How to enable Bluetooth on Windows 11

Here are the easy steps to enable or disable Bluetooth on Windows 11.

Windows 11 turn on Bluetooth
Windows 11 turn on Bluetooth / Image: Mauro Huculak
  • To enable Bluetooth on Windows 11, open Settings > Bluetooth & devices > Bluetooth and turn on “Bluetooth.”
  • If Bluetooth is missing, enable the adapter in “Device Manager” and then turn on “Bluetooth” from Settings or “Quick Settings.”

UPDATED 7/24/2024: On Windows 11, you can quickly turn on Bluetooth through the “Quick Settings” flyout or the “Settings” app. In this guide, I will explain how to complete this configuration.

Bluetooth is a wireless technology that allows you to transfer data over a short distance. You can use it to connect a wide range of peripherals, such as keyboards, mice, headphones, cameras, phones, and more.

Usually, Bluetooth is enabled by default, but you may have to turn it on manually from the Settings app or Taskbar if it’s not. You may even need to enable the adapter from “Device Manager” if Bluetooth is missing during installation.

In this guide, I will teach you the easy steps to enable Bluetooth on your Windows 11 laptop or desktop.

Enable Bluetooth on Windows 11 from Settings app

To turn Bluetooth on or off on Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings on Windows 11.

  2. Click on Bluetooth & devices.

  3. Turn on the Bluetooth toggle switch on the right side to enable Bluetooth on Windows 11.

    Enable Bluetooth

  4. (Optional) Turn off the Bluetooth toggle switch to disable the feature.

Once you complete the steps, Bluetooth will be enabled on your computer.

Alternatively, you can also turn Bluetooth on or off in Settings > Bluetooth & devices > Devices by turning on the “Bluetooth” toggle switch at the top of the page.

Enable Bluetooth from Devices page
Enable Bluetooth from Devices page / Image: Mauro Huculak

If you want to change the Bluetooth settings, under the “Related settings” section, click on “More Bluetooth settings,” and on the legacy Control Panel-style page, you can control the discovery and notification settings.

Bluetooth advanced settings
Bluetooth advanced settings / Image: Mauro Huculak

It’s important to note that Bluetooth can also be enabled automatically when specific features are enabled. For example, if you want to share a file, you open the “Share” interface and turn on “Nearby Share” because the feature requires Bluetooth. The system will enable the feature automatically in the latest version of Windows 11.

Enable Bluetooth on Windows 11 from Quick Settings

To enable Bluetooth quickly with the Quick Settings shortcut on Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Use the “Windows key + A” keyboard shortcut to open the “Quick Settings” flyout.

    Quick tip: You can also click the network and volume button in the System Tray to open the “Quick Settings.”
  2. Click the Bluetooth button to enable Bluetooth.

    Bluetooth enable button

  3. Click the “Manage Bluetooth devices” button (next to the Bluetooth button).

  4. Select the device to pair.

  5. Continue with the on-screen directions (if applicable).

  6. (Optional) Click the Bluetooth button again to disable the feature.

After you complete the steps, the Bluetooth device should connect to the computer.

Fix Bluetooth missing on Windows 11 from Device Manager

If the Bluetooth option is missing in the Settings app, the hardware is probably disabled, damaged, or not supported, or there’s a driver problem. You can quickly check or re-enable the device in Device Manager.

To fix the Bluetooth missing on Windows 11, use these steps:

  1. Open Start.

  2. Search for Device Manager and click the top result to open the app.

  3. Expand the Bluetooth category.

  4. Right-click the hardware and select the Enable device option to turn on the missing Bluetooth.

    Enable Bluetooth missing

After you complete the steps, the Bluetooth option should appear in the Settings app. If the device is missing, the hardware may be damaged, or your device may not support the feature.

Other troubleshooting tips when Bluetooth isn’t working

It’s important to note that you can only have one Bluetooth adapter enabled at one time. If you connect more than one adapter, devices may stop working at any time. For example, if you’re replacing a Bluetooth adapter with an external adapter, it’s best to disable the adapter you’re replacing from “Device Manager” and choose the “Disable device” option.

If a Bluetooth device isn’t working, the computer may be experiencing a hardware or software issue. In these cases, I always recommend restarting the computer and the device you’re connecting (if possible). Also, unpairing and repairing the device may help. 

In the case you have multiple Bluetooth devices connected to your computer, you can try disconnecting them and repairing the one having the issue. You can also try connecting the device to another computer to determine if it’s still working or if there’s an issue with the computer.

You should also remember that the Bluetooth features will also depend on the version of the adapter installed on your computer

If the computer has a yellow or red mark, it could be a problem with the drive. These instructions can help you troubleshoot and fix problems with Bluetooth.

Update July 24, 2024: This guide has been updated to ensure accuracy and reflect changes to the process.

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 15 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 21 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].