There's nothing worse than freezing your latest binge-watching marathon due to home network issues or an outage. As soon as Wi-Fi stops working, many of us scratch our heads and stare blankly at our modems and routers. Don't let your home network scare you. Follow these simple steps to troubleshooting Wi-Fi or network issues to identify the culprit and get back to what's most important.
Step 1: When In Doubt, Shut Down and Unplug
You've heard it a thousand times before, but restarting your device (computer, Roku, PS4, etc.), router and modem can often solve flaky internet issues. Start by shutting down your device and then unplugging the power supply to your modem and router. Wait 3–5 minutes and then restart your modem, router and device, in that order. If you are still having internet connection problems, it's time to investigate further.
Step 2: Identify The Problem
Now's the time to pinpoint the problem with some network troubleshooting. It might be easy to stop at "the internet isn't working." Let's go deeper and look at what about the internet isn't working. Here are some questions to help you identify the problem.
- Do certain applications connect to the network? (Gmail works but Netflix doesn't)
- Can I connect if I plug in my device with an Ethernet cord?
- Can other devices connect to my network?
- Is my IP address correct? (check out our guide to configure your IP address)
If certain apps or programs connect, then the problem most likely involves a particular software/app. If a hardwire connection works, then there is most likely an issue with your router. If other devices are able to connect via Wi-Fi, then the problem may be a hardware issue with your device.
Step 3: Further Explore Your Network And Device
Take a step back and ask yourself if you (or any other user) have recently installed or uninstalled anything unusual within the past few days. Any unusual signs — an unwanted search bar or crashing program — could mean malware.
A simple scan with antivirus software may identify and fix the issue. We recommend Windows Defender for antivirus programs. Before or after the scan, locate and uninstall any suspicious-looking software.
Identifying the problem can go a long way in fixing your home network. If you're still unable to find a solution to your internet issues after some digging around, you may need to contact your internet service provider to schedule an in-house appointment.
Best Buy 2016-12-05T08:00:00+08:00