Is Netflix not working for you? Here is how to fix it

With over 50 million paid subscribers just in the U.S., and over 125 million worldwide, chances are good you are a Netflix customer. You’ve got access to the service’s huge library of classic movies and TV shows, plus its growing list of original series, movies and specials. But what do you do if it stops working?

Let’s take a look at the various problems that you might have to deal with if you wish to access your Netflix account, such as not being able to sign on at all, to problems with the Netflix app loading, to issues where video from the service is not streaming well enough.

Make sure you have typed in the correct login and password

This seems logical, but if you cannot sign into Netflix, you most likely have not typed in the correct login or password for your account. The login is always the email address you used to sign up for the service. If, for some reason, you have forgotten your email address (many people have multiple email addresses, after all), you can contact Netflix’s online support service for help.

It’s more likely that you forgot your Netflix account password if you cannot sign into the service. Use the link below to retrieve your password, or change it to a new one.

Fix Netflix streaming problems at home

If you find Netflix not working in your home due to issues with streaming its content, a number of things might fix the problem. Netflix requires a minimum download speed of 0.5Mbps, and recommends 1.5Mbps. If you want to stream videos at SD quality, you should have a 3Mbps download connection. HD video quality on Netflix is needs around 5Mbps. Netflix also has a limited number of movies and shows compatible with 4K TVs at Ultra HD resolution, but you will need a 25Mbps streaming connection for that.
 
If you experience streaming problems at home, restarting your TV, set-top box, game console or mobile handset might solve the issue. If that doesn’t work, turn off your home router for about 60 seconds and restart it to see if that fixes the download stream. You can also turn off your modem for up to 30 seconds and restart it. Reinstalling your Netflix app might help too.
 
If you are still dealing with streaming issues, it’s possible your wireless router is in a poor location, and its signals are being blocked. Try moving it to an area of the home that’s more open. You might also try directly connecting the router to your smart TV, set-top box, or game console.
 
If you have a set-top box or game console that supports Netflix’s Ultra HD movies and TV shows, (along with a 4K TV) you could have a solid download stream, but it may still not be working. Switching the HDMI cables to a different port might help. Your 4K TV and the streaming device connected to it need to support the HDCP 2.2 protocol to watch Netflix’s Ultra HD content.
 
If you have a smart TV with the Netflix app, or a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One with their own Netflix apps, there is another, rather mysterious way to solve problems with the app, too. Open the app, and push your remote’s buttons in the following order:  “Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, Up, Up, Up, Up”. This should bring up an option to deactivate Netflix. After that, you can open the app and sign in with your account.

Fix Netflix problems on smartphones and tablets

If Netflix is not working properly on your Android or iOS mobile devices, you can do a few things. If you are on a cellular network, you might find its connection speed is not enough for a good streaming experience. Connecting to a Wi-Fi signal might help. Turning Airplane mode on and off again sometimes fixes connection issues. You can also turn your mobile device off and back on, too. Of course, deleting and reinstalling the Netflix app might help as well. You could also try restarting your device.
 
If you encounter either an Error 1011 or Error 1012 message on your iPhone or iPad when using Netflix, go to your device’s Settings menu and scroll down until you see the Netflix app list. Tap on that, then tap on the Reset option. You can then press on the Home button on your iPhone or iPad and restart the Netflix app again. Hopefully that fixes the error.
 
Android device owners who see an Error 12001 message on the Netflix app can also go to Settings on their phone or tablet. Tap Applications Manager (“Apps” on some Android devices), scroll down and tap on Netflix. You should then tap on the Clear Data option on the screen and then tap OK and then restart the Netflix app.
 
You can also use Netflix’s download feature on Android and iOS devices to save certain movies and TV shows for offline viewing. Make sure you have the latest Netflix app update, along with a device that has either iOS 8.0 or higher or Android 4.4.2 or higher, if you want to download content from the service. Keep in mind that Netflix may not allow smartphones and tablets that have been rooted to download content.

Too many people may be using your Netflix account

One of the reasons Netflix might not be working is too many people are accessing your account at the same time. Netflix has three payment programs. The basic plan costs $7.99 a month and allows only one device to stream from Netflix at a time. The standard $10.99 plan expands allows for two devices at the same time. The premium plan, which costs $13.99 a month, doubles that to four devices at once.
 
Even with the premium plan, if you have a big family and they’re all streaming on Netflix on their own devices, you might run into some problems. You could simply ask one of your family members to stop watching their stream so you can watch on your device. If you want to keep an unwanted person who may have discovered your account name and password from signing on, you can change your password, and then go to the My Account section of the Netflix web site and select, “Sign out of all devices.” 

Netflix might actually be down

While this is rare, Netflix might not be working because the service is actually just down. A site like DownDetector will show if anyone else is having problems. A problem with your internet service at home could also cause the problem, in which case you will need to contact your service provider.

Next steps

If Netflix is not working for you on your preferred platform, we hope these tips help. If you have any more tips on getting Netflix working again for you, let us know in the comments!

Looking for advice that might be specific to the media device you are using? Check out these guides:

Leave a comment