Here are some common reasons why images don’t load.

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Possible Reason #1: Permissions are incorrectly configured

What is it?

Permissions determine who is allowed to interact with your files. There are three access types:

  • User (or owner)
  • Group
  • World (or other)

You can give permission to each access group. There are three different permissions types:

  • Read
  • Write
  • Execute

For more information about permissions and how to use them, go to our File Permissions article. 

Is it happening to me?

Check your permissions for your intended image. To be able to see the image, read must be allowed for the intended access type.

How to fix

Go to the image file’s permissions on your server. Enable read for the intended access group.

Note: When configuring permissions, you should consider the audience and exercise caution.

For example, a business website would not want to give permission for world to write. This would allow anyone to come in and edit the company files.

Possible Reason #2: Your image has been corrupted

What is it?

Cou can happen if you upload it in the wrong way (using ASCII instead of binary).

Sometimes this happens if you rename the file and type in a new extension instead of choosing one. When doing this, the file does not always convert, which will result in a corrupted file.

Is it happening to me?

Try opening the file. If it looks normal, then it probably isn’t corrupted. However, if the file looks like it has changed for the worse, it’s probably corrupted.

How to fix

If you have a different copy of the file stored elsewhere, you’re in luck. You can just get that copy and re-upload it to your server.

However, if your only copy has been corrupted, you will have to start over from scratch.

Possible Reason #3: Your image links are broken

What is it?

Broken links can result in errors or images that won’t display. They occur when a connection cannot be established to the original image file.

Is it happening to me?

Many things can cause broken links:

How to fix

If you think this might be the reason for your images not loading, take a look at our Troubleshooting: Broken Links article.

Possible Reason #4: Your image is too large

What is it?

While you can scale an image down in code, it doesn’t actually make the image smaller. Those who visit the site still have to load the image in its original file size. It will just look smaller once it loads. The larger the image, the longer it takes to load.

Is it happening to me?

Check your images and make sure they are all reasonably sized.

How to fix

To fix, simply resize your image to a smaller size in your preferred photo editor and re-upload it to your server.

Possible Reason #5: You are loading images from a domain/subdomain that is not functioning

What is it?

If you are loading images from a separate domain or subdomain, make sure the domain is still up and running. If the domain is down, then your images will be inaccessible.

Is it happening to me?

If you know your images are linked to a domain/subdomain, you should check the domain/subdomain to make sure it is still functioning.

How to fix

If you check and the domain is down, contact the owner or, if you own it, contact the hosting service. Once the domain is back up, the images should be accessible.

Possible Reason #6: Your CDN is not configured correctly

What is it?

CDN stands for Content Delivery Network. It is a network of servers that deliver web content to users. Users will connect to the CDN server that will give them the fastest load time, which is usually the one closest to them geographically.

Is it happening to me?

If you use CDN for your images, this is a possibility. If you have multiple images from a CDN, check those, too. If none of them load, the CDN may not be configured correctly.

How to fix?

Double check your CDN’s configuration instructions. If you are using pairCDN for WordPress, its instructions are here.

Possible Reason #7: You are linking to unavailable external content

What is it?

External content can be convenient. It’s already on the internet – all you have to do is link to it. Well, sometimes content is taken down or moved. If that happens, you may suddenly find that your links no longer work.

Is it happening to me?

Check the original source. If the image is no longer there, it may have been taken down or moved.

How to fix

If you do enough searching, you may find it again. However, if the image is permanently taken down and there are no duplicates, there isn’t much you can do.

Possible Reason #8: You may have typos in your image code

What is it?

Typos are common, but it can be site-breaking if you have a typo in the wrong place.

Is it happening to me?

Check your image links and double check the periods ( . ) and slashes ( / ). Incorrectly placed periods and slashes are harder to spot than misspellings, so be vigilant when inspecting links that have them.

How to fix

Simply correct the typo. The image should run once its code is correct.