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Is there a reset button on Alexa?

Alexa, Amazon’s voice-controlled intelligent personal assistant, has become an integral part of many households. With Alexa built into devices like the Amazon Echo, it’s easy to get information, play music, control smart home devices and more using just your voice. But like any gadget, Alexa can sometimes act up or get confused. When that happens, some users wonder if there is a way to reset the device and start fresh. The short answer is yes, there are a few different reset options available depending on the issue you’re experiencing.

Soft reset

A soft reset is the simplest way to reset your Alexa device. It’s designed to clear up minor glitches without deleting your personal data or customized settings. To do a soft reset on an Amazon Echo, simply unplug the power cable for about 20 seconds, then plug it back in. For other Alexa devices like an Echo Dot or Echo Show, you can perform a soft reset by pressing and holding the Action button (the button with the microphone icon) for 20 seconds until the light ring turns orange, then blue. This will reboot the device. A soft reset is useful when Alexa is unresponsive or having trouble understanding commands.

Factory reset from settings menu

If a soft reset doesn’t fix your issues, the next step is a factory reset. This returns the Alexa device to its original out-of-the-box state. There are a couple ways to factory reset an Alexa device – one is through the settings menu in the Alexa app. To do this:

  1. Open the Amazon Alexa app on your smartphone.
  2. Go to Devices and select your Alexa device.
  3. Tap Settings.
  4. Select Device Options.
  5. Tap Reset to Factory Defaults.

Follow the on-screen prompts to confirm the factory reset. This will sign you out, delete all your personal data like voice recordings and reminders, and remove any skills you’ve enabled. But it retains your WiFi network connection so you won’t have to completely re-setup the device.

Factory reset using buttons on device

You can also factory reset your Alexa device manually using the buttons on the unit:

For Amazon Echo:

  1. Unplug the power cable.
  2. Press and hold the microphone off and volume down buttons.
  3. With those buttons pressed, plug the power cable back in.
  4. Keep holding the buttons until the light ring turns orange, then blue.
  5. Release the buttons.

For Echo Dot/Echo Show:

  1. Press and hold the Action button for 25 seconds.
  2. The light ring will turn blue, then orange.
  3. Keep holding until the light turns off and on again.
  4. Release the Action button.

This manual factory reset does the same thing as resetting through the app settings. The main difference is you don’t need your phone or a WiFi connection. So it can be useful if you’re having connectivity issues.

Reset to factory settings via Alexa voice command

The latest generation Echo devices with Alexa can also be factory reset using just your voice. Just say “Alexa, factory reset” to initiate the reset. Alexa will confirm that you want to erase all your personal content, preferences and signed in accounts. Say yes to continue or no to cancel. If you say yes, Alexa will explain that it’s resetting itself and the process will begin. With older Echo devices without Alexa voice control, use the hardware buttons as described above instead.

Deregister Alexa device

If resetting your Alexa isn’t solving a persistent issue, the nuclear option is deregistering. This severs the connection between the Alexa device and your Amazon account so you can set it up fresh. You’ll have to go through the full setup process again as if it were a brand new device. To deregister an Alexa device:

  1. Open the Alexa app and go to Devices.
  2. Select your Alexa device.
  3. Tap settings, scroll down and select Deregister.
  4. Confirm when prompted.

The Alexa device will now be disconnected from your account. Be aware this deletes all data on the device itself, but not data in the cloud associated with your Amazon account. Deregistering is useful if you want to give your Alexa device to someone else or set it up under a different Amazon account.

Reset doesn’t delete everything

It’s important to understand that factory resetting or deregistering an Alexa device does not delete your entire Alexa account history. Personal data like Alexa voice recordings, smart home device connections, and purchases will still be associated with your Amazon account profile. To fully remove your account details, you need to go to Amazon’s website or contact customer service.

Here are some of the things that will NOT be erased by resetting your Alexa device alone:

  • Your Amazon account login details
  • Associated credit cards or payment methods
  • Alexa voice recordings and transcripts saved in the cloud
  • Smart home and other wireless device connections
  • Music, Audible books or Kindle content
  • Shopping and content purchase history
  • Reminders, alerts, skills and routines associated with your account
  • Preferences like your default Alexa voice

So keep this in mind if your goal is to do a complete wipe of your Alexa and Amazon presence. Resetting the physical Alexa device itself only clears data stored locally on that device.


Having issues with an unresponsive Alexa? Before you throw it against a wall in frustration, try resetting it first. Here’s a quick summary of the different reset options available:

  • Soft reset – Unplug and restart, clears minor glitches
  • Factory reset via app – Wipes device data but keeps WiFi connection
  • Factory reset with buttons – Same as app reset but doesn’t require app or WiFi
  • Factory reset by voice – Newest Alexa devices only, use voice command to reset
  • Deregister device – Disconnects device from Amazon account for fresh setup

Before resetting, remember it won’t delete everything associated with your account. But it’s still an easy first troubleshooting step to revive an unresponsive Alexa. Just be ready to set up your personal info, connections and skills again if you do a full factory reset.