Check if page gets reloaded or refreshed in JavaScript

I want to check when someone tries to refresh a page.

For example, when I open a page nothing happens but when I refresh the page it should display an alert.



A better way to know that the page is actually reloaded is to use the navigator object that is supported by most modern browsers.

It uses the Navigation Timing API.

//check for Navigation Timing API support
if (window.performance) {"window.performance works fine on this browser");
  if (performance.navigation.type == 1) { "This page is reloaded" );
  } else { "This page is not reloaded");

source :


First step is to check sessionStorage for some pre-defined value and if it exists alert user:

if (sessionStorage.getItem("is_reloaded")) alert('Reloaded!');

Second step is to set sessionStorage to some value (for example true):

sessionStorage.setItem("is_reloaded", true);

Session values kept until page is closed so it will work only if page reloaded in a new tab with the site. You can also keep reload count the same way.


New standard 2018-now (PerformanceNavigationTiming)

window.performance.navigation property is deprecated in the Navigation Timing Level 2 specification. Please use the PerformanceNavigationTiming interface instead.


This is an experimental technology.

Check the Browser compatibility table carefully before using this in production.

Support on 2019-07-08

The type read-only property returns a string representing the type of navigation. The value must be one of the following:

  • navigate — Navigation started by clicking a link, entering the URL in the browser's address bar, form submission, or initializing through a script operation other than reload and back_forward as listed below.

  • reload — Navigation is through the browser's reload operation or location.reload().

  • back_forward — Navigation is through the browser's history traversal operation.

  • prerender — Navigation is initiated by a prerender hint.

This property is Read only.

The following example illustrates this property's usage.

function print_nav_timing_data() {
  // Use getEntriesByType() to just get the "navigation" events
  var perfEntries = performance.getEntriesByType("navigation");

  for (var i=0; i < perfEntries.length; i++) {
    console.log("= Navigation entry[" + i + "]");
    var p = perfEntries[i];
    // dom Properties
    console.log("DOM content loaded = " + (p.domContentLoadedEventEnd - p.domContentLoadedEventStart));
    console.log("DOM complete = " + p.domComplete);
    console.log("DOM interactive = " + p.interactive);

    // document load and unload time
    console.log("document load = " + (p.loadEventEnd - p.loadEventStart));
    console.log("document unload = " + (p.unloadEventEnd - p.unloadEventStart));

    // other properties
    console.log("type = " + p.type);
    console.log("redirectCount = " + p.redirectCount);

Store a cookie the first time someone visits the page. On refresh check if your cookie exists and if it does, alert.

function checkFirstVisit() {
  if(document.cookie.indexOf('mycookie')==-1) {
    // cookie doesn't exist, create it now
    document.cookie = 'mycookie=1';
  else {
    // not first visit, so alert
    alert('You refreshed!');

and in your body tag:

<body onload="checkFirstVisit()">




0 => user just typed in an Url
1 => page reloaded
2 => back button clicked.


I found some information here Javascript Detecting Page Refresh . His first recommendation is using hidden fields, which tend to be stored through page refreshes.

function checkRefresh() {
    if (document.refreshForm.visited.value == "") {
        // This is a fresh page load
        document.refreshForm.visited.value = "1";
        // You may want to add code here special for
        // fresh page loads
    } else {
        // This is a page refresh
        // Insert code here representing what to do on
        // a refresh

<body onLoad="JavaScript:checkRefresh();">
    <form name="refreshForm">
        <input type="hidden" name="visited" value="" />




I have wrote this function to check both methods using old window.performance.navigation and new performance.getEntriesByType("navigation") in same time:

function navigationType(){

    var result;
    var p;

    if (window.performance.navigation) {
        if (result==255){result=4} // 4 is my invention!

    if (window.performance.getEntriesByType("navigation")){

       if (p=='navigate'){result=0}
       if (p=='reload'){result=1}
       if (p=='back_forward'){result=2}
       if (p=='prerender'){result=3} //3 is my invention!
    return result;

Result description:

0: clicking a link, Entering the URL in the browser's address bar, form submission, Clicking bookmark, initializing through a script operation.

1: Clicking the Reload button or using Location.reload()

2: Working with browswer history (Bakc and Forward).

3: prerendering activity like <link rel="prerender" href="//">

4: any other method.


I found some information here Javascript Detecting Page Refresh

function UnLoadWindow() {
    return 'We strongly recommends NOT closing this window yet.'

window.onbeforeunload = UnLoadWindow;
if(sessionStorage.reload) { 
   sessionStorage.reload = true;
   // optionnal
   setTimeout( () => { sessionStorage.setItem('reload', false) }, 2000);
} else {
   sessionStorage.setItem('reload', false);


Here is a method that is supported by nearly all browsers:

if (sessionStorage.getItem('reloaded') != null) {
    console.log('page was reloaded');
} else {
    console.log('page was not reloaded');

sessionStorage.setItem('reloaded', 'yes'); // could be anything

It uses SessionStorage to check if the page is opened the first time or if it is refreshed.


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