Why Android Auto Keeps Disconnecting?

When you’re heading to work, going out for a night on the town, or driving on a long road trip, software like Android Auto makes things many times more enjoyable, but it also makes things safer. Drivers don’t need to turn to their phones when a notification comes in since Google Assistant will simply read it out for you.

According to Google, there are 150 million cars out there running Android Auto, a huge number. Of course, the more people who use a product or service, the more likely that some of them will run into some kind of annoying issue.

However, Android Auto can become a headache when you run into problems, like when Android Auto disconnects continually. You might try everything you can think of, yet it will keep disconnecting. For some people, it’s a major annoyance. Still, if you need the navigation features, you might find yourself repeatedly reconnecting until you want to scream!

So, suppose you’ve been asking yourself why Android Auto keeps disconnecting. In that case, I’m glad to tell you why you might be facing that issue, plus a whole bunch of fixes you can try to stop it from happening. Hopefully, this will prove a massive help, so let’s get into it!

Do you have a particular question about learning why Android Auto keeps disconnecting? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page. 

Possible reasons why Android Auto keeps disconnecting

Software is complex. A single line of code going wrong can result in many bugs, which is annoying for the end-user. Not only that, but for software that requires some kind of hardware interface. E.g., Android Auto needs to be connected to your smartphone. There can be even more issues.

As a result, there are a lot of reasons why you might have Android Auto disconnecting in your car. Here are some of them that I’ve conveniently listed below for you:

  1. A problem with the physical connection between the phone and the infotainment system, such as when there’s an issue with the USB port of the infotainment system or the USB cable connecting it to the phone.
  2. A software issue, either with the operating system of the Android device or the Android Auto app. However, there can also be other minor software issues that might be solved by reinstalling or restarting.
  3. A poor internet connection can result in ongoing Android Auto issues when it cannot access the internet as it should.
  4. Compatibility issues with the smartphone or the infotainment system.
  5. Aggressive background closing of apps by the Android OS may close Android Auto while it is being used. This might occur when a feature such as power-saving mode is turned on.

How to fix Android Auto disconnecting issue?

Even though there are a lot of reasons why Android Auto keeps disconnecting from your car, there are even more possible solutions. This is great because I bet that at least one of these will fix any issues you’re facing with the app. So just take a look at all the possible fixes below! I bet that you’ll find the solution you need there, so let’s get right into it.

Restart your Android Smartphone

Do you know the popular recommendation when you call in for tech support for pretty much anything? “Have you turned it off and then on again?”. It might sound useless at times, but a simple restart can fix many issues that you face with technology.

Hold down the power button until the Power Off menu shows to restart your Android smartphone. Select “Restart,” and that’s all you might need to do to fix Android Auto crashes. 

Update Android Auto

In some instances, Android Auto crashing might result from a bad line in the code that creates a bug. In these cases, you don’t have much power over it. Still, the developers are typically looking for bugs and fixing them all the time.

So, by updating the application, you might be getting new bug fixes. You can easily update the application by going to the Google Play Store, tapping your profile icon in the top-right corner, then selecting “Manage apps & device.” 

Tap the “Updates available” entry and press the “Update” button beside Android Auto. If you don’t see it in the list, you’re likely on the latest version already.

Update Android OS Version

Issues with your Android OS can interfere with how certain apps work. For that reason, they might run into bugs and unexpected issues. In the case of Android Auto, this can manifest in Android Auto issues.

You can easily update your OS from the device settings if an update is available. First, go to Settings, then there should be an option for “Software Update.” You can check for an update here and install it.

Update Google Play services

Google Play Services is the app responsible for taking care of the integration of Google apps on your phones, such as Android Auto, Maps, and more. Many people don’t know it, but you can update Google Play Services. 

  1. Open “Settings.”
  2. Go to “Apps.”
  3. Search for Google Play Services in the list and select it.
  4. Scroll to the bottom and tap “App Details.” This will take you to the Google Play Store.
  5. If the button doesn’t say “Update,” then you’re already on the latest version.

Check Android Auto compatibility of smartphone and car

By making sure that your phone and car are fully compatible with Android Auto, particularly when using it wirelessly, you can avoid Android Auto crashes in some cases.

You can check for the cars and stereo systems that support Android Auto here. Your smartphone supports Android Auto if it runs on Android 11, a Pixel or Galaxy phone on Android 10, or a Samsung S8, S8+, or Note 8.

Clear Android Auto cache and data

Clearing the cache and data for the Android Auto app can help get rid of minor glitches. Fortunately, clearing the cache is pretty easy.

Go to the Apps section in the Settings app and find the Android Auto application from the list. You have to press the “Clear Cache” and “Clear Data” buttons from here. Note that they might be under a subsection called “Storage.”

Use a more reliable internet connection

When you’re dealing with Android Auto crashing all the time, sometimes you just need to connect to a more reliable internet connection. Normally, this would be Wi-Fi, but it’s not practical to use a Wi-Fi connection in the car! If you’ve got someone else with you, you can try using their cellular data instead of on another mobile provider!

Replace USB cable

For wired connections to Android Auto, the USB cable is one of the major physical reasons why Android Auto keeps disconnecting. You might notice that you need the phone to be in a specific position before it even connects in the first place.

In these instances, bumps and other movements may cause the phone to disconnect from the infotainment system. Getting a new USB cable or using another can help.

Check USB port on infotainment system

Like a bad USB cable, a bad USB port will manifest very similarly. So you can try to clean out the USB port when the car is switched off.

Turn Off power-saving mode

Virtually all newer Android devices have a Power-Saving Mode that is easy to turn on and off. However, when switched on, it may result in a more aggressive closing of apps in the background. That can include Android Auto. This will result in Android Auto issues.

It differs between Android phones, as some of them have a quick tile for Power-Saving Mode, and you’ll have to delve into the battery options for others. It shouldn’t be too hard to find, though.

Use Android Auto wired instead of wireless

Not all phones support wireless Android Auto. For instance, you need a 5GHz Wi-Fi compatible phone, which not all of them are. As long as you’re using a good USB cable, wired Android Auto is more reliable!

Reinstall Android Auto 

Finally, you might simply need to uninstall and reinstall the app when dealing with frequent Android Auto disconnects. 

Access the app from the Apps menu in the device settings. You can press “Uninstall” here to get rid of it. Once this is done, just follow this link to reinstall it!

Credits: Thanks for the photo to Canva.

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