How can I reset my Google Chromecast?

Here's how to restart or factory reset your Google Chromecast

Google changed the device-to-TV scene with Chromecast, but as with all technology, problems can arise. At some point, you may need to restart or factory reset your Chromecast. While these options are slightly hidden to prevent accidental resets, it's a straightforward and easy process.

It is worth noting that here a reboot and a reset have two very different results. A harmless reboot will shut down and restart the Chromecast, while resetting it will erase all user information and make the Chromecast seem like you've just taken it out of the box.

Here's how to restart or reset your Chromecast from the Google Home app

If you already have a Chromecast - be it first generation or second generation - you undoubtedly have the Google Home app as it is required to first set up the device. The reboot or reset process is the same whether you're using iOS or Android, although the menus look a little different of course. I'm using an Android device for this tutorial, but you should be able to follow along with your iPhone or iPad without any problems.

First, make sure your Chromecast is turned on and connected to the network. If the device is being powered by an AC adapter attached to the wall, the TV should not be on (although this is probably still a good idea so you know it is responding appropriately). However, if you are powering it from a USB port on your TV, the device will likely need to be turned on before the Chromecast turns on.

Once your TV is on, launch the Google Home app, tap the Devices button in the top right corner on your phone or tablet. If you have multiple Google Cast devices, just scroll until you find the Chromecast you want to restart or reset. Tap the three-dot overflow menu in the top right corner of the Chromecast card. It should display the same picture that is currently on your TV. This is called the "background".

To restart the Chromecast, simply tap on the "Restart" option. Dead easy.

To factory reset the Chromecast, tap the Settings button. Then tap on the three dot menu in the upper right corner and select “Factory Reset”.

Whichever you choose, you will get a confirmation popup confirming that you want to run this command. When you're sure you want to do this, just tap OK. The device does its job. If you choose to restart, it'll be up and running again in minutes.

If you are performing a factory reset, it will take a few minutes to fully reset the device and it will restart. You can either unplug it (if you want to sell it) or set up the device from scratch.

Here's how to factory reset your Chromecast right from the device

If you can't access your Chromecast through the Google Home app, you'll need to take a hardware-based approach.

There is no "real" way to reboot the device from just one physical device. If you need to restart it, just unplug it and plug it back in. It's kind of a choppy solution, but it does the job.

If you need to do a factory reset, you're in luck: Google has set up a hard reset button for both first and second generation Chromecasts so you can easily perform a factory reset. Regardless of what model you have, the process is the same, which makes it even easier.

The first thing you need to do is physically access the device. That means pulling out the TV and digging around behind it. I'm so sorry.

Once you have the Chromecast in hand - still plugged in and connected to the TV! - Press the only physical button on the side of the device for about eight seconds. The Chromecast's indicator light will blink while you hold the button - slowly at first, then faster as the reset approaches. When the light is on again, you can let go. The Chromecast will restart and reset.

CONNECTED:Here's how to set up your new Chromecast

After restarting, you can pull the power plug if you want to remove it. Otherwise just go ahead and set up again.

The Chromecast is a simple device with a lot of really handy under the hood. It's always good to know how to restart or reset your device should you need to, so you can get that brilliant little stick back into working order as quickly as possible.