellular signal strength. Besides, the attenuating effect of the glass is more evident in double or triple insulated glass windows used in colder climates. This is especially true for low emission windows that block out the outside elements to keep the inside of homes warm or cold. They can reduce the strength of cellular signals by up to -4dB.


The insulation used in walls for purposes like reducing flammability, water absorption, and mildew formation has the effect of decreasing cellular signal reception. One such material is sheetrock, and its signal attenuation effect is low compared to glass and brick. But this effect is more significant inside closed rooms with wall insulation as they are not part of an open layout. Foil-faced insulation underlayment used on the roofs to keep the insides warm has the negative effect of blocking out radio frequency signals, and it attenuates cellular signal reception by up to -2dB. So, when using insulation material at your home, ensure that it does not disrupt cellular signal reception.


Bricks are the most widely used construction materials, and unfortunately, they significantly attenuate cellular signals. This is because of two effects: the thickness of the brick, and the mortar used for binding them. Furthermore, the attenuation is compounded if supplementary materials like sheetrock or foil-faced insulation are used on the brick wall, and the reduction in signal strength can go up to -28dB. If the signal is weak is in your area, it can create a dead zone.

Different Types Of Wood

Different types of wood are used in construction, and their attenuation effect of cellular signals vary. Plywood used in most of the home and office framework and structures reduces signal strength by up to -6dB. Keep in mind that this varies according to the thickness of the plywood layer used. Furthermore, the signal attenuation is increased by up to -20dB if the plywood gets wet, and this is because water is a bad conductor of radio frequency signals.

The attenuation of cellular signals by wood depends on its density; for highly dense woods the attenuation is higher, and for softer wood like pine, the attenuation is low. Not only that, the foliage of trees lowers cellular signal strength. This is because the water in their structure with diluted electrolytes is a bad conductor of radio frequency signals. So, the presence of old and large trees near your home or residence increases the chances of creating dead zones.


Of all the construction materials, metals attenuate cellular signals the most, and this can range from -32dB to -50dB. This effect is observable inside houses with metal roofs, inside metal buildings like warehouses, or in the cabin of vehicles. Besides, if the outside signal is weak, there are higher chances for dead zones. The best way to overcome this and improve cellular signal reception is to use a cell phone booster for metal building or vehicle.

Resolving Bad Cellular Signal Reception

The ideal way to resolve bad cellular signal reception due to construction material is to use a cell phone service booster. Before installing the device, you must identify the exact cause of the attenuation of the cellular signal and optimize it accordingly to get the best performance. In cases such as glass in the windowpane or balcony weakening signal reception, you can opt for simple solutions like keeping them open.

These are the important points that you should know about the reasons for the attenuation of cellular signals.