How to Fix Steam Running Slow

Is Steam running slow on your computer?

One of the worst issues you can encounter with Steam is that it runs so slow that you cannot navigate your library anymore. This will prevent you from launching your games, browsing the store, or managing your account. 

In worst cases, even your games are running slow if you’ve launched them from your Steam Library. 

Based on what we know, performance issues on Steam are often caused by an outdated version of the app or a problem with the servers. However, it may also be due to your network connection or operating system. 

Getting this problem on Steam can be frustrating, especially if you have limited time to play your games. Instead of enjoying your favorite shooter, you’re stuck with a game library that is slower than sloths.

To help you out, we’ve decided to make a guide for fixing Steam if it’s running slow on your computer. 

Let’s dive right in!

1. Check Steam Servers. 

Before making any changes to your network or system, you must first diagnose where the problem is coming from. To do this, we suggest using third-party sites like Downdetector, where you can check Steam’s current status. 

Steam Server Status

Since server-related issues can’t be addressed on your end, the only thing you can do if the servers are down is wait for their team to fix the problem. 

However, if there’s nothing wrong with Steam, the issue is on your side. Go to the following method below to start troubleshooting the problem.

2. Restart Steam. 

If Steam is running slow on your computer, try restarting it. This will allow your system to reload Steam’s resources which may have encountered an issue during use or were not initialized the first time correctly. 

Log out of your Steam account and close the app afterward. Once done, wait for around 5 to 10 seconds before re-launching the dedicated desktop app. 

Try using Steam for a few minutes to check if you would still experience performance issues. 

3. Restart Your Computer. 

If restarting Steam was not enough, we suggest rebooting your entire system to reload all your resources. This will also stop unnecessary applications from running in the background, which can also cause other apps to run slow. 

Follow the guide below to restart your Windows PC:

  1. On your computer, go to the Start Menu
  2. After that, access the Power Options tab. 
  3. Finally, click the Restart button to reboot Windows
Restart Windows

Once done, go back to Steam and check if the problem is solved. 

4. Close Background Programs. 

Another reason why Steam or other applications are running slow on your computer is if you don’t have enough resources to run them. To ensure that Steam can function properly, close unnecessary applications in the background to free up system resources. 

Here’s how you can do this: 

  1. First, press the Windows + X keys on your keyboard to access the Quick Menu.
  2. Next, click on Task Manager to launch it. 
  3. Inside the Task Manager, locate the apps that you’re not using. 
  4. Lastly, select an app and hit the End Task button. 
End Background Tasks

Repeat this process until all unnecessary programs are terminated from your system. 

Go back to Steam afterward and see if it’s still running slow. 

5. Run Malwarebytes. 

If you’re running out of system resources all the time, it may indicate that your system is infected by malware or other viruses. 

To rule this out, download Malwarebytes on your computer and use its ‘Full System’ scan feature. This will prompt the tool to search your entire directory for infected files and automatically remove them in the process. 

Malwarebytes is available on all major platforms, including Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS. 

6. Clear Steam’s Cache and Cookies. 

Similar to a web browser, the dedicated Steam app stores caches and cookies to your computer locally. These data are used to improve the performance of Steam when loading up pages or games. 

However, caches and cookies can accumulate over time and slow down Steam. In worst cases, they can get corrupted and cause problems with the dedicated desktop app. 

Check out the steps below to clear Steam’s caches and cookies: 

  1. On your computer, launch the Steam app and access your account. 
  2. After that, click on Steam and select Settings
  3. Inside the Settings, go to the Web Browser tab. 
  4. Now, click on Delete Web Browser Cache and wait for the process to finish. 
  5. Finally, click the Delete All Browser Cookies button. 
Steam running slow

Once done, try using Steam for a few minutes to check if you would encounter performance issues. 

7. Run Steam As Admin. 

Steam may lack the privilege to access essential parts of your operating system, which causes the app to run slow. To fix this, try running Steam as an administrator and see if the problem goes away. 

Check out the steps below to run Steam as an administrator:

  1. First, right-click on Steam on your desktop and choose Properties
  2. Now, go to the Compatibility tab.
  3. Lastly, enable ‘Run this Program as an Administrator’ and hit OK
Steam running slow

After that, launch Steam, access your account and check if the problem is solved. 

8. Disable Proxy Server. 

Having an active proxy server on your computer can cause issues on Steam. It forces the app to work extra hard since proxy servers introduce tunnels through which your internet data flow. There are times that it could improve your network’s performance, but Steam may show weird behavior when proxy servers are turned on. 

Here’s how you can disable proxy servers on Windows: 

  1. On your keyboard, press the Windows + R keys to launch the Run Command
  2. After that, type ‘inetcpl.cpl’ and hit Enter
  3. Now, go to the Connections tab and click on LAN Settings
  4. Finally, enable Automatically Detect Settings and turn off Use Proxy Server
Steam running slow

Once done, go back to Steam and see if its performance improves. 

9. Repair Steam. 

Another thing you can do to fix Steam if it’s running slow is repair its installation files. Luckily, Steam has a built-in tool that checks for corrupted Steam files and replaces them with working files. 

See the steps below to run Steam’s repair tool: 

  1. First, open the Run Command by pressing the Windows + R keys on your keyboard. 
  2. Next, type ‘C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\bin\SteamService.exe /repair’.
  3. Lastly, hit the Enter key or click OK to run the tool. 
Steam running slow

Do note that you may need to change the path above to where your Steam installation files are located. 

Go back to Steam afterward and check if the problem is solved.

10. Report the Problem to Steam. 

If none of the solutions above worked for you, we suggest that you ask the help of the experts. 

Visit Steam Support and contact their team to report the issue with their dedicated desktop app. Provide all the necessary details to help their team assess the situation faster, including your account details. 

Steam running slow

This ends our guide for fixing Steam if it’s running slow on your computer. If you have any questions, please let us know in the comment section, and we’ll be glad to help. 

If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂


  • John Sixto

    John is a staff writer at Saint and comes from a SAP ABAP development background. He has a Bachelors in IT and has been writing since 2018, with over 500 posts published. He loves to build PCs and has a deep curiosity in understanding how different components and configurations work. John spends hundreds of hours at a time, researching and testing the software and apps, before he proceeds to write about it. LinkedIn X (Twitter) Website

    View all posts
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *