Slow Scrolling in Google Chrome

By David Nield

Slow scrolling in Google Chrome can be caused by the website or the browser software.
i Patrik Stollarz/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Slow scrolling in Google Chrome is a bug that can appear as a result of the browser's graphics settings, a video driver issue, the Web page itself or the performance of Windows as a whole. If the bug manifests itself on multiple machines on a network, look for common attributes between them, such as an out-of-date graphics card driver. Ensure that you are running the most recent version of Google Chrome using the application's built-in updater before troubleshooting problems.

Web Page Issues

If the slow scrolling problem only appears on one specific website, it's likely that this page is to blame, particularly if it contains a large amount of video or other interactive content. It may also contain badly written code that slows Chrome down. Report the performance issues to the webmaster (a link is usually provided at the bottom of the page) and test the page in a different browser to see if scrolling performance improves.

Graphics Issues

Chrome supports the WebGL graphics acceleration technology to display advanced 3-D models and other graphics inside the browser. The feature is automatically enabled on compatible operating systems running compatible graphics cards, but an out-of-date driver can cause problems. Ensure that you are running the most recent driver update for your card and/or integrated motherboard graphics by visiting the manufacturer's website and looking for the Support or Downloads link. Your graphics card or chip set can be identified from the Device Manager utility in Control Panel.

Windows Issues

It's possible that Windows is struggling to provide the system resources necessary to display pages smoothly in Chrome. Use the Windows Task Manager to close down any other applications or background processes that aren't being used and are consuming significant amounts of CPU time or RAM. Note that Chrome itself will display a separate chrome.exe process for each open tab and background app, so reducing the number of open tabs and apps can boost performance. Ensure that Windows itself is updated with the most recent patches, bug fixes and compatibility updates by opening the Windows Update section of Control Panel.

Further Troubleshooting

Another possibility is that a third-party extension running on top of Chrome is causing pages to scroll slowly, perhaps because it is trying to interfere with the page-rendering process. Select "Tools" and choose "Extensions" from the Chrome menu, an icon that looks like three stacked lines – if you see a wrench icon, you know your Chrome version is out of date. Disable each extension one by one to see if it has any effect. If the problem persists, uninstall Chrome from your system and reinstall the latest version from the Chrome website, which will repair any program files that may have been damaged or deleted.