How to Fix iPhone that Doesn’t Ring, But Shows Voicemail

“Help, I am not getting calls, but my iPhone keeps showing voicemail!” This is a common complaint that we hear in Verizon, AT&T and the Apple Store from customers who are frustrated at missing calls because the iPhone doesn’t ring and then suddenly they see that they have voicemail.

Users often think this is a major problem with their iPhone and end up spending time going to a store for help and then waiting for someone to look at the problem.

Many times there is a quick fix for an iPhone that isn’t ringing but is showing voicemail notifications. There is always a chance that there is something wrong with the way the phone connects to the network, but before you waste time driving to a store you should try this simple fix that can solve the problem in a few seconds.

How to fix an iPhone that doesn't ring and sends calls straight to voicemail.
How to fix an iPhone that doesn’t ring and sends calls straight to voicemail.

When this happens, there is not likely anything wrong with your iPhone. Instead, Do Not Disturb is likely turned on, sending all calls to voicemail unless the caller calls back within three minutes. This is why you may get some calls, but most end up showing as a voicemail without any ring or notification on your iPhone.

In iOS 7 and iOS 8, the most common versions of software on iPhones, it is easy to accidentally turn Do Not Disturb on when changing settings. There is an option to do this in Control Center, the half screen of settings and controls that you can use by swiping up from the bottom edge of the phone.

If you see the moon, your phone is on Do Not Disturb, which blocks calls.
If you see the moon, your phone is on Do Not Disturb, which blocks calls.

Here’s how to see if Do Not Disturb is the reason your iPhone isn’t ringing all the time. Look in the upper right of any screen and see if there is a small half-moon near the clock. If you see this, Do Not Disturb is on.

You need to turn it off if you want callers to get through. The fastest way to do this is to swipe up from the bottom of the iPhone to reveal the Control Center. You can see what this looks like below. If you are on the home screen you can do this quickly, if you are in some apps, you may need to swipe up and then pull up on a small on-screen tab that appears.

Tap on the moon to turn off Do Not Disturb.
Tap on the moon to turn off Do Not Disturb.

You’ll see a variety of options like the image above. There is a moon icon on the right side of the screen. If this is on a white background Do Not Disturb is on. Tap on the moon icon to turn Do Not Disturb off on the iPhone. This will change the background color to gray and the moon will disappear from the area by the clock.

You should now be able to get phone calls all the time. If this does not fix the problem, you will need to go to a store or call customer support for help. You should also go to Settings -> Do Not Disturb and make sure that there is no schedule turning this on when you don’t want it on. You can use this page to customize how Do Not Disturb works and set it up to work for you.

Learn how to use Do Not Disturb on the iPhone to control when you phone makes noise and when you can think or relax without interruptions.

40 Comments

  1. Laurance

    05/01/2015 at 1:23 pm

    I had the same problem with my iPhone 6 not ringing. I tried all these steps plus more. Finally I turned off LTE. Now all calls come through. When I enable LTE. It no longer rings. So until apple or sprint fixes my problem. I leave my phone in 3G mode and I receive all my calls.

    Reply

    • Allison Burden

      04/12/2016 at 8:11 am

      So glad this was still visible almost a year later. This is my first iPhone and after MONTHS of this I was thinking about going back to Android. Hoping this takes care of the situation.

      Reply

  2. Joseph Jimenez

    06/10/2015 at 11:52 am

    I’m having the same problem. How do I turn off LTE? Thanks.

    Reply

    • Laurance

      06/10/2015 at 11:55 am

      Open settings, then click cellular. Then where it says enable lte make sure that’s not green

      Reply

      • Rod

        10/09/2015 at 5:12 am

        Thanks this was my problem – the LTE button was on. I think the software upgrade must have defaulted to the wrong settings.

        Reply

      • Madalyn

        01/04/2016 at 8:36 am

        Thanks! Turned off Do not disturb, but don’t know where settings is. All I can see is utilities. Where did my setting of? thanks!

        Reply

  3. Tom

    06/12/2015 at 3:27 pm

    This was a huge help! I thought there was a problem with my phone, but sure enough, it was set on Do Not Disturb.

    Reply

  4. Karen

    07/02/2015 at 2:44 pm

    Exactly what I needed – thank you very much Josh. I won’t be messing with those icons again any time soon! :)

    Reply

  5. John

    07/03/2015 at 7:46 am

    Wonderful fix! Thanks so much for the quick fix.

    Reply

  6. Aissara

    07/23/2015 at 4:56 pm

    Thank you Laurence! Once I turned off LTE, the phone rang again. I have been looking for a solution for a very long time, thank you for the salvation!

    Reply

  7. Suzanne

    07/24/2015 at 4:02 pm

    Genius!

    Reply

  8. Andrea

    07/25/2015 at 1:11 pm

    Thanks, Laurance – I was gong crazy trying to fix this and wondered if it had something to do with the last update, as new problems also happen with updates. Thanks, again!

    Reply

  9. Laurance

    07/25/2015 at 5:13 pm

    Just glad it’s helpful to others. I thought I was the only one having the problem.

    Reply

    • Shirley Dillard

      07/26/2015 at 10:10 am

      I may be blind, but I don’t see LTE when I click on cellular.

      Reply

      • Laurance

        07/26/2015 at 10:14 am

        You can mail me if you want [email protected]

        Reply

      • somebody

        01/05/2016 at 2:06 pm

        You may not have any iPhone model that supports LTE, ie – it must be an iPhone 5 or newer.

        Reply

  10. Henia

    07/29/2015 at 6:54 pm

    I had the same problem, but I realized it had started after I turned my zoom on to make the icons larger. Once I turned it back to standard the phone started to ring again.
    Setting->Display & Brightness under “DISPLAY ZOOM” if the view is “Zoomed” turn it back to “Standard”

    Reply

  11. Karen

    08/02/2015 at 12:38 pm

    thanks Laurence saved me time and a trip to the Att store

    Reply

  12. Johnny

    08/03/2015 at 2:19 pm

    Had same problem, but cause of my phone not ringing was the AirPlay. After using AirPlay to watch Apple TV, my phone didn’t ring. I had to switch the AirPlay mode to IPhone to get my phone to ring again.
    Hope this helps some.

    Reply

  13. Glenda

    08/05/2015 at 12:10 pm

    Just what I needed. Thought I was going crazy. Phone was right beside me and phone would not ring nor could I hear text. “Do not Disturb” was on. Thanks.

    Reply

  14. Char Love

    08/05/2015 at 12:26 pm

    THANK YOU! THANK YOU! THANK YOU! Finally found the answer to a question that has been bugging me for years, literally. I had iPhone 4s with AT&T and all calls would go to vm unless you hung up and dialed me right back… then phone would ring. (Discovered that accidentally but didn’t know why). I talked to Apple and AT&T and all I got was finger pointing and no answer. This week I switched carriers to Verizon and got a new iPhone6 hoping the problem would be solved. First test phone call… right to vmail… grrrrrrrr! So before I treked all the way to the Apple Store and talked to Verizon, I did another google search on this problem and the blogs reflect that most folks are just frustrated but living with it at this point. THEN I found you solution which is so simple and so right on! I thought it must be a setting that I was missing but my big question is why don’t the Apple geeks have the answer to this when so many people come to them with this question? YIKES! Anyway…. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

    Reply

  15. Victor

    11/10/2015 at 8:47 am

    Thank you for the tip, I disable LTE and my phone started to ring. Thanks again.

    Reply

  16. David gallagher

    11/19/2015 at 10:45 pm

    Like others I had a problem of calls apparently intermittently going to voicemail in sleep mode on my iPhone 5. I spent an elapsed 4 hours talking to 4 different Vodafone people who eventually pointed to Apple. Luckily someone randomly suggested I check aircraft mode which it was not but I happened to notice the “do not disturb ” facility which was turned on along with frequent caller over ride hence the intermittence. Not only that but my daughter had been putting up with this for months. Hey presto fixed. Surely this should be part of some sort of Vodafone triage instead of wasting time being passed from pillar to post. Dave

    Reply

  17. Andy Wu

    12/04/2015 at 7:20 am

    Thanks for the fix. Saved us a lot of time by not going to the store for help.

    Reply

  18. Carole

    12/23/2015 at 4:48 pm

    Both turning off LTE and putting the zoomed back to standard worked on my iPhone 6 plus. My daughter was concerned that turning off LTE might give me problems with Wi-Fi when I left the house. Then I saw Henia’s fix with the ‘Zoomed’ back to standard and tried that and it worked even better. Thank you Henia and Laurance!

    Reply

  19. Steve

    02/05/2016 at 2:30 pm

    Thanks, I would never take the time to go to the store and stand around and not get the answer. I’m glad people like you know some of the answers.

    Reply

  20. Kay Brown

    02/06/2016 at 7:13 am

    Another setting that can cause calls to go straight to voice mail is if “forward calls to vm is enabled.” You do that by dialing *72 whether intentional or accidentally. To disable, dial *73, wait for three beeps and hang up. Your phone will now ring for incoming calls.

    Reply

  21. Devon

    02/26/2016 at 10:02 pm

    Bless your hearts, all of you. You may have just saved my sanity.

    Reply

  22. jeffmartin254

    03/01/2016 at 6:19 pm

    Worked for me

    Reply

  23. Catherine

    03/04/2016 at 3:33 pm

    My 5c phone goes to voicemail and I have tried all suggestions, do not disturb, let. Help please.

    Reply

  24. Brandy

    03/21/2016 at 5:52 pm

    I just got the 1phone 6s 3/6/16 and I have been having issues with phone ringing I just turned off LTE and moved Zoome to standard in hope of issue being fixed!! Thank you Lauren

    Reply

  25. Mike

    03/27/2016 at 7:58 pm

    I am having problems with my phone ringing as well and text messages coming through hours late,,! I am enabling the LTE., the only problem is doing this is it on 3G instead of 4G.

    Reply

  26. Wendy

    04/04/2016 at 11:32 pm

    After endless frustration of this continually happening with my iPhone 5s and me blaming bad software, I can not believe that I just kept turning on the do not disturb icon! No wonder if people called right back it worked. I will never admit that I was at fault but you may have saved me from being single as it has caused so much frustration! Cheers!

    Reply

  27. stacy helton

    04/18/2016 at 5:20 pm

    I only have one number that goes to voicemail.. Unfortunately, it is my doctor. It is awful. When they call me the call goes directly to voicemail. Then I call them back and usually have to leave a message. So I am continually play phone tag until I can get a live person at the doctor office. Help! How can I fix this?

    Reply

    • Brad

      08/15/2016 at 4:20 am

      Hi Stacy, I was having the “sometimes iPhone not ringing” problem, now going to try turning off LTE (called 4G in Aus)… For your problem with just one phone number, check you haven’t accidentally blocked it… Try going to:
      settings > phone > blocked…
      If the doctors number is in there, go ahead and unblock it

      Reply

  28. C Mckeown

    05/24/2016 at 1:41 pm

    Thank you for this simple yet very affective solution. One of our users was convinced his phone needed to be replaced after spending countless hours troubleshooting the device. This is definitely going into our KB archives!!

    Reply

  29. partly cloudy

    06/23/2016 at 1:33 pm

    thank you. I obviously hit the do not disturb saturday morning and have worried every since.
    just fixed it! thank you.

    Reply

  30. Paul Gebhard

    07/18/2016 at 5:57 am

    I have struggled for months to get my phone 8+ to ring when someone calls but without success . It worked fine initially but now just shows accept or decline screen without ringing
    Anymore suggestions?

    Reply

  31. Polly

    08/10/2016 at 11:04 am

    I have had only select calls not ring. The solution I read (which I hope works) is: in Do Not Disturb, I had a schedule time set with the exception of “Allow Calls From” Favorites”. Once I changed that to Everyone,,, it now rings for everyone.

    Reply

  32. Sue

    09/03/2016 at 9:36 pm

    Thank you so much. Fixed the problem instantly.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *