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Tags Wireless Networks

iPhone Won't Connect to Wi-Fi

Your iPhone offers the world at your fingertips — as long as you have a solid Wi-Fi connection. Without one, say goodbye to iMessage, email, widgets, and some app functionality. Learn why your iPhone isn’t connecting to Wi-Fi and how you can troubleshoot the issue. And once you’re back online, use Clario’s Anti-Spy to keep your connection encrypted and private.

Table of contents

Why is your iPhone not connecting to Wi-Fi?

If your iPhone is not connecting to Wi-Fi, there could be one or more issues at play. Here are the most likely reasons:

Let’s explore these issues further.

Too far away from your router

The further away you are from your router, the weaker your Wi-Fi signal is. If your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi or iPhone is not staying connected to Wi-Fi, be mindful of where your router is situated. Try physically moving closer to your router and reconnecting.

iPhone case is causing signal issues

An iPhone case can prevent device damage — but it can also disrupt a Wi-Fi signal. Certain materials, like metal, can block or weaken Wi-Fi signals. Some cases block or cover your iPhone’s Wi-Fi antenna. Try taking your iPhone out of its case and reconnecting.  

Using the wrong Wi-Fi password

Are you sure you got the password right? Even if your iPhone manages to join the network with the wrong password, it won’t connect to the internet. Try double-checking your Wi-Fi password and entering it correctly.

Limited data plan or you’re not using mobile data

If you connect to the internet via mobile data, you might have reached your data limit for the month or data might not be switched on. Check with your internet service provider (ISP) and ensure your mobile data is on.

Network settings or parental controls prevent connection

Network settings or parental controls can limit internet access to some devices. If unable to join a network on your iPhone, try checking your router and iPhone for any restrictions that may cause connection interference.

Corrupted network component

In this case, the issue is with your router and not your iPhone. To rule out a router hardware issue, try connecting other devices to the router’s Wi-Fi. If other devices connect successfully, then you’ve narrowed your problem down to your router.


Now that we explored the possibilities of why your iPhone is not connecting to Wi-Fi, let’s get into what you can do about it.

Troubleshoot Wi-Fi problems on iPhone

If your iPhone won’t connect to Wi-Fi, there are several ways to solve the issue. Sometimes a simple reboot will do the trick, other times, the solution is more complex. It all depends on the underlying cause of your specific case.


Here are some ways to troubleshoot Wi-Fi problems on iPhone:

Now let's take a closer look at these solutions.

Reboot your iPhone

Sometimes a simple reboot is all you need to reconnect your iPhone to Wi-Fi.


Here’s how to restart your iPhone:

  1. Press and hold either the volume button or the side button until the power-off slider appears.
  2. Toggle the slider from left to right to power off your iPhone.
  3. Wait 30 seconds. Then press and hold the on/off button to turn it back on.
A black iPhone screen with a power toggle that is toggled to

The restart method for the iPhone varies according to the model. If the steps above don’t work for you, check Apple support for instructions for your iPhone model.  

Check to see if your Wi-Fi is turned on

You’ll need to make sure Wi-Fi is enabled on your iPhone, otherwise, your device will not connect to the Wi-Fi network.


Here’s how to check to see if your Wi-Fi is turned on:

  1. Go to Setting > Wi-Fi.
  2. Make sure Wi-Fi is toggled On. If it’s already on, try turning it off and on again.
An iPhone screen showing the Wi-Fi settings menu, with the Wi-Fi toggle enabled on the selected Wi-Fi network.

Try connecting to the Wi-Fi network using another device

To determine whether the issue stems from your router, try connecting other devices to it. If nothing seems to connect to Wi-Fi, look to your router, rather than your iPhone.  

Check your router

Check your router by ensuring all the cables and plugs are properly connected. Also, check the lights on your router. Functioning routers usually flash green or white lights, while red lights indicate an error. While quickly blinking lights indicate a normal, active connection, lights blinking slowly may mean your router is having trouble establishing an internet connection.


If you suspect a router issue, try restarting your router. Here’s how:

Reboot the Wi-Fi router

Here’s how to reboot a Wi-Fi router:

  1. Locate the power button on the back of your router.
  2. Press it to turn off your router, wait 30 seconds, and turn it back on.
  3. Try reconnecting your iPhone to your Wi-Fi network.

Turn on and off Airplane mode

Airplane mode disables all wireless communication on your device — including a Wi-Fi connection. It might be switched on if you recently traveled, went to the movies, or enabled it accidentally.


Here’s how to turn on and off Airplane mode:

  1. Go to Settings > Airplane mode.
  2. Toggle the switch to Off.
An iPhone screen depicting the 'Settings' app, with  Airplane Mode toggled off.

If Airplane mode is already off, try switching it on and off again. This may fix your Wi-Fi connection issue.

Turn off VPN

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is great for anonymous internet usage and to secure your iPhone from hackers, but it can sometimes cause Wi-Fi connectivity issues.


Here’s how to turn off a VPN:

  1. Go to Settings > VPN.
  2. Toggle the switch to Off.
An iPhone screen depicting the 'Settings' app, with the VPN option toggled off.

From there, try reconnecting to Wi-Fi. If it works, great — but you should look into fixing any network conflicts that are preventing VPN usage.  

Forget your Wi-Fi network and reconnect

Your iPhone saves information about a network when you join it for the first time. But if some of that info changes, your device may have trouble maintaining a network connection. Refreshing the network connection may solve your issue.


Here’s how to forget a Wi-Fi network and reconnect:

  1. Go to Settings > Wi-Fi.
  2. Tap the info icon next to your chosen network.
  3. Tap Forget This Network, then tap Forget to confirm.
  4. Go to Setting > Wi-Fi and reconnect to your chosen network.
iPhone screen in the Wi-Fi settings menu confirming the option to 'forget' a selected Wi-Fi network.

Limit parental controls

Parental controls can restrict specific apps and iPhone features — and may also affect internet browsing. If you turned on parental controls by accident or left it on after testing the feature, it could be the cause of your issue.

 Be careful 

If you discover any parental control app on your device that you don't remember installing, it most definitely means someone is spying on you.

Here’s how to limit parental controls:

  1. Go to Settings > Screen Time > Content & Privacy Restrictions.
iPhone screen in the Screen Time menu with 'Content & Privacy Restrictions' highlighted

2. Check the On/Off toggle. If you want to turn off parental restrictions, toggle Off Content & Privacy Restrictions.

iPhone screen showing the 'Content & Privacy Restrictions' menu with the 'Content & Privacy Restrictions' toggle in the off position.

Check for iOS updates

An outdated operating system can cause a host of issues, including for device performance and security. Though it may not directly address Wi-Fi connectivity, an iOS update may resolve an underlying problem that’s affecting Wi-Fi connectivity.


Here’s how to check for iOS updates:

  1. Go to Settings > General > Software Updates.
  2. Tap Automatic Updates. Toggle On Download iOS Updates and Install iOS Updates.
iPhone screen showing the Automatic Updates menu with the

Reset your iPhone’s Network Settings

Resetting your iPhone’s network settings will clear all previously configured Wi-Fi networks and passwords — along with cellular and VPN settings. This method may solve your Wi-Fi connectivity issue if it’s caused by corrupted Wi-Fi settings or network configurations.


Here’s how to reset your iPhone’s network settings:

  1. Go to Settings > General > Transfer or reset iPhone.  
  2. Tap Reset. Then tap Reset Network Settings. Tap it again to confirm.
  3. After your iPhone reboots, go to Settings > Wi-Fi and rejoin your Wi-Fi network.
iPhone screen showing options in the Transfer or Reset iPhone menu, with the

Reset Location Services on iOS

iPhone uses GPS, cellular networks, and Wi-Fi to determine your location for location services.  Though a useful feature for directions and local info, location services can impact Wi-Fi connectivity.


Here’s how to reset Location Services on iOS:

  1. Go to Settings > Privacy & Security > Location Services.
  2. Scroll down and tap System Services.
  3. Toggle Off Networking & Wireless.
  4. Tap Turn Off to confirm.
iPhone screens showing the location service menu highlighting System Service; and the System Services menu highlighting Network and Wireless.

Reset your iOS device to factory settings

By restoring your iPhone to its original factory settings you might remove any software-related conflicts or misconfigurations that may be causing the Wi-Fi connection problem. Just be sure to back up all your data beforehand because a factory reset will delete everything from your iPhone.


Here’s how to reset your iOS device to factory settings:

  1. Go to Settings > General >  Transfer or reset iPhone.
  2. Tap Erase All Content and Settings. Tap Continue.
  3. Enter your passcode, your Apple ID password. Tap Turn Off to disable Find My and Activation Lock.
  4. Tap Erase iPhone.
iPhone screen showing the Transfer or Reset iPhone option with Erase All Content and Settings highlighted.

Contact Apple for further support

If all else fails (including an iPhone virus scan), contacting Apple directly may help if your iPhone is not picking up Wi-Fi. It’s possible that you have a defective device. Apple can provide hands-on technical support and use diagnostic tools to assess the issue. They may repair or completely replace your iPhone.

When your iPhone connects to all Wi-Fi networks except one

If Wi-Fi won’t turn on on your iPhone, the problem can be difficult to target — even if the issue is with one particular network. Though you can be sure the problem lies with the router or Wi-Fi network, there are a number of potential reasons. To resolve the issue, your best bet is to follow the Wi-Fi troubleshooting tips listed above.

How to fix wireless router problems?

If you’ve determined that your iPhone Wi-Fi problems are not stemming from your iPhone, it’s time to focus on your router. Like with other devices, performing a factory reset on your router may clear up the underlying issues of why your iPhone isn’t connecting to Wi-Fi.


Here’s a guide to fixing wireless router problems:

Now let’s explore this guide in detail:

How do Wi-Fi networks work and how does this apply to your iPhone?

Wi-Fi networks work on the principles of radio wave transmission and reception. Your wireless router acts as the central hub that connects to the internet and acts as a gateway from which devices like your iPhone access the internet.

How to factory reset a wireless router?

The method for a factory reset of your wireless router depends on the make and model of your router. You should consult your router's instruction manual for specific instructions. Or check out the website of your router’s manufacturer and locate the manual for your model there.


But generally, here’s how to factory reset a wireless router:

  1. Press and hold the reset button: It’s typically small and recessed, so you’ll need a pen or other pointed object to press it. You should hold it for about 15 seconds or until the lights flash or change behavior.
  2. Reboot the router: Give it a few moments to completely restart. The router lights may flash.
  3. Reconfigure the router: Once it reboots, it will be restored to its factory default settings.

Now it’s time to set up your Wi-Fi network again. Here’s how:

Set up your wireless network again

Like with a factory reset, you should consult your router’s instruction manual or website for detailed instructions on how to set up your wireless network.


But generally, here’s how to set up your wireless network:

  1. Connect to the router: Use an ethernet cable to connect a laptop or computer directly to one of your router's LAN ports.
  2. Access the router’s administrative interface: Open a web browser and enter the default IP address of the router in the address bar. It’s usually or
  3. Enter login credentials: For most routers, the default login credentials are either "admin" for both the username and password or "admin" for the username and no password.
  4. Set up a new password: Once logged in to the administrative interface, set up a new password to secure your router.
  5. Configure network settings: Use the network settings page of the admin interface to set up your Wi-Fi network name (SSID), password, and security settings.
  6. Save your settings: Once you’ve saved your settings, you can start connecting devices to your new Wi-Fi network.

Make sure the wireless security type is set to WPA2 Personal

When setting up your wireless network, select WPA2 Personal as your security type. It provides robust encryption to protect your network from security and data breaches. Plus, it’s widely compatible with a variety of devices, including your iPhone. Until WPA3 catches on, WPA 2 continues to remain the most widely used and secure option for Wi-Fi network encryption.


Whatever the reason for Wi-Fi not working on iPhone, once you’re back online, it’s crucial to protect your connection. Clario’s VPN will fully encrypt your internet traffic from hackers and snoops lurking to steal your data and infect your devices with malware. It contains Wi-Fi protection, so you can freely use any and all private and  public Wi-Fi connections without risk.

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