How to Fix Firefox Not Loading Pages

Are you unable to open websites in Firefox? Here’s what to try if you’re having issues with Firefox not loading pages.

There are so many browsers to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. Chrome is still the most popular choice, but it has issues with privacy and hogging resources. If you’re not a fan of Safari or Edge, you may use Firefox across your devices; the browser is still one of the most popular browsers out there.

Firefox has a lot going for it, including great performance and a focus on privacy and security. Sometimes, as with any browser, things may not work as expected. You may find that websites aren’t loading when using Firefox. Don’t panic; if this is happening to you, then here are some things to try if you’re having problems with Firefox not loading pages.

Try Another Browser

The first thing you should try if Firefox isn’t loading pages is opening those same pages in another browser. If you’re able to open the page in a different browser, but not in Firefox, then you know that the issue is with Firefox. However, if you’re unable to open the same webpage in any browser, then there’s either an issue with the website itself, or there’s an issue with your network connection. Try opening other websites to determine whether you can access any online content at all; if you can’t, you’ll need to take a look at fixing your internet connection.

Restart Firefox

If this issue is only with Firefox, a quick and easy thing to try is restarting Firefox. You may find that simply restarting the app is enough to get things working as normal again. On mobile, you can simply close the app, launch it again, and then try reloading the page. On the desktop, you can use the profile management page to quickly restart the application.

  1. In the Firefox address bar, type about:profiles.
    firefox about profiles
  2. On the Profiles page, click the Restart Normally button.
    firefox restart normally
  3. Firefox will restart.
  4. Once the app has restarted, try opening the page again.

Restart with Add-ons Disabled

Firefox add-ons allow you to add useful additional functions and features to Firefox. However, some of these add-ons may cause issues that stop Firefox from loading the page correctly. You can try restarting Firefox with add-ons disabled; if pages then load correctly, you’ll need to try and track down which add-on is causing the problem.

  1. In the address bar, type about:profiles.
    firefox about profiles
  2. Click the Restart with Add-ons Disabled button.
    firefox restart with add-ons disabled
  3. You’ll see a message asking if you want to open Firefox in Troubleshoot Mode.
  4. Click Open to start Firefox with the add-ons disabled.
    firefox open
  5. Try loading a page.
  6. If the page still doesn’t load, follow the steps in the section above to restart Firefox normally, and try one of the other fixes below.
  7. If the page does load, follow the instructions below to enable one add-on at a time until you find the add-on that is causing the issues.

Enable Add-ons One at a Time

If pages load when Firefox is running with add-ons disabled, then one of the add-ons is the cause of your problem. You can enable each add-on in turn and then try loading the page again until you find which add-on is causing the problem. You can then leave this add-on disabled and turn all the others back on again.

  1. Click the Three Bars menu in the top-right of the screen.
    firefox three bars
  2. Select Add-ons and Themes.
    firefox add on menu
  3. In the left-hand menu, select Extensions.
    firefox extensions menu
  4. Use the toggle switches to disable all but one of your add-ons.
    firefox toggle extensions
  5. Try loading a page.
  6. If it loads, enable a different extension.
  7. Repeat until the page no longer loads. The extension you currently have enabled is the add-on causing the issue. Disable this add-on and enable the rest and you should find that your pages load in Firefox once more.

Check the Enhanced Tracking Protection

Firefox is a browser designed to protect your privacy. As such, it includes tracking protection which blocks many of the trackers that are used by companies to track your browsing habits. If you visit a unicorn saddle website, for example, you may find you see lots of ads for unicorn saddles popping up on websites; this is thanks to trackers. Firefox blocks trackers, but if the settings are too strict, it can stop some websites from working.

  1. Click the Three Bars menu at the top-right of the Firefox screen.
    firefox three bars
  2. Select Settings.
    firefox settings
  3. In the left-hand menu, select Privacy and Security.
    firefox privacy and security menu
  4. Ensure that Enhanced Tracking Protection is set to Standard rather than Strict.
    firefox standard tracking protection
  5. See if the page loads.

Turn Off Enhanced Tracking Protection for a Specific Site

If there’s only one specific site that isn’t loading, it may be that even the standard tracking protection settings are causing an issue. If this is the case, you can completely turn off enhanced tracking protection for that specific website. All other sites you visit will still use enhanced tracking protection.

  1. Open the site that you want to turn off tracking protection for.
  2. In the address bar, click the Shield icon.
    firefox shield icon
  3. Toggle Enhanced Tracking Protection off.
    firefox tracking off
  4. Try loading the page again to see if this has fixed the issue.

Configure Your Internet Security Applications

If a page doesn’t load in Firefox, this may be caused by the internet security app that you’re using to protect your computer from malware. These apps are intended to block malicious websites and other attacks, but they can sometimes mistakenly block legitimate sites, too. Ensure that your internet security apps are up to date. If Firefox isn’t listed as a trusted application, add it, by following the instructions for your specific app. If Firefox is already listed as trusted, try removing it and adding it again to see if this fixes your problems.

Disable DNS Prefetching

When you click on a link on a website, some DNS magic happens in the background that translates the web address in the link into the IP address that your computer will use to connect to the location of the page. All of this happens quickly, but it still takes a little time. DNS prefetching works by doing all of this magic for all of the links on a page while you’re reading the page. It means that if you decide to click a link, your browser already knows the IP address it needs, and can load the linked page faster.

Sometimes, however, DNS prefetching can cause issues; disabling DNS prefetching in Firefox may fix problems with Firefox not loading pages. However, this requires making changes to internal Firefox settings, so you should only do so with care and at your own risk.

  1. In the address bar, type about:config.
    firefox config settings
  2. If you’re willing to proceed, click Accept the Risk and Continue.
    firefox accept the risk
  3. In the Search Preference Name field at the top of the screen, type dns.disablePrefetch.
    firefox search preference name
  4. Click the Toggle button for network.dns.disablePrefetch to change the setting to True.
    firefox dns toggle
  5. DNS prefetch is now disabled; try reloading the page again.

Clear the Cache

If you’re still having trouble loading pages in Firefox, you can try clearing the cookies and cache to see if this resolves your issues.

  1. Click the Three Bars icon in the top-right.
    firefox three bars
  2. Select History.
    firefox history menu
  3. Click Clear Recent History.
    firefox clear history
  4. Select Browsing & Download History, Cookies, and Cache and set the Time Range to Clear to Today.
    firefox clear now
  5. Click Clear Now to clear the cache and try opening the page again.

Refresh Firefox

If nothing else works, you can try refreshing Firefox. This will remove any customizations you’ve set up and will also delete any add-ons you may have installed. However, your bookmarks and saved passwords will remain.

  1. Click the Three Bars icon in the top right of Firefox.
    firefox three bars
  2. Select Help.
    firefox help menu
  3. Click More Troubleshooting Information.
    firefox more troubleshooting information
  4. To the right of the screen, click the Refresh Firefox button.
    firefox refresh
  5. To confirm your decision, click Refresh Firefox.
    firefox not loading pages featured image
  6. Once Firefox has refreshed, try loading the page again.

Fixing Firefox Not Loading Pages

There are several possible reasons why you may be having problems with Firefox not loading pages. Make sure to narrow down the problem to Firefox rather than a problem with your internet, and then work your way through the suggestions above to see if you can something that works. It’s best to try other methods first before you start changing internal settings such as DNS prefetching.

If you find any other useful fixes, please let us know in the comments.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


To Top