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How To Troubleshooting PHP Errors In WordPress?

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How To Troubleshooting PHP Errors In WordPress?


WordPress is a widely used content management system (CMS) that powers millions of websites worldwide. It provides a user-friendly interface and a plethora of plugins and themes that allow users to customize their websites without any coding knowledge. However, like any other software, WordPress can encounter errors, especially related to PHP, the scripting language that WordPress is built upon. In this article, we will guide you through troubleshooting common PHP errors in WordPress and provide solutions to fix them effectively.

1. Understanding PHP Errors

Before diving into the troubleshooting process, it’s essential to grasp the nature of PHP errors. PHP errors occur when the server encounters issues while processing PHP code. They can manifest in various forms, such as syntax errors, fatal errors, warnings, and notices. These errors can cause your WordPress site to malfunction or become inaccessible.

2. Enabling Debugging

To start troubleshooting PHP errors in WordPress, you need to enable debugging. This feature provides valuable information about the errors, making it easier to pinpoint their sources. To enable debugging, access your WordPress installation’s root directory and locate the “wp-config.php” file. Open the file in a text editor and add the following lines of code:

define( 'WP_DEBUG', true );
define( 'WP_DEBUG_LOG', true );
define( 'WP_DEBUG_DISPLAY', false );
@ini_set( 'display_errors', 0 );

3. Identifying the Error Types

Once debugging is enabled, you may encounter different types of PHP errors. Here are some common ones:

Syntax Errors

Syntax errors occur when there are mistakes in the PHP code, such as missing semicolons or brackets. These errors can be found in the “error_log” file within the “wp-content” directory.

Fatal Errors

Fatal errors are severe issues that prevent the script from executing further. They often result from incompatible plugins, themes, or insufficient memory. The error message will appear on your website, providing a clue to the problem’s source.

Warnings and Notices

Warnings and notices are less severe than fatal errors but still indicate potential issues. These errors won’t break your site but should be addressed to ensure smooth functioning.

4. Checking the Error Log

The error log is a valuable resource in identifying the root cause of PHP errors. To access it, log in to your hosting account and navigate to the “File Manager” or use an FTP client. Look for the “error_log” file in the “wp-content” directory. Open the file to view the recorded errors and their timestamps.

5. Deactivating Plugins and Themes

Conflicts between plugins or themes can often trigger PHP errors. To check if a plugin or theme is causing the issue, deactivate them one by one and check if the error persists after each deactivation. This process will help identify the culprit.

6. Updating PHP Version

An outdated PHP version might also lead to errors. Ensure that your WordPress site is running on the latest stable PHP version compatible with your plugins and themes. You can update PHP through your hosting provider’s control panel.

7. Verifying File Permissions

Incorrect file permissions can restrict the server’s access to necessary files, leading to PHP errors. Make sure that the files and directories in your WordPress installation have the appropriate permissions. Generally, folders should have a permission of 755, and files should be set to 644.

8. Memory Limit Issues

Insufficient memory allocation can trigger PHP errors, especially when running complex plugins or themes. Increase the PHP memory limit in the “wp-config.php” file by adding the following line:

define( 'WP_MEMORY_LIMIT', '256M' );

9. Reinstalling WordPress Core Files

If none of the above solutions work, consider reinstalling the WordPress core files. First, back up your website and database, and then download the latest WordPress version from wordpress.org. Upload the files to your server, overwriting the existing ones.


Troubleshooting PHP errors in WordPress can be challenging, but with the right approach, you can identify and resolve the issues efficiently. Remember to enable debugging, check the error log, and perform systematic checks to pinpoint the problem. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can keep your WordPress site running smoothly and error-free.

Need Professional Help?

Even though WordPress is a powerful CMS platform, it is not without its flaws and occasional bugs. We trust that the solutions provided in this article will be adequate to address your concerns and resolve any errors you may encounter.

However, if you still have any questions regarding the aforementioned WordPress errors or if you require expert assistance to fix any issues on your WordPress site, please feel free to reach out to us! We are here to help and provide the support you need. Don’t hesitate to contact us for a seamless and error-free WordPress experience.


How can I enable debugging in WordPress?

To enable debugging, add the necessary lines of code to the "wp-config.php" file. This will provide valuable information about PHP errors.

What should I do if I encounter a fatal error?

If you encounter a fatal error, deactivate all plugins and themes to identify the source of the problem.

Why is it essential to update PHP?

Updating PHP ensures you have the latest features and security patches, reducing the risk of PHP errors.

Can file permissions cause PHP errors?

Yes, incorrect file permissions can restrict the server's access to necessary files, leading to PHP errors.

Is it possible to troubleshoot PHP errors without coding knowledge?

While coding knowledge can be helpful, following this guide can help you troubleshoot PHP errors in WordPress without advanced coding skills.

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