Wi-Fi printer not recognized? Fix it with these quick solutions

Elsie Otachi By: Elsie Otachi
6 minute read
Wi-Fi printer not recognized

Home » Wi-Fi printer not recognized? Fix it with these quick solutions

If you own a printer for your home office, or use one at your workplace, you must have encountered some print job issues that stem either from your connection or the printer itself.

One of these problems is when the Wi-Fi printer is not recognized, yet you are so sure all original settings have not been interfered with or changed, at least not by you.

So what do you do when you get the Wi-Fi printer not recognized error message?

Worry not, we have tried and trusted solutions to fix the issue, and this article covers these fixes.

How to fix Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  1. Check hardware
  2. Use printer troubleshooter
  3. Update drivers
  4. Temporarily disable your antivirus security software
  5. Reboot your computer
  6. Check Default printer settings
  7. Perform a Windows Update
  8. Clear spooler files and restart spooler service
  9. Check with your manufacturer

Solution 1: Check your hardware

Do the following checks for your printer and related hardware and/or accessories:

  1. Ensure your printer is turned on and connected.

Check the power switch if it is turned on, and ensure the printer’s power cable is plugged in to an electrical outlet. If you’re on a shared printer or network, ensure all computers and routers are turned on as well. Plug in your power surge protector and turn it on. Plug in the printer’s USB cable properly to your PC. For wireless printers, turn on the wireless option from your printer then run the printer’s wireless connectivity test from the menu option. If these are clear, and you still get Wi-Fi printer not recognized error, then your computer may not be connecting to your wireless network.

  1. Uninstall and reinstall your printer

Follow these steps to remove your printer:

  • Select Start
  • Click Settings

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Choose Devices

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Click Printers & Scanners on the left pane

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Find your printer and click on it
  • Select Remove device

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

Reinstall your printer (wireless or local) using the following steps:

  • Select Start
  • Click Settings

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Choose Devices

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Click Printers & Scanners on the left pane

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Select Add a printer or scanner

  • Choose the printer you want to add then select Add device

Note: you can print a test page to ensure the printer works correctly. If it is installed but doesn’t work, check the device’s manufacturer website for troubleshooting or driver updates.

To connect to a local printer, plug in the printer’s USB cable to an available USB port on your computer, then turn on the printer.

Solution 2: Use printer troubleshooter

A printer troubleshooter is an automated tool that can find and automatically fix some problems with installing and connecting to a printer.

To use this troubleshooter, download and run the printing troubleshooter and follow the instruction prompts.

Solution 3: Update drivers

Driver software is needed for most printers to work properly. In the event you updated or upgraded to Windows 10, you may have to update your current printer driver so that it matches or is compatible with the new Windows version.

If you had recent power outages, viruses in your computer, or other issues, the drivers may have also been damaged.

Download and install the latest driver using either of these three ways:

Using Windows Update.

Use the steps below to do this:

  • Right click Start

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Select Device Manager
  • Expand the Printers option to get the list of devices
  • Right click on your device and choose Update Driver.
  • Select Search automatically for updated driver software.

Downloading and installing the driver manually by yourself. Do this if Windows doesn’t automatically find a driver update for your printer, or you don’t have an installation disk. You can check the manufacturer’s website then find the latest driver for your printer.

Installing the driver software from the printer’s manufacturer. If you have the installation disc, it may contain the software for installing a driver for your printer.

Once you update the driver for your printer, do the following:

  • Disconnect the printer’s USB cable from the computer
  • Click Start
  • Click Settings > choose Devices
  • Click Printers & Scanners on the left pane

 

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Choose the printer you want to add then select Remove device

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Go to the search field box on the taskbar, type Print Management and select the corresponding search result

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Click All Printers

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Find your printer, right click it and select Delete
  • Restart your computer
  • Plug your printer’s USB cable back to your computer and try to install the software and driver again.

In case these methods don’t help you or you don’t have enough time or computer skills to use them, we strongly reccommend to do it automatically by using Tweakbit’s Driver Updater tool. This tool is approved by Microsoft and Norton Antivirus. After several tests, our team concluded that this is the best automatized solution. Below you can find a quick guide how to do it.

    1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updater
    2. driver updater starting windowOnce installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.driver updater scanning
    3. Upon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
      driver updater scan finished
      Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

If these steps didn’t work, worry not, there are more solutions ahead.

Solution 4: Temporarily disable your antivirus security software

You can uninstall third party software on your computer such as computer cleaner or antivirus.

Note: For antivirus, temporarily disable it because you need it to prevent your computer from security threats. Immediately after you’re done fixing connection error, re-enable your antivirus and check if you still get the Wi-Fi printer not recognized error message.

Solution 5: Reboot your computer

This is the first line of action whenever such an issue comes up (or any other issues with your computer and any other hardware you may be using along with it). However, if you restart your computer and nothing happens on your printer, you can go to the next solution.

Solution 6: Check Default printer settings

If your Wi-Fi printer is not recognized, check the default printer settings and change from the current printer to the one that you want to be using.

Here’s how to correct the default settings:

      • Click Start
      • Click Settings
      • Choose Devices
      • Click Printers & Scanners on the left pane

 

 

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Scroll to Let Windows manage my default printer
      • Turn the option OFF

Solution 7: Perform a Windows Update

For a healthy computer, you need to keep updating Windows with the latest system updates, and drivers. This also helps resolve any issues or difficulties you may be experiencing.

Here’s how to check and install Windows Update (manually)

  • Go to Start
  • In the search field, type Windows Updates
  • Click on Windows Updates Settings from the search results

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Click Check for updates

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

  • Install the latest Windows Updates

ALSO READ: Windows Update not working on Windows 10 [Fix]

Solution 8: Clear spooler files and restart spooler service

If the previous solutions are unsuccessful, you may need to clear spooler files then restart spooler service.

Here’s how to do this:

      • Click Start
      • Go to the search field box and type Services
      • Click Services from the search results

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Under Services, double click Print Spooler

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Select Stop then Ok

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Go to the search box again and type %WINDIR%\system32\spool\printers

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Select the file folder. You need admin privileges to access it.
      • Delete all the folders in the folder
      • Under Services, double-click Print Spooler again
      • Click Start

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Go to Startup Type list

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Select Automatic box

Wi-Fi printer not recognized

      • Click Apply then click Ok

Solution 9: Check with your manufacturer

If the other solutions didn’t work, contact your printer’s manufacturer for more troubleshooting and support based on your specific issue.

Did any of these solutions work for you? Share with us your experiences by leaving a comment in the section below.

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