How to Set Up Wireless Printers

by Marissa Robert Google

    Wireless network printers enable you to print from any device in your home to all of the printers on your network. You can print photos on one printer and documents on another using different papers, print qualities and inks, so you have many options to fulfill your printing needs. Adding wireless printers to your network eliminates the need to share printers between computers and you no longer need the shared computer to remain powered on constantly.

    Step 1

    Plug your wireless printer into an electrical outlet and power it on. Insert ink cartridges. Different models and brands may have different instructions for connecting to the network, but generally, press the "Setup" button or menu on the printer and open the network options. Locate your wireless network from the list and select the option to connect. Enter your network password. Connecting your printer directly to your network brings your printer under the proper SSID and lets you install your printer drivers onto computers on the network without using a cable.

    Step 2

    Print a network configuration page from your printer. This process differs depending on the printer manufacturer, but it generally involves locating the network menu on your printer and selecting the network configuration page option.

    Step 3

    Enter the IP address listed on the network configuration page into your Web browser on your computer and click on the "Networking" tab, click "Wireless" and click "IPv4." These options may differ, depending on your printer's manufacturer or model. Change the IP address so the last field is outside the DHCP range automatically assigned by your router. If you are not sure of your router's DHCP range, choose a number that's high but lower than 255, like 250. Use "255.255.255.0" as the subnet address. Enter your router's address from the network configuration page into the gateway fields and the first DNS field. If there are more DNS fields, leave them blank. Click "Apply" or "Save." You may need to restart the router and the printer for the settings to take effect.

    Step 4

    Open the Start menu on your computer and click "Devices and Printers." Click "Add a Printer" in the window that comes up.

    Step 5

    Click "Add a Network, Wireless or Bluetooth Printer." Click the wireless printer you connected to the network and click "Next." If the wizard prompts you to install a drive, click "Install driver." Click "Finish." If you want more detailed information on your computer about printer errors or when ink levels get low, you may want to install printer software directly from an installation CD or from your manufacturer's website. Usually, the software on the website is the most current. If you are responsible for the printer, this software may be useful, but the simple drivers available through Windows are fine for most of the computers on your network.

    Step 6

    Right-click on your wireless printer in the device management window. Click "Printer Properties." Click the "General" tab and enter a unique printer name in the text box next to the printer icon. You can describe it by its location -- Mike's office printer -- its properties -- black and white printer -- or its type -- photo printer. Naming your network printers can help avoid confusing them if they are from the same manufacturer or similar models. Click "Print a Test Page," to ensure your printer is set up and installed correctly. Click "Apply."

    Step 7

    Repeat this process with your other wireless printers.

    Tips

    • Keep your firewall and security software up to date and ensure that you only have one firewall program running on your computer. If you have problems with your printer that you think may be related to your firewall software, set the software to "medium" security.

    About the Author

    Marissa Robert graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in English language and literature. She has extensive experience writing marketing campaigns and business handbooks and manuals, as well as doing freelance writing, proofreading and editing. While living in France she translated manuscripts into English. She has published articles on various websites and also periodically maintains two blogs.

    Photo Credits

    • Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images