How To Fix Outlook Search Not Working?

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How To Fix Outlook Search Not Working?

Are you having issues with Outlook search? If it is not working correctly, finding specific emails or documents may become increasingly challenging and frustrating if used for both work and personal purposes. In this article we’ll look at reasons why your Outlook search may not be functioning as intended while offering seven quick solutions to restore its functionality.

Reasons Why Outlook Search May Not Work

There can be various causes why the Outlook search feature might be nonfunctional, some of which include:

One of the primary causes of Outlook search not working correctly is due to a corrupted search index, or database that stores all your emails and Outlook items. When this component becomes corrupted, search functionality becomes impaired and problems occur with retrieving emails and items stored within Outlook.

Outlook Is Outdated

Outdated software can lead to all sorts of issues, including search problems with Outlook. To keep yourself safe from potential search issues and ensure the best search performance for your documents and messages, ensure your Outlook is up-to-date by regularly downloading updates.

Overcrowded Inbox

A mailbox filled with many emails and attachments may cause its search function to slow or stop working altogether, reducing efficiency for searching purposes.

Third-Party Add-Ins

Third-party add-ins may also cause issues with Outlook search, and their incompatibility or conflicts could impact search.

Disable Windows Search Service

The Windows Search Service is essential for Outlook search to function optimally; its absence can cause severe disruptions with its feature. If it is disabled, however, issues with it could ensue and make searching inaccessible altogether.

Anti-Virus Software

Antivirus software may obstruct Outlook search. If it is interfering with this function, configure it so it excludes Outlook from being scanned.

Other Technical Concerns

There could be other technical issues with your computer or Outlook installation that are causing the search feature to malfunction, so it is wise to perform regular maintenance checks to update any available patches, resolve technical issues and ensure that it works effectively.

If your Outlook search feature is misbehaving, there are some quick solutions you can try if it stops functioning as intended. Here are seven potential fixes.

Rebuild Search Index

To rebuild the search index and fix issues related to corrupted indexes, navigate to Outlook Options > Search > Indexing Options > Advanced > Rebuild. Although this process may take time, it often solves search issues quickly.

Check for Updates

It is essential that your Outlook stays up-to-date, so take the necessary steps to update and install any available patches to avoid potential search issues.

Reduce Your Mailbox Size

If your mailbox is too large, it can cause issues with the search feature. Try reducing the size of your mailbox by archiving or deleting old emails.

Disable Third-Party Add-Ins

Third-party add-ins can cause conflicts that affect the search feature. Try disabling any third-party add-ins and see if the search feature starts working correctly.

Enable Windows Search Service

The Windows Search Service is required for Outlook search to function correctly. If this service is disabled, enable it to avoid potential search issues.

Configure Anti-Virus Software

Anti-virus software can interfere with Outlook search. Configure your anti-virus software to exclude Outlook from its scanning activities.

Troubleshoot Technical Issues

If none of the above solutions work, there may be other technical issues with your computer or Outlook installation.


having trouble with your Outlook search function can be frustrating and time-consuming. However, by understanding the common reasons why Outlook search may not be working and applying the quick fixes we’ve outlined in this article, you can get your search feature up and running again in no time. Remember to check for updates, reduce the size of your mailbox, disable any third-party add-ins, and troubleshoot technical issues if needed. By following these steps, you can keep your Outlook search working correctly and avoid future search-related problems.

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