How to Fix Wi-Fi Connection Problems

The wireless router that connects your computer and other Wi-Fi enabled devices to your wireless network may experience problems that impede your ability to access the network or connect to the Internet. These problems can include your computer or device not being able to detect your router on the wireless network, not being able to connect to the Internet or your router turning off unprompted. In most cases, a bit of troubleshooting can get your router back up and running, and get you back online.

Woman working at home with laptop computer
Troubleshoot your wireless router problems, and get back online.
credit: Jupiterimages/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images

Computer Cannot Find Router

Step

Connect an Ethernet cable from your computer to the router’s LAN port. Click "Start | Control Panel | Network and Internet | Network and Sharing Center | Manage network connections."

Step

Right-click the icon for the network adapter, and then click "Enable." Enter an administrator password or provide confirmation, if prompted.

Step

Reset the network adapter if the above steps do not resolve the issue. Repeat Step 1, right-click the icon for the network adapter, and then click "Disable." Enter an administrator password or provide confirmation, if prompted.

Step

Right-click the network adapter's icon again, and then click "Enable." Enter an administrator password or provide confirmation, if prompted. Your network adapter is now reset.

Router Will Not Connect to the Internet

Step

Unplug the Ethernet cable that connects your router to the modem, and then disconnect the router's power cable.

Step

Disconnect the modem from the Internet connection, and then unplug its power cable.

Step

Wait a few minutes, and then reconnect your equipment beginning with your modem: connect the modem back to the Internet connection, plug in its power cable, and then wait until all the lights on your modem are lit up before repeating the process with your router. Plug in the Ethernet cable, and then the power cable. Once all the lights on your router are turned on, you should be able to connect to the Internet.

Router Is Powering Off Due to Overheating

Step

Ensure that your router’s cooling vent is unobstructed.

Step

Use compressed air to clean your router and prevent dust buildup from causing overheating.

Step

Consult your router’s user guide to determine if it has energy conservation settings that automatically turn your router off after a set number of hours.