6 Most Common WordPress Errors and Their Fixes

WordPress errors

WordPress is one of the most prolific platforms on which you could build a website; there is no doubt about that. However, certain inevitable technical snags leave even veterans of the CMS scratching their heads.

If you encounter such WordPress errors as a beginner, you will undoubtedly face confusion. The reason behind this is primarily attributed to the nature of these errors. They’re hard to troubleshoot, and eventually fix.

But all hope is not lost. There is light at the end of the tunnel.

To give the general WordPress user a run-down of what kind of WordPress security issues and errors they might face, we’ve compiled a list of errors. Just sifting through, or reading this post in its entirety, you will have a better understanding of 6 of the most common WordPress errors.

In addition to detailing them, we will also be discussing how you can fix these errors. But before we begin, we feel that it’s important to highlight some essential groundwork.

The Importance of Backing Up Your WordPress Site

Fixing the error would often involve you making changes through the back-end. Before you start implementing changes, you need to back up your WordPress site to be safe in the event things go south.

Now, making a WordPress backup is relatively simple. If you can log-in to your WordPress admin dashboard, you can install WordPress backup plugins to create a backup.

Here’s how to install such plugins.

In addition to this, you can even create a manual WordPress backup and then upload it to the cloud. Besides fixing errors and making site changes, it is recommended that you back up regularly. With a growing site, problems are an inevitable reality. With a backup, you can always revert to the recent backup.

Now that we’ve covered the importance of having backups, it’s time we look at the first of the six most common WordPress errors.


1. WordPress White Screen of Death

A common occurrence, this error fully lives up to its title: it displays a white screen with no statement on what caused the error. You don’t know what went wrong, and how you’re going to fix it. All you see is the dreadful white emptiness on your browser.

WordPress death screen error

The primary cause of this error is a lack of PHP memory limit. Other causes for it are due to problems on the server. Depending on what went wrong, you may see this error on one or a few pages.

Fixing the White Screen of Death Error on WordPress

If you have multiple WordPress sites running on the same server, you must check them out for this error as well. If they do have the white screen of death, then perhaps the error is caused by your hosting service provider.

In such a scenario, it’s best to contact your WordPress hosting provider and ask them about this issue. Since it’s an issue that’s present across the board, it might be caused by issues within the hosting server and not from your end.

Now, if there are no server errors, then you can try to disable your WordPress plugins and themes. Once you deactivate the plugins, reactivate them one by one while at the same time, refreshing your page to see what caused the error.

But what if you can’t access the WordPress dashboard, then you need to access it through a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) like FileZilla.

Access WordPress dashboard via Filezilla
When you’ve accessed your site through the FTP, all you have to do is enter the wp-content/themes or wp-content/plugins folder and rename it. It would remove the error but also deactivate the plugins. Now, rename your plugins folder to its original, access your WordPress plugins section, and then activate your plugins step by step.

Activate WordPress plugins

As you can see, fixing the White Screen of Death error is easy, even though it looks relatively scary from the outset, and can be circumvented in such a short time.

2. WordPress Memory Exhausted

WordPress Memory Exhausted

The memory exhaustion error isn’t as threatening as the previous one since it gives out an error message when it occurs. The memory limit exhaustion is primarily attributed to a particular script or WordPress plugin.

The error that’s displayed looks something like this:
Fatal Error: Allowed memory size of 33554432 bytes exhausted (tried to allocate 2348617 bytes) in /home/username/public_html/site1/wp-includes/plugin.php on line xxx

Fixing the WordPress Memory Exhausted Error

Fixing the WordPress memory limit issue is simple. All you have to do is increase the memory limit.
To solve this, access your FTP, and try to find the wp-config.php file.

Once you’ve found the wp-config.php file, all you have to do is open the file in the text editor and just before the “That’s all, stop editing!” statement, copy/paste the following statement:
define( ‘WP_MEMORY_LIMIT’, ‘256M’ );

define( 'WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M' );

This code increases the WordPress PHP memory limit to 256 MB. Now, save your changes, and you’re good to go!


3. WordPress Connection Timed Out

WordPress Connection Timed Out

The ERROR_CONNECTION_TIMED_OUT occurs primarily due to issues within your hosting server. To be specific, it occurs on shared hosting servers that take up too many resources.
It displays a Site Can’t be Reached error and at the very bottom states ERR_CONNECTION_TIMED_OUT which indicates the cause of the error.

Fixing the Connection Timed Out Error in WordPress

To fix this error, you would have to go to the back-end once again. From there, deactivate and reactivate your plugins through the process mentioned above. It is the easiest fix to attempt since most of the time, compatibility issues within the plugin and themes are the ones causing the issue.

Besides the fix, you can solve this error by increasing the PHP memory limit. If both the former and latter fail to give out any results, then contact your WordPress hosting provider to see if they have a solution.


4. Error Establishing a Database Connection in WordPress

Error Establishing a Database Connection in WordPress
The Error Establishing a Database Connection (EEDC) is displayed because WordPress can’t connect to the database.

Now, this error is unique from the previous since it originates from the database in the following ways:
• Incorrect database host details.
• Incorrect database username.
• Incorrect database password.

Besides this, you might find that there are issues within the database.

Fixing the Error Establishing a Database Connection in WordPress

The first thing you can do to solve this error is to see whether you’re getting similar messages on both the front (the webpage) and back-end (wp-admin).
If you’re getting a different error, for example, “one or more database is unavailable” error, then you need to fix the data tables from the back-end.
Sounds tough, but it’s not really.

Again, log-in to your FTP, find the wp-config file, and just above the “That’s all, stop editing!” line, type in or copy/paste the following code:
define(‘WP_ALLOW_REPAIR’, true);
Save the changes, and re-upload the file into your FTP.

The next thing you need to do is visit this link: http://www.yoursite.com/wp-admin/maint/repair.php

Instead of “yoursite”, you type in your site. When you’re there, all you have to do is click on “Repair Database” and you’re done.

WordPress repair


5. WordPress Internal Server Error

Similar to the White Screen of Death (WSoD), this error is confusing in that there is no indication of what caused the error. It’s vague since the server doesn’t show you where the problem is, and it’s up to you to find it.

Fixing the Internal Server Error in WordPress

The root cause of this error lies in the .htaccess file. More specifically, it’s the corruption within the file that causes the error.
The .htaccess file is located in the wp-content folder inside your WordPress directory. When you’ve located the file, all you have to do is rename the file and check to see if the error presides.

If it doesn’t, then access your WordPress dashboard and navigate to Settings > Permalinks.

WordPress permalinks
When you’re there, all you have to do is click on the Save button at the very bottom, and you’re done. When you click on Save, you’re just creating a new .htaccess file.
Now, delete the previous file, and you’re good to go.


6. WordPress Parse or Syntax Error

WordPress Parse or Syntax Error

If you’ve ever used a TI-82, you would know what a syntax error is. The error occurs because the program can’t read the input you’ve provided.

The WordPress Parse and Syntax error is similar in that it represents a failure of WordPress to read the code files. It usually occurs when you’ve been editing the code of your WordPress files with code snippets meant for specific functionalities.

The thing with code is that if you miss a single semi-colon, the program fails to read it. You might have missed a character or two, which is why it’s displaying this error.

Fixing the WordPress Parse or Syntax Error

First and foremost, you need to learn how you can insert and edit code within WordPress. Having an understanding of PHP code and how to add it to WordPress correctly can help you avoid mistakes in the future.

The next thing you need to do is edit the snippet that you added to make the parse successful. For that, you need to visit your FTP first of all.

Now, you need to find the file in which you edited the code. When you’re there all, you have to either remove the snippet that you entered. If, however, it is essential, you need to edit or rewrite it with the correct syntax.

Note: If you’re non-technical, then you need to have a WordPress developer beside you who can aid you in the matter.
When you’ve made the necessary changes to your file, then re-upload it back to the server.



In this article, we discussed how you could solve six of the most common WordPress errors. To give you a run-down at the end, we talked about the following errors:
1. WordPress White Screen of Death (WSoD)
2. WordPress Memory Exhausted
3. WordPress Connection Timed Out error
4. WordPress Error Establishing Database Connection (EEDC)
5. WordPress Internal Server error
6. WordPress Parse or Syntax error.

From all that we discussed, we feel that it’s fair to say that while these errors are problematic, they are easy to solve. However, before you go fixing these issues we would reiterate the importance of having a backup just in case things go wrong.
We hope you enjoyed reading this article.

Now, if you liked this article, and you want to learn more about how to design a WordPress website, make sure to subscribe to the Colibri Youtube channel and follow Colibri on Twitter and Facebook!


Ammar Naeem
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Ammar Naeem is an eCommerce enthusiast. Playing with the analytical data and digging into useful insights is his most favorite thing to do.