My iPhone Won’t Connect To Wi-Fi. Here’s The Fix!

Problems With Your Wireless Router

A common reason why iPhones won’t connect to a Wi-Fi network is a problem with your iPhone’s relationship to your wireless router. You’ll understand how to fix the problem after you know a little bit more about how Wi-Fi works on your iPhone.

How Wi-Fi Networks Work, And Why It Applies To You

There are two things involved when your iPhone connects to Wi-Fi: Your iPhone and your wireless router. Your wireless router broadcasts a signal with the name of your wireless network for all to see. When you connect to Wi-Fi, a relationship is formed between your wireless router and your iPhone. 

Your wireless router (or Wi-Fi router) is like the post office. It’s the middleman between your iPhone and the internet, just like the post office is the middleman between the flow of mail between your home and the outside world. When you send a letter, the post office delivers it to the right address. When you receive a letter, the post office can only deliver it if it knows your address. That’s exactly what happens with your iPhone.

When your iPhone and other devices connect to Wi-Fi, your wireless router assigns each one a separate address. Everything on the internet has its own unique address. When you came to, your wireless router (or internet connection) translates into, the internet address of this website. Your computer has an address, too. You can find out what it is by typing What Is My IP? into Google.

How Does This Relate To My iPhone Not Connecting To Wi-Fi?

A lot of the time, your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi because your wireless router won’t assign your iPhone an address the way it should. This can happen for different reasons, but it’s only necessary to understand that your wireless router is refusing to allow your iPhone to connect because it’s confused about its address.

Resetting your wireless router to its factory default settings resets its “address book”, and it’s the easiest, most effective way to fix the problem for good. Don’t waste your time trying to diagnose obscure wireless connectivity issues. Just reset it to factory defaults and set it up again. It only takes a few minutes to set up a wireless router, but troubleshooting wireless connectivity issues can take hours.

How Do I Reset My Wireless Router To Factory Defaults?

If there were one way to do this, I’d tell you how. There are a billion different wireless routers out there, so I’ll do the next best thing and show you the easiest way to find out how to reset your router.

Reset Wi-Fi RouterMost routers have a tiny reset button in a hole on the back or the bottom of your router. The easiest way to reset it to factory defaults is to leave your router plugged in and use a pen to press down the reset button inside the hole for about 15 seconds. The picture is an example of what this hole looks like on a Linksys router. Your router will act just it did when you took it out of the box for the very first time.

This is the way I’d reset my router, but if you don’t know how to set your wireless router from scratch, make sure you have the instructions handy. Here’s the best way to find them if you threw away the box.

  1. Find your wireless router’s model number and write it down. It’s usually on the bottom or the side of your wireless router.
  2. Visit the manufacturer’s support website and search for your model number. You’ll find the setup instructions or downloadable user guide on the manufacturer’s support website. Here are links to a few of the big ones:

When You Set Up Your Wireless Network Again

When you set up your wireless router, it’s OK (but not necessary) to use the same name for your wireless network and same password as before. Try reconnecting to the network with your iPhone. If it connects, we’ve determined the problem was with your wireless router.

A Less Common Reason Why Your iPhone Won’t Connect To Wi-Fi

If you’re still having problems, look at your wireless security settings. Make sure the wireless security type is set to WPA2 Personal using AES encryption, not TKIP or TKIP / AES. It’s not official, but Apple devices seem to have difficulty with TKIP security. Fortunately, it’s not necessary to understand why. Look for wireless security settings in your wireless router’s manual to find out how to change this setting.

Diagnosing Hardware Problems


If you’ve Reset Network Settings on your iPhone and it won’t connect to any Wi-Fi networks at all, try to DFU restore your iPhone and restore it from a backup. If that doesn’t work, there’s a good chance you’ll need to repair your iPhone.

Apple Stores don’t do repairs to Wi-Fi antennas. The best they can do is replace your whole iPhone, and that can be expensive if you don’t have AppleCare+ and your iPhone is out of warranty or damaged. A less-expensive option I recommend is Puls, a repair company that will send a certified technician to you.

Wireless Router

If you’ve reset your wireless router to factory default settings and no devices will connect to it, there may be a hardware problem with your Wi-Fi router. Visit the manufacturer’s website to learn the troubleshooting steps before you decide to go out and buy a new one.

If You Have To Buy A New Router

Apple’s Airport routers are easy to set up and have great software built in. I’m not being an Apple fanboy with this one — they really are better than the others I’ve seen. They’re a bit more expensive than the other routers you’ll find on Amazon, but may be worth paying more to avoid any more headaches.

Wrapping It Up

By this point, your iPhone is connected to Wi-Fi or you’re well on your way to a fix. I’d like to hear about your experiences solving the problem in the comments section below. If you do, let us know exactly why your iPhone wouldn’t connect to Wi-Fi and the model number of your wireless router. Your experience can help other readers with the same problem.

Thanks so much for reading and all the best,
David P.

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About Author

I'm a former Apple employee and the founder of Payette Forward, and I'm here to help you with your iPhone.

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1 month ago

my iPhone 6 will connect to the internet but if I like go one step away from the router the wifi will disconnect please help me!

1 month ago

My iPhones mobile Data for WhatsApp is turned off every time I turn it on immediately it turns off, please help

1 month ago

my iPhone will show that it is contacting printer and after a wait it will say print successful except no printing has taken place. I can still print from my iPad and I almost always use my phone
have turned off phone turned off wi fi and blue tooth on phone turned them on again and also turned printer off and on. My printer shows up so phone recognised it

1 month ago

My phone won’t connect to my wifi. I tried all your recommendations and nada! I want to throw tingsI get so aggravated and no one to help. I appreciate your great and easy to follow instructions, wished it would have helped. Thank You.

Maria Gino
1 month ago

My iPhone will send giphy and pics to iphones with iMessage turned on but not to iPhones with iMessage off and not to android phones at all now. This just started happening. I have iphone7plus no warranty they said my phone is older out of warranty and since I had dropped it a year ago and replaced the glass that is the probable cause and I will need to buy a new iPhone. Really. It has been working all along to send pics I called AT&T last month they fixed it on the phone. Tonight after 4 hours trying to… Read more »

1 month ago
Reply to  Maria Gino

Hello! I am having a similar problem. My old iPhone 7+ quit sending pics to Android. Upgraded to a new iPhone 12 – same problem. They sent me a new SIM card, no luck. Apple has offered to replace my phone, but I strongly suspect the problem is on the ATT side and my local ATT store people think so too. Many conversations with Apple and ATT Advanced tech support, no solution yet. Just so you know you aren’t alone! And it may not be your phone at all!

2 months ago

My iPhone 6 use to be my sons that lives a couple houses over and it had always connected and even when I got it .it did an update and ever since then it started and whet he came over with his iPhone 12 it wouldn’t connect thanks for the information

2 months ago

i have iphone6 but it only connects when i set the phone on top of the modem

2 months ago

I am using iphone 6s . I am not able to auto connect wifi its continously gets disconnected .
i tried to reset network setting kindly get me solution

3 months ago

Hi, I have had this problem for about a day. I have an iPhone 7. My phone seems to not connect to wifi even though all of my family members can and they use the wifi normally. When I start using data on my phone, it wont work either. It shows me that im connected to wifi or that I have data (which I do and it should be functional), but it doesnt seem to work. I cant use my phone anymore because of this problem and I dont know what to do.

3 months ago

My iPhone won’t connect to my home USB wifi keeps saying unable to connect to my wifi after I tried to reset the network settings . It won’t even let me forget password to retype it . It just says ‘unable to connect “ I tried to reset in network settings, I tried to manually reset my wireless USB (Wifi), I tried to Mannually reset the wifi on my phone. I retry-Ed the security and everything still won’t connect. What do I do ?

2 months ago
Reply to  Fatemah

were you able to find the fix for this? I am having the same problem.