12 solutions to fix WhatsApp not working on Android

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Abraham Miller

WhatsApp is one of the most populous Instant Messaging apps used across both Android and iOS.With that on the ground, it is somewhat embarrassing and painful when your WhatsApp stops working on Android. Whether WhatsApp is not connecting at all, not receiving or sending data in the background, or maybe the app is shutting down frequently, there are a couple of fixes to try. In the article, we'll be guiding you on 12 ways to fix WhatsApp not working on Android. Let's get started.

 whatsapp not working on android

Restart the phone

First things first: it is recommendable to restart your phone if WhatsApp is not working on Android. Presumably, the problem is caused by a bug hanging around somewhere in the system. If that's it, then you're lucky. Just restart your phone by any means and continue enjoying your chats.

To force restart your phone, press and hold the Power button for about 10 seconds. You can also do so from the power menu: long-press the Power button to show the power menu, then tap/swipe on Restart.

Check the network

If restarting your phone didn't do trick, we still have many fixes for you, one of which is to check your network. As you already know that WhatsApp relies on the internet to do its job, you wouldn't be able to send/receive messages if your phone is out of coverage or your internet data has expired. To diagnose that, simply open an app, like Chrome, to check if your network is actually working. If it's not working, that means there's a problem with your network. You can try connecting to a Wi-Fi network, toggle off/on your mobile data, or simply check your data balance.

If your network is working flawlessly but your WhatsApp is not picking up, try other solutions below.

Clear Whatsapp Cache and Data

Just like every other Android app, WhatsApp usually stores some data temporarily to make it work efficiently and use fewer resources. But these data, called cache, can become corrupted or unneeded at some point, which might cause the issue of whatsapp stops working on android. To fix this you need to clear the cache data for your WhatsApp. Simply follow the steps below to do so.

  1. Open the Settings app on your phone, then click on Apps & notifications.
  2. Click on App info or other options to view all apps. Now find and open WhatsApp from there.
  3. Select Storage & cache. You'll find the options to clear the cache and data for the WhatsApp app. Tap on Clear cache to erase the cached data for WhatsApp.
  4. Now tap the back button, then click Force stop to shutdown WhatsApp.

On the same page, you could also try clearing the storage data for WhatsApp. But note that you'll lose your chat history. You should skip that for now until you've tried all the fixes in this article.

Update WhatsApp app

WhatsApp is accustomed to rolling out updates via the Google Play Store to fix bugs and introduce new features. It also has a feature that stops your WhatsApp from working if you're running a very old version. To fix that, you need to update your WhatsApp from the Play Store.

Open the Play Store on your phone and search for WhatsApp. If an update is available, you'll see the Update button under the app. Tap on it to update your WhatsApp.

Update the phone system

As well as updating your WhatsApp, also ensure you're running the latest software on your phone. To check that, go to Settings > System > System Update > Online Update. If there's any pending system update, kindly connect to a Wi-Fi network to download and install it.

Is Whatsapp restricted in your country?

Yes, WhatsApp, or some of its features, were banned in some countries. So, if you're in one of those countries, you cannot use WhatsApp. If WhatsApp is banned in your country, you should automatically see the notification when you open or try to register WhatsApp.  We believe there are other more useful Instant Messaging apps - like Telegram and Signal, allowed in your country, you can try them out instead of WhatsApp.

Disable Data Saver

While 'Data Saver', on its own, does its job by smartly reducing data usage on apps you're not currently using on your screen, it can affect your WhatsApp functionality. The effect is that you could only receive/send messages while WhatsApp is on your screen - you stop receiving WhatsApp notifications as soon as you leave the app for another.

To ensure you don't miss any chats when WhatsApp is not on your screen, kindly Disable Data Saver. Normally, you should find the one-click switch in your quick settings panel. Just swipe down from the top of the screen twice to open the quick settings panel, then find Data Saver from there and turn it off.

Ensure background data is not restricted for WhatsApp

As well as turning off Data Saver, you should also ensure your WhatsApp is allowed to use data in the background. While this works hand-in-hand with Data Saver, there's still an option on Android to restrict background data usage.

Though it's not ideal to restrict background data usage for your messaging and work apps, you might have done so unknowingly. To ensure your WhatsApp works flawlessly, even when Data Saver is on, follow the steps below allow background data usage, and also whitelist WhatsApp from Data Saver.

  • Open Settings on your phone and then tap Network & Internet.
  • Click on Data Usage to view the amount of data used by your apps, and other network-related settings. From there, click on Data Saver.
  • Tap unrestricted data to view a list of apps allowed/disallowed to send or receive data in the background.
  • Scroll down to find It's either you see a switch next to it, or you see "Background data is turned off” beneathit. If it's a switch, ensure the switch is activated or activate it yourself.
  • If it's the other way round, click on WhatsApp and enable Background data from there. Also, enable unrestricted data usage to ensure you continue to receive WhatsApp notifications when Data Saver is activated.

Turn off and on Wi-Fi again

This seems like a simple trick. But it works when  whatsapp  is not working on Android phone. If you've been on a network for hours, there are chances it has become idle. To ensure that's not the problem, simply pull down the quick settings panel and turn off Wi-Fi. Wait for a few seconds before you turn it on again. You should also do the same if you're on a mobile network.

Check your phone storage

Your WhatsApp can also be affected if you're running on low storage. To ensure the overall functionality of your phone is not halted, always keep a tab on your storage usage. On average, you should ensure you have up to 500MB or 1GB of free storage space on your phone. Simply go to Settings > Storage > Internal Storage to view your storage usage. If it's getting low, consider deleting unnecessary stuff on your phone or move them to an SD card.

Reset app preferences

If the whatsapp is still not working on Android phone , you can try resetting app preferences. It's a nifty feature on Android that helps you restore default apps settings without erasing your data. Follow the steps below to reset app preferences.

  • Launch Settings on your phone, then scroll to the bottom and click
  • From the system settings, click on Reset options.
  • Now, safely tap on Reset app preferences. Confirm the selection, then tap Reset Apps.

Uninstall and reinstall WhatsApp

Reinstalling your WhatsApp is the last, not-so-favorable, solution to fix the WhatsApp not working on your phone. It's kind of mind bugling in the sense that you'll lose your chat history in the process. But do not worry, you can always keep a local/cloud backup of your chats before uninstalling WhatsApp.

Moreover, some Android phone lets you keep the WhatsApp app data after clicking the uninstall button. So that's safer if you get the prompt on your phone. But before that, simply go to WhatsApp > Settings > Chats > Chat backup, then click Back up.

After successfully backing up your chats, now head over to your app drawer. Long-press the WhatsApp icon, then click the Uninstall button. If you receive a prompt to "keep app data", tick the box and continue. You can now safely reinstall your WhatsApp from the Play Store.

If you ticked the option to "keep app data" before installing WhatsApp, you should be able to continue using WhatsApp like nothing happened after reinstalling it. If that's not in your case, you should receive an option to restore your chats from a local/cloud backup. Do so and continue enjoying your WhatsApp.

That's basically how to fix WhatsApp not working on your phone.