You may love your shiny new MacBook Pro, but that doesn’t mean it’s perfect. While macOS running on native Apple hardware is less prone to technical problems, finding solutions can be difficult.
One problem that always seems to come back for years is an unstable WiFi connection. In other words, your MacBook keeps dropping wireless connections or refusing to connect in the first place.
We’ve dug into the general wisdom of the Internet, added some of our own strengths, and assembled the most likely tips to get your MacBook Pro back on the information superhighway.
Is it a WiFi problem?
This may seem like an obvious question, but is your MacBook Pro really having WiFi connection problems? If the WiFi connection icon shows that you are connected to the local network, but internet performance is unclear or only some websites work, then the problem is most likely not with the WiFi connection itself.
These types of problems are beyond the scope of this article. If you need help with your internet, check out our article on the subject. Below, we will only look at potential solutions to WiFi connection problems.
Basic housekeeping service
Before you start panicking and looking for mysterious voodoo rituals to turn WiFi back on, start with simple and obvious home management steps that can often solve problems on their own.
First, make sure your MacBook has been updated to the latest version of macOS. Then restart your Mac and restart your router. You should also unplug everything from the USB/Thunderbolt ports to eliminate any third-party culprits.
Pay attention to the macOS Wifi suggestions
When you connect to a WiFi network using macOS, the computer runs some standard connectivity checks to make sure it’s working properly. If there are any problems, you will see a list of suggestions pop up in the WiFi menu. First, try to resolve any of these problems listed. If the problem persists after following the recommended advice, continue with the investigation.
WiFi Diagnostic Tool
If you determine that the problem is WiFi related, then a good place to start is using the macOS Wireless Diagnostic Tool.
- Simply hold right to buy and click the WiFi icon.
- Click Open wireless diagnostics and then manually run the diagnostics by following the wizard.
- If the tool finds something systematic, it will list the problems and you can look them up specifically. If the problem is intermittent, you may find that the diagnostic tool won’t find anything. In that case, the investigation continues.
Has anything changed recently?
The next thing you should consider is whether something specific happens when your WiFi starts working.
Did you just update the driver? Did you change the router? If possible, try rolling back the changes that happened recently to check if the problem goes away.
Is it just your Mac?
It is very important to find out if your MacBook Pro is having a specific problem with wireless disconnection or if other devices using the same WiFi network are also experiencing the problem. That includes Windows laptops, smartphones, smart TVs, and anything else that uses an internet connection.
Are they working as expected? If not, it may not be the problem with your MacBook Pro. If it happens across devices, then the common factor is more likely to be the router.
Is it available on all networks?
Similarly, don’t jump to conclusions if WiFi network crashes happen on only one network. If it’s an issue with your MacBook, the problem will likely follow you from one WiFi network to another.
If not, again the router could be the real culprit. Be sure to read our article on how to fix your router if the connection keeps dropping.
The problem persists on Ethernet?
If you have an ethernet adapter for your MacBook Pro, you should disable WiFi and connect it directly to your router. If the problem persists even when using an ethernet connection, it could be again a configuration issue with the router, as this eliminates the WiFi.
Is the signal strength low?
Low signal strength is always a top candidate when looking for WiFi dropout suspects. Does the problem occur when you are near and within sight of a network router or access point? There are many reasons why your router might have a weak connection to your MacBook Pro.
If you notice your connection instability disappears as you get closer to the network access point, you can solve the problem with a WiFi repeater. These expand your signal strength so that the footprint of good quality WiFi becomes larger.
You might also consider increasing the signal strength in your router settings or adding an external antenna to it if you don’t have one already. You can read our complete guide to boosting WiFi signal strength here.
Eliminate sources of interference
Modern WiFi operates in the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz frequency bands. Since it is digital and capable of complex error correction, other devices using the same frequency usually do not significantly affect performance.
However, you may want to eliminate interference as an issue by unplugging Bluetooth devices (also 2.4Ghz) and moving away from devices such as microwave ovens. Switching the band on your router can also improve stability.
Is there channel competition?
All WiFi systems operate on the same frequency, so why don’t they conflict with each other? The answer is that they use “channels”, which divide the main frequency into small and narrow channels.
There are 11 and 45 channels on the 2.4Ghz and 5Ghz frequencies respectively. So typically your neighbor’s router will automatically use a channel that doesn’t have anything else happening on it. However, a router can set its channel manually or for some other reason there is too much competition to find a good one. Channels 1, 6 and 11 are popular choices for the 2.4Ghz band because they don’t overlap.
You can use a WiFi analyzer app on your smartphone or computer to see which local WiFi networks are using which channels and then set your router to use a relatively undisturbed channel. test.
Does it happen after waking up from sleep?
Mac users often encounter situations where WiFi doesn’t reconnect properly after waking up from sleep mode. The good news is that there is a fairly reliable way to solve the problem.
- First go to the Apple menu, System Preferences, And after that Network.
- Click Advanced. Here, you will see a list of preferred networks.
- Select all with Command + A and then click the minus button to remove all.
- Now return to the Network window from earlier. Click Location drop-down menu and then click the plus icon. Name a new location and click Accomplished.
Now all you have to do is reconnect to the WiFi and from now on there will be no more problems connecting to the network after waking up from sleep mode.
Forget the net
If you find that you can’t connect to a network, even though it worked before, the solution is often simply to forget the network and then reconnect to it.
If you read the solution to wake from sleep above, you already know how to do this. The only difference is that you will only select a single network, instead of the entire list like we did above.
No more worrying about disconnection
Dealing with MacBook Pro drops in wireless connectivity can be more daunting. Especially if you’re used to your MacBook Pro, which otherwise works flawlessly. With a little luck, some trial and error, and a little prayer to the Mac gods, you should now have full WiFi access again.