ExpressVPN Not Working – 11 Troubleshooting Tips for Noobs
ExpressVPN may not work properly from time to time, but it shouldn't be too much of a hassle to fix with these 11 troubleshooting tips below.
ExpressVPN is a highly-rated premium VPN brand with a huge base of loyal customers. But even the most well-designed computer software can break sometimes and give annoying error.
If you find ExpressVPN not working for you, here are a few tips you can try to quickly fix the problem yourself before reaching out to customer support.
Recently Reported Issue
IOS 13 VPN Vulnerability
Recently, there was a new issue reported in ExpressVPN for IOS 13 and above. There is a vulnerability that causes VPN traffic to stay unencrypted in IOS VPN apps including ExpressVPN.
The only solution to this issue right now is to connect to WireGuard protocol, turn on Airplane Mode which will disable all outgoing connections, re-enable Wi-Fi and disable Airplane mode to keep all the already established VPN traffic from not being decrypted.
ExpressVPN doesn’t support WireGuard Protocol. However, ExpressVPN has a Lightway protocol which will work similarly like WireGuard for this issue. But to use this feature, you have to become a beta tester as this feature is in the beta version right now.
11 Quick Ways to Fix ExpressVPN Not Connecting Issue
There can be multiple reasons why ExpressVPN may not be working for you. Below, you will find some of the most common causes of errors and their solutions. The most logical method for going about this troubleshooting process it to apply one solution at a time and then check if your problem is fixed.
Although ExpressVPN is one of the most powerful ones out there, PureVPN matches ExpressVPN and even outshines it in some respects. For instance, PureVPN is exceedingly reliable within China and unblocks a huge variety of streaming channels; a task which can be done conveniently by selecting the streaming channel in question which will then prompt PureVPN app to connect to the most suitable server for it.
1. Change server locations
The first thing you should do is to try to change the server locations.
ExpresssVPN offers over 3,000 servers in 94 locations, so you have a lot of options to choose from. In some cases, certain servers in the network can develop technical problems that are resolved by the provider after a while.
So, try connecting to different server locations. If the issue is server-specific, you should be able to use ExpressVPN with other servers. Also note that ExpressVPN can be used with torrents on all servers, but it will automatically redirect you to certain server locations where it’s safe to download p2p files.
It bears mention that ExpressVPN boasts fast servers that consistently deliver excellent speeds. You should receive high speeds even on remotely located servers but for best performance, it is better to choose servers located closer to your physical location.
2. Disable firewall/anti-malware
Some firewall and anti-malware software can block VPN connection ports. To test if your connectivity issues are being caused by a firewall or other similar protective programs, you will have to disable all of these programs and try connecting to an ExpressVPN server again.
If you are now able connect to ExpresVPN after disabling these security software, then you will have to make an exception for ExpressVPN in the program that’s blocking it. The easiest way to do that is to follow these steps:
- Uninstall ExpressVPN app.
- Uninstall the program blocking your VPN connection.
- Reinstall ExpressVPN.
- Reinstall the program blocking VPN connection.
This should fix the problem of ExpressVPN getting denied access from a firewall/antimalware.
3. Change VPN protocol
ExpressVPN uses OpenVPN UDP as the default protocol. This protocol combination offers the best balance of speed and security.
However, the UDP protocol is blocked in some countries such as the Middle East. You can try changing protocols, one by one, until you find the one that works for you.
Here’s how you can change protocols in ExpressVPN Windows app:
- Click the three horizontal lines to open the menu. Then choose Options.
- Click on Protocol and choose one from the available options.
- You should try connecting to the VPN again after changing the protocol, one by one, in this order:
- OpenVPN TCP > L2TP > PPTP
PPTP and L2TP offer poor security and are not recommended.
4. Update ExpressVPN app
If you’re using an older version of ExpressVPN, you should get the latest version. To obtain the latest ExpressVPN app, first uninstall your existing app then visit the official ExpressVPN website to download the latest app for your device. Then proceed to download and install it on your device.
Since outdated app versions are no longer officially supported, they tend to develop bugs and errors. Moreover, it is risky from a security point of view to run these apps. So it is important to make you are always running the latest version of ExpressVPN for stable performance and security.
5. Reduce simultaneous usage
ExpressVPN won’t connect if you have exceeded the simultaneous connection limit. The provider supports 5 multi-logins which means you can use the same ExpressVPN subscription to connect to 5 different devices at the same time.
Since ExpressVPN supports Fire stick, Roku, Kodi, and several routers, other than the common platforms of Windows, Mac etc., make sure that you aren’t already connected to 5 devices when you’re experiencing connectivity issues on ExpressVPN (might involve reducing the number of friends you have shared your ExpressVPN account credentials with).
6. Contact support with diagnostic information
The ExpressVPN app contains a built-in diagnostic tool to help developers (or even anyone tech-savvy enough) to troubleshoot problems. You can generate this diagnostic report and send it to customer support of ExpresVPN so they can figure out exactly what the problem is and offer a solution.
To obtain the diagnostic report and send it to ExpresVPN customer support, follow these steps:
1. Click on the Hamburger icon (≡) > Help & Support > Diagnostic Information
2. Click contact support button in the diagnostic file that opens next
3. Check the box “Include diagnostic information” and describe your issue with as much specific details as possible and click “Send to Support”
ExpressVPN Issues and Fixes for Specific Situations
Here are some services, devices, and platforms that ExpressVPN is often reported to exhibit problems with and their quick fixes:
7. ExpressVPN not working with Netflix
ExpressVPN has an excellent success rate when it comes to unblocking popular Netflix libraries such as US, UK, Germany, France etc. However, some users may face problems getting ExpressVPN to work with Netflix.
The first thing to try in this scenario is to change your server location. If that doesn’t work, you should contact customer support of the provider. These guys always have updated information about servers that are currently working with Netflix and can direct you towards the right server location.
If you’re an iPhone user, some people have reported that changing the VPN protocol to IKEv2 helps unblock US Netflix. ExpressVPN offers this protocol only for iOS devices.
Nonetheless, ExpressVPN is super-efficient for Netflix and users generally won’t experience any hurdle when using it to stream their favorite content.
8. ExpressVPN not working on Amazon Prime
Similarly, users that are unable to gain access to Amazon Prime Video can resolve the issue by switching to certain servers. Once again, ExpressVPN’s customer support can come in real handy and help you find out servers that are effective for unblocking Amazon Prime from abroad.
So, if you’re facing this issue don’t hesitate to reach out to ExpressVPN’s customer support.
9. ExpressVPN not working with Hulu
Some ExpressVPN servers work better with Hulu than others. The last time we checked, New Jersey 3 and Denver server locations were able to unblock Hulu.
However, the ability of VPN servers to work with different streaming platforms keeps changing over time. Contact customer support to learn which server location will work best for your needs.
10. ExpressVPN not working in China
One of the fixes that works for mobile users of ExpressVPN in China involves the following actions:
- Open your Phone’s settings > Manage apps > ExpressVPN > Clear data.
- Once data has been cleared, re-open the ExpressVPN app
In addition to this, there are some ExpressVPN servers that work more effectively in China. These are:
- Hong Kong 1, Hong Kong 4, Tokyo 1, & Los Angeles 3.
These excellent tips were mentioned by an ExpressVPN user on reddit:
ExpressVPN is one of the few VPNs that works in China. However, Chinese VPN filtering technologies aka “The Great Firewall of China” are extremely strong and capable of blocking even the most powerful VPNs.
So, if you’re unable to make ExpressVPN in China, try the above steps. If you’re still facing issues, then contacting customer support can is your best bet.
11. ExpressVPN not working on router
ExpressVPN offers firmware for certain brands and models of routers to facilitate easy connectivity. You can learn about setting up ExpressVPN on routers here.
If you are facing connectivity problems after successfully installing and configuring the ExpressVPN firmware, try removing all cables running between your computer, modem, router and any other devices, turn off the router for 30 seconds and turning it back on.
Tried all the methods above but still no progress? Maybe it’s time to try a different VPN and cancel ExpressVPN subscription. For instance, here’s how ExpressVPN compares to PureVPN, a highly affordable VPN with premium features:
|Servers||2,000+ in 140 countries||3,000 in 94 countries|
|Customer Support||24/7 live chat & email||24/7 live chat & email|
|Logging Policy||Zero Logs||Zero Logs|
|Jurisdiction||Hong Kong||British Virgin Islands|
|Compatibility||All devices||All devices|
If you are not an ExpressVPN subscriber yet but want to try out the service, it is advisable to first get the trial version of the app. The ExpressVPN’s free trial is a great way to test the service before committing to a full subscription.
ExpressVPN is probably the most popular VPN brand in the market. Yet, even this VPN isn’t immune to errors and annoying bugs. If you’re an ExpressVPN user, try the above-mentioned methods to resolve the issues you may be facing.
And if all else fails, you can always go with a better alternative, such as PureVPN.
If you want more information about this VPN, see our ExpressVPN review.
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