Steam is an amazing piece of software, however, there are a number of errors that can leave you clueless. We compiled a list for you and included their meaning as well !

Game Activation Errors

Too Many Activation Attempts

steam error too many activation attempts

Steam has an hourly limit of how many actions you can make. The current limit is 10 actions per hour, these actions include:

  • activating a steam wallet card
  • activating / trying to activate a steam key
  • purchasing a game off the Steam store

Solution: The only solution is to wait for the hour to end (The hour is counted from the time the first action was started)

Duplicate Product Code

Duplicate product code error

A Duplicate Product Code error happens when you try to use a Steam Gift code that was already activated on another account, pressing the retrieve account button will send an email to the account the game is assigned to.

Solution: Unfortunately there is no easy solution for this one, you will have to contact the store where you bought your game and request a refund or a replacement. In our experience contacting Steam Support will not help you, as they will redirect you to the Steam key provider and can’t let you know who or when the key was activated because of their privacy policy.

The product code you’ve entered requires ownership of another product before activation

This error is pretty straight forward, you are trying to activate a DLC (downloadable content) when you haven’t activated the base game.

Invalid Product Code


Are you sure you entered your product code correctly? Most game codes are in the XXXXX-XXXXX-XXXXX  (3 times 5 number or letter) format. The format can differ about 0.1% of the time, so if you have a code that is different, there really is a big chance the code you received was invalid.

Game Library Errors

Steam Error Code 41


Also known as Steam servers are too busy to handle your request, error 41 just means that the game has corrupted or missing game files.

Solution: Right click on the game causing the problem, select Properties, then select the Local Files tab and finally use the Verify Integrity Of Game Cache button. Steam will then analyze your files and will update the corrupted or missing files. We recommend you also reboot your computer after the file repair.

Steam Error Code 80

Steam error 80 or Game Failed to Start, is an error that is likely to happen when files in the steam folder are in Read Only mode.

Solution: Close all your games and the Steam software, open the Steam directory folder (found inside C:\Program Files most of the time), right-click on the Steam folder then select properties and finally uncheck the Read-Only box. Don’t forget to save your change with the Apply button, we recommend you reboot your computer after completing these steps.

Steam Error Code 51

Steam has created an article for the error code 51, we recommend you look here for more information.

Steam Error Code 83

Steam has created an article for the error code 83, we recommend you look here for more information.

Trade Errors

Steam Error Code 16

steam error code 16

The trade was initiated but failed to complete. Press the Accept Offer button to try again.

Steam Error Code 2

steam error code 2

The transaction is in progress and should be completed soon.

Solution: You can either press the trade confirmation button again until you hit the error 11 or wait for the transfer to be completed automatically.

Steam Error Code 11

steam error code 11

The trade is complete, you should now have the items in your account.

Solution: you can close your trade window and keep trading!

Steam Error Code 26

Your partner inventory is full! All your game inventories have a maximum limit of items you can have, here is are the limitations as far as we know:

  • Steam Inventory: Unlimited
  • Counter Strike Inventory: 1000 Items
  • Team Fortress 2 Inventory: 300 Items, Backpack Expanders can be purchased to raise the limit to a maximum of 2000 Items

Steam Error Code 28

The error 28 is an error you encounter when the items the sender sent to you become unavailable.

It can also be related to the Steam Servers. We recommend you verify the following website for more information about your game Server availability:

Solution: Ask your trading partner to send a new trade.

Items disappearing during trade

During Summer / Winter sales or high traffic events on Steam, we sometimes had items disappearing on us. Neither the receiver nor the sender had the items once the trade was over. The best way to retrieve the items is to open the game, related to the item that is missing, it should normally make them re-appear once you leave the game and refresh your inventory page.

Have you ever experienced an error not included in this article? Help us complete this list! Let us know below in the comment section!