Computer Keeps Disconnecting from WiFi – How To Fix

Having WiFi continuously or repeatedly dropping has to be one of the most annoying computer issues. You’re sitting there happily watching a movie, chatting or browsing the web and the connection drops and you’re left hanging.

Computer Keeps Disconnecting from WiFi - How To Fix

If you use Windows 10, you will likely have experienced this at one time or another. If you’re experiencing it right now, there are a few things you can do if your computer keeps disconnecting from WiFi.

Even though I’m using Windows 10 as the example, some of these fixes will work on a MacBook too. I will assume that you have tested your network with other devices and think it is your computer with the issue rather than your router. If other devices connect fine, it is most likely to be your computer.

 

What to Do When Your Computer Keeps Dropping WiFi

Unfortunately, there are many reasons why your computer keeps disconnecting from WiFi so this process is a case of trial and error. Work your way through each of these fixes and move on to the next if your wireless connection isn’t stable.

Reboot Your Computer

A reboot is always the first thing to try whenever a computer plays up. Whether that’s WiFi, driver, operating system, hardware or something else, a reboot is a system refresh and can fix around 90% of computer issues.

If that doesn’t work, reboot your router.

Reboot Your Router

An occasional reboot is also good for your router. It forces it to drop its IP tables and rebuild them it loads any updates and refreshes the firmware in memory. If a computer reboot didn’t fix your WiFi issue then a router reboot might.

 

Turn off Power Saving

Windows 10 continues Microsoft’s Power Management feature by allowing the computer to turn off hardware when not in use. When it works, it provides modest power saving that lowers consumption. When it isn’t working quite so well it can turn off hardware when you need it.

Turning off your network card will save microscopic amounts of power so let’s disable that.

  1. Right-click the Windows Start button and select Device Manager. Windows Taskbar menu
  2. Now, right-click your wireless card, it’s under Network Adapters, and select Properties. Network Adapter Menu
  3. Now, select the Power Management tab.
  4. Uncheck the box next to Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power.
  5. Select OK to save the change.

This is a common cause of WiFi disconnections so should hopefully address the issue.

Make the WiFi Network Private

There is some kind of security bug in Windows 10 that will restrict wireless if you have WiFi set to public. If you’re at home and your computer keeps disconnecting from WiFi, try this. If you’re using hotspots or public WiFi, skip this one.

  1. Select the WiFi icon in the Windows Task Bar.
  2. Select the WiFi network and then Properties.
  3. Turn the slider under Make This PC Discoverable to On.
  4. Right-click the Windows Start button and select Network Connections. Windows Taskbar menu 2
  5. Now, select Network and Sharing Center from the middle pane.
  6. Then, check if your WiFi connection is listed as a Private connection.

This is another common issue with wireless and can get in the way of being able to use the connection. Even though there is only a small difference between a public and private network, it is something to check if you’re on your home network.

Turn off WiFi Sense

WiFi Sense is a smart app within Windows 10 that tries to make it easier to connect to available networks. Sometimes it does the opposite which makes it worth investigating. Note, this option is only available on Windows 10 version 1709 or earlier, so you can skip this with version 1803 or later.

  1. Open the Windows Start men and select Settings. Windows Start Menu
  2. Now, select Network & Internet. Windows Settings Menu
  3. Then, select Wi-Fi from the left menu. Settings - Network & Internet Side menu
  4. Now, click on Manage known networks. Settings - Network & Internet Wi-Fi Settings
  5. From here, turn Wi-Fi Sense to Off.

Turning off WiFi Sense doesn’t affect your computer in any other way but could stop this issue.

Update the Network Driver

Network drivers aren’t updated as much as audio or graphics drivers. Often they are a couple of years old at least and that’s fine. If your WiFi keeps dropping and you have performed all the steps up to this point, updating or reinstalling your network driver is worth trying as it only takes a couple of minutes.

  1. Right-click the Windows Start button and select Device Manager. Windows Taskbar menu
  2. Again, right-click your wireless card but select Update driver this time. network adapter menu
  3. Select Search automatically for updated driver software from the popup window.
  4. Let Windows find and install any new drivers.

If that doesn’t find any new drivers, search online for your network hardware. You should see the manufacturer in Device Manager and a quick internet search should locate the most recent driver for the WiFi chipset. Download the latest driver, perform the above steps to Step 3 but select Let me pick from a list of device drivers instead of searching automatically. Point the installer to your downloaded driver file and install it.

Computer Networks

As you can see, there are several steps you can take to fix your WiFi issues. If you’ve performed all of the fixes mentioned above and your computer keeps disconnecting from WiFi, you may need to consider changing your WiFi card.

Know of any other fixes? Tell us about them below if you do!

2 thoughts on “Computer Keeps Disconnecting from WiFi – How To Fix”

Fiona Young says:
Thanks for your advice, it seems to have worked.

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