When the Nintendo 3DS WiFi problems, you can solve the problem with just a few steps.
The Nintendo 3DS is an older device that can develop connection issues based on your WiFi and the operating system of the console.
In this guide, we’ll unwrap this topic and provide the solutions you need to solve the problem in a matter of minutes!
Nintendo 3DS won’t connect to the WiFi with unsupported frequency. The connection problems such as disconnecting or lag could be caused by your internet performance and DNS settings. The solution includes an overall inspection of your network.
Before we begin, double-check if you’re connecting the Nintendo 3DS to the correct WiFi network and whether the password matches.
When that’s on point, proceed with the solutions to fix when Nintendo 3DS won’t connect to the WiFi or there are connection issues:
Keep in mind that Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 3DS XL are only compatible with a 2.4GHz network.
If you have a dual-band router, there’s a great chance that your internet technician has only created a 5GHz WiFi.
All of your devices may be fine with the 5GHz WiFi, but Nintendo 3DS is of an older generation and doesn’t support this WiFi frequency.
You can check the network band of your WiFi on Android and Apple devices at Settings > WiFi > Home WiFi > Properties > “Network Band”.
You should get on a computer, open the Command Prompt (CMD) and type “ipconfig”.
From there you should copy the Default Gateway and paste the address in your web browser.
- Use “admin” and “admin” credentials to login into the router’s settings.
From the Networking tab, create a 2.4GHz WiFi and connect the Nintendo 3DS to the newly created network.
Don’t forget that you can always share a hotspot from your smartphone and test the connection.
Note: You can call your ISP for help establishing a 2.4Ghz WiFi.
If connection profiles are already made on the Nintendo 3DS, you should delete them and add new ones.
Sometimes the profile data could be corrupted or contain the wrong login credentials in case you’ve changed the WiFi password.
Here’s how to re-add the WiFi connection profiles on the Nintendo 3DS:
- Go to the settings of Nintendo.
- Head to “Internet Settings”.
- Wait for the list of connections to load.
- Tap the listed connection of your home WiFi.
- Press Delete Settings > Delete.
- Re-discover your home WiFi network.
- Attempt to reconnect.
Note: After deleting the profiles it may take up to a minute for the Nintendo 3DS to discover your WiFi.
Routers transmit the internet over different frequency mode types including 802.11b, 802.11g 802.11n, and more.
The Nintendo 3DS only recognizes the 802.11b frequency mode and when your network does not emit the WiFi this way, you may encounter the message:
“-An Error Has Occured”
Luckily there is a way to change the frequency mode through the router’s settings:
- In your router’s settings go to Advanced.
- Go to Wireless > Wireless Settings.
- Change the Mode of your 2.4Ghz broadband to 802.11b.
- Click the Save button and restart your router.
When the frequency mode has been changed, re-attempt to connect to the WiFi from the Nintendo 3DS and check whether the problem has been solved.
You can manually fix WiFi issues by adjusting the DNS setting of the Nintendo 3DS.
Incorrect DNS settings will prevent the Nintendo 3DS from pairing with any WiFi network when the connection is blocked or there is an IP conflict.
Here’s how to correctly adjust the DNS settings of the Nintendo 3DS in easy steps:
- On your Nintendo, head to Home > System Settings.
- Tap on Internet Settings and then select Connection Settings.
- From there, locate the “Connection File” button and tap it once.
- Head to Change Settings and press “DNS”.
- Change the “Auto-Obtain DNS” option to “NO”.
- Next, go to Detailed Setup.
- From there, press on the existing DNS and change it to “22.214.171.124”.
- Save the changes made to the base DNS value.
- Go to “Secondary DNS” in the same tab.
- Change the secondary DNS to “126.96.36.199”.
- Save the changes and exit.
Note: The Nintendo 3DS can auto-validate DNS settings. Trigger a test by tapping the “Test” button in the Connection Settings tab.
There’s a high chance that this problem is not caused by the Nintendo 3DS only.
WiFi issues with your network can also prevent the console from getting paired with the WiFi.
That’s why you should troubleshoot any network problems and here is how:
- Hard-reboot your modem/router by disconnecting it from power for 5 minutes.
- Reduce the bandwidth usage of your network.
- Use the CMD to “ipconfig/flushdns” on a Windows-operated PC/laptop.
- Disconnect other devices hooked up to your WiFi.
- Use your mobile hotspot to test.
Notice: Make sure to check the Nintendo 3DS’s connectivity after each bullet.
If you’re still having the Nintendo 3DS WiFi problems, then we strongly suggest factory resetting the console to cleanly reinstall the OS.
The WiFi problems that you’re having could have developed as a result of incorrect settings configuration or even corrupted data. So far, the factory reset is your best way to go.
Here’s how to factory reset the Nintendo 3DS in easy steps:
- Go to the Settings of the Nintendo 3DS.
- Head to System Settings by tapping on the system icon.
- Choose “Other Settings”.
- Press three times the right arrow until you reach page #4.
- After that, select the “Format System Memory”.
- Select “Format”.
- Select “Format” again, to verify the factory reset.
Alert: A factory reset will erase all content stored on the Nintendo 3DS. To back up anything you can use a USB drive connected to a computer.
If you’re having WiFi issues on the Nintendo 3DS XL, we also got you covered.
Since the Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo 3DS XL OS are the same, the solutions above will also work.
Here is an additional all-in-one step guide to solve the WiFi problem on the Nintendo 3DS XL:
- Reboot the Nintendo 3DS XL using the power button on the console.
- Connect only to 2.4Ghz WiFi frequency.
- Make sure that your network encryption is not WPA2-PSK which is not supported.
- Move Nintendo 3DS XL closer to the router and attempt the WiFi connection.
- Update Nintendo 3DS XL at Settings > System Settings > Other Settings.
- Test on a different WiFi connection.
- Reset the Nintendo 3DS XL.
Once the Nintendo 3DS XL has been reset you would need to carry out the on-screen instructions to set up your device.
When you’re ready make sure to connect to a WiFi that you’re confident is working and test the connection issue.
Note: The Nintendo 3DS XL will restart during the software update, so make sure that you don’t press anything on the device until the process is finished.
To solve the problem with Nintendo 3DS WiFi, you should connect the console to a 2.4Ghz network and make sure that the internet is reliable. In addition, you would need to adjust the DNS settings and reset the Nintendo to factory default settings.
Whenever the Nintendo 3DS WiFi problems start to appear, we’ve learned that there aren’t many possibilities.
All devices connect to the internet using the network cards and a hardware problem is less likely than a problem on your side.
Inspecting your network and restarting ALL devices involved in the setup would surely give a pretty good understanding of what’s happening.
Kevin has over five years of experience working in various Tech startups and providing Technical solutions. He has contributed to many Tech publications and websites.