How to fix the Error Communicating with Steam Servers issue on Steam

Error, meet fixes.

Image via Steam

Steam may be the most populous PC gaming marketplace, but with so many users comes inevitable, if occasional, instability. If you get the Error Communicating with Steam Servers issue, either the servers themselves are having issues or there’s something wrong with your internets connection to them. Here are a few ways to check and fix the Error Communicating with Steam Servers error.

Wait for the Steam servers to come back online

In most cases, the best way to fix the communication error is to give the servers a little time to stabilize. It’s neither convenient nor desirable, especially if the multiplayer game you were playing requires a Steam connection to function, but these errors rarely take more than an hour to resolve. On Steam Sale days, servers will be back up far quicker. You can always check if the Steam servers are up if you need to know immediately.

Restart the Steam client

Sometimes connection errors are very short-lived, but your client doesn’t recognize that the network is back online. To check if this is the case, exit Steam either through the top-left Steam menu or End Process in Task Manager. Relaunch the client and see if your connection is back.

Change your download region

Steam servers function partially based on the server region you’re using. If you’re getting an error connecting to them, you can try changing the download region in the Steam settings.

  • Select “View” at the top of the Steam client and click “Settings”
  • Navigate to the Downloads sub-page
  • Change your download region by selecting a new one from the Download Region drop down
  • Click OK

Add an exception to your firewall and turn off your VPNs

Both antivirus and VPN software can interfere with the connection to the Steam servers. Both safety measures usually allow you to add an exception so that Steam or other programs can bypass security and access the internet directly. By default, you’ll want to add the following file path as an exception to see if that fixes your connection errors: C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam.

Run Steam as an Administrator

If none of the above worked, you can give Steam higher-level access to your system might do the trick. Exit steam, then find its shortcut, its icon on your Task Bar, or when you search it in the Start Menu, right-click it and select Run as Administrator. You’ll need to verify that’s what you want, then wait for Steam to open and check your connection.