Wireless Printer

Don't you just despise those times when you need to quickly print something but your printer is packed away somewhere, or you need to keep plugging in a pesky USB cable? Picking up a wireless printer will allow for remote access, enabling Windows 10 to print, fax, and scan without being physically attached to the unit. Let's take a look at how to set up your wireless printer in Windows 10.

Products used in this guide

How to connect your printer

For this guide, I'll be using my trusty HP 4500, but any wireless printer or all-in-one should work just fine — there's a newer model to my version, for example.

This guide will cover direct connections, so if you're interested in learning more about HomeGroup in Windows 10, be sure to check out our in-depth guide, which will enable you to set up and configure the sharing of printers and content.

  1. Open Windows search by pressing Windows Key + Q.
  2. Type in "printer."

    Windows 10 Printer

  3. Select Printers & Scanners.
  4. Turn on the printer.
  5. Refer to the manual to connect it to your Wi-Fi network. Unfortunately, this process varies not just from manufacturer to manufacturer, but often from printer to printer.
  6. Hit Add a printer or scanner.
  7. Select the printer from the results.

    Windows 10 Printer

  8. Click Add device.

You should be now good to go. This process will also work with wired printers, simply plug in the unit and follow the steps above.

Can't find your printer?

There's a chance that Windows might be unable to locate your printer. It's not the end of the world and the issue could be easily rectified by attempting to connect the printer to Windows 10 manually. To do this, we'll need to run through a wizard. Here's how:

  1. Open Windows search by pressing Windows Key + Q.
  2. Type in "printer."
  3. Select Printers & Scanners.
  4. Hit Add a printer or scanner.

    Windows 10 Printer

  5. Choose The printer that I want isn't listed.
  6. Select Add a Bluetooth, wireless or network discoverable printer.
  7. Choose the connected printer.

If you're still unable to see your printer, ensure it's switched on and both the printer and your Windows 10 PC are on the same local network.

Change the default printer

Windows will attempt to set the default printer by selecting the one used most recently on the connected network. This is toggled on by default and will mean that the OS can remember which printer to use when switching between networks. Not everyone needs or wants this functionality, and luckily it's really easy to turn it off.

  1. Open Windows search by pressing Windows Key + Q.
  2. Type in "printer."
  3. Select Printers & Scanners.
  4. Turn "Let Windows manage my default printer" to off.

    Windows 10 Printer

  5. Select the printer you wish to set as default from the list of devices.
  6. Select Manage.

    Windows 10 Printer

  7. Hit Set as default.

Our top equipment picks

In order to connect your printer to Windows 10, you're going to need to have one at hand. Should you be looking for a new wireless printer, we have you covered.

Wireless Printing

HP Envy 6255

Great jack of all trades

HP's Envy series of printers are perfect for the home, allowing you to hook up multiple devices and print away without cables. Simply hook it up to an available power outlet, configure the printer and connect it to your Wi-Fi network, and you're good to go.

This all-in-one printer does a little bit of everything with printing (including two-sided printing), scanning, copying, and more. Since it's a color printer you can print high-quality photos, too. It also prints up to 13 pages per minute in black and eight pages per minute in color. Connect easily over Wi-Fi or using options like the USB 2.0 port. HP backs it up with a one-year warranty.

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