How to Factory Reset or Powerwash a Chromebook

A factory reset, or Powerwash in Chromebook lingo, means that your computer will wipe all the local storage and user accounts. Your computer will return to the state it was in when you first opened it. There are a number of reasons to Powerwash your Chromebook. A Powerwash is often recommended when there’s something wrong with the software or hardware of your Chromebook. A lot of times, the things we download (apps, extensions and files) mess with the functioning of the Chromebook, leading the most random things to malfunction. A Powerwash tends to fix those errors by deleting any changes we made to the Chromebook. By clearing all local data, it also gives a speed boost to your Chromebook.

Now that you know why you might want to Powerwash your chromebook, here are the steps to go about doing it :-

On the right side of the shelf at the bottom in Chrome OS, there’s an options menu where you can access Wi-fi and bluetooth options, among other things.

In the options menu, click on Settings.

powerwash chrome-1

Scroll down to the bottom of the Settings window and click on Show advanced settings.

After advanced settings are displayed, scroll down to the bottom of the page. There, you will find Powerwash as a heading.

powerwash chrome-2

Click on the button that says Powerwash. A popup window will appear, asking you to reset your device. Click on Restart.

powerwash chrome-3

After the Chromebook restarts, it will display this message on the screen. Click on Reset.

powerwash chrome-4

Chrome OS might confirm one more time that you want to powerwash your Chromebook. They just really want to make sure that you want to do this. Don’t worry, though. It won’t harm your Chromebook in any way.

After you’re done with all the confirmation, this screen will appear for about 10 seconds.

powerwash chrome-5

Unless you want to brick your device, do not mess around with the power button or anything in general till the powerwash is complete.

Chrome OS will now greet you with the Welcome screen that you saw when you first switched on your Chromebook. Set up your account and preferences and you’re good to go with a fresh untouched Chrome OS.

powerwash chrome-6

You might have to frequently Powerwash your Chromebook, but that shouldn’t be an issue because most of your stuff would be stored in the cloud anyway. You would lose all the contents of the local downloads folder, though. To keep the contents of the local downloads folder backed up in Google Drive, you can refer to this article.


Nishant Kauntia

Nishant is a tech-enthusiast, and keeps experimenting with new apps and tweaks on his Chromebook and Android smartphone. Innovative user-experience developments fascinate him. Apart from keeping a keen eye out for updates in the tech industry, Nishant is interested in Philosophy and Creative Writing.
Back to top button