To use WhatsApp on a computer, you need to link your WhatsApp account with WhatsApp Web by scanning a QR code with your phone. But if you can’t scan the QR code, it can be very frustrating.
Most of the time, the problem is caused by dust on your computer screen or your phone’s camera lens, but sometimes it’s a bigger problem. If you can’t scan the QR code to connect your WhatsApp account to WhatsApp Web, we have some fixes to help you get back online.
1. Rule Out Hardware Issues
QR codes are made up of squares that are black and white. If dust gets on your screen and messes up any of these squares, your cell phone camera won’t be able to scan a QR code correctly.
So, you can start troubleshooting by cleaning your monitor screen to make sure no big pieces of dust are getting in the way of the code being scanned correctly. Also, make sure that your mouse cursor is not on the QR code you are trying to scan.
In the same way, you should keep the camera lens on your phone clean. If the lens is dirty, it might think that dust is part of the QR code, which would make it impossible to scan the code correctly.
If you keep your devices clean and organized, your cell phone camera shouldn’t have any other problems. You can check this by scanning a different QR code. If a cell phone can’t read any QR code, the problem is with the phone.
But if the problem only happens on WhatsApp Web, you need to look into it more. So, if that’s the case, keep making the changes below.
2. Make sure the issue isn’t caused by WhatsApp itself
Check to see if the problem is coming from the back end of WhatsApp.
If there is a technical problem with WhatsApp Web, wait until the developers fix it on the back end. If no problem is mentioned there, ask a friend if it works fine on their computer. This will make it impossible for something to go wrong at a certain location.
If the problem only happens to you, keep putting in the other fixes.
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3. Rule Out Internet Issues
Both the WhatsApp mobile app and WhatsApp Web need to be connected to the internet when linking to a new device. You might have trouble scanning if either device isn’t connected to the internet or if the connection isn’t good.
So, make sure that both devices can connect to the internet and fix any problems if they can’t. As soon as you know it’s not the internet, move on to the next fix.
4. Change how both devices connect to the network
If the QR code won’t scan on WhatsApp web, switching to a different network connection may also help. So, if both are connected to Wi-Fi, you might want to switch to your mobile data network.
Scan the QR code again after making the switch to see if it works this time. If changing the network settings on both devices doesn’t help, move on to the next step.
5. Start over with WhatsApp Web and WhatsApp Mobile
Close both the WhatsApp Web app and the WhatsApp app on your phone to rule out the possibility that a temporary bug on one of your devices is stopping WhatsApp from connecting. After starting over, connect the devices again.
If starting over doesn’t solve the problem, check to see if the problem is on the browser’s end.
6. Make sure it’s not your browser’s fault
You might be having trouble with WhatsApp Web because of the browser you’re using. To rule it out, try to scan the QR code by opening WhatsApp Web in another browser at the same time.
If it scans fine and you can link your WhatsApp account there, the problem is with your browser. In that case, switch to a different browser for a little while.
But if the problem happens in both browsers, move on to the next steps.
7. Turn off acceleration for hardware
You might also be able to fix the problem by turning off hardware acceleration in your browser. The hardware acceleration feature sends tasks to your device’s specialized hardware, like GPUs, so that the CPU doesn’t have to do them. Even though turning this feature on makes the browser run better, it can sometimes go wrong.
So, if this feature is turned on in your browser, you should turn it off. To turn it off in Chrome, do the following:
- Click the three vertical dots in the upper right corner and choose Settings.
- Click on the System tab in the left column.
- Turn off the switch by Using hardware acceleration when available.
You can do the same thing in Firefox to turn off hardware acceleration. If you’re using a different browser that has this feature, you can find out how to turn it off on its official website.
8. Clear the cache of your browser and the WhatsApp mobile app
Websites and apps load faster because the cache stores temporary information. But corrupted files in the cache can sometimes make it hard for an app to work.
So, clear the cache in both your WhatsApp app on your phone and your browser to make sure that a buildup of cache isn’t the problem.
After clearing the cache, start-up WhatsApp and WhatsApp Web again, and scan the code again. If it works, you should be fine. If not, you’ll have to do the rest of the fixes.
9. Remove any other WhatsApp accounts that are linked.
If you’ve linked your WhatsApp account to other browsers and devices before, you’re likely to run into this problem. So, you might be able to fix the problem by unlinking all of the devices you had previously linked to WhatsApp.
Follow these steps to break the link between the devices on WhatsApp:
- On your phone, open WhatsApp.
- Tap the three vertical dots at the top right of the screen (or tap on Settings if you use an iPhone).
- Go to Devices linked.
- Tap on the browser or device you want to leave.
- Hit Log Out.
Use the same steps to log out on all of your devices. After that, try scanning the code again to link a new device. If that doesn’t work, move on to the next step.
10. Turn off your antivirus and browser add-ons
Even though it’s less likely, antivirus software or browser add-ons could also cause WhatsApp Web to not work. Because of this, it is important to rule out these options.
If you use a Chrome extension, like the dark reader extension, to change the theme, you should turn it off first. Sometimes, these extensions change the background of QR codes, so your phone might not be able to scan them correctly. You can turn them on again after you scan the QR code.
In the same way, uninstall the other extensions one by one to find the bad one. Then, shut down your antivirus software. If neither of these solutions works, check to see if the problem is only happening on your account.
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11. Make sure the problem has nothing to do with your WhatsApp account.
The problem might be with your WhatsApp account, not the app or browser. To find out if this is true, log out of your account on your phone, sign into a family member’s account, and link it to WhatsApp Web in the same web browser.
If everything works fine, the problem could be with your account. In that case, you can tell WhatsApp what’s going on.
How to Let WhatsApp Know What’s Wrong
Follow these simple steps to let WhatsApp know about a problem:
- Open WhatsApp.
- Tap the top-right corner where there are three vertical dots.
- Go to Settings, then Help, then Contact Us.
- Write down all the details of your problem and make sure the box for “Include device information?” is checked. (Optional).
- Tap Next, and then tap the button that says “Send my question to WhatsApp Support.”
If this doesn’t solve the problem, you can send an email to email@example.com to get help. Don’t expect a quick answer, though.
Scan the code and get back on WhatsApp Web
We hope that the things on the list helped you scan the QR code and get back on WhatsApp Web. If nothing else works, you should send an email or report the problem to WhatsApp through the mobile app.