There’s nothing more frustrating than encountering an error screen while trying to watch YouTube. Whether it’s a video that won’t load, or that classic “this site can’t be reached” message in Google Chrome, the same question usually arises: Is it just me, or is YouTube down?
While network connectivity issues are usually quickly resolved or don’t affect all content on YouTube, other times the entire platform will be down. This can be for a variety of reasons, stemming from server issues, DDoS attacks, platform maintenance, or a problem with reaching YouTube’s servers themselves. Fortunately, when times like these arise, there are ways to find out what’s going on.
If you’re caught in a position where YouTube isn’t working correctly and you want to know if the problems are widespread or just exclusive to you, here are the best ways to check it out.
How to check YouTube’s status
First, navigate to YouTube and try both its homepage and a direct link to a video. If you’re encountering problems on both of these pages, then it’s likely the site is suffering from a platform-wide problem.
There are multiple websites dedicated to reporting problems with sites like YouTube. One of the best is Downdetector. At Downdetecor, you can see how many outages have been reported by users, where the reports are coming from, and what specific problems users are encountering. For instance, Downdetector will let you know if users in your neighborhood are also reporting outages, or if a specific feature is offline, like watching videos.
What if there are no reported outages?
If there are no reports by other users on Downdetector, you may be the first to encounter this issue. If this is the case, more reports should surface shortly. Otherwise, the issue could be on your end. And if that’s the case, there are a few troubleshooting steps you can try.
First, try opening and closing your browser. If this doesn’t help, you should try loading YouTube on a different browser or device.
For some people, their internet connection may be the issue. For instance, in some public Wi-Fi situations, YouTube may not be available. If you’re at home, your modem settings and ISP may be at fault. And if you’re on a VPN, YouTube may limit content for certain regions or connections. If possible, visit YouTube on another network to determine if the problem is rooted in your connection.
If all these steps don’t work, you may want to try restarting your device entirely. If YouTube is still down afterwards, try either waiting for the service to come back, or contact YouTube directly via its support system.