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What to do if WiFi is not working?

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In today’s interconnected world, we need a stable WiFi connection everywhere. People rely on the internet to remain connected for daily tasks such as work, communication, entertainment, and accessing information. However, instances arise when WiFi connections unexpectedly stop working; there can be a lot of factors that can affect a WiFi connection.

If you are wondering what to do if your WiFi is not working. This article discusses various solutions that you can perform to fix the issue.

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Basic troubleshooting methods

If your WiFi is not working, then we have explained a few basic troubleshooting methods that might help you resolve the issue.

Make sure your WiFi is On

It is possible that the WiFi is not working on your PC because it’s been turned off by mistake. To turn it on, click on the Globe icon, and then click on the WiFi icon in the menu.


Reconnect to the WiFi network

If you’re already using the correct WiFi network but can’t get online, try disconnecting from the network, wait for a bit, and then connect again. This could make your device reset its router connection and solve common problems.

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Make sure the Bluetooth is turned off

Your Bluetooth might be causing issues with your WiFi, especially if you’re using a 2.4GHz network. If turning off Bluetooth fixes the problem, consider switching your WiFi to a different band. To turn off Bluetooth, click on the Notification panel and then the Bluetooth icon.


Restart device

A simple yet effective troubleshooting method is to restart your device. This action can help clear temporary glitches and refresh the device’s system, potentially resolving any temporary issues.


Check if the WiFi is working on other devices

To determine why your WiFi isn’t working, try connecting to WiFi from a smartphone, tablet, or game console. If you can’t connect to these devices, the issue might be with your router or internet service provider.


Check Modem lights and connections

Different modems have various indicator lights that signal different statuses. Consult your modem’s user manual to interpret these lights and identify abnormalities. Ensure that all cables connecting your modem and router are securely plugged in.

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Restart Your Router

Often, a simple router reboot can resolve many WiFi-related issues. Locate your router and unplug it from the power source. Wait for about 10 to 15 seconds before plugging it back in. Give the router a minute or two to restart, then try connecting to the WiFi network again.


Switch WiFi bands (2.4GHZ and 5GHz)

our router sends WiFi signals on two bands, 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. You can switch between these paths if you’re having issues. This can help you avoid problems caused by interference and reset the connection between your device and the router.

Usually, the 5 GHz network has 5G in its name. Each of these bands has its strengths and weaknesses. The 5 GHz WiFi is faster but doesn’t travel far. The 2.4 GHz WiFi travels further but is slower and can be affected by interference. So, if you’re far from the router, try the 2.4 GHz. If you’re close and want more speed, try the 5 GHz.


Use an Ethernet cable

Connecting your computer to the router can help in diagnosing your WiFi issue. Start by using an Ethernet cable to connect your computer and router. If you can’t open a website, attempt a direct connection to your modem. The issue might be with your internet provider if internet access still can’t get online.

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Advanced Troubleshooting methods

If the basic troubleshooting method did not work for you, try these advanced troubleshooting methods.

Scan for viruses and malware

Bad programs like viruses and malware can get into your devices and stop them from connecting to WiFi. If you have antivirus or malware tools, use them to scan your computer and eliminate these bad programs. This might help to get your WiFi working again. To do a quick scan, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Search for Virus and threat protection in the Windows search and click on the first result.

Step 2: Click on the Quick Scan button.


Disable VPN

If you’re using a VPN (virtual private network), try turning it off to check if that makes your WiFi work again. Sometimes, a VPN can stop you from getting to some websites. Also, if you’re connected to the wrong server, your devices might not connect to the internet.

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Disable third-party Antivirus

Having third-party antivirus software on your PC might cause problems with your computer’s WiFi. See if turning off the antivirus software in its settings helps. Then, check if your WiFi starts working again.


Position your router in a better place

The physical placement of your router can greatly impact its signal strength and coverage. Ensure your router is positioned centrally within your home, away from walls and obstructions. Electronic devices like cordless phones, microwaves, and Bluetooth devices can interfere with WiFi signals, so keep your router away from such sources of interference.


Run Internet troubleshooter

Running the internet troubleshooter will search for the problems with the internet connection and try to fix problems if found. To run the internet troubleshooter, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Press Windows + I keys and click on Update & Security.

Step 2: In the sidebar, click on the Troubleshoot option.

Step 3: In the Troubleshoot window, click on Additional Troubleshooters.

Step 4: Click on Internet Connections and then click on Run the troubleshooter.


Update Network drivers

You may encounter an issue with your WiFi if you have outdated Network drivers. To update Network drivers, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Press the Windows+X and tap on the Device Manager option in the dropdown menu.

Step 2: Double-click on the Network adaptors to expand it, and right-click on your network adapter, then in the dropdown menu, click on the Update driver.

Step 3: Select Search automatically for drivers, and Windows will automatically find and install available updates. 

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Update your device

If you haven’t updated your device in a while, it might not work well with the latest WiFi protocols. When you update your device, it will also fix many network settings that could be causing problems with your WiFi and stopping it from working properly.

Click here to know how to update Windows 10

Use the Command prompt to flush the DNS cache

Flushing your DNS cache will restart your computer’s memory of websites you’ve recently visited. Caching helps you go to websites faster, but sometimes it might get corrupted, making your browser take you to the wrong address.

To flush the DNS cache, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Type Cmd in the Windows search and click on the first result.

Step 2: Type in the command ipconfig /flushdns and hit Enter to reset DNS settings to default.


Reset Winsock

If your WiFi connection works, but you can’t get to any websites, you might have to reset the network adapters on your Windows PC. This will fix certain network settings on your computer that your web browser, email program, VPN, or firewall could have changed. To reset Winsock, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Type Cmd in the Windows search and click on the first result.

Step 2: Type the command netsh winsock reset and hit Enter. After the winsock command is completed type netsh int ip reset and hit Enter.

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Update the router’s firmware

Outdated router firmware can cause connectivity issues. Visit the router manufacturer’s website and check if there’s a firmware update available for your router model. Follow the instructions to update the firmware, which might improve your WiFi’s performance.


Reset the router to factory settings

If your WiFi router isn’t working, you can make it like new again by resetting it to its original settings. Remember that doing this will erase your WiFi names, passwords, and any other changes you made. So, before resetting, find your router’s default username and password.

To reset the router, press and hold the reset button for about 30 seconds or until you see the lights on the router blink a few times. This button is usually on the back, close to the power button. You might need a paper clip to press it.

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Reset the Network settings

If you have tried all the methods and none works for you, then the last resort is resetting the network settings. It will remove all the network adapters and the settings for them, and when you will restart the PC, it will reinstall the network adapter, and their settings will be set to default.

To reset the network settings, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Press Windows + I keys and click on Network & Internet.

Step 2: Scroll down on the right of the screen and click on the Network reset option

Once the reset is complete, restart your PC.

Also read: How to limit WiFi speed for specific users?

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Akash Singh

Akash is a law graduate who likes to go for bike rides on the weekends soul-searching for answers to his many existential questions. You can contact him here: [email protected]

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