If your Firestick or Fire TV has started freezing, crashing or buffering, clearing the cache can get it running smooth again. In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll explain what cache is, when to clear it, and walk through how to wipe cache on Firestick in just 3 quick steps.
After following these tips, you‘ll enjoy much faster load times, snappier navigation and fewer interruptions when streaming your favorite movies and shows. Let‘s do some spring cleaning!
What Exactly is the Cache on Firestick?
The cache is made up of temporary data files stored by apps on your Firestick. It acts like short-term memory – keeping certain info readily available so apps can load faster.
But over time, this cache data builds up and starts taking up valuable storage space. Once it gets too large, it can slow everything down.
Here‘s an overview of how the cache works:
– Types of cache data: partially downloaded files, thumbnails, advertising files, search history, app settings
– Where cache is stored: in the app-specific data folder on your Firestick‘s internal/external storage
– Why cache grows: it accumulates constantly as you stream shows, browse the web, use apps etc.
– Size of cache: ranges from megabytes up to a gigabyte or more for frequently used apps
If an app becomes sluggish or unresponsive, clearing its cache should be your first troubleshooting step. Let‘s look at when and why to do this…
Signs It‘s Time to Clear Cache on Your Firestick
Here are some signals from your Firestick that it‘s time to wipe the cache:
Apps are slow to launch or load content
Frequent freezing, crashing or lagging
Increased buffering during video streaming
Navigation seems delayed and sluggish
Low storage space warnings appear
General instability like remote not responding
Partially downloaded files stuck in limbo
As a rule of thumb, you should clear cache at least once a month – especially before major app updates. Or anytime your Firestick feels slow.
Now let‘s walk through the quick 3-step process…
Step 1) Access App Management
From your Firestick home screen:
- Select Settings
- Choose Applications
- Click Manage Installed Applications
This is the portal where you can view and manage all apps – both from the Amazon Appstore or sideloaded.
Step 2) Select the App to Clear
Browse the list of apps and select the one you want to clear cache for.
Some common problematic apps are web browsers, Kodi, streaming apps like Netflix or Hulu, and sideloaded apps.
But you can and should clear cache for any app showing issues loading or buffering. Over time, cache buildup slows down all apps.
For this example, I‘ll choose Downloader – a popular sideloading tool.
Step 3) Clear Cache
With your app selected, scroll down and choose Clear Cache. This instantly deletes all temporary data files.
You‘ll also see Clear Data – only use this if you want to fully reset the app including any stored logins or preferences.
That‘s all there is to it! The app will now launch fresh – loading the latest versions of all its data files and settings.
When NOT to Clear Cache on Firestick
Before blindly clearing cache across all apps, be aware it can cause issues in some cases:
Media center apps like Kodi will lose your library setup if you clear data. Only clear cache.
Shopping apps may forget your login details if you clear data. You‘ll have to sign in again.
Some game app progress or high scores may be wiped if you clear data.
Clearing browser cache will delete any saved passwords.
So inspect each app carefully before clearing cache and especially data. As a rule, only clear an app‘s data if it becomes totally unresponsive.
How Often Should You Clear Cache?
I recommend clearing cache for your most-used Firestick apps about once every 4 weeks. This prevents gradual performance degradation.
Plan to clear cache more frequently – around once a week – for apps like web browsers, on-demand streaming and Kodi that cache heavily.
And anytime an app starts misbehaving – freeze, crash or buffer excessively – begin troubleshooting by wiping its cache.
Complementary Ways to Optimize and Speed Up Firestick
Along with regular cache clearing, here are some other tips for keeping your Firestick running smoothly:
Force stop apps not in use to free up memory and processing power
Fully uninstall unused apps to increase storage space
Use an app like Firestick Booster to stop background processes automatically
Restart your Firestick weekly – this clears memory leaks over time
Check for and install system software updates for fixes and enhancements
If issues persist, reset your Firestick to factory defaults
For persistent hardware lag, consider upgrading to a newer generation Firestick
Proactively managing cache is just one piece of keeping your Firestick optimized. Combine it with other maintenance habits and you‘ll enjoy buttery-smooth streaming.
More Fire TV Tips and Tricks
Hopefully this guide gave you a good understanding of how to effectively clear cache and keep your Firestick performing well.
I‘m here to help make your streaming experience flawless! Here are some other useful tutorials on my blog:
- Fix Firestick Buffering: 10 Tips That Actually Work
- How to Expand Storage Space on Firestick
- Mirror Firestick to Your Computer or Mobile Device
Let me know if you have any other questions! Reach out in the comments below or contact me directly and I‘ll help troubleshoot.