What to do if your WordPress website crashes in Chrome, Opera or Firefox

A couple of weeks ago I got a message from a visitor that our WordPress website crashes in Chrome.

I immediately tested it in all browsers.

Our site worked fine in Internet Explorer and Safari, but would crash in Chrome, Opera and Firefox.

This is how the crashed site looked in Opera:

WordPress website crashes in Chrome, Opera and Firefox

It would load for a second and then disappear leaving you in front of a blank screen.

The first thing you should do if your WordPress website crashes in Chrome, Opera, Firefox or any other browser is disable JavaScript.

How to disable JS in Chrome:

  • Open a new tab in Chrome
  • Click on Customize and Control Google Chrome button
  • Then click on Settings
  • Scroll down and then click on Show advanced Settings link

Disable Javascript in Chrome

  • Then click on Content settings
  • In JavaScript section select Do not allow any site to run JavaScript
  • And click Done

Load your WordPress website with Javascript disabled

Reload your WordPress site with JavaScript disabled.

If it loads then the problem is caused by a JavaScript conflict.

Follow the steps below to identify what causes the problem and fix it.

If you site does not load with JavaScript disabled then try steps one and three (disabling all plugins and changing your WordPress theme).

On our site disabling the JavaScript did not help.

However, step three (activating another theme) helped to fix the issue.

Step one: Disable and reactivate all plugins one by one to see if this solves the problem

Deactivate all plugins in WordPress dashboard

In your WordPress dashboard

  • go to Plugins tab
  • deactivate all plugins
  • load your site
  • if it loads then one of your plugins causes the problem
  • reactivate all plugins one by one and identify the one which crashes your site
  • keep the problem plugin disabled and inform the plugin developer about the problem

If you have deactivated all plugins and your site still crashes in Chrome then the problem is hidden somewhere else.

Reactivate all your plugins and move on to the next step.

Step two: Remove all JavaScript links in the header.php and disable JavaScript enqueued in the functions.php

JavaScript can either be loaded via header.php or enqueued in functions.php.

Enqueueing JavaScript in functions.php is the prefered way, you can read more about it in WordPress codex.

If you have no idea how it is done on your site then check both files.

I assume you have downloaded your site via FTP to your local machine (check this article how to create a new FTP user).

Open your text editor.

We use Aptana Studio 3.

It’s easy to use and it is free.

Open the root folder of your site.

Go to wp-content > themes > your theme > header.php and open it.

In your text editor open the header php file

If you see JavaScript files in the header.php, disable them.

Here are 2 example JavaScript files in the header:

Two JavaScript files in the header

The easiest way to disable JavaScript loading is to put it inside of a comment   <!–  –>

I’ve put the two JS files inside of a comment, here is how it looks:

Put JavaScript inside of a comment

Save and upload your header.php to the server.

Check also if you have any JS files enqueued in your functions.php.

In your text editor go to wp-content > themes > your theme > functions.php and open it.

Open your functions php in the text editor

This functions.php file has two JavaScript files enqueued.

JavaScript files enqueued in the functions

Put two slashes // in front of each file to disable it.

Like in this example:

Disable JS in functionsSave the functions.php file and upload it to the server.

After the JavaScript is disabled in the header.php and functions.php, reload your site.

If your WordPress website crashes in Chrome or any other browser, move on the the step number three.

But before you proceed remove comments in the header.php and functions.php files, save them, and re-upload to the server.

Step three: Activate one of the default WordPress themes instead of the theme you currently use

In your WordPress dashboard go to Appearance > Themes.

In your WordPress dashboard go to Appearance themes

And activate one of the default WordPress themes.

The default WordPress themes are Twenty fifteen, Twenty fourteen, Twenty thirteen etc.

They come preloaded when you install WordPress.

Activate a default WordPress theme to stop your site crashing on Firefox, Chrome or Opera

After you have activated a default theme reload your WordPress site in Chrome or another browser where it crashes.

Our site would load without problems when Twenty fifteen was active.

But when our theme was active, our WordPress site would crash.

We wrote a message to the theme developer.

The developer has quickly fixed the issue.

Guys, if you know of any other way how a WordPress site can be fixed when it crashes, please, write a comment or send us a message.

If your WordPress website crashes in Chrome, Opera or Firefox and you need help, please, contact us. We will fix your site.

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