Why Are Videos Not Playing on My Laptop?

Coming home after a long day at work, all you need is plentiful rest and some entertainment. For this, you prepare a scrumptious meal for yourself and grab your laptop to watch your favorite movie or TV show.

Is the video not working? Press the play button again. Is the video still not playing? Well, there could be several reasons for it such as, you have an outdated Windows OS version or your system is overloaded with heavier programs.

So, how do you determine the root cause of this issue and what are the solutions to deal with it? First of all, we recommend you calm down since it is not a very big of an issue. You can encounter such a scenario even when you have the latest Windows OS or a high spec laptop.

But, there is a lot more that could happen and trigger this malfunction. To find out how to pinpoint the trouble and its easy fixes, we urge you to read this article till the end.

How to Know if There Is an Error in Video Playback?

If you encounter any of the following video playback errors, it is a clear sign that your laptop cannot play the videos and therefore, requires an immediate fix.

  • Slugging and slow video playback
  • Corruption or distortion in video
  • Smeared or blur video quality
  • Nothing more than a black display
  • Freezes and crashes
  • Distorted sound

Two Possible Cases of Video Errors in Laptops

The most widely occurred cases where the videos are not played on laptops could be any of the two mentioned below. Before you pick any solution, make sure to determine which one is the case with your laptop.

  1. Laptop fails to play videos

You might have downloaded a movie or TV show episodes to watch in your spare time but your laptop has other ideas. Does it simply say no to play these videos? Don’t stress out, this is a very common situation that has an easy solution.

Now, there could be a variety of possible reasons that can trigger this issue so, it is important to first figure out which one is the main cause in your case. The most common reasons include:

  • An incapable or low spec laptop
  • Outdate media player that cannot support your desired file type
  • The laptop lacks correct and required codecs for video support
  1. YouTube videos are not playing

If your laptop is playing videos finely but, YouTube fails to do so, know that there is nothing wrong with your laptop but with the application itself. Also, in this situation, the reasons are a handful but entirely different than what is discussed above. For example:

  • There is an issue with your browser
  • You have a problematic internet connection

How to Fix Video Playback Errors in Laptops – Effective Ways

No matter whichever your case is from the two mentioned above, there are very simple solutions for it. The best thing about these solutions is that you don’t have to take them to a tech expert to fix them. Also, these are very quick and can be performed quickly so that you can enjoy your videos without wasting your precious time.

Below we have categorized the solutions for both the aforementioned scenarios so, determine yours and jump to it directly.

When laptop fails to play videos – Solutions

  1. Update or install the media player

Since it could possibly be the reason why your laptop isn’t playing videos, it is better to simply update your media player. If it is already up-to-date, there must be an issue with the supported file format so, try installing a new media player that can support your video file format.

  1. Update the video drivers

Sometimes, your laptop has everything required to run the videos smoothly but, the video drivers aren’t. Even if you have the best display drivers, those can get outdated or corrupter. This is why it is better to update your drivers and play videos.

  1. Install correct and required set of codecs

As mentioned earlier, an incorrect set of codecs can be a major reason why the videos won’t play on your laptop. There is not a direct way to figure out if the pre-existing set of codecs is damaged or corrupted hence, it is always a good idea to install a new yet proper set to fix the issue.

  1. Install new Plug-ins

Plug-ins play a significant role in playing the video regardless of the media players you use and therefore, it is important to have updated plug-ins. If you have the default Windows Media Player, the following steps show you how to install new plug-ins for it:

  • Open the Windows Media Player.

  • Go to the Main Menu & click on Options.

  • Select Plug-ins.

  • From the left side of your screen, click on the required plug-ins.
  • You will see plug-ins appeared on the right side of your screen.
  • From here, you can choose your preferred ones, remove any or even add new ones.
  1. Update your system

If nothing works, the last resort will be upgrading your system because an outdated system fails to perform even the basic tasks until its updated.

When YouTube videos aren’t playing – Solutions

If YouTube is not being able to play videos, try out the following ways and get it back to work in no time:

  • Make sure you have a stable internet connection.
  • Reload the YouTube page.
  • Turn off every browser extension for malware prevention and try playing videos on YouTube.
  • Clear all the cookies and caches.
  • Check for an update for your browser.

Final words

No matter if you are playing videos online or offline, playback errors are very usual and can occur at any point. What matters is that you have ample knowledge regarding the issue and can fix it without panicking.

We hope that this article proved to be a helpful guide in dealing with the video playback issues on your laptop.