Firestick Slow/Buffering?

Fire Stick Slow? Tips & Tricks to Fix Buffering Errors Quickly

Buffering errors on Fire TV can be extremely frustrating. After you’ve diagnosed the problem, use the quick solutions below to get things working once again.

VPNs Can Fix Buffering Issues Caused by Throttling

If ISP throttling is slowing down your movie streams, a good VPN can eliminate that in an instant. VPNs mask traffic to prevent artificial slowdowns put in place by certain ISPs. When your Fire Stick traffic is fully encrypted, it’s always sent through at the highest speeds possible.

Switch VPN Servers

If you’re running a VPN on your Fire Stick, you could be having an issue with a laggy server. Open the app on your device and choose a different location, preferably one that’s closer to your physical address. If your VPN has a built-in speed test or an auto-optimized connection feature, it can make finding the fastest server a lot easier. You can also wait and use the same server later in the day when congestion decreases.

Update Your Fire Device

Fire OS updates release at regular intervals, adding new security features or interface tweaks. They can also provide a quick speed boost to your Fire TV, which can help eliminate buffering issues of all kinds. Make sure your Fire Stick device is running the latest version of its operating system for optimal speeds. Follow the steps below to check for fresh content and update right away.

  1. Open your Fire TV interface and go to the home menu.
  2. On the menu items at the top of the screen, scroll to the right and choose Settings.
  3. Scroll right and select Device.
  4. Choose Check for System Update and confirm in the next window.
  5. The Fire TV Stick will automatically look for new software. If it’s available, you’ll be prompted to download and install.

Uninstall Unnecessary Apps

You can quickly gain some speed and eliminate certain buffering issues by uninstalling apps that may be lagging your device. This is especially true if you have sideloaded and third party apps on your Fire TV, as they aren’t necessarily optimized for top performance. For each app you think you want to get rid of, follow the steps below to remove it from your system.

  1. Open your Fire TV and go to the home menu.
  2. On the menu items at the top of the screen, scroll to the right and choose Settings.
  3. Scroll right and choose Applications.
  4. In the Applications menu, move down and choose Manage Installed Applications.
  5. Scroll until you find the app you want to uninstall.
  6. Select the app and a new screen will open. Scroll down and choose Uninstall.
  7. A secondary screen will open. Choose Uninstall again.
  8. After a moment the app will be deleted from your Fire TV device.

Restart Your Fire TV

When was the last time you turned off your Fire Stick? If you’re like most users, probably never! The good news is that some buffering errors can be eliminated by rebooting your Fire device to clear out the local cache. Follow the steps below to reset everything and see what happens.

  1. Open your Fire TV and go to the home menu.
  2. On the menu items at the top of the screen, scroll to the right and choose Settings.
  3. Scroll right and select Device.
  4. Choose Restart and confirm in the next window.
  5. The Fire TV Stick will automatically reboot and be ready to stream again in just a few moments.

Router and Modem Reboot

A fast solution to local network slowdown that causes buffering issues on Fire TV is to perform a reset. Turn off your modem and router, wait ten seconds, then plug them back in in the same order. This can instantly clear channel interference problems and put your local network back on the fast track.

Turn Off Unneeded App Settings

Many apps utilize background connections while you’re streaming movies. This can add up to some serious buffering issues, especially if you have dozens of apps installed. You can turn off some of these problem connections by toggling two different options under the Fire TV’s settings page.

We’ll start by turning off automatic app updates:

  1. Open your Fire TV interface and go to the home menu.
  2. On the menu items at the top of the screen, scroll to the right and choose Settings.
  3. Scroll right and select Applications followed by Appstore.
  4. Go to Automatic Updates and toggle it to off.

Next, disable an app data usage option:

  1. Go back to the Applications screen under Settings.
  2. Find the item named Collect App Usage Data
  3. Click to turn it off.

Factory Reset for More Speed

Tweaking and optimizing can often fix buffering issues with ease, but in severe cases, you might need to take drastic action. Performing a factory reset will erase everything on your Fire TV, including app downloads and sideloaded software. Your purchases will be saved, so you won’t lose any data, but you’ll need to re-download everything once the reset is complete. On the plus side, your buffering issues could be cured, too!

There are two methods for performing a factory reset on Fire TV. For the first, navigate to Settings, followed by Device. Scroll to the bottom and choose Restore to Factory Defaults. Confirm your selection and the Fire TV will automatically carry out the reset.

The second method is to hold down both the back button and the right key on your Fire TV remote. Keep them pressed for 5-6 seconds, then a factory reset warning will pop up. A timer counts down before the process automatically begins, so if you change your mind, you only have about 20 seconds to cancel.


Amazon Fire Sticks are perfect for all kinds of streaming, including live content, HD movies, and full TV series. Buffering issues can be annoying at times, but with the tips and tricks above, you can eliminate them before they turn into a regular hassle.

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