There appears to be a cache clearing bug in ionic when you have a view more than 1 level deep, and you hit a tab to bring you back to the first level. The following codepen illustrates it. We setup an alert on page2 to show when the controller gets called.
If you tap Tab2–>Page2, you get an alert. Then if you tap Tab2 again it brings you back to Page1 since you are already on Tab2 (this is good), and tapping Page2 will give you another alert.
Now for the scenario showing the bug:
Tap Tab2–>Page2–>Page3. Now tap Tab2 (it brings you back to Page1 like the previous example). But now if you tap Page2, there is NO alert. Ionic is caching that view when it shouldn’t be.
Of interest is the bug does not occur if you use the history back buttons. It only happens when you are 2+ levels deep in tab, and hit that tab again to bring you to the top level of the tab.
See the Pen Caching Bug.