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How to restart WhatsApp to solve crashing problems on iPhone and Android

In this article I’ll explain how to restart the WhatsApp app to solve problems of malfunction.

Restart WhatsApp

You are using WhatsApp on your smartphone and you have noticed that there are abnormalities in the app’s operation.

You tried to switch between apps, but when you go back to your device’s home screen and then get back into the app, the problem persists.

So you’re thinking of taking more “drastic” measures, such as restarting the application by closing it completely and then launching it again, but you don’t know how to restart WhatsApp.

Things happen like this, don’t they? Then you don’t have to worry at all, because I can help you easily achieve your goal.

I’m Frankie Caruso (apps tester and technology expert) and in today’s guide, I will actually show you how to do this on both Android and iPhone.

I’ll explain in detail how to do the forced closure of the app or alternatively, the steps you have to follow to fully restart the device.

If the problems persist, I’ll explain how to completely reinstall WhatsApp safely, without you losing your data.

I can bet you were intrigued by my introduction, weren’t you? Then what are you waiting for? Let’s not waste any more precious time!

What you need to do is comfortably sit down and pay close attention to the tips you’ll find in the next chapters.

All I can do is wish you a good reading!

How to restart WhatsApp on Android

In case you need to restart WhatsApp on your Android smartphone, follow the steps below: in the next sections I will explain some solutions that you can use.

Execute forced closure

Multitasking App in Android-Phone

If you are experiencing malfunctions with WhatsApp, you can restart the app directly from the multitasking section of your device.

The procedure you will have to follow is very simple: first, to access the multitasking section, press the icon below (it is shaped like a square or two overlapping rectangles or three vertical lines in Samsung, depending on your Android device model).

By pressing this button, you can see all the running background app sessions on your device.

Now, if you want to close all apps, press the trash icon or the one with the rectangles at the bottom.

Alternatively, scroll through the open apps until you find WhatsApps, then swipe up on its image preview or press the X icon to close it.

This method can be useful for closing an app that is currently running, but in some cases is not sufficient.

You must, therefore, completely close the operation to restore its proper functioning.

To do this, follow these steps:
  1. launch the Settings app, whose clickable icon is located on the home screen
  2. select the App > App > WhatsApp options from the next screen, which will take you to the WhatsApp application tab with all the information about permissions and memory usage.
  3. Before forcibly closing the app, click on Memory and press the Clear Cache button to clear the app of any corrupted data that could cause it to malfunction.
  4. Now, go back to the previous screen, press the Finish button twice in a row and you’re done. Now you can reopen WhatsApp normally, using its icon on the home screen.

Restarting your smartphone

How to restart Android Phone

If the WhatsApp app is still not working properly, the problem may be with some Android features, such as a software error in the network module or some other operating system service.

In these cases, the easiest solution is to soft reset your smartphone (or tablet), i.e. restart it. This operation is possible by holding down the side switch-off button and selecting the specific Restart option on the screen.

If this option is not available, press and hold the side power off button and choose the Power off option, which is shown on the screen.

As soon as your smartphone turns off, press and hold the side power button again to turn on your device.

You can now launch WhatsApp again by using the WhatsApp icon on the home screen.


Frankie’s Take:

This technique usually fixes 95% of WhatsApp issues. However, it may not be enough.

Reinstalling WhatsApp

If the advice I gave you in the previous sections didn’t help you to restart WhatsApp, because there are still some anomalies in its operation, then the best solution might be to reinstall the app.

I would like to warn you that with this procedure you may lose your WhatsApp conversations, images or videos sent and received. To avoid this, it is important that you first make a backup in advance, which you will then restore after reinstalling the WhatsApp app.

After backing up, uninstall the app by pressing and holding your finger on its home screen icon, choose Uninstall option in the pane that is shown and then press OK. On some Android smartphones, however, you need to drag the app icon to the Uninstall tab at the top of the screen.

Now, reinstall the app from the Android Play Store using this link, by pressing the Install button. If you want to know more about reinstalling WhatsApp, I suggest you read this guide.


Frankie’s Take:

This method is extreme but fixes 99% of the problems. Although I might sound repetitive, remember to backup your chats before uninstall WhatsApp, otherwise you will lose all your conversations, photos, files, videos, etc.

How to restart WhatsApp on iPhone

Restart WhatsApp iPhone

If you have an iPhone and you want to restart the WhatsApp app, maybe because you noticed it is malfunctioning, what you need to do is read the following sections carefully, as I will give you some tips that will surely be useful to you.

Execute forced closure


Execute forced closure WhatsApp

To restart the WhatsApp app, you can try forcefully close by using the iOS multitasking app screen.

To access this panel, if you’re using iPhone X or newer, go to the Home screen of your phone and swipe from the bottom to the top at the bottom edge of the display, then gently hover in the middle.

On previous iPhone models, press the Home button twice.

After that, scroll through the apps with side swipes until you find a preview of WhatsApp. Now, swipe upwards over the preview to forcefully close it.


Frankie’s Take:

This is the simplest method but often it is not enough to solve the problem. However I suggest you give it a shot.

Restarting your iPhone

reboot iPhone

If you haven’t solved the problem using the procedure described in the previous section, I recommend that you restart your iPhone.

If you have an iPhone X or newer model, press and hold the side key and one of the volume keys at the same time.

This will show you a screen for turning off your device. Then swipe over the power-off label.

On older iPhone models, press and hold the side Standby button until you see the display to turn off the device.

Also in this case, to complete the operation, make a lateral swipe on the label Scroll to turn off.

Now, to turn on your iPhone again, press and hold the side button until you see the Apple logo in the middle of the screen. On the Home screen, tap the WhatsApp icon to restart the app.


Frankie’s Take:

Often restart the iPhone solves WhatsApp problems (at least in 95% of cases). If you do not solve it then try reinstalling WhatsApp. I will tell you about it in the next paragraph.

Reinstalling WhatsApp

However, in spite of what I have told you in the previous sections, if you have not succeeded in resolving the WhatsApp problem by restarting the app or device, the best solution is to uninstall the app and then reinstall it.

To do this, follow these steps:
  1. The first thing I recommend you do is back up your conversations so you can be sure you won’t lose any data.
  2. Now uninstall the app via the iOS Settings panel.
  3. Start the latter by using the gear icon on the home screen and select General > iPhone Free Space > WhatsApp.
  4. Once this is done, select the Delete app option twice in a row on the screen that appears, so that you can uninstall all the app data.

To re-install the app, go to the App Store via this link, press the cloud button and unlock the download and installation with your Face ID, Touch ID or iCloud account password.

After that, launch the WhatsApp app via its home screen icon to use it again.

If you have any questions about any of the steps in the process I have explained above, please refer to guide on how to reinstall WhatsApp.


Frankie’s Take:

This technique fixes 99% of WhatsApp’s crash problems. Important: Make backups of your chats before uninstalling WhatsApp or you will lose them.

How to restart WhatsApp on your PC

If you are experiencing problems with the WhatsApp desktop client for Windows and macOS, which I have mentioned in this guide of mine, you can proceed with the forced closure of the operation through the appropriate panels available in these operating systems.

On Windows, open the Task Manager, using the key combination of Ctrl + Shift + Esc.

On the screen that appears, locate the WhatsApp process and right-click on it.

In the pane that appears, choose the Stop Task option to force it to close.

On macOS, try closing the application normally by pressing the cmd+q combination on your keyboard and then restarting it. If this doesn’t work, you can use the Force Application Closure panel, which is displayed when you press the cmd+alt+esc key combination.

Now, all you have to do is select WhatsApp from the list of running programs and press the Force Close option to close the process.



Do I risk losing my chats by following these procedures?

NO. You risk it only if you uninstall and reinstall WhatsApp, but as I suggested in the guide I suggest you to back up all your chats before doing so.

If you need more information watch this video:


How to restore WhatsApp backup from Google Drive or from iCloud?

Great question!

Let me explain it to you straight away.

If you have an Android smartphone proceed as follows: uninstall and reinstall WhatsApp > Open WhatsApp and verify your number by entering the code that will be sent to you via SMS > When prompted, tap RESTORE to restore your chats and media from Google Drive > Once the restore process is complete, click Next.

If you have an iPhone follow these steps: uninstall and reinstall WhatsApp > Open WhatsApp e verify your phone number > follow the prompts to restore your chat history.


This is the end of this guide.

So far it helped a lot of people, I hope it has been helpful to you as well. Supporting you with instant messaging apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, etc. is very satisfying.

But back to us…

Before we say goodbye I would like to give you a brief recap of what has been said, just to make sure that you have not missed anything.

In the first part of the guide I showed you how to restart WhatsApp on Android and on iPhone. Specifically there are three ways:

  1. Execute forced closure (very simple but does not always work)
  2. Restarting your smartphone (very simple and works especially if you have an older mobile phone)
  3. Reinstalling WhatsApp (a trickier method, but it fixes the problem most of the time.)

Whatever method you prefer, I advise you to always back up your chats!

In the second part of the guide I showed you how to restart WhatsApp on your PC Windows or Mac.

Finally I answered some of the questions I was asked the most about this topic.

If you still have questions or doubts please do not hesitate to leave a comment below and I will reply as soon as possible.

A really bug hug,

PS – I have collected more than 40 tricks for WhatsApp within this guide. I’m sure you’ll be blown away when you will discover some hidden features!

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About Frankie Caruso

I'm Frankie Caruso. I'm a professional amateur in that ugly business of social media, instant messaging apps and computer security. I help all those frustrated people who call themselves digital illiterates to understand something about this confusing digital world.

2 thoughts on “How to restart WhatsApp to solve crashing problems on iPhone and Android”

  1. Hi frankie Ben here in ireland,
    Just changed phones from an Acatel to samsung galaxy, put sim and SD into new phone..everything fine but for one contact on my whatapp, texting is fine, but when they send a video it wont download, all of the other contacts working fine, videos, text, media,
    Except this one contact,
    Best Regards: Ben.

    • Hi Bernard and welcome to my blog.
      Probably there is a bug, try WhatsApp Business and see if it keeps giving you the same problem. let me know.


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