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Netflix not working on Roku? Here's what to do

Sometimes apps act up. Here's how to fix them!

Published onApril 7, 2024

What to watch on Netflix
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Are you having trouble getting Netflix up and running on your Roku streaming device? Sometimes, it seems to have a mind of its own. However, there might be a specific reason why your Netflix app may stop working, and there are plenty of easy fixes. While we can’t diagnose your particular problem, here’s everything we recommend when Netflix is not working on your Roku device.

We’ll start with the most common fixes and work our way to the more drastic measures.

Netflix icon
Netflix is still the leading premium streaming service, with over 200 million worldwide subscribers. It offers thousands of movies and TV shows to binge watch, including its always growing list of original films and series, including Stranger Things, The Witcher, Bridgerton, and many more.

Editor’s note: We developed these instructions using a Roku Ultra running Roku OS 12.5.5. Keep in mind steps may differ depending on your device and software version.

Is Netflix down?

While rare, there is a chance Netflix’s servers are down. This would mean you can do nothing but wait for Netflix to fix its issues. You should make sure this is the case, though.

Netflix has its status page, which you can always check to ensure Netflix’s servers are up and running. There are plenty of third-party options, too. We recommend using DownDetector. This page collects consumer reports to figure out if a service is down. There’s even a live outage map to identify local blackouts.

Have you reached your device limits?

Best Smartphones 4 End of Year 2021
Robert Triggs / Android Authority

Chances are you share your Netflix account with other family members or roommates. Keep in mind there’s a limit on how many screens can watch Netflix simultaneously. The amount of devices that can stream simultaneously varies depending on your plan.

You can use Netflix on up to two devices simultaneously with the Standard or Standard with ads plans. You can also upgrade to the Premium plan to increase the number to four simultaneous connections.

The only solution to this issue is to ask others to stop watching. You can also upgrade your account if you have one of the lower-end ones.

Restart your Roku

Sometimes, the most straightforward answer is the right one. In this case, turn your Roku off and turn it back on again. No, seriously. Turn your streaming device off, unplug it, and leave it to sit for a minute or so. This should allow your Roku to soft reset — quit out of your apps and clear the RAM. Now, plug it back in and fire your Roku right back up. This can often fix many software bugs.

Restart with remote:

  1. Press the Home button on your remote control.
  2. Select the Settings.
  3. Go into System.
  4. Go into Power.
  5. Click on System Restart.
  6. Hit Restart.

Restart when frozen:

  1. Press the Home button five times.
  2. Select the Up arrow once.
  3. Tap the Rewind button twice.
  4. Press the Fast Forward button twice.

Check for updates

Roku Express remote controller - Netflix not working on Roku
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

Another reason you may not be able to get Netflix to work on your Roku streaming device is if either one needs an update. Some apps tend to act up, especially if you haven’t updated them in a while. Your Roku should check for updates regularly whenever you turn it on, but you can always manually check for them.

How to check for updates on Roku devices:

  1. Press Home on your remote.
  2. Go into Settings.
  3. Hit System.
  4. Select Software update.
  5. Hit Check now.
  6. If an update is available, your Roku should begin the process automatically. Do not interrupt it while the update installs.

This process will check for both system and channel updates. You can also check for Netflix channel updates separately, though.

How to check for Netflix channel updates:

  1. Press Home on your remote.
  2. Find Netflix on your apps and highlight it.
  3. Press the Star button.
  4. Select Check for updates.

Check your Netflix account

Netflix with popcorn stock photo 2
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

If Netflix is not working on your Roku, the problem may have nothing to do with the device itself. There’s always a chance that the fault lies within your account. There’s a lot that can go wrong.

Did you recently change the payment method? Maybe your card was locked for any reason? Regardless, payments often fail for no apparent reason. Log into your Netflix account and see if your account is active.

Delete and redownload the Netflix app

Ultra plugged into TV 2
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

A straightforward way to get Netflix back up and running on your Roku device is to delete and reinstall the app. Think of it as turning it off and turning it back on, but on the software side.

How to remove an app on Roku:

  1. Press the Home button on your Roku remote.
  2. Find and highlight the Netflix channel.
  3. Press the Star button on your remote to open the options menu.
  4. Select the Remove app option and confirm when prompted.
  5. Confirm by selecting Remove.

How to add an app on Roku:

  1. Press the Home button on your remote. Then select Home.
  2. Select Add Channels.
  3. Find Netflix.
  4. Select Add app.
  5. Enter your PIN and hit Add channel.

Are you online?

Wi Fi devices stock photo 2
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

One of the most common reasons Netflix does not work on your Roku device is if you’re not connected to the internet. It may sound simple, but there’s always a chance you disconnected accidentally.

Check if your Roku device is connected to the internet:

  1. Press on your remote’s Home button.
  2. Select the Settings menu.
  3. Open the Network section to check your Roku’s connection status.
  4. If it says you’re connected, use the Check Connection button to test the strength.

If your device is not connected to the internet, you might be completely offline. Check other devices connected to your Wi-Fi and see if they’re working correctly. Suppose they aren’t; move on to the router and restart it. There’s usually a button for this, but you can also unplug the device, wait about a minute or so, and plug it back in. If that doesn’t work, it’s time to contact your internet provider. We also have a guide on what to do when your Wi-Fi isn’t working, if you want to try other troubleshooting tips first.

Are you in a supported country?

Netflix is available almost everywhere globally, but there are a few markets where you can’t watch the popular streaming service. These currently include China, Crimea, North Korea, Russia, and Syria.

Additionally, Netflix and other streaming services tend to dislike VPNs. If you’re using one, you might want to consider turning it off to see if that gets Netflix back up and working.

There you go; a few ways to reset Netflix, update your Roku, and check your account status. If none of these methods has helped you, it might be time for a new streaming device. On the bright side, there are plenty to choose from.