Fire TV or Fire Stick running a little slow? Does every app or video feed you open stutter, buffer for ages, or just generally feel sluggish? You could have a cache problem that needs to be dealt with. Cleaning or clearing the app cache on Firestick and Fire TV can dramatically improve performance on, especially if you run a lot of sideloaded content or HD video feeds via Kodi.
Below we provide a tutorial for clearing individual app and video caches on your Firestick and Fire TV. It’s easy to do, doesn’t require any kind of hacking or jailbreaking, and should only take a few minutes of your time. Once you know how to do it, you can keep your Fire TV video cache clear on a regular basis for optimal device performance. Failing to do this means the cache just keeps growing, which can lead to all sorts of errors down the line.
Importance of using a good VPN
Online privacy is a growing concern in the modern world, even for Fire device users. More people are asking questions about who can see their data, where it’s stored, and what’s being done with it. Government-sponsored mass surveillance is a very real issue, ISPs have been found logging and selling user information without consent, and there’s no shortage of cyber criminals looking to steal your data.
The best way to stay safe while streaming is to use a virtual private network. VPNs encrypt data and hide your identity no matter which device you’re using, creating a safe tunnel between you and the internet.
IPVanish – Best for Fire Stick and Fire TV
After extensively testing the top VPNs on the market, we arrived at IPVanish as the best to use for Firestick and Fire TV. IPVanish provides both speed and security on every platform, with custom apps that are lightweight and easy to use. IPVanish’s installation is handled through the Amazon appstore, too, which means you can install it with just a few clicks.
IPVanish keeps speeds high by providing a network of over 1,100 servers in 60 different countries, all of which deliver fast downloads and incredible movie streams. Your information is secured with 256-bit encryption along with a sturdy zero-logging policy, and your identity is locked down by both DNS leak protection and an automatic kill switch.
For more information about the IPVanish experience, including speed test results, software comparisons, and Netflix reviews, check out our complete IPVanish review.
About Fire TV caches
Amazon’s Fire TV and Firestick (Fire Stick) devices are some of the best pieces of streaming hardware you can buy. They’re inexpensive, lightweight, affordable, and extremely easy to use. One of the downsides is that the devices are low-powered, meaning app video cache issues frequently become a problem for many users.
How the video app cache works
Caching video content is a common practice on just about every piece of hardware in existence, including smart TVs, PCs, laptops, and cellphones. Streaming devices have a small amount of storage set aside intended to hold small bits of data. As the movie or TV show downloads from the Internet, the device places the data into this storage area, plays it on your screen, then deletes the content in preparation for the next bits of data.
Using a video cache means a smoother stream, especially in areas where internet speeds may not be the best in the world. Caching has its limitations, though, especially in situations where low-powered devices meets sluggish Wi-Fi. If a Fire TV has a small video cache, and if it can’t download enough of the movie to maintain a constant stream, problems will start to arise.
Symptoms of full app caches
What happens when an app’s cache gets full? Unfortunately, Fire TV doesn’t notify you when this is the case, nor can it always clear the cache on its own. If you encounter any of the following symptoms, chances are you need to take measures to speed up your Firestick.
- Stuttering movies that start, stop, or frequently skip frames or entire seconds of playback.
- Periods where movies, TV shows, and live streams freeze in place for a long time.
- Menu navigation becomes slow to respond to inputs.
- Frequent and extensive buffering delays.
Ways to keep the cache empty
Emptying the Fire TV’s video cache is a good way to clear everything out on occasion. In addition to this, you can also take a few quick precautions to ensure the cache never fills up in the first place. These aren’t guaranteed to keep
- Use a higher-powered Fire device with more video cache storage, such as the Fire Cube or Fire TV Stick 4K.
- Stream lower quality videos whenever possible, as they take up less video cache space.
- Use built-in streaming apps instead of third party or sideloaded software.
- Turn off or reboot your Fire device on a regular basis.
Is it safe to clear app and video cache on Fire Stick?
Perfectly safe, yes. Amazon has provided an easy way to clear the cache on any app, regardless of whether you downloaded it from the built-in appstore or sideloaded it yourself. The process removes files that are intended to be temporary, so in most cases you aren’t even deleting anything you might need later, just garbage file data that’s slowing down your system.
In some cases with sideloaded content such as Kodi, clearing the cache may remove certain customization features, including add-ons and login information. You can recover or re-install these pretty quickly, however, so it’s still a good idea to free up cache space even if you’ll lose a little information in the process.
How to clear the cache on Fire Stick and Fire TV
Ready to boost your device’s performance and make it feel like a brand new machine? Follow the steps outlined below to clear your Firestick, Fire Cube, or Fire TV’s app and video cache.
- Turn on your Fire device and go to the main menu.
- Press up on the remote control to select the top navigation bar.
- Scroll right and choose Settings.
- Select Applications, then move down to Manage Installed Applications.
- Choose the app you think needs its cache cleared. This can be any video streaming software, including Netflix, Hulu, or Kodi.
- Select the app and scroll down. Click on Clear Cache. Fire TV will clear out the video and app cache for the software in question.
- Repeat the process for any other apps you think are causing device or playback slowdown.
It’s worth noting that clearing an app’s cache may remove some personalized data, especially in the case of sideloaded apps such as Kodi. If you feel that clearing the cache is necessary, try making a backup of the app first, or at the very least, note which add-ons you want to keep and re-install them later.
Clearing Kodi’s cache and removing problem apps
Apps like Kodi, Netflix, Hulu, and YouTube frequently run into caching problems on low-powered devices like Fire TV. If you keep encountering issues with these pieces of software, check out our tips below to handle things the right way.
Fix Kodi’s video cache
Kodi is an extremely popular video streaming app that works on a wide variety of devices, including Fire TV and Firestick. Because it’s so widely used, a number of people have encountered its caching problems, especially on low-powered devices like Amazon’s Fire series.
The good news is there are plenty of ways to speed up Kodi by clearing its cache or tweaking internal settings. Start with our guide on how to fix Kodi buffering on Fire TV.
Uninstall problem apps
If you sideload a lot of content to your Fire TV, you may run into these cache issues on a frequent basis. This is because apps designed for Android operating systems weren’t necessarily optimized with Fire Sticks in mind, leading to all sorts of resource bottlenecks, including a clogged cache.
If you clear an app’s cache every couple of days, you might want to consider removing it and replacing it with something a little more streamlined. Below you’ll find a good step by step guide on how to uninstall sideloaded or downloaded apps from your Fire device.
- Open your Fire TV interface and go to the home menu.
- On the menu items at the top of the screen, scroll to the right and choose Settings. You may need to press up on the remote to highlight the menu before navigating.
- Scroll right and choose Applications.
- In the Applications menu, move down and choose Manage Installed Applications.
- Scroll until you find the problem app in the alphabetical list.
- Select the app and a new screen will open. Scroll down and choose Uninstall.
- A secondary screen will open. Choose Uninstall again to confirm.
- After a moment, the app will be deleted from your Fire TV device.
With the problem app out of the way, you won’t have to worry about its cache issues anymore. Now you can check out alternatives to that streaming software to find something that works better in the long run.
Alternative apps for Fire TV
Some apps just don’t run well on Fire devices. If you are forced to constantly clear app caches on Firestick, or if you finally got fed up and deleted the app from your hardware, be sure to check out these alternatives for a better experience.
The Aptoide app works like an alternative appstore for your Fire TV, Fire Stick, and other Android-based device. It gives you the power to install custom apps with the click of a button, all from countless user-curated app stores that are fully compatible with your device. It’s by far the best way to access useful third party apps. Check out our full guide on how to install and use Aptoide on Fire TV to get started.
Do you like free TV channels from around the world? How about on-demand movies, live sports, and high quality films? Mobdro is one of the best ways to get access to all of this and more, complete with digital channels from the US, UK, and abroad. You can install Mobdro on your Fire TV with ease, then run it along with a VPN for full, free access to a world of entertainment.
Stremio is another free streaming resource similar to Kodi or Mobdro. Adding it to your Fire Stick installation gives you instant access to a massive amount of streaming resources, everything from movies to TV shows to sports and foreign content. Stremio is entirely free to use and comes with support for third party add-ons that include plenty of new video sources, not to mention links to legitimate outlets where you can buy or rent movies at your leisure. To get started, check out our guide on how to install Stremio on Fire Stick.
Clearing app cache on Fire TV and Fire Stick devices isn’t as complicated as you might think. It only takes a few seconds to dump these garbage files and recover some speed and functionality. Repeat the process for all of your most-used apps and you’ll feel like you have a new device. And if that doesn’t work, there’s always the option of installing alternative apps that are better suited for Fire TV use.
How has your experience been clearing the cache on Fire TV? Notice a big improvement in speed? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.