W3 Total Cache WordPress Plugin removal tutorial

Written by Tushar. Posted in Blogging

W3 Total cache is amongst the powerful plugins for wordpress blogs. When it work perfectly on blogs it feels like some magic. With plenty of settings, a newbie will find easy to configure it. Previously I have provided a tutorial on W3 Total cache plugin.

Sometimes condition occurs that after installing and configuring W3 Total cache you don’t find it handy. Yes, this is a fact that this magic plugin doesn’t work perfectly for all bloggers. When you don’t find it handy you certainly would deactivate and uninstall it. But, does your blog got crashed after uninstalling the plugin ? If yes then this tutorial will help you out to get your blog working. Even if you are planning to remove the plugin then also follow this tutorial for safe removal.

W3 Total Cache

Tutorial to remove W3 Total Cache Plugin completely

  • First deactivate the W3 Total Cache plugin.
  • Delete the W3 Total Cache plugin.

After deleting the plugin now you will face the problem, your blog might crash ! But don’t panic you can recover your blog back to normal. Follow the steps ahead in this tutorial.

Now you need to have FTP or SSH access to do the complete removal. For FTP access you can use WinSCP (works on windows OS) or some other FTP tools.

  • Find the wp-config.php file from your wordpress installation and open it. Search and then remove the line below:

define('WP_CACHE', true);

  • Navigate to wp-content directory and delete files the following files,
    • object-cache.php
    • advanced-cache.php
    • db.php
    • wp-total-cache-config.php
  • Now delete the folder w3tc
  • Now navigate to wp-content/plugins folder and here delete the w3-total-cache folder.

Now the most important part, time to check the .htaccess file.

  • First take a backup of .htaccess file
  • Open .htaccess file using any text editor.
  • Check if there is any code in between # BEGIN W3 Total Cache and # END W3 Total Cache 
  • Remove whatever code written in between them.
  • Lastly, save the .htaccess file.

I have used the W3 Total Cache plugin for a long time, but since I switched to warp framework for Technoxpad, everything changed suddenly. My blogs loading time was miserable activating the W3 Total Cache plugin. When I deactivated “W3 Total Cache” plugin, blog loaded just fine. I searched for issues regarding this on internet and came out with a conclusion to change my caching plugin. Deleting “W3 Total Cache” plugin crashed my blog. Using above steps, I recovered Technoxpad back to normal. Now I use WP Super Cache plugin which is providing me good results same as I used to get with “W3 Total Cache” plugin earlier.

For getting detailed information regarding importance of caching for wordpress blogs, do read the following article.



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Comments (5)

  • sharon


    It’s helped me a lot today 🙂



  • AstroNerdBoy


    Thanks for the tutorial. I installed W3-Total-Cache after my not so good hosting company recommended it. It does improve speed, but I discovered that my Google ads were missing. When I fixed that problem, I discovered that while ads displayed fine in Firefox and Opera, they still weren’t displaying on Chrome and IE (latest versions of all browsers). So I decided to see if complete removal would help by testing that theory on my tiny, personal blog. Sadly, ads still do not appear in Chrome nor IE appear despite my removing everything required. They did before I used W3-Total-Cache.


    • Tushar


      I have checked ur blog and for me the ads are displaying both on Chrome and IE. Might be there is some other issue. I would recommend u to clear the browser cache and then try again to see if ads are displaying.
      Also if u are finding difficulty with W3 Total Cache, then try using WP Super Cache. for best results visit my tutorial, WP Super Cache best settings to optimize your blog.


  • Mikaela


    Hi!!!! I am trying to delete W3 total cache and am at the part with the .hta access file… here is what I see:

    # BEGIN W3TC Browser Cache

    Header append Vary User-Agent env=!dont-vary

    AddOutputFilterByType DEFLATE text/css text/x-component application/x-javascript application/javascript text/javascript text/x-js text/html text/richtext image/svg+xml text/plain text/xsd text/xsl text/xml image/x-icon application/json

    # DEFLATE by extension
    AddOutputFilter DEFLATE js css htm html xml

    # END W3TC Browser Cache
    # BEGIN W3TC Page Cache core

    RewriteEngine On
    RewriteBase /
    RewriteCond %{HTTP:Accept-Encoding} gzip
    RewriteRule .* – [E=W3TC_ENC:_gzip]
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_COOKIE} w3tc_preview [NC]
    RewriteRule .* – [E=W3TC_PREVIEW:_preview]
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_METHOD} !=POST
    RewriteCond %{QUERY_STRING} =””
    RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} \/$
    RewriteCond %{HTTP_COOKIE} !(comment_author|wp\-postpass|w3tc_logged_out|wordpress_logged_in|wptouch_switch_toggle) [NC]
    RewriteCond “%{DOCUMENT_ROOT}/wp-content/cache/page_enhanced/%{HTTP_HOST}/%{REQUEST_URI}/_index%{ENV:W3TC_PREVIEW}.html%{ENV:W3TC_ENC}” -f
    RewriteRule .* “/wp-content/cache/page_enhanced/%{HTTP_HOST}/%{REQUEST_URI}/_index%{ENV:W3TC_PREVIEW}.html%{ENV:W3TC_ENC}” [L]

    # END W3TC Page Cache core

    Should I delete all of this (including the #START and #END) or not?

    W3 total cache was causing all kinds of problems in my site, do you think that it is possible that a re-install would fix that or should I switch? Strange part: I have another website on the same hosting account that has none of these problems 🙁 Thanks!


    • Tushar


      Hi Mikaela, as I see u have to delete all of these in between # BEGIN and # END

      • # BEGIN W3TC Browser Cache and # END W3TC Browser Cache
      • # BEGIN W3TC Page Cache core and # END W3TC Page Cache core


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