9 Ways To Fix Google Photos Not Backing Up Your Photos

Google Photos is a fantastic way to back up all the photos that have piled up in your phone’s memory. But if you can’t get Google Photos to start the backup, or the render process is stuck at “Backing up 1 of x photos,” it can feel like your backup has hit a dead end.

This article will go over common problems encountered when backing up photos to Google Photos from Android or iOS operating systems.

Why Google Photos Isn’t Backing Up Your Photos and 10 Ways to Fix It


1. Use The Google Photos App

Let’s start with potentially the most straightforward solution out there, switching to the app. If you’re attempting to back up your photos from your phone’s web browser, switching to the app could easily solve the problem.

While it’s not a guaranteed fix, it’s definitely worth a shot since the rest of the instructions for solving this problem will be looked at from the perspective of using the app.

2. Check Backup Status

Once you’re logged into the app, try rendering your photos again. If you’re still running into a problem, try toggling your account photo or initials in the upper right-hand corner. If any of the following messages are displayed in the menu that pops up, the solution to your problem could be simple and straightforward:

  • Waiting for connection – Change your Wi-Fi settings or connect to a different network
  • Preparing back up – Backup is preparing and will begin shortly
  • Backing up – Backup is in process
  • Backup complete – Backup already finished
  • Backup is off – Change Google Photo settings to turn backup on

It’s also worth mentioning that many Google Photos users have solved their backup problems by switching internet connections even without the “Waiting for connection” message. So go ahead and give that a try before moving on to these other solutions.

3. Kill the App

If none of the recommended solutions so far have worked for you, perhaps try killing the app and opening it back up.

You might be surprised how often this can solve simple problems with an app. Sometimes, all an app needs is a little reboot to get working again.

This is the first spot in this article where the solutions will differ between iOS and Android. If you’re on an Apple device, killing the app is easy. Just double-tap your home button, and all of your running apps will be displayed. To kill the Google Photos app, scroll over to it and swipe up.

On Android, the app killing process can vary based on what device you have and what version of Android it’s running. Usually, running apps can be displayed by clicking the button in the lower-left hand corner of the device that looks like two overlapping squares, or by swiping up from the bottom of the screen. The apps can be killed by swiping them off the screen.

4. Does Your Phone Have Enough Battery?

It may seem irrelevant, but with certain battery-saving settings on your device, sometimes backup will be postponed until you have a certain amount of battery life on your phone. So making sure your phone is charged up and trying to restart the backup process is one possible solution.

5. Restart Your Device

Another easy potential solution worth trying before the explanations get more complicated is restarting your phone.

It’s not clear why a reboot can fix so many problems with electronic devices, but it does. So maybe store this one away in your memory bank and remember a device restart can fix an array of different problems.

6. Clear App Data and Cache

This is where it starts to get a bit more complicated. However, this solution will apply more to those who have had the Google Photos app downloaded on their phone for a longer time. So if you only downloaded the app after reading this article, this solution likely isn’t going to apply to you. However, it can’t hurt to give it a shot if you really want to try it.

To do this, go to your device settings, then go to apps and click on Google Photos. Select storage and then click clear cache and clear data. On some devices, this will be the same button and will say something like clear cache and data.


7. Does Your Device have Enough Storage Space on it?

As backward as it may sound, Google Photos needs your device to have sufficient storage space to back them up. So if the reason you’re trying to back up your photos is because your internal storage is full, it can cause Google Photos to run into problems or take a long time to back your files up.

The solution here is going to be patience. Or manually uploading some of your photos to the Google Photos app, which we’ll talk more about in the next section, and then deleting them off your phone to give Google enough storage space to work with and begin doing it automatically.


9. Manually Upload Your Photos

If all else fails, you may have to upload all your photos manually to the app. It’s a tedious and time-consuming task, but if you need your photos backed up and none of the previous solutions are working for you, it’s going to be your best option.

It can be done by going through your photos folder on your phone, selecting an image you want to upload, clicking share, and then share to Google Photos.

10. Check Your File Types (And Skip Long Videos)

Google Photos is one of the best photo backup options out there, considering the amount of space they allow users for free. But there is a limit on what they will accept. The software will not accept photos over 75MB or videos larger than 10GB. This shouldn’t be a problem for most phones, but it’s at least worth mentioning.

Final Thoughts

If you ran into the problem of Google Photos not backing up photos, odds are you’re bound to find a solution in this article. If you didn’t, it could be a problem with Google’s servers and may just require you giving it another shot tomorrow

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