How to Fix WhatsApp Notifications Not Working

Troubleshooting your messaging issues

The WhatsApp messaging app is a popular and cheap way to communicate with friends, family, and colleagues on Android smartphones, iPhones, and Windows devices but sometimes the app’s notifications stop working properly, forcing you to open the app to manually check if you’ve received any DMs.

How the WhatsApp Notification Errors Appear

WhatsApp notifications not popping looks like, well, WhatsApp notifications not popping. Sometimes chat messages will appear within the WhatsApp app without triggering a notification or alert and at other times a notification may not appear because the app isn’t receiving messages either.

A man checking notifications on his smartphone.
anyaberkut/istock/gettyimagesplus

The bugs that stop the notifications from being created can also result in no WhatsApp notifications on lock screens as well. This can happen on iPhone, Android, Windows, and on the web.

Cause of WhatsApp Notification Errors

If you find yourself asking, “How come my WhatsApp notification is not showing properly?” there may be several causes behind it. Sometimes the incorrect app settings or preferences may be selected while at other times some of your device’s permissions may have been disabled.

How to Fix Broken WhatsApp Notifications

There are a variety of solutions for when WhatsApp is not showing notifications properly. Here’s how to get your WhatsApp notifications and alerts working again on iPhone, Android, Windows, and the web.

  1. Turn off Airplane mode. All have an Airplane mode of some kind which turns off all internet connectivity and can prevent new WhatsApp messages from coming in and sending you a notification.

  2. Check that you’re online. If you’ve disabled your cellular and Wi-Fi connections, you won’t receive any WhatsApp notifications, calls, or chat messages. Connecting your iPhone or Android device to your Wi-Fi network will allow notifications to be delivered.

  3. Have you gotten any WhatsApp messages or calls? Remember that you’ll only get a WhatsApp notification when someone calls or messages you within the app. Ask a friend to send you some WhatsApp chat messages so you can see if there’s even a problem.

    It can be a good idea to ask someone to send you a WhatsApp message after you try each of these solutions so that you can see if they work.  

  4. Enable notifications within the WhatsApp app. Open WhatsApp and go to Settings > Notifications and make sure the notification preferences are turned on.

    A preference is turned on if the switch is green.

  5. Check your Do Not Disturb settings. All three can affect what kind of app notifications you receive, how they show up, and when you get them. Double-check to make sure this feature isn’t making your WhatsApp notifications silent.

  6. Turn off your Wi-Fi. While you may be connected to your Wi-Fi connection, the internet service could possibly be down. Turn off your Wi-Fi on your iPhone or Android smartphone and switch to your cellular network to see if that helps.

  7. Restart your device. Restarting your Windows laptop or computer, iPhone, or Android device can fix a load of problems.

  8. Install the latest operating system updates. As with restarting a device, installing the latest operating system updates can also often fix any bugs you’re experiencing.

  9. Update the WhatsApp app. Sometimes a new version of an operating system can cause certain app features to stop working properly and an app update can fix this by improving compatibility. Regardless of the operating system you are using, it’s always important to keep it up-to-date to get the latest features, fixes, and security updates.

  10. Is Low Power Mode turned on? Many devices have a feature that automatically deactivates background app activity and notifications when the battery power runs low. Check to make sure that this hasn’t been activated accidentally.

  11. Check the iOS and Android WhatsApp Notification settings. Go to Settings > WhatsApp > Notifications on iPhone or Application manager > WhatsApp > Notifications on Android and make sure that all of the appropriate notification settings are switched on. 

  12. Enable background activity. Go to Settings > WhatsApp on iPhone and check that Background App Refresh and Mobile Data is enabled. On Android, open Application manager > WhatsApp > Data usage and ensure that Restrict background data is unchecked. 

  13. Log out on other devices. It’s possible you might actually be getting WhatsApp notifications on another device if you’re logged in in multiple places. Log out of all of your WhatsApp apps on mobiles, tablets, and computers and then re-log in on just one.

    Don’t forget to log out on the web version of WhatsApp if you’ve logged in on a web browser to access your account.

  14. Turn on desktop notifications. If you’re using the web version of WhatsApp, you’ll need to turn on notifications by clicking on the prompt in the web browser once you connect your account.

If you’re not seeing the prompt, it’s likely that your browser doesn’t support desktop notifications. Try using one that does such as Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome.

You can also check desktop notification settings for any website in Edge by going to Settings > Advanced > Manage permissions and tapping on the website name. The process is similar in other browsers.