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Using Your Own Router With The Ring Alarm Pro (Possible?)

The Ring Alarm Pro subscription plan and alarm system offer a lot of security features for smart homes. These devices are a great way to get backup internet and power, as well as protecting your home. However, are you really stuck using the built-in router with the Ring Alarm Pro? This is what Ring’s official advice seems to be, after all. The short answer is…

You can use your own router with the Ring Alarm Pro. This does mean sacrificing some of the Ring Protect Pro features (like 24/7 backup internet), but you don’t have to use the included router as your primary internet gateway. You can even incorporate the Ring Alarm Pro into an existing mesh network.

Let’s see what we can do about using the Ring Alarm Pro base station with an existing mesh network.

A Quick Guide To The Ring Alarm Pro

Marketing image of the Ring Alarm Pro base station
Marketing image of the Ring Alarm Pro base station

The Ring Alarm Pro is the latest-gen base station that’s required for running a Ring Alarm system. This is the upgraded version of the standard Ring Alarm base station.

You can buy a Ring Alarm Pro base station as a way to upgrade your existing Ring Alarm system, or you can purchase this with one of Ring’s package deals. These package deals are a great way to get all the essential pieces of a Ring Alarm system while saving a little money in the process.

The big advantage to getting the Ring Alarm Pro paste station upgrade is the included Eero 6 Wi-Fi router. This router supports up to 900 Mbps connections and can cover up to 1,500 feet. This is a solid choice for homes and apartments that don’t already have a wifi router.

Before we go much further, we should take a closer look at this Wi-Fi router that comes included with Ring’s Alarm base station.

What Is The Eero Router?

Eero routers are a brand of Wi-Fi mesh router that are integrated into some of Ring’s technology. You can find an Eero router inside of every Ring Alarm Pro base station. Amazon (who also own Ring) purchased Eero back in 2019, so a sync-up between Ring and Eero products was long overdue.

The benefit of Eero routers is that you can buy multiple Eero routers, and ‘mix’ them together to form what’s known as a Wi-Fi mesh network. This provides much greater Wi-Fi coverage around your home.

However things get a little tricky when we look at the fact that there are several generations of the Eero 6 router – and a network is only as strong as the weakest link. This means that if you have the slowest Eero 6 router in your network, this will bottleneck its speeds and performances slightly.

And unfortunately, only the base Eero 6 comes inside of the Ring Alarm Pro base station. Let’s take a look at the two upgraded models of the Eero router.

Eero 6 Pro

An Eero Pro 6 Wi Fi router
An Eero Pro 6 Wi Fi router

The Eero 6 Pro represents a major upgrade over the base model. The form factor is slightly larger, but the Eero 6 Pro incorporates much more sophisticated Wi-Fi mesh technology.

Most users will notice the most significant part of this upgrade in terms of performance. The Eero 6 Pro can handle speeds of up to 1 gig per second (even when multiple Eero 6 Pros are used to form a mesh network), and covers a range of up to 2,000 feet. All in all, this is just a much more powerful version of the standard Eero 6.

Eero 6

The Eero 6 is a cut-down version of the Eero 6 Pro. Whilst the Eero website says that the Eero 6 has max speeds of up to 900 Mbps, the actual Wi-Fi speed will go down to 500 Mbps when you run multiple Eero 6 devices in a network mesh.

In other words, your maximum Wi-Fi speeds will almost be halved with the Eero 6 (compared to the Eero 6 Pro). This might not matter for some people – 500 Mbps is still very, very fast after all – but it’s worth knowing.

Why This Matters: Remember that the Ring Alarm Pro contains an Eero 6, not an Eero 6 Pro. This means that if you use the Ring Alarm Pro as the ‘starting point’ of your home network, and then add extra Eero points onto it (to form a mesh network), your home’s Wi-Fi speeds will cap out at 500 Mbps.

Eero 6e

The Eero 6e Pro is Eero’s attempt to jump into Wi-Fi 6e game, a standard that builds on Wi-Fi 6 with some extra stability and speed enhancements.

The Eero 6e offers a wired connection that delivers speeds over 2 gigs per second and a Wi-Fi connection that has speeds over 1.3 gigs per second. This is lightning-fast Wi-Fi potential.

The Eero 6e is also designed to help you build a mesh network. These routers feature satellite routers that you can place throughout your home to build a mesh network. Adding one satellite router extends the range to up to 4,500 feet while adding two satellites can extend the range to over 6,000 feet.

The fact that there are some pretty significant upgrades to the basic Eero 6 is already giving us some compelling reasons to not use the Ring Alarm Pro as your main router. However, what happens when you use a different router?

Does The Ring Alarm Pro Really Need To Be The Primary Router?

The Ring Alarm Pro does not technically need to be your primary router. It comes with a built-in bridge mode that you can use kind of like a Wi-Fi range extender. However, when you don’t use the Pro as your primary router, you lose out on a lot of Ring Protect Pro subscription features like 24/7 backup internet – and local recording with Ring Edge might not work either.

So you have a choice: you can either use the Ring Alarm Pro as your primary router and keep those extra features, or if they aren’t useful to you, you could keep the Alarm Pro as a secondary router – and this will work fine too.

You should be able to achieve this simply by plugging an Ethernet cable into your existing router, and running this to your Ring Alarm Pro:

How to use a Ring Alarm Pro alongside your existing router
How to use a Ring Alarm Pro alongside your existing router

This will then give you two Wi-Fi networks, which usually works fine – but you can disable the Wi-Fi network on one of your routers if you find that you get interference.

What Happens When The Ring Alarm Pro Isn’t The Primary Router

When you don’t use the Ring Alarm Pro is your primary router you’re going to lose out on some of the Protect Pro subscription features. The two main features you lose out on are the 24/7 internet backup which runs thanks to a cellular connection inside of the Ring Alarm Pro, and the local recording feature.

The trade-off here really depends on your home’s Wi-Fi setup and what you need from these devices. The local recording feature has some utility depending on your security needs, but if you’re mostly after alerts or notifications you can do without those features.

The 24/7 internet backup feature is particularly useful for your alarm system. This gives you – and the rest of your home – internet functionality even when your internet goes down. However, this can incur additional costs and might not be the best option for certain security situations.

Weighing some of the bonus features you got with the Ring protect Pro plan against the advantages of using your own router is the heart of figuring out whether or not you want to use the Ring Alarm Pro as your primary router.

Why You Might Not Want A Ring Alarm Pro As Your Primary Router

A mesh WiFi point in my kitchen
A mesh WiFi point in my kitchen

Now let’s get into a few of the reasons why you might not want to use your Ring Alarm Pro as your primary router.

The first thing we need to talk about is security. It might seem strange that using the Ring Alarm Pro as your primary router could cost you home security, but there are a few considerations to keep in mind.

This prevents you from separating your smart home technology from your general internet usage. This gives hackers plenty of new attack vectors for going after your smart technology. Keeping your smart devices on their own Wi-Fi network is one of the best ways to protect your smart technology from hacking.

There are also faster Wi-Fi routers out there. The Eero 6 is an impressive router, but it’s getting a little dated – both the Eero 6 Pro and 6e are better. Being stuck using that Wi-Fi router is already slowing you down and it’s only going to get slower as the years go by.

If we’re being honest, being stuck using a built-in Wi-Fi router takes a lot of the fun out of putting together your own smart home network. A lot of smart devices are sold as prepackaged products from big-name retailers, but doing a little DIY work is how smart home technology started.

Being able to pick your own router and put together your own mesh network lets you fine tune your smart home.

How To Use Ring Alarm Pro With An Existing Router

You’ve got a couple of options for using your Ring Alarm Pro with an existing router or mesh network.

  1. Firstly, if you already have Eero routers, you could use the Ring Alarm Pro as another point on your Eero mesh network. Yes you will lose some features (as covered earlier), but this will still improve your home’s Wi-Fi reach.
  2. Secondly, at its core, the Ring Alarm Pro is essentially just a base station for the Ring Alarm system, combined with your standard Wi-Fi router. This means that you can use it just like you could any other Wi-Fi router. It doesn’t necessarily need to be the gateway router for your entire system, but it could just be another router all together.

In other words, you could have your existing Wi-Fi router (which is probably hooked up to a cable coming from your wall or floor). Then you could run an Ethernet cable from this router, into your Ring Alarm Pro.

At this point, you then essentially have two separate Wi-Fi networks in your house: one from your existing Wi-Fi router, and one from the Ring Alarm Pro.

This is often ‘frowned upon’ because it can potentially cause Wi-Fi interference, but as long as the Wi-Fi channel is different on both, you shouldn’t have any real issues. I have two separate Wi-Fi networks and this works fine.

The picture below shows how I have this setup (sorry about the bad cable management!) – while I don’t show a Ring Alarm Pro below, the “Secondary mesh Wi-Fi router” could easily be the Ring Alarm Pro and it would work just as well:

An annotated picture of my home Wi Fi network which has two separate Wi Fi networks and routers
An annotated picture of my home Wi Fi network which has two separate Wi Fi networks and routers

Making The Most Of The The Eero 6

There’s one thing you could do to make the most of the aging Eero 6 router inside of the Ring Alarm Pro.

You can use the base station and its dedicated router as a way to create a separate Wi-Fi network for all of your Ring devices. This will give you an added layer of security as well as keeping your primary internet connection free from clutter.

Your Ring Alarm system provides an important role in your smart home ecosystem. It’s also going to need to use bandwidth. You don’t want to accidentally have your gaming and media streaming conflicting with the video uploading going on with your Ring Alarm system.

About Tristan Perry

Tristan Perry is a software developer who is passionate about tech gadgets, DIY and housing. He has therefore loved seeing smart homes hit the mainstream. Tristan also has an academic background (in Math & Computer Science), and so he enjoys digging into the technical ways that smart home devices work.

Tristan owns close to a dozen Amazon Echo devices, way too many Philips Hue bulbs and lightstrips, a boat-load of Ring Cameras and Doorbells... and a bunch of other smart home devices too (from Reolink, Google Nest, GLEDOPTO and others).

12 thoughts on “Using Your Own Router With The Ring Alarm Pro (Possible?)”

  1. Excellent article,
    So I have a eero 6 pro router for my house now. Can I use the ring alarm pro as another wifi system and still not miss out on some of the features that you mentioned you would lose by hooking it up to my current mesh system.

    thank you

    Reply
    • Thanks! Yes, you could also do that – i.e. have two separate Wi-Fi networks. Many routers instruct you to turn off other Wi-Fi sources (i.e. use the other router in ‘modem mode’), to prevent potential Wi-Fi interference, but as long as the Wi-Fi channel is different on both, you should be fine.

      Reply
      • Just so I understood what you’re saying…i keep my eero 6 pro plugged into my att router, allowing it to drive my main Wi-Fi network as it does today. Then I plug a second cable from the ring pro to the att router and create a new network name that I connect all my ring stuff to?

        Reply
        • You shouldn’t need to run another cable from the Ring Pro back to your ATT system – this can actually be quite bad from a networking perspective.

          The single Ethernet cable from your ATT system to your Ring Pro is sufficient. You can then use the WiFi network from your Ring Pro (and effectively forget that your ATT system exists).

          Reply
  2. Thanks for the helpful article! I have a pretty elaborate home network with a great router and access points, which I want to keep as-is and still get the most out of Ring Pro. Can you please elaborate on how I can use the base station and its dedicated router as a way to create a separate Wi-Fi network for all of my Ring devices? Will I just let the base station/eero do it’s thing, but connect all my non-ring devices to my current network?

    Reply
    • No problem! It makes sense to keep your Alarm Pro separate for your setup, yep. I have updated the article with some further information on how to do this, but you’re basically right – you can just hook up your Base Station to your existing router, and effectively have two Wi-Fi networks. You can then use whichever Wi-Fi network you want, but as you suspect, using your Ring Alarm Pro with your Ring devices could make sense due to the extra feature that you’ll get.

      Reply
  3. Thanks for the very informative article, I have a few quick questions as I actually just set up my Ring Pro this past weekend thinking I could use it for mesh and home security.
    I have AT&T fiber but they gave me one of the BGW210 modem/routers that doesn’t support gigabit speeds so my thought was that the Ring Pro. I put the router into pass through for this for now.

    1. If I was to try and set up 2 networks as you mentioned above by getting a separate Eero (or other mesh WiFi router) would I actually be taking advantage of the full gigabit speeds I should be getting?(at least in theory) Or would I be choking my bandwidth?

    2. If I want to my speeds/smart home options is that the best approach? This is my first smart home device but, I will likely add more and I have a 1900 sqft 3 story townhome with a rooftop that we stream movies and sports on, which was my main motivation for having a mesh network as the speeds on the rooftop were lacking.

    Reply
    • Glad you found the article helpful!

      Regarding your maximum speeds, the Eero 6 (which is what’s included in the Ring Alarm Pro) has a max 900 Mbps speed – but this gets reduced to 500 Mbps when it’s part of an Eero mesh (i.e. when you add extra Eero points onto the system). So that’s worth knowing if you plan on your Ring Pro being the ‘entry point’ to your home’s network.

      If you do use the Ring Pro as your entry point, though, another alternative is to run an Ethernet cable from your Ring Pro up to your rooftop (if possible). You can then buy a gigabit router, and plug this into the Ethernet cable. This router will then provide you with a brand new Wi-Fi network, capable of gigabit speeds for your movies and sports. Just make sure that you don’t use a CAT5 Ethernet cable, since this maxes-out at 100 Mbps.

      Reply
  4. In my area I am able to use the Verizon 5G home internet. I use the Ring Alarm Pro with EEVO. I was able to connect to the gateway as mentioned in article. I did not lose anything. Meaning I am able to connect to the internet via the Verizon gateway. All works perfectly. It appears that with the system having EEVO router connection works perfectly.

    Reply
    • Thanks for the comment Mike, that’s great to know. We’ve heard slightly different things (i.e. that some features have got lost, albeit not with that exact Verizon setup). Glad to hear that it’s worked fine for you, and that you have all the same features.

      Reply
  5. Thanks for all the info Tristan. Please consider adding a trigger warning before the picture of your home network.

    What’s your PO Box? I’ll send you some hook and loops.

    Reply
    • Thanks Aaron! Glad that the info helped, but fair point about the picture of my ‘interesting’ home network layout. I think that my home network would appreciate all the hooks and loops I could get – LOL!

      Reply

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