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10 Ways to Fix 'Outlook Not Receiving Emails' Error

Ever felt that sinking feeling when you're expecting an important email, only to realize it never made it to your Outlook inbox?

You're not alone.

In fact, 99% of users reportedly check their email daily, and 58% do it first thing in the morning.

Imagine waking up to an empty, faulty inbox, a sudden interruption in your email flow that can be more than just an inconvenience. It can disrupt your entire workflow!

This article will cover all possible reasons and solutions for Outlook not receiving external emails. Let's begin!

Why Am I Not Receiving Emails Outlook?

The 'Outlook Not Receiving Emails error can feel like a maze without a map. Here are a few reasons it might be happening:

1. Network Issues

First, a shaky internet connection can be the silent culprit behind email delivery woes.

Outlook may need help synchronizing and retrieving new emails if your internet connection is stable. Ensure a stable connection to troubleshoot this aspect of the problem.

It may seem obvious, but we often panic too much before looking at whether our data plan has expired or the internet service is down.

2. Configuration Problems

Incorrect or outdated email settings can lead to disruptions in your inbox. Verify that your Outlook account settings are accurate and up-to-date.

Ensure your incoming and outgoing server settings align with your email provider's recommendations.

3. Storage Limit Exceeded

Your mailbox, like a physical mailbox, needs more space.

If your inbox is brimming with emails and attachments, you might be hitting your storage limit. This can prevent new emails from being received. Take a moment to declutter your mailbox by archiving or deleting unnecessary emails and attachments.

4. Outdated Outlook Version

An updated version of Outlook may need more crucial updates and bug fixes. Ensure you use the latest software version to benefit from improvements that address compatibility issues and enhance overall performance.

Additional factors contributing to the issue might involve:

  • A system component, such as a firewall, could obstruct incoming mail.
  • Emails are directed to the spam folder rather than the primary inbox.
  • Your email account may need to be more seamlessly synchronized with Outlook.
  • Incorrectly entered account credentials or configuration details could be the culprit.
  • Outlook's server might be experiencing downtime, or the Email client could be temporarily unavailable.
  • An Outlook plugin might be triggering the problem.
  • Malware could have compromised Outlook data on your system.

10 Ways to Fix Outlook Not Receiving Emails

Now, let's explore 10 actionable solutions to get your Outlook back on track!

1. Check the Junk Folder

Open your Outlook account and navigate to the 'Junk Email' folder.

Legitimate emails can sometimes be mistakenly marked as junk. Regularly checking and marking non-junk emails ensures that future correspondence from these sources lands directly in your inbox.

2. Switch from Offline Mode

Microsoft provides a convenient feature known as "Work Offline." When activated, this setting disconnects you from the server, preventing the reception of new messages. It serves as a helpful way to enjoy some peace after a demanding workday.

However, when you're ready to access your latest emails, you must disable the offline mode in Outlook. So, make sure to check your online status.

To bring Outlook back online, click the "Go Online" button at the top of your screen. Wait till Outlook refreshes itself, allowing you to resume receiving your latest emails.

3. Edit Filter Settings

To simplify email organization, Outlook allows filtering to our inboxes. However, you may have previously set a filter and need to remember it.

Navigate to your Outlook's inbox filters and eliminate any unwanted options. Go to "Filter" then "Sort by" and opt to sort emails by date. This ensures you can easily identify and access recent emails that the filter may have unintentionally blocked.

4. Clear Cache

A cluttered cache can impede the smooth functioning of Outlook. Clearing the cache removes unnecessary data, promoting efficient email processing. Navigate to the 'File' tab, select 'Options', and under 'Advanced', click on 'Clean Auto-Complete List'.

Pro tip

The simplest way to carry out these commands is by using Outlook command switches. Check out our complete guide here!

5. Go Through the Blocked Users List

Check your blocked users list and unblock any essential contacts.

Accidentally blocking important contacts can prevent their emails from reaching your inbox. Reviewing and unblocking ensures you receive emails from crucial sources.

Log in to your Outlook account to view your blocked users. Navigate to Settings and open Junk Email. Here, you'll find "Blocked senders and domains." Check if the email address of the sender appears on this list. If it does, be sure to remove it.

6. Remove Existing Outlook Rules

Outlook's rules automate various email tasks, but sometimes, a rule intended for efficiency might inadvertently divert your messages to an unfamiliar folder.

To access and manage your Outlook rules, Click the File tab at the top of Outlook. Select Manage Rules & Alerts on the Info tab on the subsequent screen.

Under Email Rules, you'll find a list of rules you've created. Identify the rule for modifying incoming emails and uncheck the box next to it. Or disable all rules and structure them again.

7. Clear Multiple Accounts

Outlook allows us to link up to 20 email accounts by default conveniently. However, If you have multiple email accounts linked, ensure that none are causing conflicts. Remove redundant or inactive accounts.

Multiple accounts can sometimes lead to conflicts or synchronization issues. Clearing unnecessary accounts ensures a smoother email experience.

To address this, navigate to the "Accounts" and then "Connected Accounts" section to review the list of linked accounts. Identify and remove any email accounts that are no longer active.

8. Check Storage Limit

Clean your mailbox by archiving or deleting old emails, attachments, or items you no longer need. Exceeding your mailbox storage limit can prevent new emails from being received. Clearing space ensures a continuous flow of incoming emails.

9. Update Outlook Version

This is one of the most commonly overlooked reasons for 'Outlook Not Receiving Emails'; ensure you are using the latest version of Outlook. Regular updates include bug fixes and improvements that can resolve compatibility issues, ensuring seamless email delivery.

10. Still Not Working?

None of the above solutions worked for you?

We may be down to our last resort at this point. This can be a direct issue with Outlook's service or your Profile that could have been corrupted, attacked by malware, or malfunctioned due to a plugin.

Here's your final solution to this problem:

10.1. Outlook Downtime:

Microsoft servers are renowned for their reliability and infrequent downtime. But there are still times when it's simply not working. You can confirm that in 3 ways:

  • Visit the Microsoft 365 Service Status page. If you observe a red or yellow symbol next to, it indicates Microsoft is aware of an issue.
  • Log in to Twitter and search for #Outlookdown. Recent tweets using this hashtag can provide insights into ongoing issues reported by other users.
  • Use Down Detector to see if anyone has reported issues with Outlook. Collaborative platforms aggregate user reports, offering a broader perspective on the current status of Outlook.

10.2. Create a New Profile

If it's not Outlook, it's your account.

Profile corruption can be a root cause of persistent issues. Creating a new profile ensures a fresh start, often resolving complex problems. The most effective method for addressing a corrupt Outlook profile is to discard the old one and create a new one.

To create a fresh Outlook profile, navigate to your account settings and proceed to the Profiles section.

Click the + sign to initiate a new profile, assign it a name, and click Create. Incorporate your email account into the new profile, then restart Outlook to transition to your updated profile seamlessly.

Why are my Outlook Emails not Coming Through or Sending?

While we've discussed Outlook 365 not receiving emails automatically, it's also crucial to understand potential issues with sending emails from Outlook.

Here are a few considerations and solutions if you're facing both issues and can't solve the sending error:

  • Outlook Send-out Limits: Outlook imposes daily sending limits. Check if you've exceeded these limits and wait until the next day to send more emails. This is often true for marketing and business accounts with large-scale email campaigns or internal communications.
  • Attachment File Limits: Large attachments are prevented from being sent in Outlook. Compress files or use file-sharing services for larger attachments. You can only send one attachment to one email simultaneously, which might be why your emails are not going through.
  • Encryption and Safety: Ensure that your email content or attachments do not violate security protocols, causing the email to be blocked. Also, adhere to the privacy and safety regulations of Outlook to ensure your email campaigns are being trusted.