By Trae Jacobs,
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You finally get the time to catch up on your favorite Netflix show, but your experience is ruined by slow response times and a constantly buffering video. Yes, we have been there too. Now you are on the internet searching for what could be wrong with your TCL TV.
A slow TCL TV is usually a sign of poor or unstable internet connection. However, other factors could also affect the speed of your Smart TV.
There are specific steps you can take to get the best out of your device. Dive in to see what else could be slowing your TV down and how to fix it.
What Makes TCL TVs Slow?
Your slow smart TV may be due to one of the following reasons.
You Have a Slow or Unstable Internet Connection
This is a common explanation, and it is evident when your videos are stuttering or take too long to load.
A slow or unstable connection could be traced back to your internet provider or router. There is not much you can do if the fault is from your provider, except call them and let them know about the situation. It is also possible that your data plan cannot provide the speed needed to stream on your TV. Anything above 5MBps is okay, but you need at least 25MBps to stream in 4K
You may also have too many devices with background apps connected to your Wi-Fi. Some of these apps hog the bandwidth, limiting the amount available to your TV.
Finally, there could be interference with the signal coming from your router. Try moving it closer to the TV and see if that works. If you would like to learn more about TCL Tvs, check out this article.
Your TCL TV is due for a Firmware Update
Similar to how your PC uses iOS or Windows OS, your smart TV has firmware that controls and facilitates its operations.
Your TV might start to be less efficient as its firmware becomes outdated. For example, it becomes laggy, or apps take longer to start up.
Manufacturers are constantly improving their firmware (fixing bugs, adding new features) and releasing them as updates. To ensure your smart TV is in the best condition, keep up with its firmware updates.
Your TV’s Memory is Full
If you have been using your smart TV for a while, chances are you have a load of cookies and caches on your TV memory.
Cookies and caches tend to build up in your TV as you use it, cluttering its memory. You may also have too many apps on your TV, taking up valuable memory space. These take a hit on your device’s performance, and you will often see it slow down or freeze on occasion.
Whenever you visit a new site or app, it leaves a file on your device that helps the site remember your device next time. These files are called cookies. Caches are parts of a website that gets stored on your device, so you don’t have to download them again on your next visit.
You Use an Older Version of TCL TV
If your TV is getting on in years, this might explain your issue.
Tech evolves pretty quickly, and it does not take long for gadgets to get edged out by newer versions. Manufacturers tend to focus on their latest models and gradually stop releasing updates for the older ones. Streaming platforms also cease to support such models in a bid to reduce cost.
This does not mean old TVs cannot run newer app versions; they would just struggle to keep up with their advanced requirements and will respond slower than usual.
How to Speed Up TCL TVs
Several reasons can cause your TV to be slow, and as you have probably gathered, these causes can be handled differently. But before you ring up customer support, let’s look at how you can handle these causes yourself.
Check Your Internet, Wi-Fi Connection
Remember we said you needed certain speeds to be able to stream comfortably? Well, if your internet is not hitting such speeds, you may want to upgrade your data plan with your provider. It is also possible that your area does not have such speeds.
Try disconnecting other devices from your router or disabling background apps and see if that changes anything. That should free up extra bandwidth for your TV to use.
Finally, you can restart your router and modem. A bit basic, yes, but there is no harm in trying. Unplug your setup, wait at least 30 seconds, plug in the modem, and power it on. Wait at least 60 seconds to plug the router back in. You can also try a factory reset, but make sure you know its default password first.
Keep Your TV Updated
Most of the time, your TV will inform you of an available update unless you have turned off notifications.
You can update your TCL TV’s firmware by:
- Navigating to Settings
- Click System
- Click System Update
- Download the update if there is a pending one.
These updates usually provide fixes to your device’s speed and performance. Your TV should restart after the process has been completed. Enable the auto-update option if available, so you don’t miss out on future updates.
Clear Your TV’s Memory
Your TV has a limited memory capacity, and when it reaches a critical point, processing speeds can get slower. Fix this by deleting some apps and cleaning out caches that have gathered over time.
There are multiple ways to clear your TCL TV’s cache, depending on what type you use. Clearing a TCL Roku TV is different from doing the same on a TCL Android TV.
We will be showing you how to clear the cache on both TVs below.
How to Clear Cache on TCL Roku TV
While you can always do a factory reset or uninstall and reinstall apps, here’s a more convenient method you should try:
- Navigate to your TV home screen.
- On your remote, press Home five times.
- Press the Up button.
- Next, press the rewind button twice.
- Finally, press the fast-forward button twice.
Your TV would freeze for about two minutes, then restart automatically.
How to Clear Cache on TCL Android TV
It is just as simple to clear caches on your TCL Android TV. To complete the process, follow these steps:
- Open your TV Settings.
- From the Settings, select “Apps” and enable “See all apps.”
- From the list of available apps, select an app. A menu should pop up.
- Select “Clear Cache“ from the menu.
Clearing caches works incredibly well for older TCL TV models.
Get a Streaming Stick
Using a streaming stick can help with older smart TVs that run slow. They are very cheap and allow your TV to use apps that would typically work poorly. This Roku streaming stick might be right up your alley.
While all of the provided solutions are viable and effective, you must understand that sometimes the issue can’t be helped. Not everywhere in the US has the internet speed required to support a smart TV.
A drop in speed and performance of your TCL TV is also inevitable as it gets older. While you can take the recommended steps to manage the issue, you will eventually have to buy a newer one.