There is not much worse than sitting down for a PlayStation 4 (PS4) gaming session and discovering that your PS4 won’t connect to WiFi. So, instead of playing with your friends or downloading that game you wanted to play, you are stuck trying to troubleshoot connection errors. Maybe this is a recurring problem you are experiencing, and your PS4 disconnects from your WiFi and has to be reconnected.
Without access to the internet, you cannot connect to the PlayStation Network (PSN), download and install new games, enjoy multiplayer features, stream your favorite videos, and access the PlayStation Store. Continue reading to learn more about why your PS4 is not connecting to WiFi and how to solve the problem.
How PS4 connects to the internet
If you are experiencing WiFi connection issues on your PS4, you need to consider many devices as a potential root cause of the problem. This is because your PS4 accesses the PlayStation Network and other online servers by communicating with multiple devices. If any of these connections is incorrectly configured, then you may be unable to fully connect.
Your PS4 connects to the WiFi signal provided by your router. Your router is used to connect multiple devices together on one network and route the data for each device to its destination. Your router connects to a modem that you get from your Internet Service Provider (ISP), and it connects your household to the ISP’s wired internet line. This link is through physical cabling that runs from the street to your house and connects to your modem.
Why is PS4 not connecting to WiFi?
PS4 WiFi connection errors are primarily caused by one of the reasons listed below.
Incorrect DNS settings
If your PlayStation 4’s DNS settings are not configured properly, your console might have issues connecting to your WiFi. This misconfiguration will present as the inability to access specific features on your PS4.
Router connectivity issues
Bad router placements can easily cause the PS4 not connecting to WiFi issue that you are experiencing. Typical examples of bad placements are when the router is across the house or behind many walls. Moving your router closer and with fewer walls between the device and your PS4 can reduce router signal interference.
Alternatively, your router may be using a congested WiFi band. Switching frequency bands can sometimes yield a better connection. Another possibility is that your PS4 could frequently be switching bands. During this switching, the connection is momentarily lost. To prevent this, you can instead manually select one band to prevent the spontaneous band switching.
Password mismatch on PS4
Your PS4 or WiFi can sometimes forget the password. Your PS4 won’t connect to WiFi in this case because it is trying to authenticate with the wrong or no password. Re-entering your password on your PS4 can resolve the problem and allow fresh access to your router and WiFi.
PlayStation Network outages
Check that the PlayStation Network isn’t experiencing any outages to its services. These services are the backbone behind all the online features you want to enjoy. If there are outages, you will have to wait until a PSN engineer identifies and resolves the problem.
Network issues are extremely common. Thankfully the solutions for most network issues have major overlap. Identifying the root issue is not always necessary because these solutions work for many issues. Below are some quick and effective solutions for you to try with any PS4 connection issues:
- Turn off your PS4 and router. Once fully powered down, unplug both devices. Wait 10-15 minutes, then plug both devices back in and restart.
- Connect to the same WiFi connection using your phone or another device. If you can connect with other devices and access the internet, then the PS4 device is the source of the connection problem.
- If other members of your household are also having issues connecting to the internet on other devices, the problem may lie with your ISP. Contact your ISP to check for a known outage. If none occur, they may send out a technician to identify if there is an issue with their modem or cabling. The important takeaway here is that if other devices can’t connect to WiFi either, then the problem is not with your PS4 console. It’s with some other network component.
How to fix a PS4 not connecting to WiFi
Below is a list of proven solutions that can restore a working WiFi connection to your PS4. If you have tried to fix your PS4 using the common solutions listed above, and are still experiencing this issue, then follow these specific methods.
1. Check for PlayStation Network outages
PlayStation Network groups its services into six categories. If you check PlayStation Network’s status page, you should be able to determine if PSN is experiencing issues with any of its services. The service that is affected will impact the issues you will experience on your PS4:
- Account management
- Gaming and social
- PlayStation Now
- PlayStation Video
- PlayStation Store
- PlayStation Direct
For example, if PlayStation Video is affected, you may have issues connecting to PlayStation Video or streaming any video.
You can also visit PlayStation Fix & Connect. This site is designed to help troubleshoot PlayStation network and connection issues. Identify the issue you are experiencing, and PlayStation will recommend some solutions.
2. Check your WiFi password
It’s very easy to try this solution and see if you get positive results. Simply access your PS4’s network settings and update your WiFi Password. This will force a new connection to your WiFi, and your issue may disappear:
- Launch your PS4. Select Settings from the Home Screen.
- Select Network, and because your PS4 will only store one WiFi connection at a time, select Set Up Internet Connection. You will be creating a new connection this way.
- You will need to select Use WiFi (Wireless) connection.
- You are going for a quick setup here (if this fails you will try to customize your WiFi settings in solution 5), so select Easy.
- A list of nearby WiFi connections will populate. Select your WiFi network and enter your WiFi password.
- Check to see if your console has a connection to all the services you are trying to use.
3. Relocate your router
Think about your router’s location relative to your PS4’s location. How far apart are these devices? If your PS4 is in its permanent location, aka your gaming spot, you may want to relocate your router to a closer spot. Ideally, the router should be in the same room as your console.
However, if you work from home, you may also need to keep your router close to your office. It’s okay to settle in the middle, but pick a location that reduces the number of walls and large pieces of furniture between the router and console.
If you have a router-modem combo, it’s much harder to relocate. You may need to call your ISP and request for a technician to come out and run cabling to another room. This is why it’s important to understand how you want to use your space and think carefully about your modem’s location when you first have it installed.
4. Manually select the WiFi band
If you have a PS4 Pro, this solution may be especially effective. This is because PS4 introduced access to the 5GHz wireless band with the PS4 Pro. The original PlayStation 4 can only use 2.4GHz WiFi and will not experience this problem.
Because a PS4 Pro can use either band, your device may constantly be trying to connect to a new band. Once it recognizes there is another option, it switches. Unfortunately, this spontaneous switching can result in your PS4 not connecting to WiFi at all.
According to PlayStation:
“On PS4™ systems that support the 5 GHz range, you can choose which WiFi frequency band to use. On the WiFi network selection screen, press the OPTIONS button.“
To manually select a WiFi band:
- Launch your PS4. Select Settings from the Home Screen.
- Select Network, and because your PS4 will only store one WiFi connection at a time, select Set Up Internet Connection. You will be creating a fresh connection this way.
- You will need to select Use WiFi (Wireless) connection.
- Select Easy.
- Now at the bottom of the window, look for and select the Options Menu.
- Click to open WiFi Frequency Bands and select either 5.0 GHz or 2.4 GHz. You may need to try both to compare the signal and connection strength.
5. Check PS4 DNS settings
Your PS4 relies on correct DNS settings to find the correct DNS server that will help you connect to online services. You can change your DNS server settings to another server to solve many connection issues. You will need to enter your device’s network settings to make these changes:
- Turn on your PS4 and navigate to Settings.
- Select Network and then Setup Internet Connection.
- You will need to select either Use a LAN Cable (Wired) or Use WiFi (Wireless) connection.
- When it asks, “How do you want to set up the Internet connection?” select Custom.
- Under IP Address Settings, select Automatic.
- Select Do Not Specify for DHCP Host Name.
- Now under DNS Settings, select Manual.
- Enter one of the DNS server options below:
- Leave the MTU Settings on Automatic, and the Proxy server setting on Do Not Use.
- Try reconnecting to a game or service to see if the issue is resolved.
If this solution fixes the problem, then you know that the previously selected DNS server was the main problem. Thankfully, there are excellent public servers that are available for use. We have covered the best DNS servers for PS4 and PS5 in a separate article. Check it out for more details.
6. Factory reset your PS4
If your PS4 won’t connect to WiFi even after completing the methods above, it’s likely that a system file became corrupted or a recent software update contained a bug. In either case, a factory reset can potentially restore the functionality of your favorite gaming console.
Warning: A factory reset wipes all information from your PS4 device, including your credit card details, login credentials, and game data. Make sure to create a backup before doing a factory reset.
Here is how to factory reset your PS4 console:
- First, launch your PS4 and go to Settings.
- Select Initialization, then on the next screen, pick Initialize PS4.
- Choose the Full option, and start the process by selecting Initialize and then Yes.
Note: You can also try the Restore Default Settings menu option on the Initialization screen. It’s not a complete factory reset. It only clears your customizations and reverts settings to their default states.
Alternative option: Use an Ethernet cable
WiFi connections are convenient and, in some cases, the only option due to the placement of devices in your home. At the same time, they also come with a set of drawbacks, including more frequent stability, connection, and speed issues.
If possible, we recommend connecting your PS4 console to your router using an Ethernet (wired LAN) cable. Not only will it eliminate all WiFi problems, you will also enjoy lower latency and faster internet speeds during your online play.
If you’ve made it this far, you should have recovered your WiFi connection and be able to access all services on your PlayStation console, barring any issues with PlayStation Network. You will have tried some common network solutions that so often prove themselves. After restarting your router and PS4, you moved onto the specific solutions outlined in this article. Alternatively, you have switched to using a wired LAN connection instead of WiFi.
Let us know in the comment section what worked in your case.