iPhone has lost connection to home WiFi

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by twowrongfeet, Aug 5, 2010.

  1. macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2010
    Cambridge, UK

    I'm new to this forum and have done a quick search but can't seem to find this exact problem, so apologies if I've missed another thread that covers it.

    My 3G has suddenly stopped being able to connect to my home WiFi network for some inexplicable reason. I first got an error message asking me to input the password, which I did (several times), but it simply told me I had put in an incorrect password (I know I didn't).

    Now it's not even listing the network at all. I've tried manually inputting the name and security details but it tells me it's 'unable to join', with no explanation as to why.

    I can still connect to the web on a 3G connection, and I know there's no problem with the WiFi network as I'm posting this message right now from a laptop that's connected to it. The phone itself used to happily connect to the network whenever I was at home, so this is very frustrating. It doesn't appear to be connected to any software upgrade - I've upgraded the OS to 4.0 (and wish I hadn't!) but this problem started later than that.

    I've tried resetting the router, resetting the network settings and resetting all settings. I hate iTunes with a passion so am trying to avoid doing a complete restore - so before I start, has anyone else found this problem and have a solution?!
  2. macrumors P6


    Jun 19, 2009
    Where bunnies are welcome.
    The problem is that your wifi radio or chip is probably bad (I had two 3G’s with this issue). The message you got about the password, is what happens when it’ losing connection due to hardware (loss of signal, etc.) I was able to “fix” my last one which was out of warranty, by freezing the phone. It would work for a week or so, and then stop again. You can test if this is a hardware issue, but putting your phone inside two ziplock bags, making sure to remove as much air as possible, and then putting it in the freezer for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, if the wifi works, you know it’s hardware. It will eventually stop working after a few minutes. If you later freeze it for a few hours, it seems to work like I said for a week (don’t ask me to explain why). Of course, freezing the phone like this for long periods of time could damage your battery or cause other issues, so beware. All in all, it’s probably time to upgrade to the iPhone 4. Wonderful phone BTW.
  3. macrumors 65816


    Sep 27, 2006
    United States
    Take it to the nearest AppleStore (make an appointment at the Genius Bar). I had wifi issues after updating to iOS4 and tried EVERYTHING to get it working again, including taking it back to iOS3...don't bother trying anything, just take it to Apple, I took mine there and the Genius Bar guy said "iOS4 may have inadvertently turned wifi off" ...that is a direct quote...so Apple KNOWS there are issues with some 3G iphones, but not really telling us. In any case, they checked mine out and gave me a new 3G iphone (mine is 1 1/2 yrs old, no I do not have AppleCare) --with iOS 3.1.3 on it. I will not update it until 4.1 comes out.

    Seriously, just take it to the AppleStore Genius Bar, don't even try phone service, just take it in, it will be worth your time.

    (Apple just stopped selling the 3G when the iPhone 4 came out, so I think they are overstocked with the 3G phones)

    Oh, and don't listen to people who tell you that you should just get the new model, they likely work for Apple or AT&T, Apple broke the phone with the iOS4 update, they should fix it!
  4. macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    You didn't change anything on the router? Like switch to a 802.11n-network? iPhones only connect at 'g' or lower protocols.

    I doubt this happened, as you didn't mention any adjustments you made to your home network, but it's worth a check. Your laptop and other items may easily connect to a 'n' network, but your iPhone won't.

    The symptoms you describe happened to me when I switched my router to 802.11n...before I had set up my secondary 802.11g router.
  5. macrumors member


    Jul 15, 2010
    Your router should have a setting to allow compatibility for B/G/N at the same time. Just upgrading to an N router shouldn't normally cause non-N capable devices to be unable to connect.
  6. macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    But I was segregating my router to have an n-only at 5Ghz and the g continuing on at 2.4.
  7. thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 5, 2010
    Cambridge, UK
    Hehe, I totally didn't understand the last three posts, but I can say for certain that nothing has changed on my router. I pressed the reset button on the router (part of my standard 'turn-off-and-on-again' routine when trying to fix IT problems), but that shouldn't have changed anything as far as I know. I've realised I haven't tried connecting to another wifi network, but the phone is certainly not asking me to join other networks left right and centre any more, in the way it usually does whenever I'm in a residential area. I suspect this means it's definitely phone-related and not router-related.

    I don't really fancy the idea of putting the phone in the freezer, especially if it only offers a temporary fix (thanks for the suggestion though), and I've only had the phone a matter of months, so have no desire to upgrade to iPhone 4 right now.

    It's a second-hand phone and definitely out of warranty, so I'd assumed I couldn't take it to the Apple Store? I'll give it a go though and see what they say - hopefully the guys here in Cambridge will be as helpful as your man!

    Thanks for the advice, all.
  8. macrumors 68000

    Nov 6, 2009
    I'd try the freezer thing...I mean, what do you have to lose? PLUS Aggie did this with great success. I have read other threads where he talked about this fix. He's not just trying to pull the wool over your eyes.

    You are out of warranty, so there is no hope of another fix apparently. Plus this limited time in the freezer fix is not harmful if you limit the time inside the freezer. Do exactly what Aggie said about placing it in two airless baggies for a limited amount of time and see how it goes.
  9. macrumors newbie

    Aug 11, 2010
    Hardware fault - fissured solder joints


    It sounds like you have a hardware problem. If you restore it won't fix anything. However, the problem is not the wifi chip. The problem is that the PCB was soldered with lead-free solder and the factory messed up when they QC'd your board after running it through the reflow oven.

    I made a video about how to fix your iPhone / iPod Touch wifi hardware problem on YouTube. And if you like to read rather than watch you can check out a web page that gives a tutorial on how to reflow your iPhone PCB in your oven.

    Also, don't do the "freezer fix" or the "chill fix". Apple never built your PCB by freezing the solder joints together. They fused the joints by running your PCB through a reflow oven. Also, the rapid temperature changes (hot to freezing, freezing to hot) will expand the cracks in the lead-free solder at the same time they give you a temporary fix. It's like a heroine fix, feels good in the short term and kills you in the long term.

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