Facebook Messenger app not working? Here’s what to do

Facebook Messenger is a popular messaging app, which allows users to chat with their Facebook friends, in a space free from the distractions Facebook can bring. It is a multi-platform messenger, which allows for text messaging, voice calls, voice messages, and video calls.

However, both the Messenger and Messenger Lite app can fail to function at times. There’s a couple of things you can do to solve the issue.

Facebook Messenger app not working? – What to do

The Messenger app not working is a relatively common issue to have with Facebook. Most of the time, it’s an issue with your mobile device or in some cases, your connection to the internet. In rarer scenarios, it may actually be a problem on Facebook’s end. If you’re having these issues, here’s how you should approach fixing them.

Internet Issues

As you’ve probably expected, you need access to the internet to use the Messenger app and get in touch with others. So, we need to check that our internet connection is working – you can do this by going to use a different app and seeing if there’s issues with that app too.

After doing this, it’s worth checking your network connection on other devices, and potentially even resetting the Wi-Fi router in your home. Doing this should allow you to fix your internet, which in turn should resolve any issues you’re having with the YouTube app.

If this doesn’t fix your internet connection problem, then you may want to see if there’s an outage in your area. You can do this by using the Down Detector (https://downdetector.co.uk/) and taking a look at whether your broadband provider is having issues in your area.


Server Problems

One thing that you’ll want to do with your Messenger app is to make sure that it’s an issue with the app itself, and not with Facebook’s servers. Though not common, it could just be that the servers are down at Facebook’s end – in this case, there’s not much you can do but wait until they’re back up.

You can check whether the servers are down or not by heading to https://www.isitdownrightnow.com/messenger.com.html and checking Facebook’s server status.


In most cases, you’ll be able to see that the server is up – if so, then it’s time to look at your device and see if the issue lies there.

Restart Device

One of the first things you should do if you’re having an issue with your device is to restart it. In many cases, this may fix the issue completely, as it’ll wipe your current usage of the app – this is the most common fix if you find your Facebook chat app is unavailable.

For iPhone users:

If you’re using an iPhone, then simply hold the power button down on the right side of your device and wait until the slider appears at the top of your display.


After holding the power button down for 5-10 seconds, you should be able to slide the button from left to right to turn the device off.

For Android users

In a similar way, Android users can hold the button down on the side of your phone until the Power Off or Restart button appears. then, just go ahead and click to restart.


Update Device

There’s a chance that you simply need to update your device to the most recent software to get it working again. If it’s outdated, then this could be why your device isn’t working.

For Apple users

Head to Settings > General > Software Update. Here, you’ll be able to see whether there’s an update available for you – if so, go ahead and download it.

For Android users:

Similar to iPhone, go to Settings > Software Update > Download and Install, to check for updates – if available, you’ll easily be able to download it here.

Update App

If the Messenger app you’re using has become outdated, there’s a good chance that this is causing the issue. If it is the case, you can go ahead and update the app.

For iPhone users

When you’re using your iPhone, you can go into the App Store and see all of the apps that you’ve purchased. You should be able to find the Messenger update, and if there’s an update ready to install, you’ll see that on the button next to it.

For Android users:

Android users can head into the Play store and you’ll see the Profile icon there. You can select Manage apps and devices to see a full list of the apps on your device.

Here, select the Updates Available button to find out whether there’s an update ready for your device to install.


Restart App

The next thing you should try if things aren’t working so far is restart your device – this is a common fix to a lot of app issues.

For Apple users:

Head to Settings > General > Background App Refresh.

Here, you’ll be able to see all of the apps that are running on the background of your device.

In this list, you’ll be able to see the Messenger app, where you’ll be able to disable the background activity.

After you’ve done this, you can open the app again.

For Android users:

Head to Settings > Apps.

Here, you can find the Facebook Messenger app and then click the Force Stop option in the bottom of your display.

After you’ve done this, simply go ahead and re-open the app.

Reinstall App

As a very last resort, you can try removing the app off of your device and then re-installing it again.

For Apple users:

You can find the Messenger app on your Home Screen – hold it down for a few seconds, and a short list of different options will appear for you to choose from. Here, select the Remove app option to get rid of the app from your device.


After you’ve done this, another set of options will pop up on your device. Here, you can select the Delete app option and it’ll be uninstalled.


After you’ve done this, you’ll get a final list of options with a Delete button you can press.


After you’ve done this, you can click into the app store and select your profile picture – you’ll see a list of the different apps you’ve downloaded. Find the Messenger icon here and re-install it.


For Android users:

Hold down the Messenger app icon to see the options appear on your device – you can select the uninstall option.


After doing this, you can select the OK option and confirm that you want to uninstall the app.


Finally, go to the play store store and search ‘messenger’ in the search bar. This should show the Facebook Messenger app as the first search result. Press the ‘install’ option to reinstall the app.


Contact Customer Support

If nothing you’ve tried already has worked, get in touch with Facebook Messenger’s customer support team. You can do this through either the app or website.

If you can access your app, open it and press on your profile picture. Then, press ‘report a problem’ to detail your issue to the support team.


If you can’t access the app, then go on Facebook Messenger’s website. Click on the three dots next to your profile picture to bring up a list of options. Then, click on ‘report a problem’.


A notice should then pop up. Click on ‘help us improve the new messenger’.


Finally, fill out the form to send your issue to the support team.



There are a couple of different reasons why the Messenger app isn’t working on your device. If Facebook’s servers are down, then there’s nothing you can do aside from wait for them to be back up – this will typically only take a day or so.

However in most cases, it’s down to either your device itself or your connection to the internet. Fix both of these and make sure they’re working correctly, and you should be able to use your phone as necessary – including the Messenger app.

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I love reading, writing, drawing, and other creative pursuits. I wish to travel more and do extreme activities, such as bungee-jumping and skydiving. I'm a casual gamer with an affinity for narrative-driven games and unique art styles. I like watching a variety of different media, but I particularly enjoy animations and musicals. My favourite genre, for both books and visual media, is psychological-thriller.

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