WordPress 5.5 Update Issues

Written by
Typical Read
4 minutes

Have you recently upgraded to WordPress 5.5 and experiencing site problems or JavaScript errors. You're not alone. While the 5.5 release was largely a success, it causing major problems for old sites.

WordPress 5.5 update issues — the cause.

WordPress 5.5 update issues are becoming a trending topic since its release. If your WordPress site is running an old theme or plugin that hasn’t kept up with updates, your site could be vulnerable to the 5.5. update. Here’s one example of an issue posted to WordPress:

Your last update is a pure disaster. I used the classic editor plugin because your block editor is a full mess, and now it does not work anymore since your update. I can only edit in HTML mode and not in visual!

So I tried to publish my last article in your block editor, but impossible to add a featured image, I have a white page with “Featured image” title showing on the top and that is all.


Some other issues site owners are experiencing with 5.5:

This is not the fault of WordPress. These issues are due to older themes or plugins that haven’t been updated or aren’t getting updated by its developers.

jQuery Migrate & WordPress 5.5 Issue

WP 5.5 has deprecated jQuery Migrate which acts as a bridge for older code. Site owners who update to 5.5 and that are using older themes or plugins, particularly ones that aren’t being updated, are experiencing issues such as:

  • On-page forms breaking
  • Search bars no longer working
  • Drop-down menus aren’t dropping
  • General lack of site functionality

Older plugins and themes that have been abandoned are a security risk and in this case, can cause your site to break. Check out when the last time your plugins and theme was updated. If its been a year or longer, you’re gonna want to consider looking for alternatives that are more up-to-date.

Luckily, there’s an easy fix.

How do you fix the WordPress jQuery Migrate bug?

More than 90,000 sites are experiencing this bug and can be easily resolved by installing the Enable jQuery Migrate Helper plugin.

Can updating WordPress break my site?

Not if everything else on the site is updated & keeps up with updates. Security vulnerabilities are corrected with new WordPress releases. Updating to the newest version of WordPress will ensure that you have the latest security fix. Not updating your version of WordPress may leave your site open to hackers

What happens if you don’t update WordPress?

Not updating WordPress runs the risk of having an insecure site. Prolonging updating can snowball into more and bigger problems such as site failure because you never updated your theme.

How do I automatically update WordPress?

Visit Dashboard > Updates to enable automatic core updates. For plugins visit the plugins page, then click “Enable auto-updates” next to the plugin that you want to be automatically updated.

WordPress 5.5 Pagination Bug

After upgrading to 5.5 the page parameter is being dropped from the URL with 301 redirect… This was breaking our site…. I would like to install 5.5 but this is breaking the site.


One of the other WordPress 5.5 update issues is pagination. Many site owners that are using pagination incorrectly, specifically the page parameter, are seeing their pagination break. The issue is when a theme or plugin using something other than a numeric value. Per Sergey Biryukov:

It should only have a numeric value, and is not meant to be used for any other purpose, e.g. ?page=offers&id=xxx.

So I would recommend changing this variable in any custom code to some other name to avoid conflicts.

As another possible solution, you can disable the redirect_canonical() function for these requests, that is attached to the template_redirect action by default.

Sergey Biryukov

In Conclusion

Keep your WordPress site updated at all times to avoid WordPress 5.5 update issues. This includes its theme and plugins. Regularly review what’s installed on your site and any available updates. If what you’re using hasn’t been updated in more than a year, it’s time to move on and find something that is saying up-to-date.

Need help with an upgrade? Contact me today and I’d be happy to help you out or provide a consultation on how to fix and avoid these types of problems in the future.

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