Wireless printing is now a feature present in any modern printer and is extremely convenient because it allows you to keep the printer away from your computer, maybe a little hidden or even in another room, without having to lay unsightly and uncomfortable cables.
For those who have problems with the wireless printer or for those who have never configured and just bought it, in this guide, we will show you how to connect the Wi-Fi printer of the main brands, so that we can follow the procedure appropriate to the device in our possession.
We will also show you a very quick procedure to be able to quickly add the printer to your home network and to the PC with Windows 10 and a collection of common problems, so you can solve and use the wireless printer.
How to connect the Wi-Fi printer to the router
Connecting the printer to the home or office Wi-Fi network is all in all very simple, as we will see in the various chapters below.
Connection via WPS
All Wi-Fi printers (of any manufacturer) they can be connected to the wireless network using the WPS button present on the router and setting the printer to be able to carry out the quick connection, without having to manually enter the network password (often very laborious to enter, given that the printer screens and keys are very small).
First of all, we press the WPS button on our router or we enter his own router configuration panel and we activate the WPS from there; if in the past we have disabled the security feature, we can also reactivate it temporarily and deactivate it once the printer is connected.
Within 120 seconds of its pressure, we turn on the printer and press on it WPS button (if present); alternatively, we enter the printer settings, let us go to the menu Wifi, Wireless or WLAN and make sure we select it WPS connection mode.
In a few seconds the printer will be connected to the Wi-Fi network in our possession, without having to manually enter the network password; if the connection does not occur within 120 seconds, make sure that the printer is close enough to the router and repeat the steps.
This is without a doubt the most comfortable and simple procedure to follow to connect the Wi-Fi printer to the network, but WPS has often been a victim of hackers than we strongly recommend disabling it immediately after use for the printer.
To deepen the discussion on WPS technology, we refer you to reading our guide on How to use the WPS Wifi button safely and quickly.
Manual connection to the Wi-Fi network
If we do not want to use the WPS button or it is not present, we will have to manually configure the Wi-Fi connection, so as to make the printer available to all network devices.
To connect the printer to the network turn it on, press the button Menu or Setup, let’s get to the menu Wifi, Wireless or WLAN and select the manual password entry mode.
A search will start for the Wi-Fi networks available nearby: at the end of the scan, we select our wireless network and use the keys on the printer to enter the login password.
At the end of the configuration, press OK and we turn on Wi-Fi by pressing the appropriate button, so as to make the connection.
If the printer in your possession does not have a display, we can also make the connection with an alternative method: hold down the Wi-Fi button for a few seconds, install the specific app (based on the printer manufacturer) on our smartphone and let’s connect to the provisional Wi-Fi network created by the printer itself (usually recognizable because it does not have an access password and has the same printer name); after making the connection we follow the steps offered by the app to enter the password to access the Wi-Fi network.
To learn more about all the connection methods available for each printer manufacturer, we recommend reading the suggestions in the various official guides, which we have gathered in the list below:
Connect Wi-Fi printer to Windows
Once the printer is connected to the Wi-Fi network, we will have to configure Windows to be able to manage it correctly, installing the right driver and any app or management program.
Integrated tool in Windows 10
The fastest way to connect the Wi-Fi printer to Windows 10 involves using the tools integrated with the operating system, which will download the right print driver from the Internet and make the printer available to all programs.
To use the integrated tool, make sure that the printer is already on and connected to the same Wi-Fi network where the computer in use is, so we open the menu Start, we open the app Settings, let’s get to the menu Printers and scanners and click on Add a printer or scanner.
The system will start searching for any printer present on the network; as soon as the new printer is visible, select it and click Add device. Windows will start looking for a compatible driver, so you can immediately start printing. If the printer is a multi-function, the scanner driver will also be downloaded.
Driver and program from CD or from site
If we want to achieve the highest print quality, we use Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 as the operating system or check the ink levels without entering the printer settings each time, we recommend Install the driver and support programs on the CD included in the printer package.
Once the CD has been inserted, we wait for the boot and then we launch the setup of the installation, in which we will be able to choose (in most cases) whether to install only the printer driver or the driver and support programs (often very useful to exploit the scanner or to perform head cleaning).
If our computer does not have a disc reader, we can always get an external USB DVD burner or download the updated drivers and programs from the websites of printer manufacturers, which we have collected below:
Once the manufacturer’s site is open, we enter the printer model and retrieve the necessary executables. From the manufacturers’ websites, we can choose whether to download and install only the printer driver or to download the support programs as well.
Solve common problems with the Wi-Fi printer
If we encounter connection problems for the Wi-Fi printer, the reason is usually related to the printer and the fact that it is not seen on the net. By default, the printer should appear in Windows Explorer of Windows, even if the connection to the computer has not yet been made. If this does not happen, it is necessary to check that the printer is really connected to the wifi network coming from the home router. It may be, for example, that the network access password was not correctly written or that the IP address of the printer was not assigned by the router.
At the first attempt to connect, it is worth positioning the computer and the printer close to each other, so as to exclude any bad signal reception. If the printer and router are far away we can also try the connection via Ethernet cable, so you can start it, install the drivers and try if it works. The printer management program should have the option to configure the wireless printer.
If you cannot find the IP address of the printer, access the router settings (using a browser, usually it is enough to open the address 192.168.1.1) and we check if the network printer is present among the connected devices, noting the relative IP address.
If the connection is there, but the printer still does not work, then it can be a driver problem. We completely uninstall the printer by following the steps in our guide on how to Remove and uninstall hidden drivers or old hardware devices, so we use the drivers on the package CD or by downloading the new ones from the sites, as shown in the previous chapter.
For any other problem, refer to the guide that explains what to do if the printer does not print (HP, Epson, and others)
Connecting a Wi-Fi printer to the network and to the computer is very simple, just use the method that is most congenial to us or more practical, so that we can print wirelessly even between different rooms (obviously with the wireless signal, which must always be good).
If we want to configure a printer on a single PC and share its configuration on other computers on the network (without repeating all the steps), we advise you to read our guide on how to Configure a shared network printer between PCs.
If instead, we want to print documents and photos from a smartphone or tablet, we can read our guides on how to print from Android to any printer is Ways of printing from iPad and iPhone on any printer, so that the printer can also be used as a mobile.
To print remotely, even when we are not at home or in the office, we can read the suggestions proposed in our guide on how Print online from other PCs, mobile phones and remotely, so you can print from anywhere on the planet.