How to Fix VPN Not Working Properly

If you look online, there are a number of VPN service providers that try to lure you with their lucrative offers. Some of them are good, but not all of them are trustworthy. However, even reputable VPN (Virtual Private Network) services sometimes can encounter issues that prevent them from working properly. Here are the most common VPN problems and how to fix them.

How to Fix VPN Connection Issues

Check Your Internet Connection

The first step is to check that you have a stable internet connection. Run a speed test to verify your connection speed and latency. If your base internet connection is spotty, it will affect your ability to maintain a VPN connection. To reset the connection, try disconnecting and reconnecting to your WiFi network or cellular data.

Verify VPN Account Credentials

Double-check that your VPN login credentials are correct. An incorrect username or password will prevent you from establishing a VPN connection. Reset your account password if needed.

Change the VPN Server Location

Connecting to a different VPN server location can help troubleshoot connectivity issues. Your current VPN server may be down for maintenance or overloaded with users. Switch to another server, ideally the location geographically closest to you.

Check VPN Protocol Settings

Some VPN protocols are better than others at maintaining stable connections. Switch protocols if available – try OpenVPN or IKEv2 for the most reliable connectivity. You can also toggle between TCP vs UDP connection in OpenVPN.

Update VPN Software

Outdated VPN apps can suffer from bugs that disrupt connectivity. Install the latest version of your VPN software to ensure compatibility and access the newest performance enhancements.

Disable Firewall and Antivirus Software

Security software like firewalls and antivirus can sometimes block VPN connections. Temporarily disable them to see if that fixes connectivity problems. Re-enable them afterwards and add exceptions for your VPN program.

Restart Devices and Router

Simple device reboots are an easy first step for troubleshooting any VPN issues. Restart your computer, mobile devices, and router one by one to refresh the connections.

Reinstall the VPN App

If all else fails, completely uninstall and reinstall your VPN application to reset all settings to their defaults. Reconfigure the app again from scratch to see if that addresses any software conflicts.

How to Fix Slow VPN Speeds

Using a VPN adds overhead that can slow your internet speeds. Here are some ways to optimize your VPN connection for the fastest speeds:

Connect to Local VPN Servers

Connect to VPN servers geographically close to your location to reduce latency that can throttle your connection. The shorter distance will minimize lag.

Avoid Congested Servers

Check server load indicators and connect to those showing the least traffic. Overloaded servers will have slower speeds.

Use Fastest Protocols

Some VPN protocols like WireGuard and NordLynx are highly optimized for speed. Use them instead of OpenVPN and L2TP/IPsec.

Enable Split Tunneling

Split tunneling routes only select traffic through the VPN tunnel. Enable it and assign only necessary apps to the VPN to reduce bandwidth burden.

Use Ethernet Over WiFi

Wired internet connections are faster and more stable. Plug into Ethernet instead of WiFi whenever possible while using a VPN for top speeds.

Disable Battery Optimization

Battery-saving features on mobile devices can throttle VPN apps running in the background. Turn them off to prevent speed throttling.

When to Contact VPN Customer Support

If you are still experiencing VPN problems after trying all applicable troubleshooting steps, reach out to your VPN provider’s customer support team. Explain the issue in detail and your steps to resolve it. They may be able to provide specialized troubleshooting tips or determine if there are problems on their end. Consider switching providers if you cannot get the issue resolved satisfactorily.