You have finished setting up your brand new Amazon Echo and you’re eager to issue your first voice command to Alexa, Amazon’s voice control system. But what if it doesn’t work? You speak into the void and nothing happens. Alexa??
What is going on? Is the Wi-Fi connection is bad or there’s no connection at all? Or even more frustrating, what if the device is continuously disconnecting and reconnecting? You’ll have to resolve your Echo’s connection issue before you can use it reliably.
On the bottom of the Echo, there’s a power LED that serves as a Wi-Fi indicator. If the light is white, you are connected, and if it’s orange, there’s no Wi-Fi connection.
It’s similar for Echo devices with screens: white light – good, orange light – no connection.
Seeing orange regularly can be frustrating and soon everything orange in your life feels like a trigger.
But don’t worry, as connectivity issues are pervasive with these devices. Due to the common nature of these problems there are many workarounds. Here are some useful tips for solving your Echo’s connectivity problems.
Why Does my Echo Keep Losing Connection?
There are a few possible reasons your Echo could be losing connection and the most common issue is with the Wi-Fi. This is the easiest problem to fix and will be covered in the next paragraph. If that doesn’t work, go down the list until the problem is solved. If the connection won’t come back at all, you may need a new Echo.
Check the Wi-Fi
Before the Echo device takes all the blame, you should check other devices (phones, tablets, smart TVs, computers) to see if they have a good connection.
If not, perhaps your Wi-Fi is the problem and not the Echo, in which case you should focus your efforts on fixing the Internet connection. Often, just power cycling your cable modem or router is enough to resolve connectivity problems, but sometimes it’s necessary to contact your ISP.
Power Cycling Your Amazon Echo
Have you established that everything’s okay with your network access? If that’s the case, it’s probably the Echo that doesn’t connect. We suggest that you start with a tried and true fix for electronic devices: the restart.
Turn off your Echo device. Do the same with your modem and router and turn off the Wi-Fi on all connected devices.
Wait for about 30 seconds, then turn the router back on. Turn on the Echo device so it can be the first to reconnect to Wi-Fi. Then turn on the Wi-Fi on the other devices.
If there’s still no connection, there’s a possibility that you’ll have to contact your Internet Service Provider for technical support.
Your router may use both security protocols, WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access), and WPA2 (Wi-Fi Protected Access II). Try switching the security protocol to just one of them.
Repositioning Your Echo
Move both the Echo and your router as far away as possible from all electronic devices in your home that could hamper the signal.
Believe it or not, baby monitors and microwave ovens can significantly interfere with your Wi-Fi. Even dishwashers, air conditioning vents, or stereos can cause minor problems.
Keep in mind that router signals spread horizontally and downward from the source, so the higher you move the Echo and the router, the better. Keeping them close together on an elevated spot in your house would be perfect.
It would also make the Echo a lot more accessible from all parts of your home. Also, try to keep the Echo at least 8 inches from the wall as this can dampen the signal and cause difficulty when trying to use voice activated features.
Watch for the Wi-Fi Overcrowding
If there’s a multitude of devices connected to your network, your Wi-Fi will probably be unable to keep the pace. Ease this congestion by turning off Wi-fi on devices you’re not currently using.
Check the Wi-Fi Frequency
The Amazon Echo can only connect to dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz/5 GHz) networks that use the 802.11a/b/g/n standard. Peer-to-peer networks or hotspotting cannot run these bands and standards.
Your smart devices tend to default to the 2.4GHz channel. Some of them don’t even support the 5GHz channel, which can make the 2.4GHz too busy. That can be a good thing since that leaves the 5GHz unburdened.
You can use the Alexa app on your phone or tablet to connect your Echo to the 5GHz. That way, you’ll reduce interference from other devices while increasing the connection and range at the same time.
Still, choosing the right channel should be up to you, since both options have their advantages. 5GHz guarantees a stronger and more stable connection (if the Echo is close enough to the router, of course). However, 2.4 GHz performs better for devices separated from the router by walls or other obstacles.
Reset Your Echo
If nothing else helps, factory reset and starting from scratch will most likely do the trick.
To perform the reset on the first-generation Echo and Echo Dot devices, you will need a tiny tool: a paper clip, an earring, a needle, or very thin scissors.
Find the small hole at the base of the device, insert the tool, and press in the reset button. Hold it in until the light rings turn on and off again. When the light ring turns orange, your device will enter the setup mode. Then you can open the Alexa app on your phone and start the setup process over again.
When resetting the second-generation of the Echo and the Echo Dot, here’s what you’ll do: Press and hold the Microphone Off and Volume Down buttons at the same time for about 20 seconds until the light ring turns orange and then blue.
After that, it’s the same drill as with the first-generation devices: the light ring will turn off and on again, then it’ll turn orange, and the device is ready for setup via the Alexa app.
Contact Amazon Customer Support
If none of these tips seem to do the trick and nothing is wrong with the Wi-Fi connection, there is definitely some knotty issue with the hardware. Do not hesitate to contact Amazon customer service.
Like any other customer service, they will probably test your patience by politely asking you to repeat all the steps you’ve already taken. On the bright side, your journey will most likely end with this step, as they will be able to help you – even if that means sending you another Echo.
If you own an Amazon Echo, you’ll frequently discover new features and even some Easter Eggs. Check out these TechJunkie articles:
- How To Make and Answer Calls with your Amazon Echo
- How To Set the Amazon Echo Alarm to Wake You with Music
- Over 200 Amazon Echo Easter Eggs & Tricks
Did your Echo have connectivity problems? How did you resolve the problem? Please tell us about it in the comments below!