How To Factory Reset Router When There Is No Button (Via Router Settings)

It’s almost a cliche now in home networking help guides (including on this blog) that the “nuclear” option to fix a lot of router problems is to just push a pin into the reset button or “hole” for 10-20 seconds to reset everything back to factory defaults and start over. And this can work on a lot of routers.

But it’s also increasingly true that not all routers even have a reset “hole” where you can do this, and sometimes they don’t even have a reset button. They might only have an On/Off/Power button and that’s it. This is actually the case on my current router, and the one I used before that only had a reset button but not a reset hole.

What do you do then? How do you reset a router to factory settings if there isn’t an obvious reset button/hole you can use?

Most often, the factory reset “button” is actually more like a hole, something like this:


Or this:


And you push and hold a pin or safety clip or other sharp object into it for 10-20 seconds until the lights blink or go out, and then wait up to 10 minutes for everything to reconfigure.

In this guide though, we’re going to cover what to do if you CAN’T find this reset hole.

If there’s no factory reset hole on your router, it’s usually possible to factory reset your router using either a protruding reset button (hold this down for 10-20 seconds as opposed to a recessed hole), or via the router settings instead if there’s no button either.

Let’s cover each solution in turn.

Solution #1 – Use The Protruding Reset Button If Available

This is not very common, but in rare cases, sometimes there’s a flat or protruding reset button that can double up as both a quick and full reset button. Quickly pressing the button will initiate a quick/soft reboot (no settings lost and only a short interruption in connections), whereas pressing and holding this reset button for up to 20 seconds can initiate a full factory reset.

Something like this on my old router (or it might stick out a bit):


Therefore if there’s no reset hole on your router, but there is a reset button, try holding this in for up to 20 seconds, and see if the lights on the front of the router flash, blink, or go out. In which case a factory reset should have been initiated, and wait for 5-10 minutes for everything to reset itself.

This doesn’t work very often, but it’s worth trying if you’d rather not be messing round with router settings.

Solution #2 – Factory Reset Your Router From The Router Settings Page

If using the button doesn’t work, or there isn’t even one, then your best best is to go into the router’s configuration menu and factory reset it from there. This might sound intimidating to users who haven’t done it before, but it’s actually pretty easy and everything you need is on the sticker on the back.

Check the router label for login credentials (router login IP/username/password):


Then grab any device that’s connected to the router by Wi-Fi or cable, open up any browser and do the following:

  1. Type the router login IP into the browser address bar (often or
  2. Enter the username/password
  3. Look for a Reset/Reboot/Factory Reset/Re-initialization menu in the settings.
  4. Follow the steps to initiate a factory reboot
  5. Wait up to 10 minutes for the reboot to complete.
  6. A factory reset erases all custom settings

See here if you’re having any problems accessing your router settings page.

The factory reset option may also be under Tools, Advanced, or some other menu type, since all router interfaces are different. But moving about through the menus, it’s usually pretty easy to find it.

In rare cases, you can be caught in a bit of a Catch 22 situation, where you don’t know your router admin username/password, because they’ve been changed to something custom and/or you’ve forgotten them, yet you need these details to be able to log into the router and reset them to default if there’s no obvious reset button. This is a bit more tricky, and it’s recommended to contact your ISP’s support in this case. They might be able to do a remote router reset or help in some other way.

What Does A Router Factory Reset Do?

If you do initiate a factory reset from within the router settings itself, then you’ll likely get loads of scary warning messages that you’ll have to accept and OK through before finally confirming it, because it’s the most drastic and comprehensive form of a router reset.

To provide clarity on this, let’s give an overview of everything a full factory reset will do on a router:

  • All custom Wi-Fi SSIDs/usernames and passwords to access the network will be lost and reset to the defaults indicated on the sticker on the back of the router. So any users who need to reconnect will need to find the router again on the network list and re-enter the default password to use the Wi-Fi.
  • If you have also set custom values for the router login admin/password (to change settings), these will also be reset back to the default values indicated on the sticker on the back.
  • If any gamers have set a static IP for their console on the router, this will be deleted and they’ll have to do it again.
  • Any other custom settings that were configured on the router (eg. QoS, DNS settings, DMZ) will be lost and need to be reconfigured.
  • All logs and stored browsing history will be wiped off the router.
  • Factory resets can sometimes also take longer than quick resets, with a disruption of connection for sometimes up to 10 minutes or more.
  • See our article on resetting your router for more on this, plus how to get settings back to how they were if you need to.
  • See here for a help guide if your internet doesn’t come back online after a factory reset, even after waiting a while.

In other words, it basically restores the router to like it was when you first got it out the box and plugged it in. Any custom settings/credentials you’ve got will be wiped and it’ll revert everything back to the default settings template it had when it was first installed and turned on.


Online gamer and general home networking enthusiast. I like to create articles to help people solve common home networking problems.

Recent Posts