Heart failure (HF) is associated with complicated molecular remodelling within cardiomyocytes; however, the mechanisms underlying this process remain unclear. Here we show that sorting nexin-13 (SNX13), a member of both the sorting nexin and the regulator of G protein signalling (RGS) protein families, is a potent mediator of HF. Decreased levels of SNX13 are observed in failing hearts of humans and of experimental animals. SNX13-deficient zebrafish recapitulate HF with striking cardiomyocyte apoptosis. Mechanistically, a reduction in SNX13 expression facilitates the degradative sorting of apoptosis repressor with caspase recruitment domain (ARC), which is a multifunctional inhibitor of apoptosis. Consequently, the apoptotic pathway is activated, resulting in the loss of cardiac cells and the dampening of cardiac function. The N-terminal PXA structure of SNX13 is responsible for mediating the endosomal trafficking of ARC. Thus, this study reveals that SNX13 profoundly affects cardiac performance through the SNX13-PXA-ARC-caspase signalling pathway.