Stay Connected: Enhancing Raspberry Pi Wi-Fi Stability by Turning Off Power Management

I recently encountered a frustrating issue where, despite the wireless access point being just five meters away from my digital picture frame, the Wi-Fi connection kept dropping and failed to reconnect automatically.

Initially, I suspected the SD card or the power supply might be at fault. In my experience with Raspberry Pi, these components are often responsible for unusual issues.

After replacing both the SD card and the power supply, the problem persisted, indicating that the issue lay elsewhere.

Understanding Wi-Fi Power Management

Subsequently, I discovered a straightforward solution on the Raspberry Pi forum that resolved this annoyance. It is well-known within this community that power management settings can sometimes lead to Wi-Fi connectivity issues.

So, the fix was very easy: I had to turn the WiFi power management off.

Wi-Fi power management is a feature designed to reduce power consumption by turning off the Wi-Fi module when it’s not actively transmitting data.

This is particularly useful for battery-powered devices. However, in a Raspberry Pi setup, where consistent connectivity is more critical than power saving, this feature can be more of a hindrance than a help.

While this may not be a solution that works for you, I would give it a try.

By default, power management is turned on.

You can check it by entering the following in the Terminal.


In the answer, you will find the line “Power Management”.

lo        no wireless extensions.

eth0      no wireless extensions.

wlan0     IEEE 802.11  ESSID:"yourwifinetwork"  
          Mode:Managed  Frequency:2.432 GHz  Access Point: 49:5E:35:19:8F:17   
          Bit Rate=57.7 Mb/s   Tx-Power=31 dBm   
          Retry short limit:7   RTS thr:off   Fragment thr:off
          Power Management:off
          Link Quality=54/70  Signal level=-56 dBm  
          Rx invalid nwid:0  Rx invalid crypt:0  Rx invalid frag:0
          Tx excessive retries:160  Invalid misc:0   Missed beacon:0

Disabling Wi-Fi Power Management

As with everything else on the Raspberry Pi, there are many ways to skin the cat.

The one solution that I found to be very reliable, is this one:

In Terminal type

sudo nano /etc/rc.local

A file will come up with something about the IP hostname.

Insert this line right below “# By default this script does nothing”

/sbin/iwconfig wlan0 power off

so that your entire file looks like this

#!/bin/sh -e
# rc.local
# This script is executed at the end of each multiuser runlevel.
# Make sure that the script will "exit 0" on success or any other
# value on error.
# In order to enable or disable this script just change the execution
# bits.
# By default this script does nothing.
/sbin/iwconfig wlan0 power off
# Print the IP address
_IP=$(hostname -I) || true
if [ "$_IP" ]; then
  printf "My IP address is %s\n" "$_IP"

exit 0

Save with CTRL+o and exit with CTRL+x.

Reboot and check iwconfig if the power management is turned off.


After disabling Wi-Fi power management, monitor your Raspberry Pi for a few days to see if there’s an improvement in Wi-Fi stability.

I hope there is!

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