How to Access Router Settings and Update Your Wi-Fi Password

I would bet when you moved into your house or rental property, you set up your router with a name and password, and you haven’t thought about it yet. Am I right? Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s a good habit to change that password on a semi-regular basis even if you currently have a strong password for your home Wi-Fi network.

I guess you’re reading this because you’d like to change your home Wi-Fi password (great!), but maybe you don’t know how to do it (no problem!) good news ? Changing your network password is probably a lot easier than you think — and if it’s been a while since you’ve messed with your router, it’s probably easier than the last time you tried, too.

On top of that, maintaining a strong password for your home Wi-Fi network is more important than ever as we continue work from home (and filling the place with all sorts of gadgets and connected gadgets). A good password will help keep all of this secure and prevent people from using your network without you realizing it. Here’s how to update yours (and if you’re looking for expert advice on how to choose and remember a strong password, check this
).

Read also: Want better Wi-Fi? Here is the best place to put your router

Screenshots of your router's free companion app.

Most routers come with a free companion app that will guide you through setup and provide quick access to network settings. Typically, this includes the ability to update your network name and password.

Screenshot by Ry Crist/CNET

First things first: Does your router or ISP offer an app for this?

Almost all routers these days come with a companion app to guide you through setup, and apps like these also allow you to log in to access your router’s settings, including name and password. network password. Moreover, most internet service providers offer an app to manage your account, and if you rent your router or gateway from your ISP, that app will likely include quick access to your network settings as well. Either way, downloading this app and logging in will be the fastest and easiest way to change your network password.

I’ve included links to the most common network control apps below – just figure out what kind of router you’re using, then tap Android or iOS depending on what kind of phone or tablet you’re downloading it to. ‘application. Once downloaded, open the app while connected to your router’s network, then follow the instructions to create an account and log in. From there, the option to change your network name and password should be prominently displayed in the app settings. section.

No application ? No problem

If your router doesn’t offer an app or you just don’t want to use it, you’ll need to access your router settings through the web. Most manufacturers maintain a website that will allow you to do just that – your device just needs to be connected to the network your router is currently using (a wired or wireless connection is fine). Here are some manufacturer-specific links to these websites:

(Note: Not all of the links above may load for you, depending on the brand and model of router you are using.)

In most cases, you can also access your router’s settings in a web browser by typing its IP address in the URL bar (in fact, the Linksys link above just redirects you to the IP address by default of Linksys routers). To find your router’s specific IP address, connect to its network on your computer, phone, or tablet, then go to that device’s network settings. Pull up the router’s network details and you should be able to find the router’s IP address listed next to “router” or “default gateway”.

Close-up of the underside of a router.

With most routers, you can find the default login information printed on the bottom. If you’re having trouble logging in, these login details should work after a hard reset (you may need a paperclip for this).

Chris Monroe/CNET

If this is your first time logging in to adjust your router settings, you may be prompted to create an administrator password, which is separate from the password that allows you to join the network ( the one you are currently trying to edit). If an administrator password like this has already been set, you will need to enter it to access your router settings. If it uses these, your router should have the default admin username and password printed on the bottom of the device – if these don’t work, that means the login credentials have already been changed to something else (perhaps by you the last time you tried to log in).

Don’t remember the admin password? Don’t worry, you can reset the original admin credentials by performing a hard reset on the router, which probably requires holding down a button with a paper clip for a few seconds. Just be sure to revert to a stronger admin password once you’ve entered – and this time write it down on a sticky note and tape it to the bottom of the router. In the future, you will be very grateful.

Once you’ve logged in through the router’s web portal, you should find easy access to all of your basic network settings, including the ability to change the network name (SSID) or password. After that, be sure to look for a button that saves your new setting – once you’ve clicked it, you should be good to go.

New password — now what?

Now comes the slightly annoying chore of reconnecting all the Wi-Fi devices in your home with the new, updated password. It wasn’t so bad back when the only things most people connected to their home networks were a computer or two and maybe a printer. Now with mobile devices for every member of the family, game consoles, security systems and streaming devices that rely on a constant connection to the web, and a handful of smart home gadgets scattered throughout most homes these days, reconnecting everything is a whole new ball game.

Yes, logging in to all those devices and updating the password so they can log back in is a bit of a hassle – but please don’t let that stop you from updating the password for your home network when the time comes. Updating your Wi-Fi password is actually a perfect opportunity to adjust device settings and upgrade firmware for all the tech in your home, which is another really good habit. technological. Thinking of it all like a yearly chore similar to spring cleaning feels appropriate – and like any good spring cleaning session, once your job is done, you should feel free to sit back, relax, and congratulate yourself for crossing one off the list.

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