If there was a power outage in your area, you may experience an internet connection failure even after the power is restored. However, this does not mean that your router is damaged, or the internet connection is permanently lost. You can still troubleshoot this problem.
If your router stops working after a power outage, you should reset it. Start by unplugging the router and wait 30 seconds. Connect the power cable and restart the router. Allow the router up to 10 minutes to reconnect everything. Your internet connection should be back up.
How to Reset Internet after Power Outage
A power reset helps you reboot the router and allow it some time to get rid of any cache files that were stuck in its memory. Follow these steps to do a power reset:
- Unplug the router
- Wait about 30 seconds
- After some minutes (5 to 10 minutes), plug the router back in and allow it some time to properly reboot. The lights on the router will blink a few times before they become stable.
- Check your internet connection by loading a web page to see if the internet is restored.
- If the connection fails, try the next reset method.
If the power reset did not restore the internet, you should try a hard reset. Note that a hard reset is the same as a factory reset, and it removes all your file configurations from the device, including your SSID and passwords. You will need to set up the router afresh.
Follow these steps:
- Find the reset button (most routers have a reset button on the back or side). In some devices, you will need to insert a clip into the reset hole. Check your router manual if you cannot find the reset button.
- Press and hold the reset button for 30 seconds, or once the lights on the router start to flicker.
- Re-activate the router. You may need to input your account information to configure the router. Check the router manual for this information, or call your ISP.
- Once you have set up the router, confirm that the internet connection is restored.
Reset the modem (if the router appears to be working but no internet)
If you can connect to your home network but there is no internet, it could be an issue with your modem or ISP.
Follow these steps to troubleshoot the problem:
- Check router lights. If the LAN indicators are blinking or solid green, but the internet indicator is showing orange or amber, it means the router is broadcasting its own internet, but not from the ISP.
- Check the modem lights. If the modem lights are blinking red or out, it means the modem is the problem.
- Unplug the router from the modem, and connect your device (computer, tablet, or phone) to the modem.
- If your laptop connects to the internet, it shows that the modem is working properly. However, if your laptop cannot connect to the internet, then your modem could be the problem.
- Once you confirm that the modem is the cause of the internet failure, perform a power reset. Unplug it, wait for 30 seconds, plugin it in, and reconnect.
Reboot your DNS server
A power outage can cause the ISP’s DNS servers to stop working, which can result in internet connection failure. You can resolve this by rebooting the DNS servers.
Follow these steps to reboot your DNS:
- Navigate to the search bar and search “Command prompt”.
- Open the command prompt application. A new black window will open.
- Type “net stop dnscache” and press enter. Allow it a few minutes to stop the DNS service.
- Type “net stop dnscache” and press enter. This will restart the DNS servers.
- Open your browser and search to see if the internet connection has been restored.
Call your ISP
If nothing works after trying the above methods, it could be a problem with your ISP. Call your ISP to report that your internet is not working after a power outage.
If there was no damage to the ISP’s infrastructure, the ISP will help you restore the internet. You might be asked to perform troubleshooting tasks on the router while you are on the phone with their reps.
If the ISP’s infrastructure was damaged in a storm, strong winds, or floods, you might have to wait until repairs are done. This might mean staying without the internet for a couple of hours or days. However, find alternative ways of getting an internet connection such as use your android phone or iPhone to tether a hotspot.
Can a power outage damage a router?
While a power outage may not damage your router outright, a voltage spike may precede or immediately follow the power outage, and it can cause damage to your router and other electrical devices.
If there is a spike in the voltage, it will be sent in frequency through the communication line, which could lead to your router or modem. If the spike is high enough and the router does not have a surge protector, it can blow up the hardware inside your router.
When this happens, the router is said to have been “fried”, and you can smell a burnt plastic odor coming from your router. The sudden spike could damage all your electrical devices that have been powered on, not just your router.
If your router is connected to a surge protector or has an in-built surge protector, it can guard the router against the voltage spike. Surge protectors work by absorbing the surge and neutralizing it before it reaches the router. By containing the spike, the surge protector helps keep your router intact.
How to Protect your Router from Power Outages
If you live in an area that experiences frequent power outages, you should protect your router, laptops, and other electrical devices from power surges.
One device you can use is a surge protector to deal with voltage spikes when the router is plugged in. A surge protector guards your devices against physical harm due to spikes, it is enough in most situations.
You can also buy an uninterruptible power supply to give you immediate backup power to ensure your router is always on. It can save you from slit-second power losses or extended power outages.