Blank White Page

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There are a large number of reasons that your website may be displaying a blank white page. These can range from a simple blank page being called to PHP issues and plugin conflicts.

Unfortunately, the main way you know you have this problem is also the main reason it's so frustrating. There's absolutely nothing there! No error messages or anything of the like to point you in a direction to try and determine what is wrong. We've created this article to help you through some of the common causes the dreaded white screen.


If you turn on WP_DEBUG, you may be able to get an error to help you track the issue or share with support. Open your wp-config.php file using SFTP and look for the line below:

define('WP_DEBUG', false); 

You can turn it on by changing false to true like below.

define('WP_DEBUG', true);

If the line isn't in the file you can add it anywhere above this line.

/* That's all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */

If needed, you can see how to edit the wp-config.php file in this article. 

Once you've turned it on by setting it to true, check the blank page for any errors. If the error references a particular plugin or theme you can contact the plugin or theme's support for further guidance.

Once you're finished, be sure to turn WP_DEBUG off by setting it to false. While it's on, it will display any site errors no matter the severity. For this reason, you should never have it set to true on a production site unless you're currently troubleshooting it.

Empty File

The easiest to fix and most frustrating of all the causes of this is quite simply a blank file being called. This can be a temporary index.html file that was dropped into your /web/content folder or anything else that is calling to a file with nothing in it. When your browser calls the site and it's calling to that blank page with nothing in it, you get nothing out!

In this case, you'll want to determine why that file is blank; did it get put there accidentally and needs to be deleted or did something happen to remove the content and now you'll need to restore from backups or re-upload that file? Once you get rid of or add content to that empty file, things should then start displaying for you.

Memory Limits

Another possible cause of the blank white page is that your WordPress site has hit the memory limits of your hosting. Luckily, we allow you to modify those settings and you can find the way to do so here

Plugin Conflicts

The next possible cause is a plugin creating some havoc or otherwise not playing well with others. The fastest way to get through the resolution is to access your site and disable all of your plugins. There are a few different ways that this can be done and you can find instructions for that here.

Once you've disabled all of the plugins, you will want to slowly reactivate them one at a time so that you can determine which one is triggering the error blank white page.

Theme Issues

If we're continuing down the line, then you should try replacing your current theme with one of the default themes like Twenty Seventeen. There is a detailed article here on resetting your theme to the default.

Once you've changed all of the settings, check your website. If this clears up the whatever the issue was, then you should look at your themes functions.php file. There could be extra spaces at the bottom or you could be using a poorly coded function in your theme’s functions.php file.

Restore Backup

If we get to this stage and you haven't been able to clear this up, then it may be time to consider restoring your site from a backup. There could be corruption in some WordPress core files or something that needs to be resolved by going back in time. If you need to perform the restore, you can follow these instructions for restoring to one of your BackupBuddy backups.

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