Having trouble with your Firestick, but not sure where to start troubleshooting? We can help! In this article, we’ll cover all of the major issues you could find yourself running into with your Amazon Fire Stick.
To make things easy, we will break this down into three main categories:
- Firestick applications that won’t work
- The Firestick itself is actually not working or behaving erratically, including Firestick WiFi issues
- The remote is not working
We also have some links down in our description box with the best deals on new streaming devices and replacement remotes in the unlikely event that one of these fixes does not work for you, so let’s get started!
Part 1: Apps Not Working
Sometimes the trouble isn’t with the Firestick itself, but with one or two pesky apps that seem to be crashing or slowing down your Amazon Fire TV. If that’s the case, then your solution is probably an easy one.
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Before you get started, we recommend running an analysis on your Fire TV. There are a few tools like Drives, Cleaner and Speed Boost for Fire, and the Amazon Firestick’s built-in disk space check that can take a look underneath the hood and tell you which apps are taking up too much space or hogging up resources that make your Fire Stick run slow. Once you know which apps are responsible for the slowdown you can try this fix to speed up your Firestick.
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Fix #1: Clear Firestick App Cache
If you have an application that’s not working, this will fix it almost 100% of the time. To get started, just follow these steps:
- Go to Settings
- When you’re in Settings, go down to Applications and enter your code if you have one
- Go to Manage Installed Applications
- Find the application that’s not working, for example Netflix or the ABC TV app
- Click on the app and go to Force Stop and click
- Next, go down to Clear Cache and click that as well
- Then just go ahead and run the application again. Now the application work what should work fine!
Part B: Fix Firestick Not Working or Running Slowly
Unfortunately, the problem isn’t always a simple app issue. If your Firestick is not working at all or is working slowly and erratically, try the solutions in this category you should be back up and running in no time.
Fix #2: Reset Firestick to Factory Default Settings
To quote our favorite nerds from the IT Crowd, “Have you tried turning it off and on again?” Well, that wisdom holds true for almost all technology. Resetting to factory default settings and rebooting should be your first solution if your Amazon Firestick is acting up. Try these simple steps:
- Hold down the select button (that’s the big round button on the Firestick remote) and the pause/play button at the same time
- Keep them both held down for about five seconds
- After a moment, the Fire Stick will start to reboot and, when it comes back up after a minute or two, everything should be set and your fire stick should work right.
Fix #3: Check WiFi Signal Strength
We also recommend going into your settings menu, going into the network area, and checking your Wi-Fi or network connection. Your signal strength should be rated as Good at the very least. If it’s excellent, then all the better, but good is the minimum we’re looking for.
If it says Fair you’re usually going to have problems watching movies or accessing other high-bandwidth content. If that’s the case, try to move your fire stick to a slightly different position, and that sometimes will get you a better signal.
- On the Home menu, scroll to Settings
- Then go down until you get to Network
- Scroll to your network and check to see if you’re connected
- Press the Play button over the network and you can see the strength of your connection
If your signal strength is fair (or worse) then rearrange your Amazon fire stick so it’s closer to your router.
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Fix #4: Check Background Processes
Sometimes there are processes happening in the background that are slowing down your Firestick and keeping you from enjoying free movies. To stop these processes so you can get your Fire TV back to blazing speeds, go to the Home menu and scroll all the way to the top and go to the left and:
- Go to the Fire TV App Store
- Hold down the voice button on your Firestick voice remote and say “background processes” into the Alexa Voice Remote
- You should see the following app pop up: Background Apps and Processes
- This application will show you all the applications that are running in the background on your Amazon Fire Stick
- Go ahead and close any unused applications that are running in the background by going to Force Close
Fix #5: Turn Off Data Monitoring
Speaking of things running in the background, you’ll want to take one more step to prevent extra processes from slowing down your Firestick’s performance.
- Go back to the Home Screen on your Amazon Fire Stick
- Scroll back to Settings
- Then go down to Preferences
- Select Data Monitoring
- Turn Data Monitoring off
Why? Because Amazon is collecting information about you when you’re using your device. This is using data in the background, slowing down your device. This helps protect your privacy and reduces extra activity on your Amazon Fire TV.
Fix #6: Turn Off App Notifications
This may not be a huge resource hog, but sometimes every little bit helps. At the very least, this will mean fewer annoying pop ups on your screen, which is never a bad thing.
- Go to Applications
- Turn most (or all) of these application notifications to the Off setting
Fix #7: Use VLC Instead of MXPlayer or Other Video Player Apps
In this case, you can reduce strain on your Amazon Firestick by adding a device. We strongly recommend downloading VLC player from the Amazon Fire Stick Store. This guide will show you how to download VLC.
The great thing about using VLC player instead of the MX player is that it uses less data and less CPU memory on your Amazon Fire Stick. It’s also very versatile and will play almost any type of video file. So if you find yourself using an application that requires a media player, try to choose VLC player as it will use less data and less memory in the background.
Fix #8: Consider a New Firestick Model
If you’re still having trouble you might need to take your Firestick model into consideration. The first gen Firestick, being the oldest Firestick, is going to run a lot slower than the 4K Fire Stick or the 2nd gen Firestick, and this is purely because the software is much older.
If you’re using a first gen Firestick, I would recommend that you go ahead and get yourself a 4K Firestick or the 2nd gen Fire Stick with Alexa voice remote just because you’ll just see such a massive in the speed and performance of the newer models.
Fix #9: Plug Firestick Directly Into Wall Instead of Into Power Strip
One small thing that can make a huge difference is making sure that you’re using a strong and reliable power source for your Amazon Firestick.
Power sources like power strips or the USB plugs in the side of your TV may be providing a less than optimal stream of power to your device, which can cause performance issues and slowness. If you’re experiencing slowness from your Fire TV, check to see what power source you’re using. If at all possible, try to plug your device directly into a wall outlet. This will usually give you the best results. And above all:
** Stop using the USB port in the back of the TV to power the Amazon Fire Stick **
This is the worst power option available to you and will almost certainly cause trouble at some point.
Fix #10: (See WARNING) Try a 2 Amp Power Supply Instead of the Stock (1 Amp) Amazon Power Supply
WARNING: Try this at your own risk. We are not responsible for any damage caused to your Firestick or anything else.
As we mentioned before, power matters. If you’re still having trouble, a lot of people have had great success from switching over to a 2 amp power supply. These are pretty common items, and you can probably find one already laying around your house. If you look at the back of most power cords, the amps will be listed.
This has made a massive difference for some people, so you might be interested in trying it out. As always,though, using higher than recommended power levels comes with some degree of risk to your electronics, so proceed with caution.
Fix #11: Power Cycle Your Router Modem
If you’ve tried everything we’ve suggested so far, but you’re still having trouble getting a strong wireless connection, the problem might actually be with your router. Doing a hard reset will fix most WiFi related issues. Following these steps should help:
- Locate your wireless router
- Find the power cord
- Now unplug it and then plug it back in after approximately 30 seconds
Try your connection again once the entire network has restarted. This will likely alleviate most of the wireless signal issues you’ve been having with your Amazon Fire Stick.
Fix #12: Power Cycle the Firestick
After you’ve power cycled your wireless router, it’s not a bad idea to try do the same for your Firestick. The process for this is exactly the same:
- Locate your Amazon Fire Stick
- Find where it’s plugged into the power source
- Unplug it and then plug it back in after 30 seconds
Part C: Fire Stick Remote Not Working
There are two methods for fixing the Firestick remote, and both are pretty straightforward. If the Firestick remote has completely frozen so that none of the buttons are working, then this first method should get you back in action in no time.
Fix #13: Remove One Battery From Firestick
This is exactly what it sounds like! Here are the steps below:
- Undo the back cover on the Firestick
- Pop out one of the batteries
- Wait a second or two
- Put the battery back in
- Close the cover on the Fire Stick
- Wait a second or two
And voila! Your Firestick remote should start working again.
If the first method did not get your Firestick working again then try the second method.
Fix #14: Hold Down Home Button
- Press and hold the Home button for at least 10 seconds
- After that release it and wait a few seconds
- And just like that your remote should be working again
In the unlikely event that neither of these methods fix your remote, you can try replacing both batteries in the remote with fresh ones. After that, it may be time to consider ordering a new replacement remote.