Local Help Docs Local Pro

Getting Started with Instant Reload

Local’s new Instant Reload feature, available in Local Pro, saves you time so you never have to click “refresh” in your browser again. Custom plugin and theme authors rejoice! Instant reload is helpful in other uses-cases too:

  • Work with your code and browser side-by-side: Maintain flow-state and streamline previewing your CSS changes.
  • Debug file changes: Local displays a log stream of your latest changes which helps make sure new changes are detected and displayed. 
  • Make edits in real time: Changes are displayed immediately meaning you’ll never have to clear your cache again.

Using Instant Reload

All of the Instant Reload functionality can be found within the “Instant Reload” section of the “Tools” tab in Local.

The general flow of using this tool looks like:

  1. Enable Instant Reload for the site
  2. Open the site within a browser
    • NOTE: You’ll know that Instant Reload is working correctly if you see the “Instant Reload Enabled” message within the browser.
  3. Edit a CSS file in your editor of choice. Once that file is saved, Instant Reload will automatically refresh those styles in the browser!

Local does keep a session log of when a CSS file has changed, which can be found on the Instant Reload tab.


Instant Reload is enabled on a per-site basis. Once you’ve enabled Instant Reload, it will automatically start up when using Local in the future.

Instant Reload only watches wp-content/plugins and wp-content/themes for changes to .css files.

Changes that are made using page builders or other WordPress plugins which do not persist their changes to the filesystem will not be refreshed.

Instant Reload isn’t detecting my changes

Still not working? Try switching to localhost routing mode.