Fix: Mac Won’t Connect to Wi-Fi but Other Devices Will

iMac is Not Connecting to Wi-Fi Network

I know how annoying it feels when your Mac is not connecting to Wi-Fi. Speaking from experience, you’ll quickly waste hours running system scans. To help you find the root cause faster, I ranked some common troubleshooting steps from most to least effective.

What to Do if Mac Won’t Connect to Wi-Fi but Other Devices Will

Before blaming the internet connectivity issues on your Mac, let’s rule out other possible causes first:

  • Check Your Wi-Fi Router: Check for wireless router issues, like physical damages, signal obstructions, or overheating. You might also need to restart it multiple times.
  • Unpair and Pair Your Wi-Fi Network: Disconnect and connect your preferred networks. Open the Wi-Fi icon on the menu bar, go to Wi-Fi Settings, click the horizontal ellipsis beside your network, and then select Forget Wi-Fi Network.
  • Check Other Network Connections: Check other Wi-Fi networks. Your internet provider might be to blame if your router and Mac are working properly. Also, try using an ethernet internet connection. You’ll find the port behind your Mac or on its power brick.

You can proceed with more complex troubleshooting steps if your Mac is still not connecting to Wi-Fi. Here are several ways to fix Mac Wi-Fi problems.

1. Troubleshoot With Wireless Diagnostics

Time needed: 5 minutes

Here’s how to run Wireless Diagnostics on your Mac:

  1. Hold the Option key, click the Wi-Fi icon in the menu bar, and choose Open Wireless Diagnostics from the drop-down menu.

    Open Wireless Diagnostics on Wi-Fi Menu

  2. Input your administrator profile’s username and password and click Ok > Continue.

    Username and Password for Admin on Mac

  3. Wait for Wireless Diagnostics to finish scanning and list potential issues. You can also click the Information icon beside each row for a thorough explanation.

    Running Wireless Diagnostics Because iMac is Not Connecting to Wi-Fi

  4. If no Mac Wi-Fi problems are detected, select Continue to Summary to file a diagnostics report. Enter any details about your router and press Continue.

    Wireless Diagnostics Found No Network Issues

2. Turn Off VPNs

Check if you accidentally left any VPNs enabled. They could prevent you from accessing sites that prohibit users from rerouting traffic through encrypted connections:

  1. Click the Apple Menu > System Settings > Network in the side navigation pane.
    Clicking the Network Settings Section on macOS System Settings
  2. Open the VPN section and toggle off any enabled VPN configuration.
    Clicking the Disable VPN Toggle Button on macOS System Settings
  3. To erase VPN settings, click the information icon (i) beside their names and hit Remove Configuration.
    Removing the VPN Configuration on macOS System Settings
  4. Also, check your browser extensions for active VPNs.

3. Double-Check the Date and Time on Your Device

Adjust the date and time of your device. Many websites use them to authenticate user access—they might think you’re a bot if your device shows inaccurate timestamps:

  1. Click the Apple Menu > System Settings > General in the side navigation pane.
    Clicking the General Section Under macOS System Settings
  2. Scroll down to Date & Time and toggle on the button for Set time and date automatically. Your Mac will refer to by default, although you can set any source you want.
    Letting Mac Adjust Date and Time Automatically

4. Adjust Your ISP’s DNS Settings

  1. Click the Wi-Fi symbol in the menu bar, launch Wi-Fi Settings, and select Details beside your Wi-Fi name.
    Checking Network Because iMac is Not Connecting to Wi-Fi
  2. Open the DNS tab from the sidebar menu and click the plus symbol (+) under the DNS Servers section.
    Trying Other Public DNS Servers Because iMac is Not Connecting to Wi-Fi
  3. Copy-paste any public server for troubleshooting, like or
  4. Click the Ok button, enter your admin password, and start testing your Wi-Fi network.
    Enter Admin Username and Password for Network Unlock

There are several public DNS servers for you to try, which include:

Google Public DNS

  • IPv4: and
  • IPv6: 2001:4860:4860::8888 and 2001:4860:4860::8844


  • IPv4: and
  • IPv6: 2620:0:ccc::2 and 2620:0:ccd::2

Cloudflare DNS

  • IPv4: and
  • IPv6: 2606:4700:4700::1111 and 2606:4700:4700::1001

5. Kill and Launch Wi-Fi From Terminal

If, for whatever reason, you can’t access the Wi-Fi menu from the menu bar icons, kill and launch Wi-Fi from Terminal instead. It’s a fairly simple action. Just ensure you input the correct commands; otherwise, you might terminate another system function.

  1. Launch Finder > Applications > Utilities > Terminal or open Launchpad > Terminal, which you’ll likely find in the Other folder.
    Finding Terminal App on Mac Finder
  2. Input networksetup -setairportpower en0 off to turn off the Wi-Fi.
  3. Let your Mac rest for a while, then input networksetup -setairportpower en0 on to turn on Wi-Fi.
    Kill The Wi-Fi Function Through Terminal App

6. Update Your Wi-Fi Router’s Firmware

You should update your Wi-Fi router’s firmware every three to four years. ISPs fix compatibility issues, minimize disconnects, increase connectivity range, improve request response speed, and introduce new features through updates. Using outdated firmware for too long might cause faulty Wi-Fi:

  1. Click the Apple menu > System Settings > Wi-Fi > Details next to your paired Wi-Fi network.
    Wi-Fi Settings of Wi-Fi Name Details
  2. Copy your router’s IP address.
    Reading the Tenda Router's IP Address
  3. Input it into your browser’s URL address bar, hit Return, and see if there’s an available firmware update.
  4. Follow the on-screen instructions, which may vary based on your ISP.
    Updating Firmware of Router Tenda

7. Test Different Networks, Devices, and Web Browsers

You can connect your Mac to different networks, test if other gadgets can access the internet, and visit multiple websites on various browsers. See if you’ll notice some improvement after uninstalling browser plug-ins, and force quitting third-party apps.

8. Contact Your ISP

If you still have a faulty Wi-Fi connection despite running the above software and hardware diagnostics tests, call your internet service provider (ISP). It can’t help with Mac Wi-Fi problems, of course. But your ISP’s technicians can troubleshoot your router and pinpoint any connection issues on their end—they might even visit you for in-person maintenance. It’s definitely worth trying before going to the Apple Genius Bar for repairs.

Why Is My Mac Not Connecting to Wi-Fi?

Several reasons could be causing network issues on your Mac such as being connected to the wrong network, service cutoff by your ISP due to missed bill payments, software problems from recent third-party app installations or updates, defects in your router, and overlooked hardware issues that require an Apple technician’s attention.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.