You’ve finished setting up your brand new Amazon Echo and can’t wait to give 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 WiFi connection poor or is there no connection at all? Or even more frustrating, what if the device constantly disconnects and reconnects? You’ll need to fix your Echo’s connection problem before you can use it reliably.
On the bottom of the Echo is a power LED that serves as a Wi-Fi indicator. If the light is white, you’re connected, and if it’s orange, there’s no WiFi connection.
It’s similar for Echo devices with screens: white light – good, orange light – no connection.
Seeing orange on a regular basis can be frustrating and soon everything orange in your life feels like a trigger.
But don’t worry, connectivity issues are ubiquitous with these devices. Due to the general nature of these problems, there are many solutions. Here are some helpful tips for troubleshooting your Echo’s connectivity issues.
Why does my Echo keep losing connection?
There are a few possible reasons why your Echo could be losing connection and the most common issue is with Wi-Fi. This is the easiest problem to solve and will be covered in the next section. If that doesn’t work, go through the list until the problem is resolved. If the connection doesn’t come back at all, you may need another ultrasound.
Check the Wi-Fi
Before the Echo device takes all the blame, check other devices (phones, tablets, smart TVs, computers) to see if they have a good connection.
If not, maybe your Wi-Fi is the problem and not the Echo, in which case you should do your best to restore the Internet connection. Often turning your cable modem or router off and back on is enough to resolve connection issues, but sometimes it’s necessary to contact your ISP.
Power Cycling your Amazon Echo
Have you verified that everything is OK with your network access? If so, it’s probably the Echo not connecting. We recommend that you start with a proven solution for electronic devices: the restart.
Turn off your Echo device. Do the same with your modem and router and turn off Wi-Fi on all connected devices.
Wait about 30 seconds and then turn the router back on. Turn on the Echo device so it can reconnect to Wi-Fi first. Then turn on the Wi-Fi on the other devices.
If there is still no connection, you may need to contact your ISP 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 only one of them.
Reposition your echo
Place both the Echo and your router as far away as possible from any electronic devices in your home that could interfere with the signal.
Believe it or not, baby monitors and microwaves can significantly disrupt your Wi-Fi. Even dishwashers, air conditioning vents, or stereos can cause minor problems.
Keep in mind that router signals propagate horizontally and downwards from the source, so the higher you move the Echo and the router, the better. It would be perfect to keep them close together in an elevated spot in your home.
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 (20 cm) from the wall, as this can muffle the signal and cause problems when using voice-activated features.
Beware of Wi-Fi overcrowding
If you have a large number of devices connected to your network, your Wi-Fi probably can’t keep up. Ease this congestion by turning off Wi-Fi on devices you’re not currently using.
Check the WiFi frequency
The Amazon Echo can only connect to dual-band Wi-Fi networks (2.4 GHz/5 GHz) that use the 802.11a/b/g/n standard. Peer-to-peer networking or hotspotting cannot use these bands and standards.
Your smart devices tend to default to the 2.4 GHz channel. Some of them don’t even support the 5GHz channel, which can make the 2.4GHz too crowded. That can be a good thing, because then the 5GHz is relieved.
You can use the Alexa app on your phone or tablet to connect your Echo to the 5GHz. This way you reduce interference from other devices and at the same time increase the connection and range.
Still, it’s up to you to choose the right channel, as 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, a factory reset and starting from scratch will probably do the trick.
To perform the reset on the first-generation Echo and Echo Dot devices, you need a small tool: a paper clip, an earring, a needle, or very thin scissors.
Find the small hole on the bottom of the device, insert the tool and press the reset button. Hold it down until the light rings turn on and off. When the light ring turns orange, your device enters setup mode. You can then open the Alexa app on your phone and start the setup process again.
To reset the second-generation Echo and Echo Dot, do the following: Press and hold the Mute and Volume Down buttons simultaneously for about 20 seconds until the light ring turns orange and then blue.
After that it’s the same exercise as with the first generation devices: the light ring turns off and on again, then it turns orange and the device is ready for setup via the Alexa app.
Please contact Amazon customer service
If none of these tips seem to work and there is nothing wrong with the Wi-Fi connection, there is definitely a tough problem with the hardware. Don’t 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 plus side, your journey will most likely end with this step, as they can help you – even if it means sending another ultrasound.
If you own an Amazon Echo, you’ll regularly discover new features and even some Easter Eggs. Check out these TechJunkie articles:
Did your echo have connection problems? How did you solve the problem? Please tell us in the comments below!