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Intermittent Wireless/Dropped WiFi Connection


Is your wireless device dropping from your wireless signal?  Can you connect sometimes but not others?  Has one of your wireless devices dropped from your wireless network?  These are all symptoms of an intermittent or dropped wireless connection.

Device Troubleshooting | Environment Troubleshooting | Modem Troubleshooting


Device Troubleshooting

  1. Make sure you are using a compliant device to access your Charter Internet. Click here for more information.
  2. Verify all connections are hand tight
  3. Power-cycle your gateway. Click here for more information
  4. Power-cycle your device:
    • Unplug the power cord and if possible remove the battery from the wireless device that is experiencing connection issues.  Wait approximately 10 seconds, replace the battery, reconnect the power and reboot the device
    • Apple iOS devices (iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch) do not have removable batteries. To power-cycle an Apple iOS device, simultaneously press and hold the Power button at the top and the Home button at the bottom for 5 - 10 seconds.

hold home & power button

iOS 6 users

After holding the buttons for 5 – 10 seconds your iPad screen will automatically go dark and will restart. After restarting, your iPad will display the Lock Screen.

iOS 5 users

After holding the buttons for 5 – 10 seconds your iPad will display "Slide to Power Off". Continue holding the Power and Home button for another 5 – 10 seconds.

slide to power off

Your iPad screen will automatically go dark and will restart. After restarting, your iPad will display the Lock Screen.

  1. Disconnect and reconnect your wireless connection:
  • Wireless Switch: If your device has a wireless hardware switch (Typically laptop computers), turn it off for approximately 10 seconds, and then flip it back on.

wireless switch

  • Smart Phone/Tablets: Check your wireless settings to ensure that WiFi is set to ON. Also make sure that Airplane mode is set to OFF
  • Windows: Right-click on the Internet icon internet icon in the lower right-hand task bar and select Disconnect from then select your wireless network.  Wait approximately 10 seconds then right-click on the icon and select Connect to a network.  Select your wireless network name to reconnect.
  • Windows 7 and Vista: Right click on your connection in the task bar and select Diagnose and repair.  Windows will then walk you through several troubleshooting steps.
  • Apple AirPort: Click the AirPort icon and select Turn AirPort Off.  Wait approximately 10 seconds and then select AirPort: On.


  • Wireless adapters: If you are using a wireless adapter on a device, such as a USB adapter or Ethernet to WiFi, unplug the adapter, wait approximately 10 seconds, and then plug it back in.
  1. Verify that wireless computers are using the correct password. Click here for more information
  2. Make sure your operating system (Windows, OSX etc…) is updated to the latest version
  3. Verify there are no software conflicts:
    • Firewalls and Anti-Virus software: by definition, these types of software scan everything that comes into and out of your home network. Try disabling or turning down the scanning level of the program to see if that improves performance.
    • Virus/Adware/Malware: These types of programs are installed and run on your computer without your knowledge.  You may inadvertently download one of these by clicking on unknown hyperlinks or opening files attached to emails.  Click here for information on downloading and installing the Charter Security Suite
    • VPN (Virtual Private Network): if you are using a VPN solution, they may be scanning your connection for security reasons.  Try disconnecting from your VPN session and using your computer without it to see if your VPN is causing the issue.

Modem Rebooting Itself

Follow the steps below to troubleshoot your modem and/or router if it is rebooting itself and causing an intermittent connection.

  1. Verify you are using the original supplied power adapter and not a 3rd party replacement. Third party replacement adapters may not be compatible.
  2. Ensure the power adapter is securely connected to the power outlet and the modem and/or router.
  3. Try plugging the modem and/or router into a different power outlet.

Environment Troubleshooting

  1. Distance: The farther away from the gateway you are, the weaker your signal will be.  Try moving closer to your gateway to see if the connection improves. Your best signal is within approximately 125 feet within line of sight.


  1. Gateway Location and Obstacles:  Check the location and surroundings of your gateway.  Is your gateway tucked away in the basement or entertainment center?  Do you have it under stacks of materials on your desk?  Are you trying to get a wireless signal through two floors up and four plaster walls over?  Your gateway needs to be in the most central spot in your home, and away from anything that might block its signal.  Metal objects, bodies of water, plaster walls and other similar construction materials may severely limit a wireless signal from passing through.  If you can, move your gateway to a better location away from such obstacles.  Also try using your device away from these obstacles to see if your performance improves.


  1. Competing Devices: The more devices that are sharing your Internet connection, the more bandwidth each is competing to use.  One or two devices may be 'hogging' your bandwidth.  Try disconnecting some of your devices that aren't in use to improve performance on other devices.


  1. Interfering Devices: All devices with an antenna are trying to send data over the air.  Cordless phones, baby monitors, Bluetooth devices (i.e. wireless speakers, mouse) and neighboring wireless networks are all competing with your wireless network.  If you can, move your WiFi devices away from the other transmitting devices, or turn them off when not in use.

wireless phonebaby monitorwifi device list

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