Why is Your Ethernet Cable Not Working?(+Quick Solutions)

Ethernet cables can be an instrumental piece of hardware in any home/work network. They are used in connecting a computer (or other devices) to the main network. 

This article will cover all the essential and common troubleshooting solutions regarding situations when your Ethernet cable is not working. Check out the list of the most reliable Ethernet cables on Amazon now!

Can Ethernet Cables Go bad? 

Like all hardware, Ethernet, too, has the tendency to go bad. It has physical pieces that can accumulate damage and go through the process of wear and tear.

Such physical processes can render them useless in time. Long segments of the cables are usually exposed to sunlight and other sorts of vibrations. The rays from the sun adversely affect the construction of the wires.

These long segments also hang from connection to connection which loosens up the internal structure of the cables. Bending the cables will also make them go bad since it may affect the cable’s internal structures.

All this wear and tear affects the strength of the signal passing through the cables. Eventually, a point in the cable may stop working from this wear and tear, rendering the entire length useless. So, the Ethernet cables can actually go bad. 

Some other things can also cause the Ethernet cable to go bad.

The contacts (the connections) can go bad from the oxidation (rusting) process. Those need to be replaced over time, and if they are not, then the cable will go bad.

Damage to the connectors may also cause wobbly signals from time to time, depending on how they are connected to the ports.

The next section will tell you how to spot these faults in order to know if your cable has gone bad or not.  

How to Check If Ethernet Cable Is Faulty? 

You can check whether your Ethernet is working or not in two different ways. You can check it from your computer first, and if it is still showing problems, you can then check the actual cable itself, physically.

Follow the steps below to check the Ethernet connection from your computer screen. Keep going through the steps to conclude if your Ethernet is faulty or not. 

  1. Turn off your Wi-Fi on the computer. If your PC is connected to both the Wi-Fi and the Ethernet, then turning the former off (on your PC) is going to make the rest of the tests simpler to follow. You can turn the Wi-Fi off from the “Network and Internet Settings” option on windows. 
  2. See if your Ethernet is working by enabling the LAN (local area connection) option in the same “Network and Internet Settings.” 
  3. If it starts working, then the problem was technical rather than physical. If it doesn’t, then try to change the port that the cable is connected to. If it works, it means your router’s port or your PC’s port was faulty. If the problem persists, carry on to the next step. 
  4. If your router has lights that indicate if a cable is connected or not, then it’s going to make this entire process easier. If the router does not show any blinking and you are sure that the router is fine, then the problem is with the cable. At this point, you can deduce that the cable is faulty. The nature of the issue is difficult to locate, so we have to apply both physical and software-related fixes in the last section of the article. 

If performing these four steps does not have any effect on the Ethernet connectivity issue, it means that the cable is faulty. Look for any bends along the wire or any other issues such as having a loose connector or a torn casing.

If you find these, then it is likely that you will have to replace the wire or part of the wire. If you do not find these, then it is wise to implement the technical issues first! 

Why Is My Ethernet Cable Not Working? 

There are a couple of issues that can occur when using Ethernet cables that can cause connection problems. The most common causes are discussed in the questions above.

However, there are many more issues that can occur. These issues are discussed in this section. 

Since the router, the PC, and the cable itself are involved, there are many places where things can go wrong. If you connect the cable to its connectors yourself, make sure you use the correct wiring scheme (T568A and T568B are common in the US); otherwise, the wire will not transmit any signals. Also, make sure that you have used the same scheme on both ends. Wrong terminations are the most likely cause of ethernet dysfunction.

The other physical causes may also be related to connectors. The wires may not be pushed all the way inside the connector, or the connector might not have been pushed all the way in the port.

These small things are vital in getting a signal transmitted through the wire. 

How To Fix an Ethernet cable Not Working Problem 

Since there are so many causes of this problem and it’s so difficult to locate the problem, you would have to apply a bunch of solutions to get your ethernet cable working back again. Check the connection after the completion of each step to see if your problem was solved.

The solutions get more severe after each step; therefore, you have to follow the steps in a strictly ascending order. 

  1. Check the connector if it’s loose or not. Push it all the way inside the port and see if your router responds. 
  2. Turn off the router for a couple of minutes and then turn it back on to see any changes.
  3. Try to reinstall the Ethernet drivers on your computer. This usually fixes the software issue. Otherwise, you will have to make physical changes to the wire after this step. To reinstall the Ethernet drivers, follow the steps below: 
  4. Open the start menu and look for the “device manager.” 
  5. In this new window, expand the “Network Adapters section.” 
  6. Select the Ethernet driver in this list and uninstall it by right-clicking on it. You can find this driver by its name. It will not have the words “wireless” or Wi-Fi in its name. 
  7.  Restart your computer to reinstall the drivers automatically. 
  8. Replace the connector with a new one. Make sure to install the wires in the connectors with the correct terminations, as explained in the previous questions. 
  9. Use this Ethernet wire in another network environment. Try to connect it in your friend or relatives’ home networks to see if the wire works. If the wire does not work, that means you would have to replace the entire wire in your connection. Check out the list of the most reliable Ethernet cables on Amazon now!


Ethernet wires are very useful; however, once plagued with a problem, an inexperienced computer user may find it difficult to locate the problem on his/her own.

Therefore, use this guide to navigate and solve your issue without any hassle.