Steam is a hugely popular digital game store not only because it makes buying games so easy, but also because it gives you the option to return them. This is the same (or better) service that you would receive when buying a game in a physical store, but you can do it from the comfort of your own home.
Whether you bought a game just before it went on sale or just decided you don’t like it after a few minutes of play, returning games on Steam is quick and easy. Keep reading for everything you need to know about Steam refund eligibility, as well as step-by-step instructions on how to return a Steam game.
Steam refund rules
Before we get into how to return a Steam game, it’s important to make sure that your purchase is eligible for a refund. Note that even if your game doesn’t meet the requirements below, Steam may still approve the refund in certain cases. Here’s a quick list of common questions for Steam refunds.
How long do I have to return a Steam purchase?
Steam game purchases are refundable within 14 days of purchase, as long as they haven’t been played for more than 2 hours. This includes both full games, DLC, and pre-purchased titles (starting from the release date).
In-game purchases are limited to 48 hours after purchase, as long as the item has not been used in-game. Some developers may have disabled the option to return in-game purchases, and this will have been made clear at the time of purchase.
How much time does it take to receive my Steam refund?
Accepted refunds can take up to a week to receive. You can receive the refund as Steam Wallet funds or through whatever payment method you used to make the purchase.
I’ve been banned, can I get a refund?
No. Players who are caught cheating by the Valve Anti-Cheat system (VAC) forfeit their right to refund that game.
Can I return Steam Wallet funds?
Yes, Steam Wallet funds can be refunded within 14 days of purchase, as long as you have not spent any of those funds on Steam games or DLC.
Can Steam take away my right to refunds?
If you are thought to be abusing the system, Steam can revoke your right to refund purchases. This is so that users don’t abuse the two-hour limit.
I just bought a game and now it’s on sale. Can I return it and get the sale version?
Yes, you can. Returning a game for this reason is not considered an abuse of the system.
How to return a Steam game
As long as your game purchase meets the requirements above, here are the steps to return a Steam game or other purchase.
How to return a Steam game
- Navigate to the Steam help page and log in to your account.
- Click Purchases from the menu.
- Click the purchase you’d like to refund. If it doesn’t appear, it’s too old to refund.
- Select the problem you’re having and click I’d like to request a refund.
- Select how you want to receive the funds from the drop down.
- Fill out and submit the request form.
Afterwards you’ll receive a confirmation email for your refund request. It can take up to a week for the return to be approved, but it can take up to seven days for the money to appear in your account. For international payment methods, it might be even longer.
That’s it for our guide on how to return a Steam game. Remember that even if your return is denied or the purchase was made more than 14 days ago, you can still send another request to have it reviewed by another person.