Solving "Call to a Member Function bind_param()" Issue on Boolean

When working with PHP and MySQL, you might come across an error like this:

Uncaught Error: Call to a member function bind_param() on boolean

This error can be quite frustrating, especially when you're trying to store or retrieve data from a database using prepared statements. In this guide, we'll look at the common causes of the error and provide step-by-step solutions to fix it.

Table of Contents

  1. Understanding the Error
  2. Common Causes and Solutions
  3. Incorrect SQL Query Syntax
  4. Database Connection Error
  5. Incorrect Table or Column Names
  6. FAQs

Understanding the Error

The bind_param() function is a method of the mysqli_stmt class used in PHP to bind variables to the corresponding placeholders (question marks) in a prepared statement. The error occurs when the function is called on a boolean value instead of an object of the mysqli_stmt class.

The reason for this is that when the prepare() function encounters an error while preparing the SQL statement, it returns false (a boolean value) instead of a mysqli_stmt object. Consequently, calling the bind_param() function on the false value triggers the error.

Common Causes and Solutions

Incorrect SQL Query Syntax

One of the most common reasons for this error is an error in the SQL query syntax. Make sure the query is correctly written and follows the proper SQL syntax.


  • Double-check your SQL query and ensure it is properly formatted.
  • Use the error property of the mysqli object to get the error message from MySQL.
$sql = "INSERT INTO users (username, email, password) VALUES (?, ?, ?)";

if ($stmt = $mysqli->prepare($sql)) {
    $stmt->bind_param("sss", $username, $email, $password);
} else {
    echo "Error in query: " . $mysqli->error;

Database Connection Error

Another common cause of the error is a problem with the database connection. Ensure that the database connection is properly established before calling the prepare() function.


  • Verify that the database connection credentials are correct.
  • Check for any errors while connecting to the database.
$mysqli = new mysqli($host, $user, $password, $database);

if ($mysqli->connect_error) {
    die("Database connection failed: " . $mysqli->connect_error);

Incorrect Table or Column Names

If the table or column names in the SQL query are incorrect or misspelled, the prepare() function will return false, causing the error.


  • Check the table and column names in the SQL query and ensure they match the actual table and column names in the database.


1. Can I use the bindParam() function instead of bind_param()?

Yes, you can use the bindParam() function if you're using the PDO extension in PHP. The bind_param() function is a method of the mysqli_stmt class, while the bindParam() function is a method of the PDOStatement class. Both methods serve the same purpose but are used with different PHP extensions.

2. What are the benefits of using prepared statements?

Prepared statements provide several advantages, including:

  • SQL injection protection: Prepared statements separate the SQL query and data, making it harder for an attacker to inject malicious SQL code.
  • Improved performance: When executing the same SQL query multiple times with different data, prepared statements can be faster because the query is parsed only once by the database server.

3. What are the possible data types for the bind_param() function?

The bind_param() function accepts the following data types as the first parameter:

  • i: Integer
  • d: Double (float)
  • s: String
  • b: Blob

4. Can I use named placeholders instead of question marks in prepared statements?

Yes, you can use named placeholders if you're using the PDO extension in PHP. The mysqli extension does not support named placeholders. When using PDO, you can bind variables to named placeholders using the bindParam() function.

5. How can I fetch data from the database using prepared statements?

You can use the bind_result() function to bind variables to the columns in the result set when fetching data from the database. Then, use the fetch() function to fetch the data into the bound variables.

$sql = "SELECT username, email FROM users WHERE id = ?";
$stmt = $mysqli->prepare($sql);
$stmt->bind_param("i", $id);
$stmt->bind_result($username, $email);

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