Speed Up, Cancel or Replace Transactions Using Metamask

Altcoin Alerts
4 min readMar 18, 2021

Metamask is one of the most commonly used tools to interact with web3 applications built on Ethereum, Binance Smart chain, matic or many other networks. However, with Ethereum’s ever changing gas fees, users may find themselves in situations where their transactions are stuck for hours.

When such things happen, users have several options to get out of the problem, but none of these solutions are quite directly available to users. Let us look at the possible solutions:

  1. Speed up the transaction by adding gas to it.
  2. Sending a new transaction with the same nonce, to replace the old transaction.
  3. Cancelling the stuck transaction.

In order to achieve 2 and 3, users must have access to edit the nonce of the transaction they are making using metamask. A small change in settings opens up the option of custom nonce.

Change the settings for Custom Nonce

Step 1: Open up Metamask and click your avatar icon on the top right corner. After that, click the Settings icon.

Step 2: Once you are in the Settings page, tap on Advanced.

Step 3: Scroll down until you see a switch labeled “Customize transaction nonce.” Flip that on.

1. Speed up a Transaction

If a transaction is stuck, Metamask allows users to speed up the transaction by adding more gas to it. Essentially, in the transaction we are simply increasing the value of GWEI.

User can check the status of the transaction and tentative ETA on Etherscan. For example, in the image below, the transaction will take more than an hour to complete. However, it can be sped up.

Step 1: Open Metamask, and click on the “Activity Tab”, find your transaction and click on “Speed up”

Step 2: Choose the new Gas fee from available options or click on Advanced and set the gas fee yourself.

2. Replace or Cancel a Transaction

The general principle to replace or cancel a pending transaction is the same. Each transaction has a nonce, it is a serial number defining the sequence of transactions. If a user wants to replace a transaction, they simply need to send a new transaction with the same nonce, with a higher fee so it is taken up by the network.

In order to cancel a transaction, users can send a new transaction with the same nonce to their own address and 0 funds.

So here’s how you send a new transaction to replace an existing pending transaction.

Step 1: Identify the nonce of the transaction from Etherscan.

Go to the Etherscan page of the transaction that is causing the blockage. Hit “Click to see More” at the bottom to see all the data fields. You will notice that one of them is called “Nonce.”

Step 2: Go to Metamask and create a new transaction.

Enter the amount and address for the transaction, and after you click next, you can change the nonce of the transaction. Make sure that the nonce is the same as identified in step 1.

If you cannot find the option to set “custom nonce”, read the instructions at the top on how to enable the option.

Confirm the transaction!

3. Cancel a Transaction

To cancel the transaction, user can send a new transaction with 0 ETH to the same address with the same nonce, or use Metamask’s option to cancel it.

Step 1: Open Metamask, and click on the “Activity Tab”, find your transaction and click on “Cancel”

Step 2: Metamask will ask if you are sure about it, as you can only cancel a pending transaction.

So, if the transaction is confirmed before you cancel it, the cancellation transaction shall fail.

Click on “Yes, let’s try” if you wish to cancel.

This is how we can cancel, replace or speed up a transaction using Metamask on any supported chains. If this article helps you then do clap and follow us on all social media platforms.

Helpful websites to get estimate on gas fee and checking backlogs

  2. ETHGasStation
  3. ETHStats
  4. txstreet



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