These are annoying connectivity error codes that will pop up every now and then for NetFlix users. They actually have multiple different error codes, but looking closer at this, I don’t see what the point of this is, since all the NW- errors seem to have the same general causes and the same general solutions.
In this guide we’ll cover solutions for the NetFlix NW- errors:
- Error NW-4-8
- Error NW-2-5
- Error NW-2-4
- Error NW-3-6
- Error NW-4-7
- Error NW-6-403
- Error NW-1-19
- Error NW-8-17
- Any other NetFlix NW- error code.
From what I can see, they may as well have just used one error code for all networking errors, since the solutions to fix them are the same, so there’s no point creating separate guides for each error. We’ll just bundle them all into one.
We’ll also cover specific steps for different devices, like games consoles, smart TVs, Roku, Streaming devices, set top boxes, tablets and so on.
Here is a quick summary answer of the main ways to solve these NW- errors:
Try some quick reboots, reset, and updates of your devices and the app. Move closer to your router for a better signal, or switch to wired instead (ethernet or powerline). Using Google DNS (188.8.131.52, 184.108.40.206) can also sometimes fix this error.
We’ll start off with more generalized solutions you can try on pretty much all devices, before moving onto connection fixes and then device specific tips.
Quick Fixes For All Netflix NW-Error Codes
Let’s run through some quick general things to try for these NW errors that you can try pretty much on any device you are using, including Smart TVs, Set Top Boxes, Blu Ray players, Roku devices, tablets, laptops and other portable media players, plus games consoles:
- Restart the Netflix app (Settings….Reset/Sign Out/Deactivate).
- Sign out of Netflix and then sign back in from the Settings or Cog/gear symbol ( ).
- Another way of signing out on streaming devices is to press Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Left, Right, Right, Up, Up, Up, Up on your remote control and select Reset/Sign Out/Deactivate/
- Reset your router and device.
- Make sure your device and router is fully up to date, as well as the Netflix app if you are using it.
- Fully power cycle your router and device, unplugging them for 5 minutes before re-starting them.
- Move closer to your router. Moving your router to a more open and/or more elevated position can also help with the signal.
- Move any obvious obstacles out the way, as well as other wireless devices that may be causing interference.
- Use a wired connection instead if possible, plugging directly into your router. If Netflix still doesn’t work even when plugged into your router, check that the router isn’t broken (can other devices connect?) or check your ISP service isn’t down.
- If you’re using a VPN, try disabling it.
- If you’re using custom DNS servers or any other custom network setting, try reverting them back to Automatic/Default settings.
- Reduce the streaming quality on Netflix to place less demands on the network. Go to Account, select the right profile, go to Playback and change settings so less data is used. See here.
- If you’re watching through the Netflix app, switch instead to watching on netflix.com through a normal web browser on a PC or laptop.
- Make sure that your internet service isn’t down. Check on downdetector.com
Improving Your Connection (Key Solution)
Whilst it’s true that error codes do have many different possible causes, with these NW errors, by far the most important factor is simply the strength/quality of your connection, especially if you are using Wi-Fi.
To stream reliably on Netflix, you do need to get the best possible connection to your router. We already mentioned moving closer to your router, but the better long term option is to simply get off Wi-Fi altogether and use a wired connection instead.
Option #1 – Long network cable
This can be difficult if you’re a long way from the router; nevertheless you can get long network cables – click the link to view 10m ethernet cables on Amazon (you can go longer if you need to).
Option #2 – Powerline Adapters
If this just isn’t practical for you, then another clever way of getting onto a wired connection is to use powerline adapters. These consist of a pair of plugs that are installed in wall sockets and connected to your router and streaming device. The two plugs communicate through the existing house wiring to deliver a strong wired internet connection to your device.
See the video below for a quick demonstration of how powerline works. They can be a clever way of bypassing Wi-Fi altogether and connecting directly to your router even when quite some distance from it physically.
You can find links to the TP Link Nano Powerline adapter, pictured above, plus more advanced models, on our Powerline Adapters page.
Performance of these adapters is not guaranteed in all cases, since the wiring in your home has to be in good enough condition for the adapters to reliably communicate, but when they work they can be an excellent tool for streamers to get a more reliable connection versus unreliable Wi-Fi which often drops out over distance the more obstacles are in the way.
Option #3 – Wi-Fi Extenders
However, we get that Netflix is available on many different devices, some of which are smaller portable ones which don’t even have an ethernet port and so have to stay on wireless.
In these cases, it’s a case of strengthening your signal as best as possible, firstly by moving closer and trying quick resets as mentioned above.
Another option you can try is to use a Wi-Fi repeater/extender, which are just single plug adapters you install in a wall socket which capture and amplify the existing signal from the router, hopefully spreading it over a larger area.
However, performance of these gadgets can be very hit and miss depending on house layout and distance, and they may or may not improve the signal enough to allow streaming. Could be worth trying if you’re streaming on smaller devices and can’t plug into the router.
See our article on extenders vs powerlines for a comparison of the two types of product.
Changing DNS Settings For Games Consoles
This applies to the Nintendo Switch, PS3, PS4, PS5, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Xbox X games consoles.
You can try all the things mentioned in the above sections, but another setting you can try adjusting is DNS servers, which can be manually altered on most games consoles and can give better network performance. Google’s DNS servers (220.127.116.11, 18.104.22.168) are generally the best to use.
We’ll cover below the steps to manually change your DNS Servers for the PS4, but the general process is the same for all game consoles – find your Connection Settings, switch to Manual/Custom Setup, move through all the settings as they are until your reach DNS Settings, then switch to Manual, enter your desired pair of DNS servers, and finish the setup.
Here are the steps to do this:
- Go to Settings….Network……Set Up Internet Connection
- Select Wi-Fi or LAN depending on your connection. Plug into your router and use wired if the Wi-Fi doesn’t work.
- Select Custom setup
- Run through all the settings as they are, without changing them, until you get to DNS Settings
- For DNS Settings, switch to Manual
- Input these Google DNS servers: Primary: 22.214.171.124 Secondary: 126.96.36.199
- Once configured test your internet connection a few times (Settings…..Network…..Test Internet Connection) to see if it delivers better download and upload speeds than the ones you were using before.
- The general process is exactly the same for other games consoles – configure your Internet Connection manually, select Automatic for other settings, switch to manual for DNS Settings, and input the pair you want.
- You can also use other free DNS servers; here are two common pairs:
- `Cloudflare DNS – Primary 188.8.131.52 Secondary 184.108.40.206
- Open DNS – Primary 220.127.116.11 Secondary 18.104.22.168
- If one pair don’t work, try another pair. See our article on the best DNS for gaming for more information.
- Advanced option – use the DNS Benchmark Tool to find your own optimum pair of DNS servers for your location. Needs to be downloaded and run and a PC. See our other article on DNS settings for more on this. We’ll cover this further below also.
- See just below for a video demo of how to do this.
However, DNS servers are a double edged sword, and can work both ways. Sometimes using default ones can cause a poor connection, but also sometimes using custom ones can lead to a network error, even if they may have worked well initially. So whatever DNS setting you’re currently on (Default or Custom), try switching to the other option to see if the error resolves.
Specific Solutions For Smart TV’s
Some of these errors do appear a little more on Smart TV’s than other devices. Here are some other things to try, other than what’s listed above:
- Try resetting/power cycling the Smart TV as follows – unplug it fully for 1 minute, and press and hold the power button on the TV for 5-10 seconds to discharge all the power.
- If you’re using public or Hotspot Wi-Fi, satellite internet or another access point that may have restricted access or poor signal, switch to a home Wi-Fi router instead for a better reception.
- If the Smart TV is in a hotel or other public building, check that access to NetFlix isn’t blocked or restricted.
- Use Netflix on a PC or laptop instead, where you visit the website and log in instead of using an app.
- Make sure the Smart TV and Netflix app are installed to the latest version. For the app, make sure the SDK version is updated to version 4.0.6 or higher.
- On some Smart TV’s you may be able to change DNS servers by going to Settings….Network and sometimes under Advanced there may be an option to manually input DNS. Try putting in Google DNS servers (22.214.171.124, 126.96.36.199) and see if this solves the error.
- If you’re already using Custom DNS servers, try switching back to Default/Automatic ones.
Specific Solutions For Blu Ray Players
Here’s some extra things to try if the above steps don’t work:
- Run a connection to test on the device to make sure the internet is working.
- Make sure the Netflix app on the player is updated to the latest version.
- Power cycle – fully unplug the player for several minutes, press and hold the power button for 5-10 seconds to discharge, then plug back in and try again.
- Try the service on a PC/laptop instead if possible.
Specific Solutions For Set Top Boxes & Streaming Devices
Most of these devices will have ethernet ports, so by far your best bet to get rid of these NW errors is to plug directly into your modem with a cable. However, if this isn’t possible or doesn’t work, and the steps mentioned above don’t work, here’s some other things to try for these devices:
- Power cycle – fully unplug the set top box/streaming device for several minutes, press and hold power button on the device to discharge, then plug back in and retry.
- Make sure your network offers decent speeds for streaming if you have to stay on Wi-Fi.
- Don’t use public Wi-Fi, hotspots, satellite or other forms of wireless that will often deliver poor speeds not good enough for streaming.
- Turning down the streaming quality from within the Netflix settings may help on a weaker connection.
- Go into the Netflix app settings on the device and make sure it’s updated to the latest version.
Specific Solutions For Roku
Here’s some extra tips for Roku streaming devices if the other tips don’t work:
- Test that internet connection is working from within the Roku — Settings….Network…Connection Status. If not, check that other devices can connect to make sure it’s not a general service outage.
- Restart Roku – Unplug the Roku device fully from the power for 30-60 seconds, then plug back in and retry.
- Don’t use public or Hotspot Wi-Fi or other poor connections.
- Try using Netflix from a PC/laptop instead.
Specific Solutions For Amazon Fire Stick/TV
Here’s some extra things to try on top of what’s listed above:
- Don’t use on a poor connection like public Wi-Fi or Hotspots.
- Power cycle – unplug fully for a few minutes and plug back in.
- Use Netflix on a PC/laptop instead.
Specific Solutions For iPhones & Tablets
Portable devices carry their own challenges, since they often can’t connect by wired ethernet because they don’t have a port. Here’s some extra things to try to get better Wi-Fi on these smaller devices:
- Try changing the DNS Settings on your iPhone. Go to Settings….Wi-Fi.….Click the i button…..Configure DNS….Manual….Enter Google DNS servers (188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206) to see if you get a better connection.
- Consider using a Wi-Fi Repeater/Extender to boost the signal if you’re getting these problems a lot in the same spot at home. These are single plug devices that capture and amplify the existing Wi-Fi signal from the router. See our article on them for more details.