Wireless printers are fantastic pieces of technology, requiring only a power cable to operate. However, it can be frustrating if you are having trouble finding a printer on your wireless network. This is a common problem even in top-quality printers but you can easily fix it.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Wireless printers can drop from a wireless connection or become connected to an incorrect wireless network.
  • Check your router and modem to ensure both are operating correctly and reset both devices if necessary.
  • Download any necessary driver software and reset the printer, taking care to enable a wireless connection once it has restarted.

How Do Wireless Printers Work?

It can be useful in this regard to know a little bit about wireless printers and how they work. Digital printers can be quite pricey and you may wonder why their ink cartridges are so expensive. These digital printers typically connect to your home or office wireless network via a Wi-Fi connection, though they can connect in other ways. Some wireless printers use Bluetooth and related types of wireless connections.

Insider Tip

We recommend testing the wireless connection by taking a look at the status indicator lights that are on your modem and router.

Finding Your Wireless Printer on Your Network

If you are looking to find your wireless network so can get started with wireless print jobs, here are some useful tips and guidelines. Please note, every printer, router, and modem will be different, though we made sure to keep these tips as universal as possible.

Take a Look at the Wireless Connection

The issue could not lay with your printer, but rather with your actual wireless connection. We recommend testing the wireless connection by taking a look at the status indicator lights that are on your modem and router. If you aren’t sure, simply unplug both devices, wait a minute, and then plug them back in. You can also check on your wireless connection by simply opening up a webpage on your laptop computer, smartphone, or another device that has been connected to the network. If your wireless connection isn’t operating properly, you will not be able to do wireless prints.

Insider Tip

Go into your printer’s settings panel and look for an option for enabling a wireless connection.

Enable Your Printer to Connect

If your printer is not connected to your wireless network, it may simply be a case of the printer dropping a previously held connection. Go into your printer’s settings panel and look for an option for enabling a wireless connection. You can also search for nearby devices using computers that are on your network, such as a laptop or Windows PC. You may need to restart your printer or download and install printer or router drive software. Also, make sure your printer is not connected to another wireless network. A printer needs to be on the same network as the device sending out print jobs. In other cases, your printer may work but may keep showing streaks. You may want to find out why your printer is making streaks.

Move the Printer

Often the culprit is blockage or distance away from the router. Generally speaking, wireless printers do not have a long wireless range so should be placed relatively close to the router. Additionally, some printers cannot receive signals if they are behind a closed door or behind a compartment.

Warning

If your wireless connection isn’t operating properly, you will not be able to do wireless prints.

F.A.Q.

What to do if Windows can’t connect to your printer?

This is rarely the fault of the operating system. Try to reset your router, modem, printer, and any other connected devices.


What if the printer driver doesn’t install?

If you are having issues installing a printer driver, you may need to contact the manufacturer or try to find an older version of the software to download and install.


Is your printer properly connected?

You may also want to check out if your printer is connected to a power outlet. Remember, wireless printers do not need cables to conduct print jobs but do need to be plugged into a power source .



STAT: In 2017, the U.S. market for internet exchange routers is was worth 4.4 billion U.S. dollars. The industry is currently being driven by increasing demand for internet-enabled devices, the expansion of cloud networks, and an expected rise in virtualized technologies. (source)

Lawrence Bonk

Lawrence Bonk is a copywriter with a decade of experience in the tech space, with columns appearing in Engadget, Huffington Post and CBS, among others. He has a cat named Cinnamon.

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