If your mods are not functioning properly in Sims 4, there are some free tools created by the modding community that will help you find and delete the files. The process can be tedious, but the best way is using Sims 4 Studio (a free tool for making custom content) and Sims 4 Tray Importer.
Are Mods Causing the Problem?
There are a few tell-tale signs if mods are creating problems in your game. If you’re running mods in your game, you should always launch and test The Sims 4 with mods disabled after an update. If the game works smoothly with mods disabled but something appears to be wrong after you’ve enabled mods, then it’s time to do some digging in your Mods folder.
For example, I downloaded a mod for The Sims 4 University that made tuition cost more, while also forcing some careers in-game to require certain degrees. It was Zero’s University Costs More mod in addition to her Required Degree mod.
After Electronic Arts released an update to the game, my Sims that were attending university for the second time graduated and lost their previous degree. At first, I started poking around to learn if Sims are able to have more than one degree, and it turns they can. That’s when I started to suspect that the mod was causing my game to behave incorrectly.
The madness didn’t stop there. My university Sims’ performance bar suddenly changed, and when I enrolled them for their next semester, I discovered that courses didn’t count, and I had to retake the semester over.
This is really common for mods, as they can become outdated with most recent game patches. If the game works when the Mods folder is removed, then one or more of the mods and/or custom content have become outdated and will need to be removed or replaced. EA/Maxis isn’t responsible for broken mods/cc. It is up to the individual creators to fix their own mods.
What to Do When Mods Are Breaking Your Game
The first method is tedious if you have a large amount of custom content, but it’s also incredibly reliable when you’re trying to single out broken mods in your game. Usually, custom content like CAS (Create a Sim) items (hair, clothes, etc.) won’t entirely break your game because they’re not game-play mods.
If CAS items are broken, your Sims may show up bald, naked, or slightly disfigured, but it won’t cause your game to crash. So, we’ll talk about removing CAS and Build/Buy items later. For now, we’ll talk about removing the larger game-play mods, like the University mod I mentioned earlier.
Back Up Your Mods Folder
Close your game first and then move your Mods folder to the desktop.
Move Your Mods Back One-By-One
Method 1: After you have closed the game client and moved the Mods folder to your desktop, begin moving the files back to the Mods folder in your game directory one at a time. You should be moving game-play mods out of your Mods folder, not CAS or Build/Buy items.
Luckily for me, I knew it was Zero’s University Cost More mod because it was the only University game-play mod that I had installed. When I downloaded her mod originally, it went into its own folder so that I could easily locate it later. This is why it’s important to keep files in your Mods folder organized.
Eventually, you’ll single out the broken mod, and you can delete it from your Mods folder. It’s a good idea to reach out to the mod creator for future updates and utilizing the MCCC Discord Channel to infer about finding similar mods.
Note: If you follow this process of elimination, you should start with the most recent mod and move backward, if possible.
Method 2: Start by moving all of the mods out. Make two subfolders in your backup mods directory and move half of the mods to one, and half to the other (doesn’t matter which goes where, just try to make it a roughly even division). Pick one of the folders to try first and move it to your game directory.
Launch the game. If the error is gone, then the problematic mod is in the other half folder. If the error is present, then the problematic mod is somewhere in the set you moved back into the Mods folder. Whichever set of mods has the bad mod, you can just repeat the process again: subdivide the remaining mods into two halves and try each one in turn.
How to Find and Delete Other Mods
Let’s say you have downloaded a ton of Build/Buy custom content and you’ve decided you no longer want it in your game, but you just can’t seem to figure out what the file is called in your mods folder. With the use of a few free tools from the modding community, we can easily locate and delete these mods.
We’ve downloaded some Build/Buy items to help create a step-by-step process of how this tool works. Both of these mods are base-game compatible.
Also, the Simkea set has a “separated” download version, which allows us to pick and choose which mods to keep. If you think you like the whole set, just download the “merged” set; if not, choose the “separated” download file. For this tutorial, download the “separated” file.
Sims 4 Tray Importer
This is the best tool for locating files and deleting them from your Mods folder. First, download the Sims 4 Tray Importer, then follow the instructions.
Move the Mods to Your Mods Folder
We created a Mods Tutorial Folder within the Mods directory and placed the “Simkea Pack” and “Harrie’s Plants” mods within.
Launch the Game and Remove Any Unwanted Mods
Next, launch The Sims 4. Now ask yourself, “What mods do I want to discard?” To figure out which mods you want to keep from these packs, find an empty lot on the world menu and select “Build.” It can be any empty lot. Once loaded into your empty lot, start placing the custom content onto the lot.
Go through the pack and select the items you don’t like. Remember, you can filter all of your custom content in Build/Buy mode on the lower right-hand side of your screen, just look for the small arrow for filter options.
Once you’ve decided which items you want to remove from your game, remove the items you want to keep from the lot so that the only items placed are the items you wish to remove from your game. Next, click the “Save To My Library” button on the bar at the top of the screen.
A small drop-down will appear, and you’ll want to click the icon that looks like a house. A new screen will appear that shows a preview of the lot. At the bottom right of this screen, you’ll find a download button that says “Save Lot to My Library.”
Click this button, and it will close the lot detail screen. A notification will appear in the upper right that the lot has been saved to your library. Next, save and exit The Sims 4.
After The Sims 4 game client has closed, open The Sims 4 Tray Importer. The Sims 4 Tray Importer is defaulted to load items that you’ve saved to your Library. On the left side of the program, all of your Library items will appear. Look for the saved item at the very top of this list—this is your most recent upload, which should be the lot you just placed custom content.
On the right side of the screen, there will be three categories: “General”, “Files”, and “CC.” Click “CC” and every item left on the lot will appear here. Hopefully, you only left items that you wanted to delete. But if not, that’s fine, because there is a preview dialog box of each item just below the file names.
Next, right-click each item and then select “Show Containing Folder.”
This will open the Mods folder and automatically highlight the file you selected in Sims 4 Tray Importer. Just right-click the file and delete it. The Sims 4 Tray Importer will automatically delete the files in your Mods folder for you, but only if you downloaded the separated
.package file instead of the merged file. If you downloaded the merged
.package file, all of the mods will be deleted.
How to Delete CAS Items in The Sims 4 Tray Importer
To delete CAS items like hair, clothes, etc., launch The Sims 4, and select “Create A New Household.” Filter your custom content, and choose the items you want to delete from your Mods folder, including any broken mods in your game. To make this super easy, make sure to only dress your Sim in items that you want to delete.
Save your household to your library using the same method as above (there is a folder at the top of the “Create a Sim” screen), and then save and exit the game. When you launch The Sims 4 Tray Importer, the household you created will show at the top bar on the left.
Click the household and the “CC” tab and then the files will display just like the image listed above. When you click on a file, it will preview the item at the bottom of the dialog box. Next, right-click to open the file folder and delete it.
How to Delete Broken Custom Content Using The Sims 4 Tray Importer
If custom content has made your Sim disappear, or if they turn into a demonic pit of darkness with a question mark on their forehead, chances are you’ve equipped them with broken custom content.
There’s a simple fix for this using The Sims 4 Tray Importer. First, go to “Create a Sim” screen and remove everything from the same category on every outfit. Our goal is to only have equipped default items. By clicking “X” on each clothing category, you can remove all equipped items from the Sim.
After that, locate the broken items, and put as many as you can on one Sim. This should be a random Sim, one you just generated. If any part of your Sim disappears when you put a piece of CC on, leave it on.
Use the instructions from the previous section to launch The Sims 4 Tray Importer, and remove the broken content from your game.
The Sims 4 Studio
An alternative method to The Sims 4 Tray Importer is the Sims 4 Studio. This tool will upload all custom content that you’ve downloaded and will allow you to preview items and delete them. First, download the Sims 4 Studio, then follow the instructions.
The application will install an update, and once that’s completed, click “My CC.” If you have a lot of custom content in your Mods folder, this may take some time to load.
Note: The Sims 4 Studio will not launch “My CC” unless your game is closed.
This will open a screen with a list of everything in The Sims 4 Mods folder. Navigate to the Mods folder, and click the expand arrow. Every item can be clicked to be previewed on the right. On the preview, you can rotate the item around.
The Sims 4 Studio also gives you the option of removing swatch colors for individual mods. On the right side of the screen, the swatch colors appear, and you can delete these individually.
The description box contains information like the creator name, the price of the item, and more. The price of the item can be changed here, and if you wish to move the item to a different Build/Buy category in the game, that can be changed here, too.
If you want to delete the item, click the “Delete” button at the bottom. Click “Yes”, and the Sims 4 Studio will remove the item from your Mods folder.
As always, remember to back-up your Sims 4 folder periodically, especially before installing an update to the game.