ASUS RT-AC88U WiFi and AirPrint wireless printer problem solution

The ASUS RT-AC88U is a pretty awesome router. However, out of the box, it’s a bit finicky if you try to print to it via WiFi or Apple’s AirPrint. It doesn’t seem to want to maintain the connection. I stumbled across this somewhat cryptic post and the suggested changes have solved my issues–at least so far. Here are the steps with a little more detail:

1. First log into the router’s settings.

2. Choose Wireless > Professional tab

3. Make the following changes:

-Modulation Scheme: Up to MCS 9 (802.11ac)
-Airtime Fairness: Disable (NOTE: According to one reader, this is the only change that matters, so try this first. Thanks Dan CC!)
-Multi-User MIMO: Disable (Note that this was already disabled by default for me)
-Explicit Beamforming: Disable
-Universal Beamforming (5 GHz only): Disable

Click Apply button.

4. Each of the Bands (i.e., 2.4GHz and 5GHz) have their own independent set of settings on this page. So, change the Band and repeat Step 3.

5. Finally, change the Control Channel to a specific channel (i.e., something other than Auto). Again, apply the change for one band, change the Band setting, and apply the change for the other band. (NOTE: as hellojohnbuck points out in the comments, printers generally only use 2.4GHz, so you probably only need to change for that band.)


I’m not sure what real-world impact changing these settings has on the router’s performance; however, I haven’t really noticed any significant difference…other than my printer works wireless now ;-)


Matt S commented below that he disabled a new setting, “Target Wake Time” (Wifi > General), that was causing his printer connection to timeout.

If you found this information helpful, please considering donating to help me keep this blog alive. Any amount would be appreciated. Thanks!

Comments 225

  • I just want to let you know, for the last 5 years, every time i decide to create an unnecessary disaster for myself and redo my networks, I always end up on this page for one of my Asus routers. I see many have already, but here is one more thank you for this information.

  • Sir.
    That was incredibly relieving. Now it works!
    Not only the printers, but also airplay speakers conected to airport express.

    Thank you VERY much.

  • Great, many thanks for the information! In my case, just changing “Airtime Fairness” to “Disable” in my Asus RT-AC5300 running Asus-Wrt Merlin, resolved the issues that I had with a Canon Printer Pixma G3160 and also with Midea air conditioner with a wifi dongle.

  • This worked for me, solving an issue I’d spent many frustrating hours on! Thanks for sharing..

  • My WiFi printer and thermostat would not connect. I disabled airtime fairness and chose a random control channel, and that fixed the connection issues. THANK YOU!!!

  • Thank you so much for posting this information. I have a mixed environment of Windows, Mac, and IOS devices with an ASUS RT-AC88U router I have a number of Brother printers which were supposedly AirPrint capable, but failed to show up on the AirPrint list on the Apple devices, yet I could print to the printers wirelessly using the Windows devices. I just changed the “Airtime Fairness” setting on the Asus router for the 2.4GHz band. Magically, all the Apple devices now can see the printers and print to them wirelessly ! Such a relief after months of frustration searching. Such a simple solution. Thank you again !

  • GOD BLESS YOU – this has been driving me up the wall with my new HP 9000 series and my AC-5300 :(

  • Yes!!!! Disabled the Airtime Fairness setting and it worked with my Epson XP820 printer and my Asus AC3100 router. Been pulling my hair out for years… you’re a lifesaver!! Well worth a small donation! :)

  • I upgraded to ASUS firmware, and Airtime Fairness no longer fixes the issue of my HP printer falling off / sleeping. Anyone dealt with this issue / firmware lately?

    • If your model is covered i strongly recommend installing the Asuswrt-Merlin firmware
      “Asuswrt-Merlin is a third party alternative firmware for Asus routers, with a special emphasis on tweaks and fixes rather than radical changes or collecting as many features as possible.”

      disable airtime fairness & run amtm to install Diversion – this is an ad blocker at the router level for all your wifi connected devices – just need a spare USB thumb drive to run it.

    • I have an AX86U now and mine is still OK (knock wood), even thru Windows 11 upgrade. But, I have more that Airtime Fairness as above. Perhaps try the other changes?

  • I only changed “Target Wake Time” (Wifi > General) on my RT-AX88U router and it resolved it for my Canon TS-6000 Pixma

  • recently having problems connecting to my epson L3150. the ASUS RT-AC86U sees teh printer. but upon installing the software supplied by ASUS, it cant find the printer.

  • I have a Brother HL-L2340DW. Sadly none of the above settings fixed my issue. Been chatting/talking with tech support for both Brother and Asus to no avail. If anyone has other ideas please let me know.

  • Outstanding info! I had done two updates (one for the router and one to the OS) and I couldn’t figure out which one was causing the “no show” and “printer offline” problem. I had to disable Airtime Fairness and switch the Modulation Scheme to get mine to show up again. But your fix worked. Thank you!!!!!

  • Asus RT-AC88U (with Asuswrt-Merlin firmware) and a new Brother DCP-T510W printer here…

    As above, I disabled only “Airtime Fairness” and this immediately fixed the no printer visible in airprint issue for me – printed from my iphone and my ipad… perfect.
    Also it allowed Image Capture on my Macbook to connect to the scanner wirelessly…

    All hail the power of the internet to find problems and fix them… huzzah.

    ps if you have Asus router you really, really ought to check out the Asuswrt-Merlin upgrade for the firmware here

    Once installed, you then ‘amtm’ which is a front end to run various outstanding apps on the router – the best of which is Diversion, which will block ads (and most Youtube ads) at the router, so all your connected household is ad-free… ’tis the best thing ever. Run ‘amtm’ in a terminal connected to your router and easy, essy install of Diversion(just have a spare USB thumbdrive handy).

  • Thanks for sharing! One more datapoint here to confirm that disabling “Airtime Fairness” alone fixed the problem for me. I have the RT-AC5300 router, and I experienced unstable connection to my iHome switches and HP printer.

  • thank you. I disabled only “Airtime Fairness” and my Brother dcp-t510w is again visible

  • You Sir are my Hero! I cannot tell you how many hours I have spent trying to research the issues I had keeping my Epson multifunction printer and my Epson Fast Foto scanner connected to my network. I even exchanged my FastFoto scanner for a new one because I was convinced THAT was the problem. I found this blog about a year or so ago, but when I had one router die on me, moving to a new house and starting with a fresh new network, I have been able to refer back to this blog (its bookmarked at the top of my favorites) to assist me! Thank you again. I sent you a little thank you $ on PayPal too! Seriously much appreciated!!!!!!!

    • Well Kati, thank you so very much for the kind words and donation! Yeah, the fix is nearly magic and I’m glad it worked for you. Take care.

  • Disabling the Airtime Fairness on my AC88U 2.4Ghz solved the connection issues I was having with my Epson WF-4820. Thanks for the tip!

  • Thanks! You have relief my frustration! Ufff, thanks!

  • Thank you, thank you, thank you! Like all other comments this was making me crazy, Been battling printer problems since I got the new ASUS router this summer. Fingers crossed as I can’t afford to be happy and then crushed again. Maybe a couple days from now I’ll breathe easier.

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