I Can’t Change My Background in Zoom [Troubleshooting Tips]

Using a custom background in Zoom is a great way to display your personality or brand. But what if you can’t change your Zoom background for some reason? In this article, we’ll look at why you may be unable to change your background in Zoom and how to fix it.

Why You Can’t Change Your Zoom Background

There are a few potential reasons why the option to change your background may be greyed out in Zoom:

  • Background changes are disabled – Your Zoom account admin may have disabled the ability for participants to use virtual backgrounds. This restricts you from changing it.
  • Your device doesn’t support it – To use customized backgrounds, you need to be on a desktop/laptop with Zoom 5.0 or higher, or be on an iPad with Zoom 4.6.0+. Older devices may not support it.
  • You’re using an alternative login method – If you’re logged into Zoom via Facebook, Google, or SSO, you may have limited account controls, including changing your background.
  • You’re using On-Premise Zoom – Customized backgrounds may be disabled if you’re using Zoom through an on-premise private cloud.
  • The Zoom app is glitching – Like any software, Zoom can have intermittent bugs that cause errors with certain settings. Try troubleshooting your app.

How to Change Your Zoom Background

If background changes are enabled for your Zoom account, here are the steps to change it during a meeting:

  1. Click your profile picture then “Backgrounds”.
  2. Choose “Add Image” to use your own photo or video.
  3. Select a pre-loaded Zoom background image.
  4. Toggle “Virtual Background” on. Your background will change instantly.
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On mobile, tap the “More” tab and select “Virtual Background”. Choose your desired image or video background.

Troubleshooting Tips for Zoom Background Issues

If you are still having issues changing your background in Zoom, try these troubleshooting steps:

  • Make sure you’re using Zoom 5.0+ on desktop or 4.6.0+ on iPad
  • Log out and directly into Zoom instead of using Facebook/Google login
  • Ask your Zoom admin if customized backgrounds are restricted
  • Update the Zoom app to the latest version
  • Restart your device
  • Adjust your camera settings or lighting
  • Switch from a wireless to wired internet connection
  • Contact Zoom support for help diagnosing the issue

Following these tips should help resolve any problems so you can access background customization again.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I unlock the background change feature in Zoom?

If your Zoom account has the feature disabled, you’ll need to contact your Zoom admin and request that virtual backgrounds be enabled for your account.

Why can’t I remove the background in Zoom?

Your background may be stuck if you’re using an older version of Zoom, if custom backgrounds are restricted, or if there’s a glitch. Try updating Zoom or ask your admin.

Does Zoom background change work on mobile?

Zoom background changes are supported on the iOS and Android Zoom mobile apps, however the available features may vary slightly from desktop.

Can you have a gif background in Zoom?

Yes! Zoom supports using animated GIFs as your virtual background on both desktop and mobile apps. Add your GIF like any other custom background.

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Is there a size limit for Zoom backgrounds?

Zoom background images can be up to 10MB on desktop and 5MB on mobile devices. JPG, PNG, and BMP formats are recommended.

Key Takeaways

With Zoom’s customizable virtual backgrounds, you can display any image you want during meetings. If you suddenly can’t change your background, be sure to check your Zoom version, account settings, device compatibility, and troubleshoot your connectivity. With the right troubleshooting steps, you should be able to enable background changes again.

Let us know if you have any other questions!


  • Adekiya Joscor

    Am a Tech blogger | Content Writer | Website designer | Freelancer | YouTuber. Need any of my help? Use any of the social handles below to get to me.

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