How To Fix Netgear Router Not Working (Nighthawk Troubleshooting)

Netgear Router Not Working

Is your Netgear router not working?

There are various reasons why your Netgear Nighthawk router may not be working, but the main reason typically relates to the wireless signal.

If there is no signal from your router or internet service provider, your devices will not connect to the internet.

Other causes include outdated firmware, loose cables, faulty devices, disabled radios, as well as invalid passwords.

Luckily, there are many easy solutions you can try to solve the issue of your Netgear router not working, without needing much technical knowledge.

These solutions include resetting or restarting the router, updating the firmware, refitting or replacing cables, changing the password, or contacting customer service for professional help.

Follow our step-by-step troubleshooting guide below to quickly solve this issue.

Why Is My Nighthawk Router Not Working?

Various reasons may be preventing your Nighthawk router from working properly. They include:

  • The firmware is outdated.
  • The power supply has been interrupted.
  • The device is faulty, or the radios are disabled.
  • Loose or faulty cable connections.
  • Interferences caused by physical objects or other devices.
  • Incorrect password or the password has been changed.
  • Hardware issues like faulty capacitator or antenna.
  • Invalid IP address

How To Fix Netgear Router Not Working

Nighthawk Troubleshooting

The following are the different ways that you can troubleshoot your router to solve the connectivity problems:

1. Power Cycle or Restart Your Router and Modem

You can always fix your connectivity issues with a simple restart.

The router works in tandem with the modem by continuously sending and receiving data.

After a period of uninterrupted use, sometimes the router or modem encounters bugs or interferences which cause poor performance. Often these can be corrected through a system restart or power cycle.

Follow the steps below to restart your router:

  • Find the power button on the router and modem then turn it off.
  • Give the devices a few minutes to rest.
  • Then turn the devices back on and wait for the status lights to become stable.

Below are the steps to power cycle the router and the modem:

  • Turn off the power button on the router and modem.
  • Unplug all the power cords that connect the router and modem, including all Ethernet/Coax cables connecting the modem to the router and the wall outlet.
  • Give the router and modem 10 minutes to rest.
  • Connect the modem to the wall outlet using the cable.
  • Turn on the modem after plugging the power cord in.
  • Give time for the modem to initialize and the lights to be stable.
  • Now connect the router to the wall outlet using the power cord.
  • Use the Ethernet cable to connect the router and the modem.
  • Turn on the router and wait for a few minutes for the lights to turn on.
  • Check whether your router is connected to the internet.

If your router is not working, you should check the cables for any damage.

2. Check for Damaged or Loose Connections

Your internet connectivity can be affected if there is any damage to the cords and cables. A clear sign of weak or no connectivity is that there will be no lights on your router or a red light will appear.

The splitter can also be at fault if you are using bundled services, so it should also be checked.

Below are the steps to check whether your cables are damaged or loose:

  • Check the power cord connected to the router and modem.
  • Check for any fluctuations in power.
  • Check the quality of the coax cable that is connecting the wall outlet and the modem.
  • Inspect the ethernet cable connecting the router and the modem.
  • If there are any damages, you should replace the older ethernet/coax cables with new ones.

If your Netgear router is still not working even if the cables are not damaged, you should check if there is a firmware update that you need to do.

3. Update Router Firmware

If your router is connected to the internet but cannot access it, it may be operating on outdated firmware. Your router must run on the latest firmware.

Below are the steps to update your router’s firmware using the Netgear App:

  • If you do not have the Netgear Nighthawk App, download it from Play Store and then install it.
  • Make sure that your phone is connected to the WiFi Network.
  • Use the admin credentials to log in to the App.
  • Then tap on the router image in the App and you will be directed to the settings.
  • Scroll down and select the ‘Check for Updates’ option.
  • A screen will appear with information about the firmware.
  • Tap on the update.

To update the firmware using Netgear Website, follow the steps below:

  • Log in to the Netgear Website and check whether there is any latest firmware available for your router.
  • Download the firmware manually and store it on your computer/laptop.
  • Then go to the admin portal of Netgear.
  • Under the advanced settings, select Administration and then click on router update.
  • Click on browse and this will map the downloaded file.
  • Click on upload and the firmware update will begin.
  • Ensure that the router is powered to keep the process uninterrupted.

4. Factory Reset Netgear Router

If updating the firmware does not solve the issue, doing a factory reset on your router can reverse any problems caused by conflicting settings by restoring to default settings. The following are the steps to factory reset your router:

  • Find the reset button which is located at the back of the router.
  • Hold and press the button for 30 seconds while the router is on using a pin or paper clip.
  • Take the paperclip or pin out when you see flashing lights.
  • Wait for about 10 to 15 minutes for the factory reset to happen.
  • Once the process is done, you need to enter the username and password.

5. Change Your WiFi Password or Network Name

When you input an invalid password or username, you won’t be able to access the internet via a Netgear router. To resolve this issue, you can change the router’s network name or password using the following guide.

  • To begin, launch the web browser on your device and go to the website
  • Once you have accessed the router’s login page, enter your username and password.
  • Navigate to the “Wireless” section on the home page and locate the “Name (SSID)” field. Then input the new network name that you want to use for your router’s wireless network.
  • Find the “Password (Network Key)” field and type in the new password that you want to set for your router’s wireless network. Then, click on the “Apply” button to save and apply the changes you have made.

6. Turn On the Netgear Router’s Wireless Radios

If you can connect to the internet through an Ethernet cable but not through the wireless network, it means that your router is not emitting a signal that is strong enough.

In this case, you can fix the problem by pressing and holding the WiFi On/Off button on the router for around 2 seconds. After this, the LED on the active antenna should be illuminated.

This will hopefully reactivate the antenna to improve the wireless signal.

7. Try Cloning The Current MAC Address 

Another solution to troubleshoot your Nighthawk router is to clone the MAC address.

Often, home or workplace network setups have a specific number of MAC addresses that are approved, causing your device to have connectivity issues.

Cloning circumvents these issues by copying the MAC address from an approved device to the device having issues.

The cloning process is straightforward, you’ll need to have your old and new router available.

First, find the IP address for your old router and enter it into a web browser, it may resemble something like

In the portal, locate the status page where the MAC address should appear. Copy this address and shut down your old router.

Next, load the portal using the IP address of your new router. Then, find the network settings page and enter the MAC address of your old router into the address field and save the settings. This completes the cloning process.

8. Contact Customer Support

If the above steps fail to resolve the internet access problem, it is recommended that you seek assistance from a trained professional. Therefore, you should call Netgear’s customer care or chat with them online.

A professional will walk you through some of the solutions and if they don’t work, they will send a technician to your home to inspect the router. They will then advise you on the best steps to take depending on the cause of the issue.

9. Repair or Replace the Router

If the above steps do not solve the problem, maybe it is time to repair or replace your router. In this case, you should contact your internet service provider to help you with the process.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my Netgear WiFi not working?

Various issues may prevent Netgear WiFi from working, most commonly, the issue relates to wireless signal issues.

For example, disabling the wireless radios or encountering issues with cables or power cords can cause the Netgear WiFi to stop functioning properly.

Why is my Nighthawk router offline?

There are various possible causes of internet connectivity issues, including faulty Ethernet cables or power cords, internet outages, or outdated firmware on your Netgear router.

How do I fix connected but no internet access?

If you are connected to the network but have no internet access, typically the cause is outdated firmware. You can update the firmware via the Netgear App or website.

If the problem persists, you can also try a power cycle or factory reset of your Netgear router to see if that enables internet access.

What lights should be on my Netgear router?

Netgear routers typically have LED displays indicating device power status, internet connection status, as well as the status of the WiFi signal, Bands, WPS, Ethernet, and USB. There may be some variance between models.

A few lights to look out for on a Netgear router include:

Power Lights

  • Solid Green / White – the router is ready.
  • Blinking White – the router firmware is corrupted.


  • Solid Green / White – the router is connected to the internet.
  • Blinking White – the router is sending or receiving traffic.


  • Solid White – the WiFi radios are operational.

Why are the Default Username and Password for My Netgear Router?

Confirm that you’re entering the correct login information as shown on the device or the product manual. You might be able to log into your router if your model supports it and use the password recovery feature by Netgear.

Alternatively, perform a factory reset by holding down the reset button to restore the default password and username.

The default username and password are:

Username: admin

Password for the latest models: password

Password for older models: 1234

Final Words

Hopefully, this article has given you all the information that you need to fix your Netgear Nighthawk router if it is not working properly.

Understanding the causes of your router issues will help you in the solving process.

Some of the causes include interrupted power supply, outdated firmware, loose cables, and faulty devices to name a few.

You can replace any damaged cables, update your router’s firmware, or do a factory reset or a power cycle to get your Netgear router back to working properly.

In the worst-case scenario, contact customer service for further support or replace the router.

Daniele Besana

Daniele Besana

Daniele is a freelancer consultant with 15 years of experience in network security, customer support, Linux and Salsa. He worked for Juniper Networks in Netherlands, providing support and consultancy on security projects across Europe and Middle-East.

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