Home Router How to Turn On Wireless Capability On Dell Laptop? (Follow These Simple Steps)

How to Turn On Wireless Capability On Dell Laptop? (Follow These Simple Steps)

by stacy

Many times, users mistakenly believe that the internet connection is set up automatically when they buy a new laptop. It is not often true. Some manufacturers require you to complete certain tasks before your Wi-Fi network can be connected. This guide will show you how to turn on wireless capabilities for your Dell laptop.

Dell Laptop Wireless Capability

Even though not all Dell laptops have Wi-Fi connectivity, the majority of them do. The manufacturers attach a network adapter, also known as a Wi Fi card to your Dell laptop’s motherboard in order to establish a Wi Fi network.

You may not always be able see that the laptop has an active Wi Fi connection when you turn it on. You can follow this simple guide to activate wireless capability on your Dell laptop.

Use a physical button to turn on Wi-Fi

You can sometimes use the keyboard key to turn wireless Wi-Fi on and off. The most common location is between two (2). Function keys at the uppermost area of the laptop’s keyboard. Once you have turned on the Wi-Fi network, press again to turn it off.

Function keys

If the function isn’t on the keyboard you might find a physical button on your laptop. This is common with older models.

find a physical button on the side of the laptop

Windows 10: Turn on Wi Fi

Windows 10 is a good alternative to Wi-Fi buttons and keys. These are the steps:

  1. Click on Start to open the Settings menu.
  2. Choose Network & Internet.
  3. Select Wi-Fi in the menu to the left.
  4. Press the On toggle to turn the Wi-Fi on – a blue highlight will appear.

turn the Wi-Fi on

There’s a much quicker way to do it. The Wi-Fi network icon is located at the bottom right of the laptop screen. You will see a list of strong Wi Fi networks within close proximity to your laptop. Click on the desired network to activate wireless capability on your Dell laptop.

Occasionally, your Wi-Fi won’t turn onThere are many factors that can cause this. Don’t call up your Internet Service Provider or Dell’s customer service yet – we’ve got you covered as well. Here are some quick fixes and possible causes.

Modify Adapter Options

You can check and enable your network adapter by following these steps:

  1. Right-click on the Windows icon at the bottom-left of your Dell laptop’s screen.
  2. Select Network Connections to see a Network Status Page.
  3. Click on “Change adapter options” under Advanced network settings.
  4. Right-click on the Wi Fi network and choose Enable. Or, if it’s already enabled, select disable first, wait a few seconds, and then right-click again and select Enable.

4 Methods to enable Wi-Fi on a Dell laptop

Modify power options

You need to reduce your laptop’s power consumption for many reasons, including conserving battery power. This setting can interfere with Wi-Fi networks and may cause your wi-fi adapter to be disabled. These steps will ensure that the laptop has maximum power.

  1. Go to the Control Panel.
  2. Select Hardware or Sound from the menu to the left.
  3. Click on Power Options.
  4. You can choose the High-performance power plans option.

Verify that your Wi-Fi Driver has the most recent version

Windows updates can cause problems with some tools and applications, such as the Wi Fi driver. These steps will be helpful if your Wi-Fi driver encounters an error or is not up to date.

  1. Right-click the Windows icon at the leftmost end of the taskbar.
  2. Choose Device manager.
  3. Right-click on the Network adapter to be found.
  4. Right-click on the Wi Fi driver to choose Update driver.
  5. Follow the steps to update by selecting Search automatically for Drivers and following the rest of the instructions.

Wi-Fi Driver

Reinstall Wi-Fi Driver

If the last method doesn’t work, you may need to uninstall and reinstall the Wi-Fi driver entirely. Since you’re getting access to the same device, i.e., the Wi-Fi driver, repeat the first four steps in the last fix.

When you get to step 4, choose Uninstall driver. The Wi-Fi driver should be installed automatically when your Dell laptop reboots.

select Uninstall driver

You can check the Wi-Fi card Network Adapter

We have mentioned at the beginning of this post that a network adapter or Wi-Fi card connects to your laptop’s motherboard. That’s what enables wireless capability on your Dell laptop. If none the above solutions are successful, the problem could be caused by a defective Wi-Fi Card.

You may need some DIY skills to check the Wi-Fi card. If you don’t feel competent enough, you might not be able to perform this task and you should call a technician instead. But it’s a pretty simple operation.

First, open your laptop and search for the Wi-Fi Card. Detach it using a small screwdriver and reconnect it to ensure it’s firmly attached to the laptops’ CPU. If the Wi-Fi network is still not working, you will need to replace it. For convenience, it may be worth replacing it with an external Wi Fi connector in case it needs replacement.

Remove unknown devices from the network

Your computer can be a target for hackers, believe it or not. It won’t make it any better if you take your internet safety measures for granted. Your inability to turn on a Wi-Fi network could be a sign of a hacker’s presence in your network. These steps will help you get rid of unwanted hackers.

  1. Start your internet browser.
  2. Visit your router’s configuration page.
  3. Locate the section Devices Attached.
  4. Look for unknown devices.
  5. Select the devices you wish to remove and click on the Remove button.

Once you have removed all unknown devices (potential intruders), then turn on your Wi Fi network to verify that it works.


You will learn how to activate wireless on a Dell laptop by pressing a button/key and also how to use Windows settings and router settings. A few things might prevent you from connecting to Wi-Fi on your Dell laptop. Hopefully one of our solutions helped restore your Wi Fi connection.

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