My iPhone Won’t Turn On! Here’s The Real Fix.

Your iPhone will not turn on and you’re looking for help. It’s a problem that can be easy or difficult to fix, depending on the cause. In this article, I’ll help you determine the reason why your iPhone won’t turn on and show you how to fix your iPhone when it isn’t turning on.

Be Careful Of Misinformation About Why iPhones Won’t Turn On

I wrote this article because I’ve seen a lot of other articles that claim to have a solution to the “iPhone won’t turn on” problem, but based on my experience as an Apple tech, the other articles have only one piece of the puzzle — or the information is just plain wrong.

Why Won’t My iPhone Turn On?

Your iPhone won’t turn on because either the software crashed and needs to be reset or restored, or a hardware problem is preventing your iPhone from turning on.

How To Fix An iPhone That Won’t Turn On

  1. Determine Whether Your iPhone Won’t Turn On Due To A Hardware Or Software Problem

    We need to determine is whether a software or hardware problem is preventing your iPhone from turning on. Your iPhone’s software is the easiest to troubleshoot, so that’s where we’ll start. If that doesn’t solve the problem, I’ll discuss the hardware issues that can cause the problem.

  2. Software Crash

    I saw this problem a lot at Apple. Someone would walk in and hand me an iPhone that wouldn’t turn on. I’d do a hard reset and their iPhone would immediately spring back to life. Astonished, they’d ask, “What did you do?”

    Cross your fingers and try a hard reset. To hard reset your iPhone on an iPhone 6S or older, press and hold down the Sleep / Wake button (the power button) and the Home button at the same time, for at least 20 seconds or until the Apple logo appears on the screen.

    On iPhone 7, simultaneously hold the power button and volume down button instead.

    To hard reset an iPhone 8 or newer, quickly press and release the volume up button, then press and release the volume down button, then press and hold the side button until the Apple logo appears.

    Sidenote: Why Can A Hard Reset Fix An iPhone That Won’t Turn On?

    If a hard reset fixed your iPhone, your problem was never that your iPhone wouldn’t turn on, because it was on the whole time.

    A lot of people think their iPhone won’t turn on when their iPhone is on, but the software has crashed so it’s displaying a black screen and not responding. It’s an easy mistake to make, because an iPhone in that condition is almost indistinguishable from an iPhone that’s turned off.

    Fixing A Software Crash

    If you’ve determined that your iPhone’s software is the reason your iPhone won’t turn on, I recommend you backup and restore your iPhone. When a software problem is that bad, it’s time to fix the software. You can learn about how to do the deepest type of iPhone restore in my article about how to DFU restore an iPhone.

  3. Check Your Lightning Cable And Your Charger (Don’t Skip This Step)

    iphone wont turn on check cableIf your iPhone won’t turn on, try charging your iPhone with another cable and another charger, or alternatively, try charging someone else’s iPhone with your cable and your charger. If their iPhone charges and yours doesn’t, don’t skip to the next step just yet.

    A common, less-documented issue is some iPhones will charge when connected to a laptop computer, but not with the wall charger. Even if your friend’s iPhone charges with the same cable and wall charger, it’s possible that your iPhone will not. Without going into a detailed discussion about why this happens, try charging your iPhone using a USB port on your computer if you usually use a wall outlet, and try a wall charger if you usually charge your iPhone with your laptop.

    To learn more about how to fix iPhone charging problems that can be related to this issue, I recommend you check out my article called My iPhone Won’t Charge.

  4. Make Sure It’s Not Just The Display

    iphone with itunes openIf your iPhone still won’t turn on, plug your iPhone into your computer and open iTunes (PCs and Macs running macOS 10.14 or older) or Finder (Macs running macOS 10.15 or newer). Does iTunes recognize your iPhone? If it does, back up your iPhone right away. If there’s a serious hardware problem, this might be your last chance to back up your data.

    If your iPhone shows up in iTunes of Finder and you can successfully back it up, or if it’s making any noises at all, you may need to have your iPhone’s display repaired. My article about what to do if your iPhone screen turns black can help. Scroll to the Repair Options section at the bottom of this article to learn what to do next (and possibly save some money).

    If your iPhone doesn’t show up in iTunes or Finder, try doing a hard reset while your iPhone is connected to your computer. Do you see any error messages? If iTunes says you need to restore your iPhone, do it.

    If you’ve tried the previous steps and your iPhone still won’t turn on, there’s probably no way to recover the data that’s on your iPhone now unless you have an iTunes, Finder, or iCloud backup. The only other option for recovering data is to use one of the very expensive iPhone data recovery companies you can find with a Google search.

  5. Check For Physical Or Liquid Damage

    For those of us who’ve dropped our iPhones and got away with it, iPhones are tough. For people whose iPhones stopped working after they watched their daughter’s softball game in the rain, iPhones are fragile. Drops and spills can cause damage that stops iPhones from turning on.

    Water damage is insidious and unpredictable. A spill from a week ago can cause a problem to occur today for the very first time. A drop of water got in the charging port and your iPhone won’t charge, but your friend spilled a glass of water on his iPhone and it works just fine — we hear stories like this all the time.

    Do a visual inspection of the outside of your iPhone — is there any damage? If it’s minor, Apple may ignore it and replace your iPhone under warranty.

    check closely for damageNext, check for liquid damage. Your iPhone’s warranty doesn’t cover liquid damage unless your have AppleCare+, and even then, there’s still a deductible. To learn how to check if your iPhone has water damage, check out our comprehensive guide on iPhone liquid damage.

  6. Repair Options For When An iPhone Won’t Turn On

    If you’re under warranty and there’s no physical or liquid damage, Apple will probably cover the repair for no charge. If you’re not, Apple can be expensive—but there are good alternatives.

    Now might be a good time to get a new cell phone. iPhone repairs are expensive, and your device may have multiple hardware problems. Repair companies often need to replace every broken component. Those repairs will add up quickly, and your bill may be hundreds of dollars. It may be more economical to upgrade to a newer iPhone. Check out UpPhone’s tool to compare every cell phone on every wireless carrier.

Your iPhone Is Turning On Again: Time To Wrap It Up

By this point, you’ve determined why your iPhone won’t turn on and the next steps to take if your iPhone needs to be repaired. If it helped you, please share it with your friends, especially because so many other articles out there are filled with inaccurate information on this subject. I’m interested to hear about your experience with troubleshooting and how you fixed your iPhone in the comments section below.

About Author

I'm a former Apple employee and the founder of Payette Forward, and I'm here to help you with your iPhone.

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Anonymous
6 years ago

THANK YOU SO MUCH! VERY HELPFUL!

Anonymous
6 years ago

You’re such a blessing. I tried resetting my iphone (hard reset – 20 seconds) and charging my iphone on my laptop, and presto, it’s back to life again. I haven’t used this one for months and I’m glad it worked today! Thank you!

Anonymous
6 years ago

My iphone is fallen into vine glass half filled from the top side that is from camera side. The vine was half to my iphone. When my iphone fallen in its flash lights are one when i bring it out after 15sec it didnt respond to my finger touch then its battery goes out. Now after that when i put it to charge it shows me only its apple logo and some time it shows me connect to itune what problem does it have.Please i need help cause it has some urgent documents. [email protected]

Anonymous
6 years ago

Is there anyway to do the hard reset if your home button doesn’t work?

Anonymous
6 years ago

it works thank.

Anonymous
6 years ago

On my iphone 5s i disconnected the battery plug inside then plugged it back in and its back to normal, so must have been loose.
Hope this helped

Anonymous
6 years ago

You helped me! Thank you so much, had no idea how easy a hard reset would be.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Nooo! On an iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus: Press and hold the Sleep/Wake and Volume Down buttons at the same time.
On an iPhone 6s and earlier, iPad, or iPod touch: Press and hold the Sleep/Wake and Home buttons at the same time.

Anonymous
6 years ago

10 seconds worked. Thank you Mr. Payette

Anonymous
6 years ago

thank you so much for making this article it helps me turning on my iphone 🙂 Godbless you 🙂

Anonymous
6 years ago

Heard about this and tried it before reading any fixes here. This didn’t work. But another person in the apple support community said to do this but toggle the mute switch up and down a few times before and then do the hard reset listed here. Worked for me. He said no one knows why but the toggle works. Another mac mystery.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Usefull article. Thank you so much

Anonymous
6 years ago

So how do you do a hard reset of the lock button doesn’t work?

Anonymous
6 years ago

thank u . it worked

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thank you for your help my iphone is back on , will back files so that don’t happen again.

Anonymous
6 years ago

You are a life saver! Yes, I freaked out when my I-Phone had a black screen and would not turn on. Your simple solution to hold the off button with the big white home button worked. Thanks again 🙂

Anonymous
6 years ago

THANK-YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous
6 years ago

So helpfull!!!!

Anonymous
6 years ago

(Y) (Y) (Y)

Anonymous
6 years ago

My iPhone 7 still won’t work. Everything works fine and when I try to hard reset my phone it won’t turn on no matter what I do. And about 2 hours later, (the time keeps getting longer and longer) it boots up by itself. I can’t understand it. I’ve tried evert button combination possible to try and start it up again. Even tried to charge it and do the same thing.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Nice! Thanks

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thank you. I got the phone started and will follow advice to back it up.I was toying with the idea of upgrading so maybe this was an omen! Have bookmarked your page

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thank you, very helpfull

Anonymous
6 years ago

Congratulations David, I’m glad I found your page, it’s the most professional and accurate help I have seen in a long time. I followed your instructions, made a hard restart but this time I waited the 10 seconds or more you recommend and then it worked flawlessly and solved the problem very easily. Thank you for your advice and please keep up the good things you are doing…!!!

Anonymous
6 years ago

Worked for my wife’s phone 26 seconds

Anonymous
6 years ago

my iphone5 has a different problem it shows the apple logo but it is blinking and going of what shuold i do plz help ??

Anonymous
6 years ago

IF WE CAN CHANGE THE PROCESSOR

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thank you. It worked!!

Anonymous
6 years ago

I did a hard reset on my phone, then looked up why it shut off. This is a great explaination of both how to do each step and why it might have happened. Thank you so much.

Anonymous
6 years ago

We also discovere,d from my awesome son, that sometimes junk will accumulate in the charger area. That can be removed with a toothpick or toothpick soaked in alcohol. My husband’s iPhone was dead & would not charge. We cleaned out that area & now it charges & is working just fine.

Anonymous
6 years ago

My IPhone 6 screen started to flicker and then after a day it went black. It was still receiving calls but after the hard reset it stopped working altogether. It was one month out of warranty and it will cost a lot of money to fix. I am worried that it will happen again, so I am going to buy another brand of phone.

Anonymous
6 years ago

This article was so helpful I didnt know what to do and this small pragraph helped me so much ! 🙂

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thanks the hard reset instructions worked.

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thanks so much for your tip! I had tried holding down the two buttons at the same time but not long enough! When I held them down for 20 seconds, it worked! I had completed an update in the middle of the night, it worked this morning for awhile but was a bit glitchy but then just would not turn on!

Anonymous
6 years ago

I tried the hard reset on my iphone 5s and it worked .thanks a million

Anonymous
6 years ago

i just got my phone fixed with a new battery and it wont turn on
i dont now what to do pls help me fix this

Anonymous
6 years ago

thanks it really works, i have an 4s and now its working. thanks again!!!

Anonymous
6 years ago

My phone won’t turn on so I tried number 3 and it just told me (when I plugged it in) that it can’t access my phone without my passcode. But I can’t put my passcode in if my phone doesn’t turn on!

Anonymous
6 years ago

HUGE HELP!!!!! Phone was on charger for like an hour and nothing! I did the hard reset and held both buttons down for like 30 seconds.at first I didnt see apple logo so was about to do again but about a minute after I did first reset it came on and is now charging and working perfectly

Anonymous
6 years ago

Black screen on iPhone following self opening and close, which I’ve done successfully many times before. I connected to iTunes via USB, and get the message, “To allow access, please respond on your iPhone…” But, obviously, with a black screen, there’s no way I can “respond” and therefore can’t backup. Moving on to your next suggestion of what to do if your screen turns black.

Anonymous
6 years ago

my iphone was working fine a few days ago but it was turning complete off even when it was at like 50% so I would always have to keep it plugged in. but I think what I have been doing wrong is charging it while it’s at 20% and not getting rid of all of the background apps. and now it’s at the point that it would show the apple icon but not turn on, just go to a back screen and than the apple icon would pop back up.

Anonymous
6 years ago

thamk you for this article it has helped me a lot

Anonymous
6 years ago

Thank you for the Hard Boot solution , it was easier than i thought . Thanks again

Anonymous
6 years ago

Hi my iPhone 5s won’t come on at all it only chagre when it off and when it do come on it last about 20 mins and then it cut off

Anonymous
6 years ago

the apple logo would turn on then it would go away. it wont turn on all the way! whats happening?!

Anonymous
6 years ago

I got my phone fixed t
Day as it had a broken lcd screen and the front screen also had a swollen battery. It’s been on charge for about 3 hours now and it’s not turning on, it comes up with the charging sign but will not turn on.. Amy suggestions???

Anonymous
6 years ago

Awesome! Saved me a trip to sprint!
Thanks!!

Anonymous
7 years ago

Thank you so much! Very grateful my search for help landed me on your page first. I had a black screen iphone 6S and the hard restart worked!

Anonymous
7 years ago

thank you so much such a big help.

Anonymous
7 years ago

Hi mate
Tried the hard reset but no joy I have a lot of important stuff on the phone and would be devastated if I lose them .. please help
Cheers
Jimi