9 Ways To Fix YouTube Playback Error

If you’ve been getting “ Playback error. Tap to retry” error along with “ Playback ID on your YouTube video, it could be due to the Ad-blocker. Your video might have stopped while playing or didn’t play at all. 

Besides, if you encounter this error on your YouTube premium account, it could be due to unavailable membership in your region. However, you can fix the issue with minor tweaks on YouTube settings.

In this article, you can learn how to fix YouTube playback error issues on your device. 

What Causes Youtube Playback Errors?

Usually, the general cause for YouTube playback errors is internet lagging. But, there can be other reasons for it too. You can find it out below.

  • Ad-blocker
  • Restricted Mode On
  • Corrupted YouTube Cache
  • Streaming Limits on device
  • Expired premium membership
  • Geo-restricted Videos 
  • Not supported High-definition video format

How to Fix the Youtube Playback Error

You can first try restarting your YouTube app on your device. If there are minor glitches, it should solve them. Also, you can restart your device to resolve system freezing issues caused by excessive RAM usage. Then, try playing the video on YouTube. If the issue still persists, you can follow the given fixes. 

Check Your Internet Connection

Your Internet connection influences streaming quality on YouTube. Especially for HD videos, YouTube recommends a minimum speed of 5 Mbps for the seamless video streaming. So, you might get a playback error or video buffering error if your Wi-Fi connectivity is slow. 

You can try checking your Internet connection through an internet speed test. Connect your device to a strong Wi-Fi signal if your internet speed lags. You should be able to play the video. 

Remove Ad-blocker Apps and Extensions

If you are using an Ad-blocker on your YouTube, there are chances that it is leading to a playback error. Some sites on YouTube might play ads that can be misleading or intrusive.

There might be a conflicting error between YouTube and the Ad-blocker. Or, there might be viruses or bugs on extensions. So, you can disable or uninstall Ad-blocker to solve the issue. 

Change Video Quality 

Some devices or browsers might not support 4k or high-definition YouTube video format. So, you might encounter playback errors. Also, trying to play such high-quality video with a weak internet connection can lead to this error. In such case, you can try changing the Video Quality.

Follow the steps below to change the video quality:

On Mobile

  1. On your video, tap on the Gear icon (Settings) at the top of your screen
  2. From the menu, tap on Quality
  3. Choose either Auto or Data saver video quality
    Choose either Auto or Data saver video quality

On PC

  1. Click on the Settings at the bottom of your screen on your video.
  2. Then, go to Quality 
    Go to Quality
  3. From the list, choose a lower video quality than before

Disable Hardware Acceleration

Although Hardware Acceleration is extremely useful in functioning programs faster, it might cause lagging, crashing, or freezing issues occasionally. So, you might encounter playback errors while using YouTube on your browser. By default, it is enabled on browsers. So, you must disable it from the browser settings.

Follow theses steps to disable hardware acceleration on Google Chrome below:

  1. Click on the three Vertical dots, i.e., More icon at the top-right corner of your screen
  2. From the menu, select Settings > System
  3. On Use Hardware acceleration when available, switch the toggle left to turn it offdisable-hardware-acceleration1
  4. To refresh the changes, restart Chrome and try playing a YouTube video

Temporarily Disable Restricted Mode

If the restricted mode is enabled on your account, you might face a playback error on some videos. With this feature, you will have limitations on the YouTube experience. It will filter your videos all inappropriate videos. So, if you’ve enabled this feature, you can try turning it off temporarily and playing a video.

Follow the steps given below:

On Mobile

  1. On your YouTube app, tap on your Profile
  2. Go to Settings > General
  3. Find Restricted Mode and Switch the toggle left to turn it off
    YouTube turn off Restricted Mode

On PC

  1. On your YouTube account, navigate to your Profile at the top-right
  2. Then, Select Restricted Mode
  3. On Activate Restricted Mode, Switch the Toggle left to disable it 
    Disable restriction mode on PC

Change Your Region

You might’ve set your YouTube account to a different region. Some videos are geo-restricted. Thus, a “playback error” might appear on your screen if you are trying to play the video. You can change your region on your YouTube account to solve it.

Here’re the steps you need to follow:

On Mobile

  1. On the YouTube app, navigate to your Profile > Settings
  2. Tap on General > Location 
    Change Location on Mobile
  3. From the list, Select your Preferred Location 
  4. Restart the YouTube app to refresh changes

On PC

  1. From the top corner of the YouTube home screen, click on your Profile icon
  2. Then, click on the Location
    click on the Location
  3.  Select your Preferred Location 
  4. Restart YouTube

Clear YouTube Cache

Although cache data can help YouTube loading experience faster, it can be corrupt if you haven’t cleared it. Such a corrupted cache leads to video lagging and freezing issues. Thus, you will encounter a “playback error.” So, you can clear the YouTube cache to improve loading performance. Your video should play after clearing it. 

Try Using Incognito Mode

Sometimes your IP address might be blocklisted, which prevents you from accessing videos. So, you most likely encounter “Something went wrong. Tap to retry.” So, you can try playing the YouTube video in incognito mode. All your activities will be private and not saved in this mode. 

Follow the steps given below:

On Mobile

  1. At the top-right of the YouTube home screen, tap on your Profile
  2. Then, select Turn on Incognito Mode 
    Turn on Incognito mode on YouTube

On PC

  1. Open New Incognito Window on your browser
  2. Then, go to YouTube and start playing videos

Update YouTube

If you are still using an older version of YouTube, there might be a bug in YouTube that is causing an error loading your video. YouTube releases its new version update with fixed bugs, repairs, and improved performance. So, you can update the YouTube app regularly for a better experience. 

How to Fix YouTube Premium Playback Error?

Basically, you might encounter playback ID if your premium YouTube membership account has ended. So, firstly, you can try checking your membership account status. If it hasn’t expired, you can try the fixes mentioned below.  

Check if You Are Logged in to Your Premium Account

If you encounter a playback error watching downloaded videos on your YouTube premium, chances are you logged into your normal account. So, check if you are logged in to your premium account. You can try re-logging into your YouTube premium account. 

Close YouTube From Multiple Devices

Although premium users of YouTube can enjoy streaming on multiple devices simultaneously, it has limitations. You can stream maximum on two devices simultaneously for individual YouTube premium users. Similarly, you can stream five devices together on YouTube’s premium family plan. 

So, if you’ve reached the limitations, your video will pause, leading to a playback error. You can stop streaming YouTube from multiple devices. Then, try using it from only one device. You should be able to play videos. 

Check if Premium Membership is Available in Your Location

YouTube Premium memberships are not available in all countries. So, if you’ve just shifted the Location and tried to use YouTube premium, you will face a playback error. You can check if the premium membership is available in your current location.