commas-leftDo you use WordPress? Are you one of those who has been experiencing some annoying WordPress errors and are having trouble fixing them? Is it a broken plugin, or a minor glitch in the code? Worry no more as I will be sharing with you 15 most common WordPress errors and solutions so you don’t have to worry with WordPress any more. commas-right

Undoubted, WordPress has the most user-friendly interface and flexibility compare to other platforms. Fixing most WordPress errors is not always difficult if you can find your way around them. However, before we go about fixing errors, it is imperative you take a backup to avoid any loss of data before you start making changes on your WordPress.

Alright, I believe you must have done that. So, here are 15 most common WordPress errors and their solutions.

1. ERROR ESTABLISHING A DATABASE CONNECTION

As a WordPress user, I am very sure that you are most probably familiar with this error. This error is just telling you that WordPress cannot connect to the site’s database. In case you don’t know what a database is; a database is where all your content is being saved by WordPress.

Generally, this may happen when your WordPress database path is incorrect or your database server is down. When there is no connection, it means your site is down.

Solutions :

    • Use the WordPress Repair Tool :

Right on your WordPress dashboard, you will see a message indicating that the database needs repair. You can use the WordPress repair tool suggested to fix it.

    • Contact your Hosting Provider :

If the above fix doesn’t work or you were not able to access your dashboard, kindly contact your hosting provider. They should be able to tell you if there is any issue with the server or not. The database may have shut down because of it reaching the maximum size assigned to it.

    • Check your wp-config.php :

If neither of the above solutions are working, then you need to check wp-config.php using File Manager from your Cpanel or by using FTP as this file holds data that was entered during installation. Check if your database name, username, password and server are correct. If not, then edit and correct them.

Following any of the above suggested solutions can correct this WordPress error.

2. 505 INTERNAL SERVER ERROR

This is another common WordPress error that developers must come across at least once. It is a very confusing error as it has no specific cause. It can be caused by an exhausted PHP memory limit, theme or plugins functions, or even corrupted .htaccess.

Solutions :

    • Deactivate Plugins :

Connect to your dashboard via FTP or File Manager and deactivate all your plugins. It might be a particular plugin that must be causing it. Refresh the site and check if the error is gone. If yes, then reactivate the plugins one after the other to find which particular plugin is causing it.

    • Increase the Memory Limit :

Since this is regarded as one of the cause, it is recommended that the PHP memory limit be increased. Edit your wp-config.php file via FTP adding the following line of code:
define( ‘WP_MEMORY_LIMIT’, ‘64’);
This increases your memory limit to 64M. You might need to contact your host before you do it as some host don’t allow it from your end.

    • Switch to a Default Theme :

Another solution to Internal Server Error is by replacing your current theme with the default WordPress theme. This can be done by accessing your wp-content/themes folder via FTP and renaming the folder.

3. WHITE SCREEN OF DEATH

This is straightforward as it only happens either when a script reaches the PHP memory limit or during a plugin or theme conflict. This can be very frustrating as the screen will just display a plain white screen with no error message.</p.

Solutions :

    • Increase the Memory Limit :

Follow the same step mentioned above to increase the memory size.

    • Deactivate all your Plugins :

Connect to your site via FTP and rename the wp-content/plugins folder to plugins_old to deactivate all your plugins.

    • Try the Debug Feature :

If you try any of the solutions mentioned above and the problem still persist (which might be impossible), insert this code into your wp-config.php file: define( ‘WP_DEBUG’, true);.
Using this feature will let you know the true cause of the error.

4. 404 NOT FOUND ON POSTS

This error can only happen as a result of a change in the permalinks without changing the links pointing at the original URL. It is very easy to fix though. It can also show if the file is missing i.e. if it has been deleted from your database.

Solutions:

  • Change link to Previous:

Login into your dashboard, go to settings, go to permalinks and go back to the kind of permalinks that have been searched for and save it.

  • Install Redirection Plugin:

This plugin can help you do the job. It just involves you inserting the old permalinks and pointing them towards the new ones.

5. MAINTENANCE MODE

This may happen when there is an interruption or an unfinished WordPress update. WordPress puts your site in maintenance mode if an update is interrupted. When an interruption occurs, you are locked out of your dashboard.

Solution:

  • Delete the File called. maintenance :

Connect to your site via FTP, locate a file called .maintenance in your site’s root directory and delete it. Once that is done, your site should be back to normal. Have it in mind that this file is usually hidden. You will need to click on ‘show hidden files’ to access the file.

6. IMAGE NOT UPLOADING

Many a times WordPress users suddenly observe that they cannot upload an image anymore and that images on their site are either broken or not displaying. When the user tries to upload the image, it shows an error. This commonly happens due to wrong file permissions.

Solutions :

Connect to your site via FTP and change the permission level to 744. You may also have to change it to 755 if the error still persists.

7. ALLOWED MEMORY SIZE

This error occurs when your plugin or script exhausts the default memory size. An indication could be the “white screen of death”. If you are on a shared cheap hosting, the default memory is not always enough to handle heavy plugins as the memory is limited.

Solutions :

    • Increase PHP memory size :

Whenever this happens, you will have to increase your PHP memory limit. Follow the step explained previously.

    • Deactivate Plugins :

Connect to your dashboard via FTP or File Manager and deactivate all your plugins. It might be a particular plugin that must be causing it. Refresh the site and check if the error is gone. If yes, reactivate plugins one after the other to see which of the plugin is consuming much space.

8. CONNECTION TIMED OUT

This error is very common in a shared hosting environment. Occurs when a shared server is overloaded and can’t connect your site to the internet. It means your server is experiencing heavy usage and can’t process your request. It has a similar solution like others.

Solutions :

    • Increase PHP memory size :

Follow any of the same step mentioned above to increase the memory size.

    • Deactivate Plugins :

Connect to your dashboard via FTP or File Manager and deactivate all your plugins. It might be a particular plugin that must be causing it. Refresh the site and check if the error is gone. If yes, then reactivate the plugins one after the other to see which of the plugin is causing this error.

9. LOCKED OUT OF WORDPRESS ADMIN

Sometimes you may forget your password or can’t remember the email you normally use to log into your WordPress site causing you to get locked out of the WordPress admin.

Solutions :

    • Reset your email and password via phpMyAdmin :

This can only be possible when you connect to your site via cpanel. Click on phpMyAdmin, locate the database that belongs to your site and reset the admin address.

10. LOGIN PAGE REFRESH

This error occurs when you try to log into your WordPress account and it redirects you back to the login page over and over again. This issue might be coming from the .htaccess file or incorrect value for site URL.

Solutions :

  • Delete the .htaccess file
  • Delete cookies on your computer.
  • Deactivate plugins via your site FTP
    Any of these three or a combination will help fix this WordPress error.

11. 403 FORBIDDEN ERROR

This is one annoying WordPress error that is mostly encountered by users that are new to WordPress. It only displaces when your permissions deny access to a specific page. It can be as a result of poorly configured security plugin.

Solutions :

    • Deactivate Plugins :

If the error is caused by a WordPress plugin, deactivate all your plugins. Refresh the site and check if the error is gone. If yes, then reactivate the plugins one after the other to see which of the plugin is creating this error.

    • Fix the corrupt .htaccess File :

This option is only useful if the error is caused by a corrupt .htaccess file. Fixing the file requires you to connect to your website via FTP. Locate the .htaccess file in the root folder. Download the file to your computer and delete it from your server.

    • Enable Index.php :

This option is for WordPress users who have their blog hosted on a Windows server. The error might possibly be coming from the Directory Indexes.
Go to your Cpanel, locate and click on Web Options. Go to Directory Indexes, add index.php to the Directory Indexes.

    • Contact Hosting Provider :

If after you have tried the above two options without success, then it may have been caused by file permissions. Kindly contact your hosting provider to help correct the file permissions.

12. CAN’T DELETE A PLUGIN

You tried deleting a plugin from your dashboard but it is still appearing. You even deleted the directory via FTP but it is still there. Don’t worry, here is the solution.

Solutions :

    • Delete Plugin via Secure Shell (SSH) :

If you have SSH access to your blog, log into your site via SSH and use it as a command to navigate “../wp-content/plugins/”. Locate the particular plugin and delete with rm (Folder name).

13. WORDPRESS SIDEBAR BELOW CONTENT

Your sidebar is supposed to appear at either the right or the left. But, when it now appears below your content, that is an error that needs to be addressed. It can be caused by too much div tags open or closed. When these <div></div> tags open or close in the wrong place, they completely disturb your site layout.

Solution :

  • Use HTML Validator to find where the problem is coming from and fix it.

14. PARSE OR SYNTAX ERROR

This is another common WordPress error that usually occurs when try to insert code snippets to your functions.php file. The message is telling you that there is an error in your code that needs to be corrected.

Solution :

  • Since the browser will show you the exact file with issue and the line where the parsing error occurs, connect to your site via FTP and remove the line of code.

15. FATAL ERROR

When you see a message like this on your browser “Fatal error: Call to undefined function get_header() in /example/site/wp-content/themes/yourtheme/index.php on line_14, understand that it is as a result of plugin conflict.

In most cases, the fatal error will always show you the problem and in which file. It is very easy to interpret the issue just by looking at it. The above example tells us that the fatal error was caused by a theme using a function hook.

Solution :

  • If you know how to code, you can check the file indicated and solve the problem.

Conclusion:

Sometimes the solution to most of these WordPress errors is just either increasing the PHP memory limit, deactivating and reactivating the plugins, deactivate current theme to default, or fixing corrupt .htaccess files.

Experiencing a WordPress error not shared in this post? Kindly drop it as a comment and we will help you solve it!

by Jaki Watson
I am Jaki Watson, working as a Web Development team lead at Perception System, San Jose, USA. I have served plenty of patrons in the USA for their varying WordPress design and development requirements. My developers are always busy fixing the most annoying and stubborn issues which then become food for the Perception Blog!

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