Alexa devices are used by people all over the world to figure things out at the drop of a voice request to include the current time, weather, sports updates, and breaking news. Those who rely on Alexa to wake them up in the morning or get them to an urgent appointment know how daunting it is (or could be) when the device’s voice suddenly stops responding.
If your Alexa device has become unresponsive, an error with the Internet connection or clear use of language is likely. Your Alexa device will not work right if the wrong plugs are being used, updates have not been done, or there is too much noise. Make sure your device is in an uncrowded space and has a strong network connection.
It is not uncommon for everyday Alexa device users to encounter a minor default every now and then. So what do you do when your Alexa device has stopped responding to your commands and you do not know how to handle it? The information provided here will assist you with that.
Your Alexa device could be malfunctioning due to a number of reasons, but some likely errors are listed below and should be checked first to avoid wasting time:
- Ensure the correct power adapter is being used
- Make sure your internet connection is stable
- Verify the device is not set to ‘mute’
If the light is red, the mute feature has probably been activated.
- Press the device’s action button to see if it stimulates Alexa’s response
- Remove the device from areas with background noise, other speakers and devices, or small spaces
- Speak in a neutral, clear tone
- Say the statement or question you are asking differently
[i.e., if you said ‘weather in Baltimore,’ try saying this instead ‘Alexa, what is the weather in Baltimore, Maryland right now?’]
- Ask Alexa if she heard you
- Unplug the device then plug it back in
If none of the resolutions listed above fixed your issue, you may need to try some additional repair methods.
Ensuring your cable connections are set up the right way could be the main way to correct Alexa’s unresponsiveness. When purchasing an Amazon device that requires connectable cables, those wires come with the product and are designed to specifically accommodate that exact device.
If you are attempting to charge or connect your Alexa device with cables that did not come with the product, they may actually not be compatible with it. If the cables are not suitable for the device, then this could very well cause not only charging issues but voice response defects as well.
In cases where you are possibly using cable connections that were not provided with your Alexa device, try switching them out for the ones that do belong to the item.
In the same way that your Echo device must be in an area that is not too loud or extremely crowded, it should be as close to the router as possible. If the distance between your device and the router is too great, the network needed for the Echo’s services will not be able to function properly.
Location matters when it comes to your Echo device because it does not operate on its own and needs a valid connection in order to work. The router should be seen as an essential component to your Alexa devices.
Your Alexa device runs on internet connectivity, so if your Wi-Fi password was entered incorrectly, it would have a negative impact. It is important that you double check your Wi-Fi connection because if there is a related error, it could indicate that is where the problem is stemming from.
Check to see if your Wi-Fi is active:
- If you open your network settings and discover the connection is not there, that is an obvious sign of the issue. Find the network that belongs to you and enter your password. A green ‘connection’ phrase will appear if your password was entered accurately.
- If the connection does appear to be active, still click the connected network and select the ‘disconnect’ option. Once that is done, click on your network and re-enter the password. Sometimes a simple reconnection will quickly fix the issue, or potentially lead to recognizing a larger issue.
As with any electronically run device, updates are a natural part of maintaining the health of the Alexa device’s system as a whole. Typically, you would be able to request updates to your Alexa device by just saying to her ‘check for software updates,’ per Amazon support. However, it may be challenging to complete the update this way when unresponsiveness is the issue at hand. (But you can try this first to see if it works)!
Amazon provides an alternative to speaking to your device in order to perform updates; after opening your app, logging into your account, or finding your device’s setting elsewhere, you are able to check for software updates.
You can download the app not only on a phone or tablet but also via an Internet browser such as Firefox or Chrome. Once you find the most relevant updates, further instructions will follow.
If you are familiar with apps and how they work, then you know that they require periodic updates and sometimes this requires taking the action of uninstalling the whole app, then reinstalling it. This provides a needed tune-up and will prompt the Alexa app to act as if it and your account were brand new.
Once you remove the app from whatever device you have it on, you should be able to smoothly download it again and still have your prior information appear in your account. The Alexa App is available in most or all application stores.
Popular software corporations that allow and make a way for app downloads employ members who can help you successfully complete your mission. For example, Microsoft has a platform where you can type your questions regarding reinstalling an Alexa app, and independent advisors will respond with answers. You can exchange messages until your need is accomplished.
Restarting your Alexa device could be the small solution to what seemed like a complicated issue before. To restart your device, you may need to do one or more of the following:
- Unplug the device and plug it back in
- Remove the battery, then replace it
- Press and hold the power/application button for 10-20 seconds
- If you have an Echo with a small hole in the middle of the bottom of the device, press a paper clip or other item that is the right size in the hole. (This is a reset button).
Since there are so many variations in Alexa devices, the restart method may differ. Amazon offers a help forum which will enable you to select your device and review common questions about it or ask your own.
Factory reset procedures will vary depending on which device you have, but it seems that the easiest way to do so is by utilizing the app. When you access your app settings and locate the reset options, there should be specific language allowing you to select ‘factory reset.’
It is important to keep in mind this will not be your first go-to solution because factory resets often erase everything that is important to you, by literally resetting the device to its original factory settings. Factory resets will definitely remove all content you downloaded before, along with any app purchases that were made.
Restarting the router could resolve the issue posed by an unresponsive Alexa. Similar to refreshin the network connection, restarting the actual device, or unplugging and replugging the cable, a router restart might be favorable.
When you restart a router, it can benefit your device in many ways to include:
- Renewing connectivity settings
- Improving speed
- Stopping any malware from infecting it
- Disconnecting other devices
So, How Do You Fix Alexa Not Responding?
With all of the different ways to work toward fixing your unresponsive Alexa device, you should know the quickest and most simple tasks should be tried first. Checking mute buttons, password accuracy, Internet connectivity, the format of questions to Alexa, cables, and positioning of the device are all good starting points.
If none of that works, move to the online forums. That’s exactly what I did when I had issues with my Alexa flashing a green ring. A ton of useful information can be found via Amazon’s help and support pages, which link to other helpful content.