You’ve finally gotten around to changing your password from a 20-digit code to something shorter and easier to type. However, this means you’ll have to reconnect all of your devices to your router.
Confident, you input your new password into your phone’s Wi-Fi settings, only to be met with an error message. You just changed your password a few minutes ago, so what’s going on? Have you locked yourself out of your router?
Wi-Fi passwords can be tricky and your devices may be unable to connect to your router for a variety of reasons. Luckily, we have a few tips and tricks to have all of your devices connected to Wi-Fi in no time.
Let’s get started!
1. Double-Check the Password
Wi-Fi passwords must be entered correctly for your device to connect to your router. Any capitalization, spelling, or punctuation errors will result in an error message and leave you Wi-Fi-less.
So, to ensure you’re inputting the correct password, it’s a good idea to double-check it.
To do this, head to your router’s admin page where you’ve just changed the password. Find the Network Key input. This input may also be labeled Wi-Fi password or something to a similar effect.
Here, you should be able to see your Wi-Fi router’s new passcode. If you can’t see the password, look for a Hide/Unhide button next to Network Key. Select or hold this button down to reveal the password.
You can even try copying and pasting the password directly into your computer’s Network settings.
However, if you’re 100% certain you’ve entered the correct password, there may be something wrong with your device or router.
2. Restart Your Devices
One of your devices may have glitched, preventing it from connecting to your router. Additionally, your router may have glitched after you changed its password, leading to connectivity issues.
To ensure all of your devices are working as they should, it’s a good idea to restart them or perform a power cycle.
Let’s learn how!
Step 1: Power off your smartphone, tablet, or computer and unplug your modem and router from the wall outlet.
Step 2: Leave all your devices powered off for at least a minute. This will allow your smartphone/tablet/computer to fully shut down and drain the power from your modem and router.
Step 3: Then, plug the modem back into the wall outlet and allow for it to fully restart.
Step 4: Connect the modem to power and wait for it to fully boot up as well. You’ll know it’s restarted when its indicator lights are lit up green. This could take a few minutes.
Step 5: Next, turn on your smartphone, tablet, or computer.
Step 6: Once your device has booted up, head to its Network settings and try reconnecting to your home’s Wi-Fi network using the correct password.
3. Forget Wi-Fi Network
Your device may be trying to connect to your Wi-Fi router using the old password, leading to an error. So, you may need to forget the Wi-Fi network to connect to it properly.
Don’t worry. This won’t prevent you from connecting to this Wi-Fi network in the future. Instead, it will force your device to forget the new password, allowing you to input the new one.
Step 1: Launch the Settings app.
Step 2: Navigate to the Wi-Fi settings.
Step 3: Tap Edit.
Step 4: Find the Wi-Fi network you changed the password to and tap the “i” button beside it (shown below).
Step 5: Click on Forget This Network.
Step 6: To confirm your choice, select Forget.
Step 7: Now, try connecting to the Wi-Fi network again using the new password.
Note: This procedure may vary depending on which MacOS version is installed on your MacBook.
Step 1: Launch the Apple menu, characterized by an apple icon in the top-left corner of your screen.
Step 2: Head to System Settings.
Step 3: Go to Wi-Fi.
Step 4: Open the Advanced menu.
Step 5: Find your Wi-Fi network’s name and select the beside it to reveal more options.
Step 6: Click on Remove From List.
Step 7: Select Remove to forget this network.
Step 8: Now you can try to connect to the Wi-Fi network once more.
Note: Since Android devices’ settings are not standardized, this procedure may vary between smartphone models.
Step 1: Open the Settings app.
Step 2: Head to the Connections tab.
Step 3: Go to Wi-Fi.
Step 4: Tab the kebab menu (characterized by three vertical dots) in the top-right corner of your screen.
Step 5: Go to Advanced.
Step 6: Head to Manage Networks.
Step 7: Tap your Wi-Fi network’s name.
Step 8: Then, tap Forget.
Step 9: Once you’ve completed the steps above, try connecting to the Wi-Fi network again.
Watch the video below demonstrating how to forget a network on an Android device.
Step 1: Click on the Start/Windows button in the bottom-left corner of your screen.
Step 2: Launch the Settings.
Step 3: Head to Network & Internet.
Step 4: Navigate to Manage Wi-Fi settings.
Step 5: Go to Manage known networks and click on your Wi-Fi network.
Step 6: Click on Forget.
Step 7: Then, try to connect to your Wi-Fi network with its new password.
Watch the video below demonstrating how to forget a network on a Windows computer.
4. Change the Encryption Mode
Your Wi-Fi router’s encryption mode may have switched to WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy).
The WEP encryption mode will prevent your smartphone, tablet, computer, or TV from verifying that you’ve entered the correct password. Since your device cannot tell if the password is right or not, it will simply refuse to connect to the network.
To tell if your router’s encryption mode has changed to WEP, look for one of the following signs:
- A “Router not found” message appears.
- A “Could not find <your Wi-Fi network name>” message appears.
- A “Connected successfully” message appears but you still cannot access the internet.
To fix this problem and adjust your Wi-Fi’s encryption mode, you must navigate to your router’s admin page where you initially changed the password. You can access this page by entering your router’s IP address in the browser URL on your computer.
On this page, find the encryption mode, which may also be labeled Wireless Security Mode. Select it to reveal the different encryption options. Then, select WPA or WPA2 from the drop-down list.
5. Factory Reset Your Router
If none of the solutions listed above have solved your connectivity issues, consider factory resetting your router. This will erase any custom values you’ve set and allow you to set it up from scratch.
However, we strongly advise against this if you’re unsure of how to set up a router, since you may incorrectly adjust its settings or be left without internet.
If you’re not sure how to set up a router, head to your Wi-Fi provider’s official website or contact their customer support for more information.
To reset your router, find the Reset button on the back or side of this device. This button may also be a pinhole. To press the pinhole, you must stick a long, thin, sturdy object into it, like a SIM ejector tool.
Once you’ve found the Reset button, long-press it while observing the router’s indicator lights. Release the button once the indicator lights have turned off.
Now that your router has been reset, follow the provider’s instructions to set it up again. Then, try connecting your devices to it.
Watch the video below demonstrating how to factory reset a Wi-Fi router using the method outlined above.
Yesenia Achlim is a technical copywriter and editor with a focus on AV equipment. She aims to break down complicated topics and make technology accessible, no matter your technical expertise. When she’s not teaching you how to replace a projector lamp, you can find her reading and baking.