How to Reset Your Chromecast: Factory Restore Google’s TV Dongle

The Google Chromecast is great, but every so often, it needs to be reset. If the device is frozen, or if you’re moving to a new home and want to restore it to factory settings, you will need to perform what’s known as a factory data reset (FDR) on the Chromecast.

How to Reset Your Chromecast: Factory Restore Google's TV Dongle

In this article, we’ll show you how to factory reset your Chromecast device.

Ways to Factory Reset Chromecast:

There are two ways to reset your Google Chromecast; the first involves going into the Chromecast app, while the other involves a hard reset of the Chromecast dongle itself. The process is slightly different from the 1st Generation to the 2nd and 3rd Generation models. Let’s break it down.

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Resetting Chromecast (1st Generation)

Resetting the Chromecast (Gen 1) dongle is easy, but it requires a bit of patience unless you decide to reset it using the Android or IOS app.

Option #1: Reset Chromecast Gen. 1 Via The App

  1. Open up the Google Home app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Find the specific Chromecast device you want to reset.
  3. Go to the Settings gear, located in the top right-hand corner.
  4. Go to the More option, which looks like three dots stacked on top of each other.
  5. Choose Factory Reset.
  6. Confirm that you want to reset your device.

Option #2: Reset Chromecast Gen. 1 Via The Dongle

  1. With the Chromecast plugged into the TV, hold down the side button on the dongle for 25 seconds or more, waiting for the white LED to start blinking red.
  2. Once the LED steadily turns white, let go, and the Chromecast will reboot to complete the reset process.

Resetting Chromecast (2nd and 3rd Generation)

The factory reset options on Generation 2 and Generation 3 Chromecast dongles are very similar to resetting Generation 1 Chromecast devices. However, you do not need to hold the reset button down for 25 seconds, and the LED colors are different. When using Android or iOS to reset Chromecast, it is almost identical for all versions because it is based on the app, although your OS version may look different.

Option #1: Reset Chromecast Gen. 2, Gen. 3, and Gen. 3 Ultra Via The App

  1. Open up the Google Home app on your Android or iOS device.
  2. Find the specific Chromecast device you want to reset.
  3. Go to the Settings gear, located in the top right-hand corner.
  4. Go to the More option, which looks like three dots stacked on top of each other.
  5. Choose Factory Reset.
  6. Confirm that you want to reset your device.

Option #2: Reset Chromecast Generation 2, 3, and 3 Ultra Via The Dongle

  1. With the Chromecast plugged into the TV, hold down the button on the side, waiting for the LED to start blinking orange.
  2. Once the LED steadily turns white, release the button, and the Chromecast will reboot to complete the reset process.

What To Do When ‘Factory Reset’ Doesn’t Appear

If you’ve followed the steps above, you may have noticed that a few menu options are missing compared to the ones in the screenshots above. Don’t worry though, there’s an easy fix.

If ‘Factory Reset’ is missing in the menu it’s because your smartphone isn’t communicating with the streaming device. There are two reasons for this.

First, make sure that your smartphone is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your Chromecast device. If you aren’t on the same Wi-Fi network you’ll be missing the option to reset your device along with other options.

Next, make sure that the television that your Chromecast is plugged into is on as well. Turn the TV on and go to the input that activates the Chromecast device. Then, open the Home app and follow the instructions above. The ‘Factory Reset’ option should appear.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to factory reset my Chromecast?

The most common reason to factory reset a Chromecast is because you’re having trouble or connection issues and you can’t update your Wi-Fi. Another reason may be that you need to connect to a new Wi-Fi but the old one isn’t available. Lastly, you will have to do a factory reset on your Chromecast if you intend to sell it or let another user have it.

However, there are some basic troubleshooting steps that you can take to avoid a factory reset if you’re having issues. For example, if you are having connection issues you can forget the current network and simply add it back.

Fortunately, the Chromecast has an incredibly simple setup process. So even if you do have to perform a factory reset, it isn’t as much of a hassle as some other tech devices.

As you can see, resetting Google Chromecast is simple, regardless of how you do it. Just remember that a reset erases ALL data, so your customizations and third-party apps will be gone forever. If you need more usage tips, check out our guide on how to use Google Chromecast.

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