My iPhone won’t turn on – simple fixes if your iPhone won’t turn on

My iPhone won’t turn on – how to fix.

my iPhone won't turn on

What to do if my iPhone won’t turn on?

My iPhone won’t turn on or charge is an issue I have heard many times from iPhone users seeking solution to the problem. If you find your iPhone won’t turn on, your device might have a frozen screen/black screen that doesn’t respond when you touch it or press buttons. Or maybe your device begins to turn on, but gets stuck during start-up. Before I go into the solutions to the problem let us look into the probable causes why your iPhone won’t turn on.

Why won’t my iPhone turn on –probable causes

Some of the possible reasons why your iPhone won’t turn on are,

  • Software crash;
  • Battery drained out completely;
  • Corrupted firmware;
  • Water damage;
  • Hardware problem;

But at this point you are probably wondering, what am I to do if my iPhone won’t turn on? If you find your iPhone not turning on and it has a black or frozen screen or you see an error message, you need not worry. Try the following fixes which will make your iPhone to boot again and work as it should be. If it doesn’t, your device has a hardware problem preventing it from working properly.

All these fixes are found to be effective for all versions of iPad and iPod touch apart from iPhone.

Steps to fix if your iPhone won’t turn on:

Restart your iPhone  

First, try to restart the phone if your iPhone won’t turn on. To do this, press and keep holding down the Sleep/Wake button (Power button) at the top right corner or the right edge of your phone until the red slider appears on screen. Slide it across to turn your iPhone off. Then restart your phone again by holding down the Sleep/Wake button for a few seconds.

Force restart your iPhone

If your iPhone won’t turn after trying the standard restart try to force your iPhone to restart. Forcing your device to restart won’t erase the content currently on it. Here is what you need to do to force restart your iPhone:

  • For iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus: Press and hold both the Sleep/Wake button (the Power button is also known as the Sleep/Wake button)  and Volume Down buttons for at least 10 seconds, until you see the Apple logo;
  • For iPhone 6s and earlier, iPad, or iPod touch: Press and hold both the Sleep/Wake and Home buttons for at least 10 seconds, until you see the Apple logo;

Charge the iPhone

If ‘force restart’ doesn’t work and your iPhone won’t turn on or start up after this, the next thing you should do is to check if your iPhone’s battery is charged enough to run the phone. An iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch may fail to turn on if its battery is completely dead. Generally, you’ll see a ‘low battery’ indicator when you try to turn an iOS device on if it doesn’t have enough battery power. But, when the battery is completely dead, it won’t respond and you’ll just see the black screen. In such situation your iPhone won’t turn on until you let it charge for a while. Therefore, plug in your device and let it charge for up to one hour. Few minutes after you plug in the phone, you should see the charging screen.

my iPhone won't turn on

If you don’t see the charging screen within an hour, or you see the ‘connect to power’ screen, it’s possible that your power adapter or cable is faulty. Check the USB cable, jack and power adapter and make sure that everything is plugged in firmly. If your iPhone still won’t charge, there are a couple of things you may try:

  • Try another USB cable;
  • Try another power adapter;
  • Try another wall outlet;
  • Connect your device to your computer instead of using a wall charger;
  • Clean the charging port to remove dirt, debris or dust;

Restore your iPhone to factory settings

If your iPhone won’t turn on even after charging the battery your best bet would be to restore your iPhone to its factory settings, which can solve a lot of problems. This would erase all the data and settings on your phone and therefore, make sure to backup all your data first before going for the Restore process. If you haven’t sync your device recently, do so now to make sure all your data are up to date.

Normally, you’d sync your iPhone and restore it to factory settings using iTunes.  To do this, connect your device to your computer and launch iTunes. But before connecting the device and launching iTunes, make sure that you have the latest version of the iTunes software installed. Next, open iTunes on your computer and connect your iPhone to your PC or Mac with the supplied USB cable. Then, unlock your device with your PIN and tap the Trust button to trust your computer when asked for. Select your iPhone when it appears in iTunes and click the Restore button. iTunes will restore your device to its factory settings with a clean copy of the iOS operating system.

However, in case your iPhone won’t turn on, try these steps to put your iPhone in recovery mode to restore the device:

  • Plug the iPhone’s USB cable into the Lightning/Dock Connector port, but not into your computer;
  • Hold down the iPhone’s Home button (in case of iPhone 7 hold volume down button);
  • While holding the Home button, plug the other end of the USB cable into your computer;
  • This will open iTunes, put the iPhone into recovery mode and let you restore your iPhone to factory settings;

Put the iPhone into DFU mode

A DFU restore stands the best chance of fixing a problem of your iPhone when a reset or standard Recovery mode fails to solve it. DFU mode can be used to fix a number of problems with your iPhone including the ‘iPhone won’t turn on’ issue. Particularly in situations when you suspect that firmware updates or faulty jail-breaking of the device may be the cause of the problem, you may choose to put your iPhone into DFU mode.

To put your iPhone into DFU mode follow these steps:

  • Plug your iPhone into your computer;
  • Hold down the Power button for 3 seconds, then let it go;
  • Hold down the Power button and Home button (in case of iPhone 7, hold the Power button and the volume down button) together for about 10 seconds;
  • Release the Power button but keep holding the Home button (in case of  iPhone 7, holding the volume down button) for about 10 seconds until you get a popup from iTunes saying “iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode”;
  • iPhone won't turn on
  • If you’ve successfully entered into DFU mode your iPhone screen should be completely blank and no logos will be present. If it’s not, try again from the beginning; Now restore your iPhone using iTunes;
  • To Exit DFU Mode hold the Home and Power buttons until the Apple Logo appears. Press the power button to reboot the device. After the device reboots, your phone should be back to its normal functions;

It is however very important to note that regardless of whether you use DFU mode or recovery mode all your un-synced data since your last iTunes backup, will be lost. Therefore, you are advised to proceed with backup of any un-synced data.

What to do if your iPhone won’t turn on due to water damage

I have many times come across comments like – my iPhone won’t turn on as I accidentally dropped my phone in water. If your iPhone or iPad falls into water the last thing you should do is to try turning it on. In such situation you should avoid turning your iPhone on for at least 24 hours to prevent damage beyond repair. You need to dry out the phone first before trying to turn it on.  You can read my article on tips to rescue if your iPhone Dropped in water for dealing with a water-damaged iPhone.

If your iPhone won’t turn on even after following all the fixes mentioned above, your iPhone or iPad likely has a hardware problem preventing it from booting. In such situation you need to contact Apple or visit one of their stores.


After going through this article you probably no more need to worry or wonder ‘why won’t my iPhone turn on’. In majority cases the fixes suggested above would resolve the issue and make your iPhone boot again and work properly.

However, if the problem still persists and you find your iPhone won’t turn on, you have no other options but to contact Apple support. Hence, if you still see black screen after charging, force restarting or following other steps in this article or if your device’s screen is on but it doesn’t respond when you tap or slide or if you can’t force your device to restart because your Home or Sleep/Wake button is broken or stuck or if your device is stuck on the Apple logo or is not recognized in iTunes, you need to contact Apple support and get them to identify and fix the problem for you. But before you contact Apple support you should check the status of your iPhone’s warranty since that could save you money on repairs.

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