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What to do when your iPhone won’t charge

Your iPhone won’t charge. What do you do? Well, you can panic, or you can fix the problem.

If your iPhone is not charging, there are a number of potential fixes available, from restarting your iPhone to changing your Lightning cable. As we show in this article, they’re all easy to try, and in the vast majority of cases, they’ll get your iPhone charging again.

Check, change or replace the Lightning cable

Your iPhone charges by receiving electricity through its Lightning cable. If it’s not charging, then there may be a problem with this cable. Here are a number of things you can try:

  • Make sure your cable is connected properly. This means making sure it’s inserted properly into your iPhone and into either the wall charger, a computer or a USB hub. It also means checking for anything that might be in the cable’s jack or in iPhone’s Lightning port, such as lint.
  • Try a different cable, if you have one. If other cables work, then it’s clear the first cable was the problem.
  • If no other cables work, then it’s likely that something else is causing the problem. That said, the cables you’ve tried may all be faulty, so you may want to purchase a new Lightning cable (after trying other things suggested in this article).

Restart your iPhone

Pexels/Mateusz

Restarting your phone is one of the safest and most dependable solutions to virtually any iPhone problem. The same thing applies when your iPhone won’t charge.

With the iPhone X, XS, or iPhone 11 range, simultaneously hold one of the Volume buttons and the Side button, until the power off sliders appears. With the iPhone SE (2020) down to the iPhone 6, hold the Side button. If you have an iPhone 5 or older, press and hold the Top button.

Apple also recommends trying a force restart. This is similar to a normal restart, but it works even when your iPhone is frozen. For the iPhone 8 or later, do the following: Press and release the Volume Up button, press and release the Volume Down button, and then press and hold the Side button, until the Apple logo appears. If you have an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus, simultaneously press and hold the Side button and the Volume Down button until the phone restarts. For the iPhone 6S or earlier, simultaneously press and hold the Side (or Top) button and the Home button until you the Apple logo appears.

Check your power source

Thomas Kolnowski/Unsplash

Similar to checking or changing your cable, it’s possible that your iPhone is not charging because of your power source.

If you’re using a power adaptor, try a different adaptor. You can also try plugging your Lightning cable into a compatible USB 2.0 or 3.0 port on your computer (or on a USB hub or docking station).

If you’re plugging your iPhone into a computer (or docking station), make sure that the port you’re using is actually compatible with your Lightning cable. This means the port should be USB 2.0 or USB 3.0 compatible. Don’t use the USB ports on a keyboard, since these won’t work.

Likewise, if you’re using a wireless charger, try charging using a Lightning cable. If this works, your wireless charger may need replacing.

Cool your iPhone down

Pixabay/Mylene2401

In cases where your iPhone won’t charge past 80%, Apple recommends moving your iPhone to a cooler location. Why? The latest versions of iOS (iOS 13 and later) contain a feature that prevents your iPhone’s battery from getting too warm, something which can reduce its longevity. If it’s already warm, charging it may make it too warm, so the iPhone will limit itself to charging up to 80%.

Again, if it stops at 80%, take your iPhone somewhere cooler and keep it out of sunlight. Also, if you have iOS 13, you can go to Settings > Battery > Battery Health and tap Optimized Battery Charging, so that its slider moves into the off position. This isn’t recommended, since it may accelerate the aging of your battery, but it will prevent your iPhone from charging up to 80% in some cases.

Take your iPhone to Apple

Apple

If you’ve tried all of the above and your iPhone still won’t charge, you may have a faulty battery. In this case, you need to go to Apple’s website and arrange to have your battery replaced. You can also take your iPhone to your nearest Apple Store, which you can also locate on Apple’s website.

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