New gadgets are fun. Devices like Fire Sticks provide endless entertainment for you, your friends, and your family.
But when technology fails us, it can be rather annoying. So when you discovered your Fire Stick was frozen, you panicked.
Why does your Amazon Fire Stick keep freezing? What are the reasons? And how can you fix it?
Let’s take a look at several reasons your Fire Stick might freeze. Some of these reasons include:
- Too much buffering
- Slow internet connection
- Slow router
- Low storage
- Apps hogging bandwidth
- ISP blocking streams
- It’s broken
Let’s review these bullet points to see how it can cause our new streaming device to freeze and what we can do to help our situation.
1) Too Much Buffering
Have you ever streamed a movie that constantly buffers? It’s irritating, right?
Constant buffering freezes your Fire Stick. Well, technically, it freezes the video you’re viewing.
That’s because the video you’re trying to view needs to download for you to view it.
To understand why buffering happens, we must first understand how streaming works.
When you stream a video, the Fire Stick must first download enough of its content for you to see it in “real-time.” But if your device fails to download enough of its content before you hit the Play button, it will freeze the video and buffer until it downloads more content for you to continue watching.
So why does buffering occur? To answer why your Fire Stick constantly buffers and freezes, we must segway into two other reasons your Fire Stick might freeze.
2) Slow Internet
A slow internet connection may cause your Fire Stick to freeze. So, if your videos constantly buffer, chances are your internet is too slow.
If you’re streaming standard definition content, ensure your internet speed is at least 5Mbps. Speeds lower than 5Mbps will cause your video to freeze.
If you’re streaming HD videos, your internet speed should be at least 10Mbps. 4K videos require more than 25Mbps speeds.
If you’re interested in testing your internet speed, head to Google and type “Test my internet speed.” Google will show you a snippet with a brief explanation and a blue button that says “Run Speed Test.”
Press the button to see how fast your internet is running at that very moment.
If your internet is slow, try calling your internet provider and upgrading to a faster speed. These days, there are many plans to choose from, depending on your provider.
If your internet speed looks good, perhaps your router is the reason your Fire Stick is freezing.
3) Slow Router
Some routers are outdated, falling apart, or simply can’t keep up with today’s fast internet speeds.
So, if you tested your internet speeds and you know it’s fast, it might be your router.
If your router is old, the rate at which it sends the video data to your Fire Stick may be too slow, resulting in buffering.
Getting a new router often solves this problem. Also, there’s a plethora of options, like the product below. Not only does this router work with Alexa, but it can handle speeds up to 5400Mbps.
- Gigabit WiFi for 8K Streaming – Up to 5400 Mbps WiFi for faster browsing, streaming, gaming and...
- Full Featured WiFi 6 Router– Equipped with 4T4R and HE160 technologies on the 5 GHz band to enable...
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4) Low Storage
Unlike Fire TV, a Fire Stick has very little storage. It can range from six to eight gigabytes. Although for a tiny little gadget, that might sound like a lot, it fills up quickly.
Once your Fire Stick starts to freeze, it often means you’ve reached the storage limit and it can no longer function as it should.
Luckily, there are a few things you can do to solve your storage issue.
The easiest way to solve this is to delete apps you no longer use from your device. Some apps are storage hogs and use more space than you think. And if you no longer use them, it’s better to eliminate them.
We can always delete the unwanted cache if you don’t want to delete any apps.
Cache is data, scripts, and images downloaded to your device and stored so the next time you open your app, it loads faster.
To delete your cache from your device, you’ll have to go into each app and do so individually.
- First, head to your Main Menu.
- Navigate to the Applications menu.
- Proceed to Managed Installed Applications.
This menu will give you a list of all your applications. It will display how much space the app is taking on your device as well as how much space the cache for this app is using.
Look through each app to see which apps have downloaded too much cache.
- To delete the cache, click on the app.
- Then navigate to Clear Cache.
See this video here if you’re a visual learner and want a demonstration on how to clear your cache.
5) Applications Hogging Bandwidth
Many times we’re unaware that apps continue running in the background even after we close them. If you have many apps running in the background, it can hog all the bandwidth. So when you try streaming a video, it will freeze or buffer too much.
Don’t worry, though. This is easy to fix.
All we have to do is close the apps running in the background.
- Let’s navigate to Settings.
- Next, find the Applications menu.
- Proceed to the Manage Installed Applications menu.
From here, you can either go one by one or simply check the apps you know you’ve used recently.
- Regardless, please navigate to the app you want to close and click on it.
- Next, click on Force Stop to close the app.
The app has now stopped running in the background.
6) ISP Blocking Streams
Believe it or not, our ISP (Internet Service Providers) meters how much data we use and gives us a data cap.
Even though the data cap is often high, you’ll run through your data quickly if you’re streaming movies all day long.
If that happens, your ISP will slow you down, and you will not be able to stream as efficiently. This causes your Fire Stick to freeze.
However, you can often avoid this by turning off your TV and your Fire Stick.
Stop streaming movies because you love background noise.
Force Stop apps running in the background. And if you really want to stop your Fire Stick from using any unwanted data, simply unplug it from your TV when not in use.
7) Your Fire Stick is Broken
An unfortunate side effect of life is that everything must come to an end. And that includes your Amazon Fire Stick. Sometimes things just break, and you have to purchase a new one.
But how do you know if it’s truly broken?
For starters, if you checked all of our above pointers and nothing seemed to work, that might be a clue.
However, there are certain tricks you can try to reboot and repair your Fire Stick. If those don’t work, chances are, your Fire Stick has gone to gadget heaven.
Nevertheless, here are a few more tips you can try to save it from impending doom.
- Update the apps that continually freeze
- Update your Fire Stick firmware
- Reboot your device (aka soft restart)
- Perform a hard restart
- Contact Amazon Customer Support
If you’ve run through this list and your device continues to freeze or does not function properly, it may be time to get a new one.
Is Your Fire Stick Unfrozen Yet?
We hope you learned why your Fire Stick keeps freezing and how you can take a few steps to fix it.
Sometimes, it’s as easy as closing apps running in the background. Other times you have to face the harsh reality that your device might have met its end.
Regardless of the situation, we hope you learned a few tricks to un-freezing your Amazon Fire Stick.
Do you have other questions or concerns? Please leave them in the comments.
James Quintanilla is a technical copywriter. Although his experience allows him to write on many topics, he loves to focus on tech and travel. As a freelancer, James has worked on projects with Pointer Clicker, Lonely Planet, and the Travel Channel. When he’s not writing or planning his next adventure, he’s watching a scary movie.