YouTube Videos Not Playing

YouTube Videos Not Playing

You can trust PC GuideOur team of experts use a combination of independent consumer research, in-depth testing where appropriate – which will be flagged as such, and market analysis when recommending products, software and services. Find out how we test here.

Last Updated on

YouTube has become the go-to place for sharing videos. The site boasts over 1.8 billion monthly users, and its popularity continues to rise.

Yet despite its success, some users encounter issues with their videos.

How often do you get frustrated because your video isn’t loading properly? How about when it plays but there is no sound or picture? Or maybe a video just won’t play at all.

While YouTube offers a variety of tools to help you create and manage your videos, it also provides ways to troubleshoot problems with your account.

In this article, we’ll discuss what causes these problems and how to fix them. We’ll also cover other common issues that can occur with your account.


Reasons That YouTube Videos Won’t Play

There are many reasons why your YouTube videos may not load correctly.

Here are a couple of reasons that your YouTube videos may not be loading:

  • Your browser may need an update
  • Your Wi-Fi may not be working properly
  • You may need to clear your cache and cookies
  • There may be issues with the Adobe Flash Player

The following sections will provide more details on each of these potential problems.

Your Wi-Fi May Be Down

Your Wi-Fi May Be Down

If your internet connection is down, then none of your devices connected to the internet will be able to access any websites, including YouTube. To check if your Wi-Fi is working, try connecting to another network in your area.

If you still have trouble accessing the internet, contact your ISP (Internet Service Provider) for assistance.

Clear Cache And Cookies

When you use certain websites, such as YouTube, your computer stores information so that you don’t have to re-enter data every time you visit that website. This process is called caching. Caching helps save time by allowing your computer to quickly display pages from previous visits. 

However, sometimes when you return to a page, it takes longer than usual to load.

When you clear your cache and cookies, you remove the information stored on your computer. This allows your computer to start fresh and load faster.

Clear Cache And Cookies

To clear your cache and cookies:



Accessing the Control Panel

Start by clicking the Start button on your desktop. In the search box, type “Control Panel” and press Enter.

This will open the Control Panel window where you can manage various system settings.



Navigating to System and Security

In the Control Panel, look for the “System and Security” option and double-click it. This section contains important settings related to your computer’s security and system preferences.



Deleting Browsing History

Within the “System and Security” section, locate and select “Tools.” Here, you will find an option labeled “Delete Browsing History.” Selecting this allows you to clear the data stored by your web browsers, which often includes cached files and cookies.



Adjusting Privacy Settings

Under the Privacy settings, click on “Settings,” followed by “Manage Search Settings.” This area allows you to control how your browsing data is handled and stored.



Removing All Data

Find and select the option “Remove All Data.” This action will clear all the cached data and cookies stored in your system. Be aware that this will remove saved data across all browsers and websites.

Click OK twice to confirm your choice and proceed with clearing the cache and cookies.

The Adobe Flash Player Is Missing

Adobe Flash Player is a popular plugin used to play online video content. It’s available for free at

Adobe Flash Player is required for viewing some YouTube videos. If you experience problems playing YouTube videos, first make sure that you’ve installed the latest version of the Adobe Flash Player.

The Adobe Flash Player Is Missing

If you continue to experience problems after installing the latest version of the Flash Player, follow these steps to install the current version of the Flash Player:



Locating Adobe Flash Player Installer

Begin by clicking the Start menu on your desktop. From there, select Run. This action opens a dialog box where you can execute commands.

In the “Open” field of this dialog box, carefully type: %windir%\system32\Macromed\FlashPlayerUpdate.exe and then press OK.

This command navigates directly to the Adobe Flash Player update executable file located in your system files.



Completing the Installation

After running the command, a message should appear indicating that the installation of Adobe Flash Player was successful. It’s important to ensure that all open windows and programs are closed at this point.

Proceed to restart your computer, which helps in refreshing the system and applying the new changes effectively.



Testing YouTube Playback

Once your computer has restarted, try opening a web browser and accessing a YouTube video. This will allow you to test if installing Adobe Flash Player has resolved the issue of YouTube videos not playing.

Please note that as of December 31, 2020, Adobe no longer supports Flash Player, and it has been blocked from running in all web browsers. This method is only relevant for systems and browsers that still support Adobe Flash Player.

If you’re using a modern browser or system, this method might not be applicable, and you should consider other troubleshooting steps for resolving YouTube playback issues.


What If YouTube Videos Still Won’t Play?

If you still can’t watch YouTube videos, or other videos on the web, there are a few things you can do to troubleshoot the problem.

What If YouTube Videos Still Won't Play

First, make sure that your browser isn’t set to automatically log off. If this setting is enabled, you may need to manually log out of your account before trying to view videos on another site. Also, try clearing your browser’s history.

YouTube Videos Not Playing

Finally, try downloading an updated version of your browser. For example, Internet Explorer 9 has been known to cause issues with YouTube. Try updating to Internet Explorer 10 instead.


What To Do When YouTube Won’t Play On Android and iPhone

Before attempting to fix the issue on your cell phone, make sure that you’re connected to the internet. Your device should be connected to a wireless router or modem. If not, connect your phone or tablet directly to a wired network connection.

Next, check if your device supports HTML5 video playback. You’ll see a list of supported devices in the bottom left corner of the YouTube mobile app.

If your device does support HTML5 video, try using a different browser. Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera browsers all support HTML5 video.

YouTube Videos Not Playing1

If none of these work, try resetting your device by pressing and holding down the Home key and power buttons simultaneously until the screen turns black. Then release both keys. After about 30 seconds, the device will reboot itself.

After rebooting, try opening the YouTube app again. If it doesn’t work, try reopening the browser. You may also want to check that the YouTube app is completely up-to-date, if you are trying to watch videos through the app itself.

Final Thoughts

We hope that this guide helps you resolve any issues you might have when trying to watch YouTube videos. We know how frustrating it can be when you encounter errors while trying to access YouTube from your computer or smartphone.

Hopefully, we were able to help!

Andrew is one of three co-founders of BGFG, the parent company of PC Guide. A keen gamer and PC enthusiast, Andrew dabbles in a bit of writing sometimes - when he gets the chance to!