If you can’t seem to get a stable internet connection going, you may be frustrated and ask, “Why does my WiFi keep disconnecting?!”
Nowadays, an internet connection is a vital component of daily life. So much relies on an internet connection, so much so that even a brief disconnection can cause major issues. There are many reasons why you may be getting disconnected, such as network congestion, wifi range limitations, signal interference, and more.
If you want to figure out why your WiFi keeps disconnecting in Windows 10, our guide below will walk you through the most common reasons and the best ways to potentially resolve your issues. Let’s get right to it!
Why Does My WiFi Keep Disconnecting?: Common Causes
Your computer keeps disconnecting from WiFi, and you don’t know why. It’s probably driving you crazy, especially if you have pressing deadlines. Unfortunately, there are several reasons why your computer may keep getting disconnected. Some are simple, while others may require a fair amount of diagnostic testing to identify and extra work to resolve.
These common reasons include the following:
- Network Congestion – When too many devices connect to the same WiFi, the network can become congested. This congestion may slow connections or cause them to drop intermittently. Try disconnecting some unnecessary devices.
- Signal Interference – Your network may suffer signal interruptions due to physical barriers like walls or ceilings. WiFi signals can also suffer interference from other wireless devices.
- Modem/Router Issues – Your modem and/or router may need a restart or an update. Updating firmware may seem daunting but it is relatively simple, though in some cases, you may need assistance from your internet service provider. If the equipment is too old or malfunctioning, you may need to replace it entirely.
- Incompatible or Outdated Drivers – The WiFi adapter driver on your computer may need to be updated.
- Range Limitations – WiFi signals can only reach so far. If you only have one bar, disconnections are common and to be expected. Consider moving closer to your modem/router or extending your WiFi range with a repeater or mesh device.
- Power-Saving Features – Some computers may turn off the internet connection to save on power (or battery) when in power-saving mode. Turn off this setting and see if the problem gets resolved.
- ISP Problems – Sometimes, WiFi issues may be due to issues at your internet service provider (ISP). Check with your ISP to see if they are experiencing outages or interruptions. You can also ask them when they think things will return to normal.
- Network Settings – You may suffer intermittent disconnections if your network settings are configured incorrectly.
- Viruses or Malware – If your computer has a virus or is infected with malware, it may suffer issues with network connectivity.
Quick Checks You Can Do
“My WiFi keeps disconnecting!” If you find that you’re in the same boat, there are a few quick checks you can do before you start looking into more complex solutions.
If your internet disconnects randomly, first try some of the potential solutions below:
- On your computer, ensure that your wifi is set to on. You can also check if your router’s WiFi switch is on.
- Double-check to see if you’re connected to the correct WiFi, especially if multiple options are available.
- Check the back of your router and ensure that the cables are plugged into the correct ports.
- Look at the lights on your modem/router and ensure all the lights are green (or whichever color is standard for your device). An unusual color, such as a blinking red light, can signify a problem with your ISP. Contact your ISP and find out if the problem is with them. If this is not the case, consult your router’s manual to see how you can resolve the issue.
- Move closer to your router. Remove any items that may be causing interference. If you cannot move any closer, try using a WiFi range extender.
- If you can, try connecting via LAN/ethernet to see if the problem fixes itself. If you’re no longer getting disconnected, the problem is likely with your wireless signal.
- If you are using a wireless adapter dongle, ensure it is completely plugged in and working as intended. If you think the adapter dongle may be the issue, try using another one to see if the problem persists.
Related: How Can I See What Devices Are Connected to My Network?
WiFi Keeps Disconnecting? Fix It With These Methods
If your laptop keeps disconnecting from WiFi on Windows 10, there are a few things you can try to fix them. Before you do, make sure you back up your data and have access to an administrator account on your computer. Then, you can consider some of the methods below!
Method #1: Change Your Home Network from Public to Private
Incorrect WiFi settings can often cause connectivity issues and instability. On Windows 10 (or 11), one of the reasons may be that your network at home is set to public rather than private. You can fix this by changing your settings using the instructions below. But before attempting this method, ensure you are on a trusted network!
- On your taskbar, navigate to the system tray and click on your “Network & Internet” icon. It may be hiding if you can’t see it, so click on the up arrow to reveal any hidden items.
- Select the network you are currently connected to and click on “Properties.”
- Look for the heading “Network Profile” and change your setting to private instead of public.
Method #2: Check Your Power Management Settings
If your Windows 10 WiFi keeps turning off, it may be because of your power management settings. Some power-saving options can occasionally disable your WiFi adapter to reduce power consumption. To resolve this issue, follow the instructions below.
- While on your computer, navigate to your “Device Manager.” You can access your device manager from your quick links, which you can access with the Windows + X shortcut.
- Navigate to “Network Adapters” and expand that heading by clicking on the arrow.
- Locate your adapter and double-click on it.
- Click on the “Power Management tab” on the next window that pops up.
- Untick the box with the text “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power.”
- Click “OK” and then restart your computer.
Method #3: Update Your Drivers
If your computer’s wireless drivers are outdated, you may experience a variety of issues — including frequent disconnections. Thankfully, updating your drivers is generally painless, as in most cases, Windows will do most of the leg work for you. To update your wireless drivers, follow the steps below.
- Press the Windows + X shortcut to bring up your quick links and go to your “Device Manager.”
- Navigate to “Network Adapters” and expand that heading by clicking on the arrow.
- Double-click on your adapter to open the “Properties” window.
- On the next window, click on the “Drivers tab.”
- Locate the “Update Driver” button and click on it.
- Windows will prompt you on your preferred driver search method, asking whether you prefer to search for them automatically or browse your computer for a pre-downloaded driver. Click the option that tells Windows to “search automatically.”
- If Windows detects the driver update, follow the instructions provided. If Windows does not find the driver, check your modem/router’s manufacturer for possible updates and install manually.
- Once the drivers are updated, restart your computer.
Method #3: Reset Your WLAN Autoconfig
If your WLAN Autoconfig is set up incorrectly, you may experience unexpected wifi troubles. If this is the issue, the resolution is quite simple — just follow the steps below:
- Using your keyboard, press Windows + R, which will launch the “Run dialog.” In the text box, type “services.msc,” then hit “OK.”
- In the services window that opens up, search carefully for “WLAN Autoconfig.” Once you find it, right-click on the entry and select “Properties.”
- Under the “General” tab, look for “Startup Type” and change it to “Automatic.”
- Click on “Apply,” then press “OK” to close the window.
- Restart your computer and check whether you are still experiencing WiFi issues.
Method #4: Temporarily Turn Off Any Anti-Viruses
Although antivirus software can be incredibly helpful in protecting your computer from malicious files and bad actors, it can sometimes cause problems of its own.
Some antivirus software may cause your computer to run slowly by hogging resources. Some may even cause a slow internet connection, especially if they are hogging the bandwidth. And yes, you may also encounter WiFi connectivity issues due to antiviruses.
To check whether your antivirus software is the answer to the question, “Why does WiFi keep disconnecting?” conduct a simple experiment. Quit your antivirus and use your computer, as usual, to see whether the problems continue. If your disconnection issues resolve, you may need to fiddle with your antivirus settings or find a replacement.
Method #5: Check Your VPN
If you use a VPN to access the internet, your VPN may be causing your disconnection problems. VPNs can be beneficial, but sometimes the node you are connected to may be overloaded, causing bandwidth issues resulting in slow connections or disconnections.
Try temporarily turning off your VPN to see whether this is the issue. If you cannot turn off your VPN, try connecting to a different node or location and see if you continue to experience disconnections. Some VPNs will display server load and bandwidth, allowing you to choose an uncrowded location to connect to.
Method #6: Check with Your ISP
Sometimes, your disconnection issues may not be a problem with your WiFi — instead, they may be caused by problems with your internet service provider. If you notice that you are experiencing disconnection issues on many devices and not just your laptop, it may be time to call your ISP.
Ask your ISP whether they are experiencing downtime or any other service interruptions. You can also ask whether the line to your home is intact or needs repairing. Either way, your call will at least inform your ISP of potential issues in their system.
Method #7: Fix or Replace Your Equipment
If none of the methods above resolve your disconnection blues, the issue may be with your modem/router. Unfortunately, no modem or router is immune to problems. Your equipment may malfunction due to overheating, overloading, or even plain old age.
If you think the disconnections are happening because of your equipment, try addressing those issues first. Address overheating by moving your router to a different location or propping it up to allow more airflow. Alternatively, you can use a router cooling fan such as this one. If you believe too many devices are connected to your router simultaneously, disconnect a few and see if the problems persist.
Sometimes, the problems may be because of outdated modem/router firmware. If this is the issue, update the firmware to see if this resolves the issue. If your equipment came from your ISP, you may need their assistance to update the firmware.
And finally, if none of your attempts fix your disconnection issues, it may simply be time to replace your equipment entirely. Purchase a new modem or router, ensuring that your new equipment is compatible with your ISP. Alternatively, you can request new gear from your ISP — but don’t forget to ask if they require payment or re-contracting before you commit!
Unstable and intermittent WiFi connections can be the bane of anyone’s existence. However, with some patience, testing, and experimentation, you may be able to banish your WiFi woes for the foreseeable future. Just remember to try one thing at a time!
We hope this guide has answered the question, “Why does my WiFi keep disconnecting?” If the problem is still unresolved, don’t forget to check whether there may be an issue with your computer’s wifi receiver — or even with your internet service provider!
Have you fixed your wifi problems? Check out our guide on how to share your WiFi password.
- How to Boost a WiFi Signal Through Walls (6 Easy Ways)
- Ethernet Connected but No Internet: 8 Easy Fixes
- How to Fix a Problem With a Wireless Adapter or Access Point
Chriselle has been a passionate writer for over 10 years, working with many publications worldwide. She currently writes for Productivity Spot, The Grad Cafe, and Hackr.io, among others.