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YouTube TV Local Channels Not Working (Why & How To Fix It)

YouTube TV has replaced standard cable television in the modern cordless world. You get access to many cable and premium channels, and that includes local programming. However, local channel glitches are somewhat common and frustrating. So, what should you do when YouTube TV local channels are not working?

Change your home area on YouTube TV if local channels are not working. You must also change your current playback area to access local channels when you travel to another location. Otherwise, local channels simply may not work because there is a channel outage, and you must wait for the network to fix the problem.

Avoid altering your location with a VPN on YouTube TV, or else local channels won’t work. Follow along as we explore why YouTube TV local channels are not working and highlight how to fix the problem.

Why is YouTube TV Not Playing My Local Channels?

Your Home Area is Wrong

YouTube TV gives access to local channels based on your location. This is called your “home area”, and it determines which local channels you can watch. For example, if your home area is set to Baltimore, Maryland, you won’t get local channels from Boise, Idaho.

If you live in Baltimore but your home area is set to Boise, local channels from Baltimore won’t work on YouTube TV. Luckily, it’s easy to manually change your home area from the settings menu. Open YouTube TV, click on your profile icon, and select “settings”.

Click on “Area”, “Home Area”, and “Update Home Area”. YouTube TV will show your location and you must confirm it to update your home area. Now, the local channels on YouTube TV should work. You can also use the same method to change your home area on your phone or PC.

Device Location Settings Error

Like many apps, YouTube TV monitors your location if you enable location permissions. Location permissions are necessary for local channels to work on YouTube TV. If local channels are not working on YouTube TV it could be because your location permissions timed out or were disabled.

Location errors can also occur if you travel to another location and watch YouTube TV on the same device as usual. This can confuse YouTube TV because the app will recognize your location and notice it’s different from your home area. You will lose access to the local channels you’re used to if you travel somewhere that channel doesn’t broadcast.

Luckily, you can manually solve this error if you change your playback area. Open settings, click “Area”, and scroll down to “Current Playback Area”. You won’t be able to access the local channels from your hometown, but you will be able to watch the local channels in your travel destination.

You are Using a VPN

VPNs are comforting because of the privacy protection they offer, but they don’t always mix well with YouTube TV. However, that is only if you manually change your location with a VPN. Many people change their location with a VPN to access different shows on streaming services or protect their data.

If you are using a VPN at home and local channels are not working, simply disable your VPN. You can still use a VPN with YouTube TV, just avoid changing your location or local channels won’t work.

TV Channel Outage

If local channels aren’t working on YouTube TV, it may have nothing to do with YouTube, your location, or your device. You can tell this is the case if you are watching YouTube TV at home and everything works except for a specific local channel. This indicates that the local channel is experiencing an outage, and you must wait for the channel to fix the problem.

So, Why Are Local Channels Not Working on YouTube TV?

If local channels are not working on YouTube TV, it may be because your home area is set to the wrong location. This can also happen if you travel to a different city or state without adjusting the playback area on YouTube TV. You can only access local channels on YouTube TV when you are within the broadcasting range.