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Xfinity is a Comcast brand and as such, it encompasses all of your internet streaming needs on one or more TVs. Xfinity isn’t known for putting out garbage boxes, which is probably why they are one of the largest providers in the US. however, that doesn’t mean nothing ever goes wrong.

If you’re getting the “Channel is Temporarily Unavailable” message, it’s likely one of several problems. These include updating your TV’s OS, power cycling your cable box, matching input settings, checking your cable connections, or your exterior wiring. 

Depending on how comfortable you are with exterior wiring, specifically cable or fiber internet, you can deal with it on its own or you will need to contact Comcast customer service. The other potential troubleshooting tips, however, are things most of us can handle.

This Channel Is Temporarily Unavailable Xfinity: 5 Potential Solutions

1. Update Your TV’s OS (Operating System)

Smart TVs are fantastic devices but they do require a degree of preventative maintenance. You have to keep it updated. An Xfinity box will get frequent updates and most of the time, expect it to be an automated process.

Keeping your TV updated will ensure that the box is interacting with the latest your TV has to offer and vice versa.

Of course, we can’t specifically walk you through how to check for updates and update your TV (since there are about a billion models out there it seems), but we can tell you where to look in most cases.

Most smart TVs have a Settings menu and a sub-setting that’s usually labeled ‘General’ or ‘About.’ These are the two settings where you will either see an “update available” or you will find that your TV is up-to-date and you don’t have to do anything.

If you need more information on updating your TV, you can grab the user manual or look up your model number and brand online.

2. Power Cycle Your Xfinity Box

You gotta love power cycling, which is just a glorified name for ‘reset.’ It has a long and established history of fixing the biggest cluster, no matter how bad it seems, all the way back to before the Atari.

It’s the reason you will find this troubleshooting tip in everything from a smart TV device to a blender. It’s also a great reason because it’s a simple one.

  1. Power down your cable box
  2. Remove the cable from the back of the box
  3. Unplug it from the wall outlet
  4. Wait about five minutes or so
  5. Plug the cable back in first
  6. Plug the box back into the wall outlet
  7. Power up the cable box

Now, try to navigate to the channel you wanted to watch originally and see if you’re still getting the same message.

3. Make Sure Your Inputs Match

If you have your TV set on the wrong input, you won’t be able to do much of anything until you do. All TVs are different but most TV remotes have either a ‘Source’ or an ‘Input’ button so you can skim through the available sources your TV has to offer.

These include HDMI 1, 2, 3, etc., AUX, USB, Cable, Ethernet, and more. Check your box to see what inputs you have on it and change your TV accordingly.

AdobeStock_107129654 man connects internet cable to the TV

4. Cable Connections

A bad cable connection can cause a lot of problems. If you’re dealing with it, you’ll probably have a lot more issues other than just a “channel is temporarily unavailable” message.

When it comes to Comcast Xfinity, most of what the company offers is cable internet.

However, in select locations, Xfinity also offers fiber. All you need to do is check over the connections on the back of the box, along with the wiring coming through the walls and into the room.

Make sure that none of the wiring is crimped or awkwardly bent. Coax is harder to mess up when it is bent but fiber is another story entirely. Bending a fiber land, even if the pressure is fairly light, may be enough to destroy the line.

At the connection ports on the back of the box, unplug everything and check both the male and female ends. With coax, the male end is on the box and the female end is the connector at the end of the cable.

Make sure there is no dirt, dust accumulation, or debris in any of the ports. For fiber, which connects like an ethernet cable, check the male and female ends the same way.

Also, make sure that the clip on the male end is in place and makes an audible ‘click’ when you plug it in.

5. Checking Over Your Exterior Wiring

For the most part, all you can look at outside is the wiring. Most cable/internet companies will run a single to a handful of wires from the nearest pole to the closest eave on your house.

From there, it will run along the eave (usually) and down, into the wall where your cable box is located.

You won’t be able to check where the exterior wires run to the nearest phone pole. But you can see if the line was severed.

This happens more often than you think when tall dump trucks or semis try to come down local roads and end up hitting the low-hanging wires.

Check the exterior walls for the same things, including crimps in the wire or anywhere there might be some damage.

Make sure you check everything you can visually account for, all the way into the wall before you call it a day. If you see any damage, you’ll need to contact Comcast customer service and have them send a technician out.

Final Thoughts

The above-listed troubleshooting tips are about all you can do to deal with the “Channel is Temporarily Unavailable” message. If you can’t get the message to go away, it’s possible that it’s not even the result of something you did or your equipment.

Contact Xfinity customer service and they will send a tech out to you ASAP to fix any damage.