This is a guide to show you how to quickly fix iPhone charging problems if your phone stops connecting to your computer or charging.
It can be a truly rough situation when on the go and you find your iPhone is running low on battery life or worse, completely dead. The situation is even tougher when you realize the phone is not charging at all when you plug it in.
When you experience iPhone charging problems it is easy to get frustrated and immediately assume the worst. However, with a little bit of patience, you can often fix the charging problem yourself or at least get a better idea of what’s going on.
How to Fix iPhone Charging Problems
There a two different elements than can cause iPhone charging problems, hardware and software. Just like a computer, exploring both of these factors independently can usually give you some good results to go off of.
Here are a couple of things to try when you encounter these charging issues, hopefully getting your device working quickly again and saving you a trip to the Genius Bar.
Perform a Hard Reset
Believe it or not, a hard reset will resolve most power related issues because it gets the software factor out of the way immediately. This is especially useful to try if the phone is blank screened and completely non-responsive.
Plug the phone into your Lightning Cable (preferably one you know to be functioning) and wall adapter and wait a few seconds to see if the phone responds.
If there is no illumination of any kind on screen, hold the home button and the sleep/wake switch down at the same time for roughly 7-10 seconds. If the phone is experiencing a software problem, this usually starts things back up again by halting all processes and forcing the phone to reboot.
If this is a success, you should see the Apple logo illuminate your screen, indicating the phone is now rebooting with all functionality enabled again.
This is the best first response if the phone is completely dead but is also very useful to just troubleshoot charging issues in general.
This type of hard reset will not wipe your phone’s memory, but if you were working on something when the phone screen went dark you may lose any changes you just made.
Check Your Lightning Cable and Adapter
The second best troubleshooting step is to just perform a physical inspection of the Lightning Cable you are using to connect your iPhone.
Are there any tears in the cable? Any bare wires exposed? Is there any discoloration or melted areas? These are all sure signs of an issue with the cable. Even if it was “just working” it absolutely could be the cause of your issues.
Test with another cable as soon as you can, preferably one that is Apple branded and not an aftermarket cable. These are not reliable and should not be used during the troubleshooting process whatsoever. If the cable was at fault, you may need to let the phone charge for a while before seeing results.
The other alternative is that it could be your power adapter brick causing the issue, so plug the cable into a computer or another adapter to ensure the same results. The bricks tend to not be the most common cause, but they are definitely still worth looking at if the cable testing isn’t yielding any results.
The best way to confirm all of these tests is to use another iOS device that charges via Lightning Cable and check side by side with your problem iPhone.
Check the Lightning Port
The device may be having a problem with connectivity due to debris in the charging port. This step involves careful physical handling as you don’t want to damage anything within the charging port.
There is often a high chance that if you keep your iPhone in your pocket, you will end up with some lint stuffed into the port, blocking your cable from making connection. Under good lighting, look into the port and observe if there is anything obstructing the connection. Look near the sides of the port but especially the back wall. It should appear metallic if the port is clean.
If you see some culprit debris, you may be able to gently dislodge it and get your phone charging again. Using a bent paper clip or a sewing needle, carefully pick at the sides of the port, and right near the back wall. You should be able to pull the debris out and free the connection.
Be extremely careful when inserting objects into the bottom of the phone and do not proceed if you do not feel comfortable. The Genius Bar will be able to clean your port for you if you don’t want to risk damaging it. All the same, check for debris before booking an appointment to at least save the technician some troubleshooting time.
Hopefully these tips have helped get your iPhone charging again or powered on! If all else fails, the iPhone may require a hardware repair and will need to be taken to a service provider. The Apple Store will attempt a lot of these same steps however so it helps to try a few things at home first! Hardware repairs may involve replacing the device so be prepared for any service options if you need to take the phone in.