Google Chrome is the preferred desktop browser for the majority of folks. Consumers also prefer to use Google services such as Gmail, Google News, and Google Search for queries, research, and projects. While Google Search is the default option on Google Chrome, we have seen Google Chrome reports automatically changing search engine to Yahoo. It can be annoying as Yahoo offers inferior search results compared to Google.
There are multiple reasons behind the behavior. Someone might have changed the default browser on Chrome. The prime factor behind the search engine change is browser hijacking code or extensions.
Browser hijackers are a constant threat to millions of users around the world. Some browsers are more prone to them, some less, and some, a minority, basically can’t be affected. It also depends on the user. If you have a practice of installing random apps from the web, then some PUAs (Potentially Unwanted Applications) might take over device applications and change settings.
This post will explain how to avoid and fix the Google Chrome search engine changing to Yahoo. Let’s get started with a simple troubleshooting trick.
1. Change the Default Search Engine
If you aren’t using Chrome multi-profile feature, then the chances are that someone might have changed the default search engine on Google Chrome. It could be someone you share your computer with. So you need to revert it to Google using the steps below.
Step 1: Tap on the three-dot menu at the upper right corner.
Step 2: Go to Settings > Search Engine.
Step 3: Select the Search engine used in the address bar and set it on Google.
Step 4: Scroll down and select the Manage Search Engine menu. Fiend Yahoo on the list and remove it from the Chrome browser.
2. Disable Chrome Extensions
Extensions play a vital role in the Chrome ecosystem. Using extensions, one can add more features to the basic Chrome interface and functionality. However, some might not be actively maintained, could be out of date, or develop incompatibilities with new Chrome builds. Some malicious extensions might be preferring Yahoo search engine instead of Google.
If you have dozens of Chrome extensions installed, it can be difficult to figure out which one of them is causing the issue.
Because of that, the easiest solution is to disable all extensions and then enable only the ones you need one at a time.
Step 1: Open Google Chrome, tap on the three-dot menu at the top.
Step 2: Navigate to More tools > Extensions.
Step 3: It will open the Extension menu. Tap on the Remove button and remove Chrome extensions.
3. Reset Google Chrome
This will reset your startup page, new tab page, search engine, and pinned tabs. It will also disable all extensions and clear temporary data like cookies and cache. Your bookmarks, history, and saved passwords will not be cleared. Follow the steps below to reset the Google Chrome browser.
Step 1: Open Google Chrome and tap on the three-dot menu at the upper right corner.
Step 2: Scroll down the Settings tab, and then click the Advanced button.
Step 3: Scroll down to the Restore settings to their original defaults option shown directly below. Then click the Restore settings to their original defaults option.
Step 4: Press the Reset settings button to confirm.
4. Use Chrome Malware Scanner
As I mentioned earlier, the problem can be linked to the Yahoo Search redirect virus or malware. This virus or malware works by redirecting your browser to multiple sites and then deposing you onto the Yahoo site. The hackers generate revenue from clicks and even collect personal data and track your internet activity.
Google Chrome does offer an integrated anti-malware scanner that will scan your computer and find any problems.
Step 1: Open Chrome and go to Settings.
Step 2: Scroll down and click Advanced to open all settings.
Step 3: Scroll down to the Reset and clean up section and click Clean up computer.
That will open a window where you can launch the Chrome malware scan. Just select the Find button to start the scan. Alternatively, we recommend installing and running Malwarebytes to figure out and delete any malware.
5. Scan PC Using Microsoft Defender
If you are still experiencing issues after the Google Chrome malware scan, then try using Microsoft Defender on Windows 10 scan. As you may know, Microsoft Defender is Microsoft’s built-in solution to remove malware from the device.
Open Windows Defender (now Microsoft Defender) and use the Quick scan option to identify any harmful elements on the device. You can also opt for the full PC scan, but it might take a long time depending on the device’s storage.
Don’t worry. You can minimize the app and continue doing your work as usual.
6. Ditch Google Chrome
If you are still facing Yahoo search engine directs on the Google Chrome browser, it’s time to ditch it in favor of an alternative.
Microsoft Edge is one of the best Chrome alternatives out there. It’s Chromium-based, available on all platforms, and supports all the Google Chrome extensions.
Another Solid Google Chrome rival is Firefox. Mozilla has improved Firefox offering by leaps and bounds in recent times. It’s definitely worth a look.
You can also opt for privacy browsers such as Safari and Brave on the desktop.
Start Browsing Again
Using the tricks above, you can easily fix Google Chrome using the Yahoo search engine instead of Google. Go through the steps above and tell us which trick worked for you in the comments section below.
Next up: Are you getting too many notifications from the Chrome browser? Read the post below to learn how to fix the issue.
Last updated on 24 February, 2022
The above article may contain affiliate links which help support Guiding Tech. However, it does not affect our editorial integrity. The content remains unbiased and authentic.