My iPhone Is Dead! Here’s The Real Fix.

You have a dead iPhone and you don’t know what to do. It won’t even charge when you plug it into a power source! In this article, I’ll explain why your iPhone is dead and show you how to fix the problem for good.

Why Is My iPhone Dead?

There are a few possible reasons why your iPhone is dead:

  1. It’s out of battery and needs to be charged.
  2. The software has crashed, making the screen black and unresponsive.
  3. Your iPhone has a hardware problem such as an old, faulty battery.

At this point, we can’t be totally sure what’s responsible for your dead iPhone. However, I’d be willing to wager that your iPhone’s software has crashed, or that you’re dealing with a hardware problem resulting from water damage. The steps below will help you diagnose and fix the real reason why your iPhone is dead!

Charge Your iPhone

You’ve probably already tried this, but connect your iPhone to a charger using a Lightning cable. I recommend trying more than one charger and cable, just in case they’re broken and causing the problem.

Plug lightning cable into usb

When your iPhone, charger, and Lightning cable are working normally, a low battery icon or the Apple logo will appear on the display. If your iPhone display is still completely black after plugging it into a charger, move onto the next step!

Hard Reset Your iPhone

A lot of the time, your iPhone appears dead because its software has crashed and made the display completely black. A hard reset will force your iPhone to abruptly turn off and back on, which will usually fix a black or frozen iPhone display.

The way to hard reset your iPhone varies depending on which model you have:

  • iPhone SE or older: Simultaneously press and hold the power button and the Home button. Release both buttons when the Apple logo appears on the screen. Your iPhone will turn back on shortly after.
  • iPhone 7: Press and hold the volume down button and the power button at the same time until the Apple logo appears on the screen.
  • iPhone 8 or newer: Press and release the volume up button, then press and release the volume down button, then press and hold the side button. Let go of the side button when the Apple logo appears on the display.

If the hard reset revived your dead iPhone, it was never really dead to begin with! The software on your iPhone crashed and made your iPhone screen black.

Even though your iPhone is working normally again, we still haven’t fixed the root cause of the problem. There’s still an underlying software problem that made your iPhone appear dead in the first place. Follow the next two troubleshooting steps in this article to fix your iPhone’s software problem!

If A Hard Reset Didn’t Fix Your iPhone…

We still can’t rule out the possibility of a software issue even if a hard reset didn’t fix your iPhone. The next two steps in this article will help you backup your iPhone and put it into DFU mode.

Backup Your iPhone

You’ll want to save a backup as soon as possible if the hard reset fixed your dead iPhone. If there is a more significant software problem causing issues on your iPhone, this may be your last chance to back it up.

Even if a hard reset didn’t fix your iPhone, you still may be able to back it up using iTunes.

First, plug your iPhone into a computer running iTunes. Open iTunes and click on the iPhone icon near the upper left-hand corner of the application. Click the circle next to This Computer, then click Back Up Now.

backup iphone to this computer

If your iPhone isn’t showing up in iTunes, you won’t be able to back it up or put it in DFU mode. Move onto the repair section of this article to learn what the next steps are.

Put Your iPhone In DFU Mode

When you put your iPhone in DFU mode and restore, all of its code gets erased and reloaded. A DFU restore is the deepest type of iPhone restore, and it’s the last step you can take to completely rule out a software problem. Check out our step-by-step guide to learn how to put your iPhone in DFU mode!

iPhone Repair Options

If your iPhone is still dead, it’s time to start exploring your repair options. A lot of the time, water damage can leave you with a dead iPhone. Although it’s less likely, your iPhone’s battery might be damaged or completely dead.

My first recommendation would be to set up an appointment at your Apple Store, especially if your iPhone is covered by AppleCare+. Apple also has an excellent mail-in service if you don’t live near an Apple Store.

We also recommend Puls, an on-demand repair company that can replace batteries and sometimes fix water damage.

Your iPhone Is Alive & Well!

You’ve revived your dead iPhone and it’s working normally again! Next your iPhone is dead, you’ll know how to fix the problem. Leave any other questions you have in the comments section down below.

Thanks for reading,
David L.

About Author

David Lynch is an expert on cell phones, cell phone plans, and other tech. After using a flip phone into his early 20s, he learned the ropes about iPhones and Androids from a former Apple employee. Today, his articles and videos are read and viewed by millions, and he has been cited by major publications including Reader's Digest, Wired, CMSWire, Consumers Advocate, and more.

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Amy R Martin
1 year ago

If Apple says my iphone x death is irreversible after running diagnostic – is that the end of the line

2 years ago

Thank you, I’m fully in tears as I followed your advise & my iPhone 6s has recovered.

Meera Raghavan
2 years ago

I did all possibilities as you said but my iPhone 6s has still not recovered. I recently put a new battery in my iPhone from the Apple Store.

Dolly Bachaalany
2 years ago

Hello. I want to tell you what it happened with my iPhone 7. This is the first time I am facing a problem with it. It was like a new one. I have had this phone since it came out on the market. I bought it from the US by a doctor who lives there. It was not subject to any collisions, falls or liquid objects. It has full storage constantly and asks me to delete some apps and photos. I do that but it soon comes back to getting full. On September 5, Apple logo showed up on the… Read more »

ethan s.
2 years ago

I went to apple to replace my old iPhone 6’s battery. They fixed it and it worked but only for one time. After that, I tried to charge it with multiple cables that worked with my iPhone 12. I tried to hard reset it but it showed no signs of life and even when I pressed the power button after the iPhone had been charging for hours, it didn’t even show the red battery sign. Also, I got infected by Corona and I can’t go to Apple and I need this iPhone on urgently.

Patrick Green
3 years ago

My iphone SE has blac screen have charged for a day tryed all butten code nothing have took apart and unconnected battery as hard reset i belive then cheaked connections unplugged left few min then put all back together and still nothing any help please

ethan s.
2 years ago
Reply to  Patrick Green

What was the tip? I’m also stuck with the same exact problem and I need my phone back. What’s worse is that it has a new battery and I can’t go back to apple becuase i got the virus and I need the data on this phone urgently for work (I work online).

3 years ago

Thank you for the tip. It worked.

Liam Shotwell
3 years ago
Reply to  Cyn

No problem! Glad we could help! ?

3 years ago

Great! Thanks. Now running after the first reset?. Much appreciated as I thought about taking the battery out to reset as I have done for android in the past. U saved us a lot of hassle.
Thanks again

Liam Shotwell
3 years ago
Reply to  Wayne

If only removing the battery was as easy as the old days…I’m glad this article was able to help you! ?

kyle maharaj
3 years ago

if your iphone is not turing on still what to

Anna Lea
3 years ago

My new iPhone se a few weeks old black screen won’t charge I tried to restart it. But nothing

Nishit Vats
3 years ago

My iphone 6 won’t turn on , not connecting to itunes,not getting in dfu mode and unresponsive to charging also what can i do please help

3 years ago

my iphone wont turn up plz help me

3 years ago

I know for sure that my iPhone needs an Apple repair, but they restore to fabric, so I need a way to get my information before they fix it, I bought a new iPhone, in fact, so I don’t need it any more, I just want my photo gallery and all the phone numbers of my contacts I have more than 1500 and at least 200 of them are important to me because I do not have other way to contact them

Liam Shotwell
3 years ago
Reply to  Robin

Your photos and contacts may have been uploaded to your iCloud if you had that function turned on. If your iPhone is dead, check on your computer to see if that data is stored on your iCloud as an iPhone backup.

Joe McWhorter
4 years ago

I clicked to watch an add in the middle of a game and my 6s went black and doesn’t respond to forced restart or charging. I went to a repair shop and they said that it wasnt showing to even take a charge. So could be a bad battery, I ordered a new battery from Amazon and installed it, still no response! Any ideas???

3 years ago
Reply to  Joe McWhorter

Same as mine, turned out I need a new motherboard ?

Holly Quinn
4 years ago

Last night my iPhone 6s+ was glitching out really bad i decided to just set it down and worry about it later, I come back later and my phone won’t turn on at all I’ve tried charging it and hard resetting but it’s just unresponsive I’m scared I’ll have to take it in to the Apple Store and be charged a bunch of money for it. So I come to you seeking help.