All of a sudden I started getting memory and time out errors whenever I try to make a loop with WP_Query. Heres the code:

$args = array(
    'post_type' => 'post',
    'posts_per_page' => '3',
    'fields' => 'ids'

$query = new WP_Query($args);

 while($query->have_posts()) {


Looping through 3 rows is obviously not going to overload the server so theres some kind of error happening. Like I said, this only started happening all of a sudden, it was working fine earlier. When it first broke, it was memory errors I was getting, but now its this same error:

Fatal error: Maximum execution time of 30 seconds exceeded in C:\Projects\fieldaware.dev\wp-includes\query.php on line 3760

It happens with all post types. I can view posts through the admin post editor, so it seems to be just my code causing this issue.

Is there any way I can diagnose whats going on here? Also I should mention that using get_posts doesn't cause any time out errors, so this:

$query = get_posts($args);

 foreach($query as $post) {


works fine, its just WP_Query thats causing the problems.


I tried running the exact code which was working before, and it works again, I don't get it, here it is:

    $args = array(
    'post_type' => 'fa_asset',
    'posts_per_page' => 50,
    'paged' => 1

$query = new WP_Query($args);

$data = array('data' => array());
//      ID, Model, Manufacturer, Serial Number, Last Service, Service Frequency, Next Service, Type

if ($query->have_posts()) {

    while($query->have_posts()) {
        echo '<p>TEST</p>';

        $id = $query->post->ID;

        $type = $query->post->post_title;
        $manufacturer = get_post_meta($id,'manufacturer',true);
        $serial_number = get_post_meta($id,'serial_number',true);

        $data['data'][] = array(
            'last service',
            'service frequency',
            'next service',


echo "<pre>" . json_encode($data,JSON_PRETTY_PRINT). "</pre>";

I'm completely lost with this one (its not the post type BTW, I tried changing that). I can't see how anything is different with the more detailed code.

  • 1
    Is this the only loop in the page? Did you install any new plugins recently? I would try to find out what your issue is by elimination process, isolating the loop into a different template, or by removing plugins and so forth. – gdaniel Dec 8 '15 at 15:13
  • S.O.P asks : have you tried disabling plugins one by one to rule out an issue with a plugin? WP_Query can be hooked and filtered – Brandt Solovij Dec 8 '15 at 15:13
  • I didnt install any plugins, I'm building a theme and I'm trying to run the loop from inside the functions.php file. – Dominic Fagan Dec 8 '15 at 15:16
  • what action do you run your query on? is there anything inside your while loop? if you don't call the_post, your while loop never terminates. – Milo Dec 8 '15 at 15:17
  • Oh, I think that answers the question. My older code that works, I had $query->the_post inside the loop. So the issue was an infinite loop then. What exactly does the_post do? I thought its supposed to output something like the_content thats why I removed it. – Dominic Fagan Dec 8 '15 at 15:25

Yep the issue was what Milo mentioned, that I didn't have the_post inside the loop so the loop was running infinitely.

| improve this answer | |
  • 1
    You should mark this as the answer ;) – jgraup Dec 11 '15 at 11:38

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