Staying connected to the Internet is essential nowadays. We use it for entertainment, education, working or staying connected to family and friends. When your home internet connection does go out it can be a real problem. Below are some of the most basic steps that will help you fix it before going through the motions of calling your ISP which in itself could also be another world of pain.
Is the modem/router on?
Check if your router/modem has power. A modem is a device that allows you to get connected to your ISP via telephone, coaxial cable, fiber, satellite or even via wireless mobile service. A router is another device that allows you to have more than one device connect to your internet service usually via WiFi. Nowadays, it’s standard for Internet service providers or ISPs to give you a modem + router combo. Routers would have lights turned on to show that it has power. Check the outlet and the power adapter. While you’re at it, check if all the cables to your modem/router are properly connected.
Check the physical connections
Check if the line coming into your house from the outside pole is connected properly. It could be that something snapped or got caught in the cable which caused the lost internet connection. If there’s a problem with it then you’d need to call your service provider as it can be dangerous to fix this on your own.
Reset the modem/router
After checking and making sure the physical cables to your modem/router are properly connected and the unit is receiving power, do a power cycle. Unplug it from the socket and give it around 10 to 20 seconds before turning it on again.
If it does the trick, you should be able to get back on-line. If it doesn’t, most modems would usually give an indication that it’s having trouble connecting to your ISP – a red light is quite common.
Check your Wi-Fi connection
You can use other devices that are connected to the Wi-Fi to try to isolate where the problem is. If other devices are able to connect and go on-line then the issue may lie with the device that you’ve lost the internet connection on. It may be a laptop, a tablet or a mobile phone. It’s also important to make sure that the WiFi you’re connecting to is your own. I’ve worked in customer service before and believe it or not, we’ve had lengthy calls from customers who later found out that they were just connecting to their neighbor’s WiFi and had been denied access because they changed or put in a password.
Check your device settings
Depending on what device you’re having problems with, check if it has the correct credentials for WiFi by opening its networking settings. It would usually give a notification that it’s unable to connect to the WiFi or if there’s something else that’s wrong with it.
Disable your tablet or mobile phone’s WiFi then enable it again to see if fixes the issue. Then check if you have the correct password. The next step would be to do a power cycle on your device. If it is still unable to go on-line, you may need to reset the WiFi settings on the device. That means removing the current WiFi settings and entering it again as if it’s the first time the device will be connecting to your WiFi.
For laptops, you can reset the Wireless adapter – for Windows, Linux (Ubuntu) and Mac. An alternative is to grab an ethernet cable and physically connect it to your modem/router. If you’re able to go on-line again, then the issue is with the laptop’s Wireless adapter. This could be fixed by updating its drivers or installing updates to your operating system or getting it repaired by your device manufacturer.
If all else fails, it’s time to get in touch with your ISP and ask for assistance. These are the basic steps to troubleshoot your internet connection. Most of the time, one or a combination of these would resolve your internet connection issues without having to call your ISP.