How To Fix Outlook Search Not Working?

Microsoft Outlook application has a very smooth user interface. It doesn’t matter whether you are using it on a Windows computer or a Mac computer; whenever you click on any of its functions, it will respond immediately.

But in some extreme circumstances, the Outlook application does not work correctly. Because of this, whenever you click on a button, it does not respond.

The search button not working in the Outlook application is a common problem. 

Which is faced by about 20% of the users all the time. If you are also suffering from the problem of not working the search button of Outlook on your Windows or Mac computer. So with the help of this article, you can fix it.

Why is the search button not functioning in the outlook mail application? 

Usually, the Search button does not work because of the outdated version of the outlook application. But sometimes, some other elements can also block the functioning of the search button, and those are listed below. 

Outlook search button not working

The Outlook is corrupted- When some major elements or files are missing from the outlook program, and the buttons or other parts will not function. 

Your computer is running slow- sometimes, the search button is not responsive because of the computer’s performance. When the computer performs slow, the outlook application might hang while performing multiple operations. 

Application version is outdated- If you haven’t updated the outlook application for a long time. Some buttons or other programs files will not be able to respond appropriately. You might face the search button not working on the outlook application problem at such a point in time. 

Virus/malware infects the application- When your outlook application is infected with the viruses. It will corrupt the important files. At such a point in time, You will face the search button not responding or other types of problems in the app. 

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How Do I Fix Outlook search not working problem in the windows 10 or windows 11 computer? 

Whenever outlook search is not working on Windows 10 or 11, you should close the application and reopen it. If that does not work, you need to follow the steps given below. 

Reboot the computer to fix the outlook search functionality- 

If the search button is not functioning on the windows 11 computer. You need to reboot the computer once, then reopen the outlook application. Now click on the search button. Let’s see is responding now or not? 

reboot the computer
  • Close the Outlook and other programs on the computer. 
  • Press the Windows button. 
  • Click on the power button. 
  • Now click on the restart button. 

Restart the Outlook in the safe mode- 

Whenever search buttons are not working on the outlook application, you need to reboot the outlook application in safe mode. 

Outlook safe mode
  1. Open the run box
  2. Type outlook.exe /safe and press the ok button. 
  3. Once the outlook application is opened, you need to click on the search button. 

If the button is working now, it means the problem is within the internal files of Outlook. So you need to repair the outlook application. 

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Repair the Outlook application- 

When the internal files are corrupted on the outlook application, the search buttons will no longer respond. In such a case, you have to repair the outlook application using the instructions below. 

  • Close the Outlook application on the computer. 
  • Now Open the Run window by pressing the Windows + R key. appwiz
  • Type Appwiz.cpl and then press the ok button. 
  • Once the program and features window appears on the screen, you need to select Microsoft Office 2019, office 365 or whichever version you are using from the list. 
  • Now click on the Change button. repair Office application , outlook search not working
  • If you see an administrative permission window, click on the yes button. 
  • Now select the online repair option from the list. outlook repair, outlook search not working
  • Finally, press the Continue button. continue

Once the repair process gets completed, you need to click on the finish or close button. After that, you need to restart the computer once. 

Review the Outlook indexing location- 

When the outlook indexing is not enabled, you might have difficulties with the outlook search functionality. So you need to go to the outlook application and make sure that the Outlook 

  • Open the Outlook application on the windows computer. 
  • Click on the files
  • Now press the options button.options
  • click on the search
  • Here, you need to click on the indexing options. search indexing, outlook search button not working
  • Now click on the modify button. outlook search not working
  • Put a checkmark on Microsoft Outlook
  • Click on the ok button. outlook search not working , Click on the ok button
  • Now restart the Windows computer once again. 

Optimize the Windows 10 computer to fix the outlook search not working problem – 

When outlook search is not working on Windows 10, you should close the outlook application. Now check the performance of your computer. If it is running slow, you need to optimize the computer. 

Cleanmgr to fix outlook search not functioning
  • Clean the C:// Drive on your computer by running the Cleanmgr command. 
  • Uninstall the heavy softwares and useless files. 
  • Disable the ineffective programs from the startup and task manager
  • Check the CPU and memory performance.

Clean the System files- 

Sometimes, the outlook search not working problem can be resolved by running the system files scan program on the computer. 

sfc scannow to fix outlook search not working
  • Open the command prompt in the administrative mode. (Type command in the windows search >> select the command prompt >> press the run as administrator button). 
  • Type sfc /scannow command and then press the enter button. 
  • Wait until the scan gets completed, once the scan is completed, you need to reboot the computer. 

Fix the Outlook search from Registry files- 

outlook registry files
  • Open the run box
  • Type Regedit and press the enter button. 
  • Once ]the Registry window appears on the screen, press the CTRL + F button to open the find window. 
  • Copy this command HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Search
  • paste it in the find window. 
  • Once you reach the specific directory, you need to right-click and click on the new Dword (32 bit) option. 
  • Please give it a name, PreventIndexingOutlook and assign the value 0.
  • Save the file now and then reboot the computer once. 

Scan the computer- 

Sometimes, the search button is not working in outlook 365 or other versions because of malicious files or viruses. Outlook is probably corrupted with the virus that has corrupted the search indexing program. 

So you need to scan the computer with the malware bytes anti-malware or some other antivirus program. 

Repair the PST Files to fix the outlook search button- 

Sometimes, the Outlook search button is not working on Windows 10 or 11 because of the PST File issue. Most probably, the PST is corrupted on Outlook. To fix that error, you need to run the Scanpst.exe program on your computer. 

The location of the Scanpst.exe can vary according to the outlook version. 

For outlook 2016 32 bit or latest version- C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office16\

Outlook 2016 64 bit or latest version- C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Office\Office16\

For Outlook 365 Version- C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\root\office16\

Once you find the PST file, you need to follow the steps given below. 

  1. Close the Outlook application
  2. Open the Scanpst.exe program 
  3. Click on the Repair button. 
  4. Once the repair process gets finished, you need to restart the outlook app. 

Update The Outlook Application- 

Sometimes, The Search button is not working on outlook 365, outlook 2019 or another version because of the outdated application. To fix that error, you need to update the outlook application. 

update the outlook application to fix search button not working
  • Connect the computer to the internet. 
  • Open the Outlook application
  • Click on the files
  • Now click on the office accounts
  • Click on the office update option. 
  • Press the Update now button. 

Once the outlook application is updated, you need to close the application and reopen it. Now If search button is working or not? 

Update the Windows- 

Sometimes, there can be a glitch in the Windows program files. That’s why outlook search might stop working on windows 10 or windows 11 computers. To fix those errors, you have to update the windows computer.

check for update
  1. Open the settings
  2. Go to the updates and security
  3. Press the windows update button. 
  4. Now press the check for update button. 
  5. If you find the Update, download and install it on your windows computer. 

Reinstall the Outlook application- 

If you have tried the above steps but couldn’t fix the outlook search button problem, you need to uninstall Microsoft Office from your computer. Now reboot the computer and install it again. 

uninstall the outlook application
  1. Open the run box
  2. Click on the programs and features window. 
  3. Select the Microsoft office, and then click on the uninstall button. 
  4. Press the Yes button. 
  5. Now follow the instructions to uninstall the office

Factory restore the computer- 

If you have reinstalled the outlook application on the windows computer, the outlook search button is still not working. You should factory restore the computer to the previous settings when the search buttons are responsive. 

system restore to fix outlook search button not working
  1. Open the command prompt
  2. Type rstrui.exe and press enter
  3. Select the restore point and then click on the Next button. 
  4. Now click on the finish button. 
  5. Press the yes button on the confirmation window. 


After applying the above techniques, the outlook search button should be working now. If that is still not functionable, you need to repeat the process. 

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Ezequiel Farrell

I am a passionate blogger to write about technologies. So far I have written more than 200 How To Guides. Through Which, you can easily fix the computer, networking and printer related problems.

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