Best 7 Ways to Fix GoDaddy 503 Service Unavailable Easily 2021

{Disclaimer: The post may contain affiliate links that don’t cost you extra.}

A fresh WordPress site runs flawless. By the time, it grows and many errors start to appear.
Don’t worry, it’s natural. Just like that your new car.

Some errors are easily understandable but some are literately like UFOs. 500, 501, 502, 503 are one of them which are hard to understand and painful to fix.

They don’t hint a bit about actual causes, just inform you that there is an error. You have to figure it out by constant work and by giving a lot of time.

We will break them in detail to expose their real reasons with solutions, but at GoDaddy, 503 errors occur a lot. So we will cover it only in the post. Rest will be in the coming posts.

What does 503 Error mean ?

503 server errorThe 503 (Service Unavailable) status code indicates that the server is currently unable to handle the request due to a temporary overload or scheduled maintenance, which will likely be alleviated after some delay.

The server MAY send a Retry-After header field to suggest an appropriate amount of time for the client to wait before retrying the request.

Note: The existence of the 503 status code does not imply that a server has to use it when becoming overloaded. Some servers might simply refuse the connection. – The Internet Engineering Task Force

In nutshell,
1.503 error code is fog or mask over problem, that doesn’t expose the exact cause.
2.In-compatibility issues, low resource, heavy plugins, etc can be the culprit, and need deeper analysis.

Variations of 503 Error

What variation of 503 errors do you get? It depends on server software, server configurations and browsers.
Here are some forms of the error which you can count as an issue.

  • HTTP Error 503
  • HTTP Server Error 503
  • The Server is temporarily unable to service your request due to maintenance downtime or capacity problems. Please try again later.
  • 503 Service Unavailable
  • 503 Service Temporarily Unavailable

How to Fix GoDaddy 503 Error

Since the error seems like Sherlock Holmes’s case. So the reasons are many.503 server error

1.Plugin Issues

In WordPress, plugins provide extra power, extra design and extra scalability. The plugins are made by various developers.

So the nature of coding will be different. It may doesn’t suit your current theme and start causing problems. Sometimes popular plugins occur the issue.

Reasons are –

I.Incompatible code

II.Recent improper speed optimization

III.Using PHP 8

Solutions –

I.Incompatible Code – If some plugins are not compatible, then we have to find the culprits and replace them. But if your website is not accessible at browser, you can follow the below steps.

a.Connect FTP to your server or go to File Manager through GoDaddy cPanel.

b.Head to public_html> wp-content > pluginsPlugins Folder

c.Now rename plugins folder to plugins.old

d.Refresh your site. WordPress won’t find plugins folder, it will deactivate your all activated plugins.

Hope your website is loading.

e.Now activate a single plugin and refresh the web page. Follow the process with the rest plugins.

When your site starts to imply 503 error, then the last activated plugin is the culprit. Replace it.

II. If you’ve done speed optimization recently, It’s higher possibility, your speed expert or you have done something wrong with the important file of plugins.

a.You might have removed crucial codes from the files of plugins to fix unused CSS or JS errors.
b.You might have blocked or lazily loaded jquery files. It will surely malfunction your plugins.jquery plugin

Before removing any code from a plugin, you have to understand if some codes are useless on some pages, but useful on other pages. Removing the code definitely impacts plugin functionality.

So it’s better to use the Perfmatters plugin to stop loading useless code files on specific pages and load on the other pages where these are needed.

Especially for Godaddy site slow, we have a comprehensive speed tutorial, you can checkout.

Every plugin needs js to be workable. But most of the plugins are being made of jQuery. jQuery is a library of various website functions which consist of many JS code lines.

It makes it an easier job for developers, just plug and play. But there is a big drawback, you can’t block them or even lazily load them otherwise it’ll stop and cause problems on your site.

So don’t touch the jQuery urls or replace the plugins with non-jquery plugins.

III.PHP 8- PHP 8 is the latest version. It can give the best performance, security and stability.
But it’s not advisable to use it. Many plugins and themes are not ready for it. So change your php version to 7.4.
If the problem still persists, it’s time to move to the next step.

2.Theme May Be Culprit

You have already ruled out your plugins as a cause of 503 error. Now it’s time to check your theme.
It may be incompatible or you may have blocked some important theme files during speed optimization or using a higher number of PHP version.

Let’s solve it one by one –

Incompatible Issue – If you still can’t access your site, then the process of deactivating the theme will be different than deactivating the plugins.

Otherwise WordPress will show errors like “the theme directory “theme name” does not exist.” or “ERROR: The theme directory is either empty or doesn’t exist. Please check your installation.”

the theme directory does not exist

a.Now access PHPMyadmin through cPanel.

b.Go to wp_options table.

c.Click on the search tab, which is on top.wp options template search

d.Head to option_name, in the value box enter template and hit go.

e.You’ll get info of the current activated theme. Now we have to change it. So in the option_value box write the name of WordPress default theme like twenty-twenty.wp option theme change

Your current theme will change, hopefully the problem will be gone.

In the end of the section, I would advise you don’t block the jQuery file of the theme, follow what I have told you above on the Perfmatters plugin and PHP 8.

3.Low PHP Memory Limit

By default WordPress allots 32MB as memory limit at GoDaddy. This is too tiny for a normal blog. The situation gets even worse whenever you start using heavy plugins like page builders which require a 128 mb memory limit at least and 256 mb for best performance.

Due to low php memory, PHP processes don’t get executed and the server goes down.

So we have to increase the limit. But before doing this, you should ensure sufficient RAM.

For 1 GB RAM only 128 MB can be memory limit, if you increase it, A single php process can eat up whole RAM and kill other php processes. Site will also go down.
1 GB RAM for a normal blog and 2GB RAM for a production website are essential.

Three Ways to Increase PHP Memory Limit

Edit the wp-config.php file

a.Click on public_html

b.Download wp-config.php file.wp config-php

c.Open it in the notepad.

d.add the line before * That’s all, stop editing! Happy blogging. */

define(‘WP_MEMORY_LIMIT’, ‘256M’) and save changes.

e.Now rename already existed wp-config.php file in file manager.

f.Upload the edited one.

Edit the PHP.ini file

If you see PHP.ini file in the root path, you can edit it and set memory_limit=256M

Edit the .htaccess file

If you can’t find the php.ini file, go through the .htaccess file and add the line.

php_value memory_limit 256M

4.Millions row in Table prefix_postmeta

Recently on a client site, row numbers of f8_postmeta was over 9 million and size was about 1GB. On a regular basis, the server had to run the massive rows.millions row in sql table

It took a huge time, consumed the whole 2GB RAM and the php memory limit went to 356M. Frequently the server didn’t respond.

I dug their SQL tables, stumbled upon f8_postmeta with enormous rows.

Meta key “-wp-smpro-smush-data” “-post_views_count” “-ekit_post_views_count” “_yoast_wpseo_content_score” “_jetpack_related_posts_cache” with huge rows but “_kksr_fingerprint_default” was the main evil.

It was created by the KK Star Rating plugin, whenever visitors provided their star reviews.

Generally f8_postmeta stores plugins data, image attachment and payment data. Now check your SQL table via PHPMyadmin.

And keep in mind, whenever you install any plugin, it creates rows in f8_postmeta which won’t get deleted, even after deleting the plugin. And no other optimizer plugin can delete it. Only manually can be done.

So if it is huge, delete it.deleted row in postmeta

How to Delete Million Rows in SQL Table (PHPMYADMIN)

1.Take backup of your MySql table.

2.Access MySql table, search postmeta in containing the word box and choose tableprefix_postmeta, not wp-postmetasearch postmeta

3.Find the meta keys with huge rows and note them down in the notepad.

4.Click on SQL tab and run the command to delete the rowsDelete command in SQL

DELETE FROM f8_postmeta
WHERE meta_key = ‘_kksr_fingerprint_default’

Deleting rows can change the appearance of related elements and working of the plugin also. Watchout.
You can delete rows of deactivated or deleted plugins too.

5.Unconrolled Heartbeat

It is a great feature of WordPress which saves post drafts and shows plugin notifications on a regular basis. So you won’t lose data.
But the API function runs a process in the background regularly which consumes resources.

Generally it beats per 15s-20s. It is a big number for a shared hosting plan. So it can cause the problem, follow the steps to exam.

How to Disable Heartbeat

a.access public_html

b.Go to wp-content>themes>current theme>functions.php and paste the code in the bottom.functions-php

add_action( ‘init’, ‘stop_heartbeat’, 1 );
function stop_heartbeat() {

If the problem is fixed, now you have to optimize the function properly. We can’t stop it for a long time.

How to optimize Heartbeat

We have to alleviate the number of frequent heartbeat API requests per minute. So its impact on the server will be negligible.

a.Activated Perfmatters Plugin

b.Scroll down to Disable Heartbeat in options

c.Choose “Only Allow When Edition Posts/Pages” in Disable Heartbeat and set heartbeat frequency to 60 seconds.Heartbeat Perfmatters

And don’t forget to check the auto-schedule process and cron job, these have also big impacts!, can be detrimental on peak traffic hours.

Try to use an auto schedule for essential only and do the less important task manually.

6.Check CDN

Sometimes CDN causes 503 errors, you should pause it to check what is going on.
If everything is okay. You can take help from the support team of CDN.

Or if you are using Cloudflare, then change SSL to flexible SSL and clear cache.cloudflare flexible SSL

7.Low Server Resource

Regardless of doing all efforts, if the problem is still not fixed. It’s a big indication that the problem is due to low server resources.

As I above have advised you that 1GB RAM for a normal blog and 2 GB RAM for production website is needed. But with GoDaddy’s entry level shared hosting plan, you just get 256-512 MB virtual RAM.

It’s too little.

And every shared hosting is known to throttle their bandwidth and disk space. So that they can sell to as many customers as possible and earn a huge profit.

GoDaddy is one of them. Even they are stagnant to adopt new technology and have blocked many popular performance booster plugins like W3 Total Cache WP Super Cache.

So strange!

That’s why world famous Forbes advice to avoid GoDaddy and iTheme called them poor overcrowded host and gold miner of upsell strategies.

Recently GoDaddy faced massive attacks 1.2 million managed WordPress hosting customer’s data exposed. Lazy Giant couldn’t detect the big attack for 70 days.

Recent reports says, the giant is facing the security issues on regular basis. In may 2020, a data breach affected 28k customers. So unsafe.

Now what do you expect from GoDaddy?

Choose cloud hosting and enjoy peace:-

No need to share your server resource to others
amazing cluster feature which shifts overload to the next available server, that’s how to save websites from going down.
You will get full server resource what mention in plan
Latest technology for web hosting which is the most powerful & speedy performant and robust against hackers and spammers.

Not expensive, it’s cheaper than Godaddy’s higher level shared hosting plan.

GoDaddy Pricing
GoDaddy’s Higher Renewal Shared Hosting Pricing
cloudways plan
Cloudways Fix Pricing for Cloud Plan

So do you think, you need to be technical. No No. You are just a few clicks away from hosting your first website on cloud.

Cloudways simplify cloud hosting for beginners. You can host your blog at World’s best 5 cloud infrastructure which are Google Cloud, Amazon Web Service, Digital Ocean, Linode and Vulture in clicks and enjoy World’s best performance, security and stability.

At Forbes featured Cloudways, you will get an intuitive dashboard, where you can easily manage your website and get information about RAM, disk and bandwidth usage like you have done in cPanel.Cloudways Dashboard

Why Choose Cloudways

Servers are powered by powerful Intel Xeon Scalable Processors, built-in AI acceleration and can clock up to 3.90 GHz in turbo mode.
Get a unique IP that keeps you safe from spam neighbour websites & increases rankings.
Fastest & most stable server stack (intelligent combination of Nginx, Apache, Varnish, PHP-FPM and Memcached), without any cache plugin, server(TTFB) responds in just 14-16ms.Cloudways Server Stacks
Free automated backup keeps data of the last 15 days.
Expert level pre-configured PHP-FPM makes 4x faster PHP processings than traditional FastCGI.
Total freedom to choose life of server level cache to achieve best performanceCloudways Varnish Cache Lifetime
World’s first host that provides disk clean feature on server level.
Free site transfer
Free SSL certificate
Unlimited domains on a server
6G firewall & bot protection to mitigate DDoS, brute force, XSS attacks and spam bots.Cloudways bot protection
Flexible & responsive support team for 24X7.
”Pay as you go” payment mode, pay per month, don’t need to fall in a longer contract.
Pro blogger’s no-1 choice. Even Google’s John Mueller shows their affection.

If your problem is fixed, please share on your social media accounts. Will cherish it. If not, let me know in the comment box, Will be pleased to help you.

Leave a Comment