My iPhone Touch Screen Is Not Working! Here’s The Fix.

It’s natural to feel frustrated when your iPhone touch screen is not working. You use your iPhone for everything, from making calls to scrolling through pictures — but don’t let your “touch screen troubles” get you down. In this article, I’ll explains why the touch screen on your iPhone is not working, how to fix the problems that can be fixed at home, and recommend some great repair options, if it comes to that.

There are a lot of reasons why your iPhone touch screen might stop working. Thankfully, there are also a lot of ways to fix those problems.

Why Is My iPhone Touch Screen Not Responding?

The first thing we need to do is figure out why your iPhone touch screen is not responding to touch. Usually, the problem is caused when the physical part of your iPhone’s display that processes touch (called the digitizer) stops working correctly or when your iPhone’s software stops “talking” to the hardware the way it should. In other words, it could be a hardware or a software problem, and I’ll help you with both in this article.

Troubleshooting iPhone software problems typically doesn’t cost anything. It’s also easier than prying off your screen with suction cups (please don’t do this). For this reason, we’ll start with the software fixes and move on to fixing the physical problems if you have to.

A note about drops and spills: If you’ve recently dropped your iPhone, odds are a hardware problem is to blame for your touch screen trouble — but not always. Slow apps and problems that come and go are usually caused by software problems.

One last thing to keep in mind is that a screen protector can cause touch screen issue with your iPhone. Try removing your iPhone’s screen protector if you’re having problems with the touch screen.

If your touch screen works sometimes, keep reading. If it doesn’t work at all, skip to the section below called When Your iPhone Doesn’t Respond To Touch At All.

A Quick Word On iPhone Touch Disease

iPhone touch disease refers to a series of problems that primarily affect the iPhone 6 Plus. These problems include a gray, flickering bar at the top of the display and issues with iPhone gestures, such as pinch-to-zoom and Reachability.

There’s some debate over what causes iPhone touch disease. Apple claims it’s a result of “being dropped multiple times on a hard surface and then incurring further stress on the device.” They’re aware of the problem and have a specific repair program if you’re experiencing this issue with your iPhone. iFixIt opened up the iPhone 6 Plus and discovered what they call a “design defect.”

Regardless of what’s really causing the problem, you can take your iPhone into Apple and get it fixed for a $149 service fee.

Software Problems and Your iPhone Touch Screen

A problem with the software that tells your iPhone how to act can cause your touch screen to stop working. It may help to reset troublesome software if your iPhone touch screen is not working.

Does The Touch Screen Stop Working When You Use A Specific App?

If your iPhone touch screen stops working when you use a specific app, there may be a problem with that app, not your iPhone. First, check to see if an update is available for the app.

Open App Store and tap on your account icon in the upper right-hand corner of the screen. Scroll down to see a list of available app updates. If there’s an update for the app causing the problem, tap Update to its right.

check for updates to apps

If updating the app doesn’t fix the problem, try deleting and reinstalling it. The app will get a completely fresh start once it has been reinstalled.

Press and hold on the app’s icon until the menu opens. Tap Remove App -> Delete App -> Delete to uninstall the app on your iPhone.

delete an iphone app

To reinstall the app, open App Store and tap on the Search tab in the lower right-hand corner of the screen. Type in the name of the app, then tap the Install button to its right. Since it’s an app you’ve previously downloaded, the button will look like a cloud with an arrow pointing down.

reinstall tunnelbear app

If your iPhone touch screen is not working after you’ve reinstalled the app, send a message to the app developer. They may have a fix for the problem or be working on a solution already.

How Do I Send a Message to the App Developer?

  1. Open App Store.
  2. Tap Search at the bottom of the screen and search for the app.
  3. Tap the app icon to open details about the app.
  4. Scroll to the bottom and tap Developer Website. The developer’s website will load.
  5. Look for a contact form or email address on the developer’s website. It shouldn’t be hard to find it the developer is worth their salt. Remember that good developers appreciate it when you let them know about problems with their apps!

visit app developer website in app store

Update Your iPhone

It’s rare, but occasionally iPhone software updates can cause touch screen issues. The most recent documented case of this happening was Apple’s iOS 11.3 update. The problem was quickly fixed by a subsequent Apple update.

Open Settings and tap General -> Software Update. Tap Download and Install if an iOS update is available on your iPhone.

install ios 15 on your iphone

When Your iPhone Doesn’t Respond To Touch At All

Touch screen problems that happen in multiple applications or when you don’t have an app open may be caused by problems with the iPhone’s software. A good first troubleshooting step is to power your iPhone off and back on again, but it’s hard to do that when your touch screen doesn’t work! Instead, we’ll need to do a hard reset. Here’s how:

If your iPhone won’t turn off in the normal way — or if turning your iPhone off and back on again doesn’t solve the problem — try a hard reset. A hard reset abruptly restarts your iPhone, stopping all of its background processes.

To hard reset an iPhone 6s or older, hold the power and Home button simultaneously. Keep holding both buttons until the screen goes black and the Apple logo appears.

On an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus, press and hold the power button and volume down button together for several seconds until the you see the Apple logo appear on the display.

To hard reset an iPhone 8 or newer model, press and release the volume up button, then press and release the volume down button, then press and hold the side button until the screen goes black and the Apple logo appears on the center of the display.

My iPhone Touch Screen Still Isn’t Working!

Is your iPhone touch screen still giving you problems? It might be time to try restoring your iPhone to its original settings. Before you do this, be sure to back up your iPhone. You can do this by plugging your iPhone into a computer and running iTunes (PCs and Macs running macOS Mojave 10.14 or older) or Finder (Macs running macOS Catalina 10.15 or newer). You also have the option to back up your iPhone to iCloud.

I recommend performing a DFU (device firmware update) restore. This type of restore is a bit more thorough than a traditional iPhone restore. To do this, you’ll need your iPhone, a cable to plug it into the computer, and the most recent version of iTunes or Finder.

Putting your iPhone into DFU mode can be a little tricky. For a simple step-by-step walkthrough, check out our article that explains exactly how to put your iPhone into DFU mode. When you’re done, come back here.

When Your Touch Screen Hardware Is To Blame

If you’ve dropped your iPhone recently, you may have damaged the screen. A cracked display is one of the most obvious signs of a damaged screen and can cause all sorts of issues with the touch screen.

A drop can also loosen or damage the delicate under-layers of your iPhone touch screen. What you see and put your hands on is just one part of the touch screen. Underneath, there’s an LCD screen that creates the images you see.

The LCD screen and digitizer both connect to your iPhone’s logic board — that’s the computer that makes your iPhone work. Dropping your iPhone can loosen the cords that connect the LCD screen and digitizer to the logic board. That loose connection can make your iPhone touch screen stop working.

The MacGyver Solution

When iPhones get dropped, the tiny cables that connect to your iPhone’s logic board can become dislodged just enough for the touch screen to stop working, even if there’s no physical damage. It’s a longshot, but you may be able to fix your iPhone’s touch screen by pressing down on the part of the display where the cables connect to the logic board. iPhone display connections to logic board

Warning: Be careful! If you press down too hard, you could crack the display — but this may be one of those “nothing left to lose” situations, and it has worked for me before.Press down over iPhone logic board connections

Options for Fixing a Broken iPhone Touch Screen

If your iPhone touch screen is not working because it’s completely broken, you could order a kit and try to swap out the parts yourself, but I wouldn’t recommend it. If something goes wrong and you’ve replaced any part of your iPhone with a non-Apple part, the Genius Bar won’t even look at your iPhone, and you’ll be on the hook for a brand new iPhone at full retail price.

The Genius Bar does a great job with broken displays, but they charge a premium for their service. Make sure to schedule an appointment first if you decide to visit the Apple Store.

Once the damaged pieces are replaced, your iPhone touch screen should work like new. If it doesn’t, the software is probably to blame.

Purchasing a new iPhone is another good option. Screen repairs on their own typically aren’t too expensive. However, if multiple components broke when you dropped your iPhone, they’ll all have to be replaced. Your simple screen repair could turn into something much more expensive.

Investing that money in a new smartphone might be the more cost-effective solution. Check out the UpPhone cell phone comparison tool to find a great deal on a brand new phone.

Back In Touch With Your iPhone

Your iPhone touch screen is a complex and fascinating piece of technology. I hope this article has helped you if you iPhone touch screen is not working, and I’d love to know which solution worked for you in the comments section below.

About Author

I'm Valerie Lauer, a writer, editor and tech enthusiast. I believe in channeling my technical support powers for the greater good, creating helpful how-tos and making life with your smartphone easier.

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4 months ago

so if the touch screen is not working, how do you do any of the steps above ????

Theresa Mulkey
1 year ago

Okay so literally the top 60% on my touchscreen does not respond.
Also this is NO physical damage to my touchscreen. My husband screen literally started doing the same thing as min about 3 days before mine did.

1 year ago

My iphone 12 mini touch screen wouldn’t work, i tried everything to do it and im only just 10. I just got this phone a year ago (2021 november) and sadly it wont work I paid 300 dollars just for a phone to work for a year and just to stop working randomly when it dies. None of these would ever work on my phone and im not paying 50 -1000 dollars to get it fixed my family needs to save money for bills, food, etc.
is there anymore other ways to fix this problem?

Last edited 1 year ago by RoninR
1 year ago

Hello! None of these worked and i’ve tried anthing an article suggests. I hadn’t dropped my phone or spilit anything except for a drop of water but thats all. I just tupdated my iphone 13 with the newest update and this happened. It doesn’t respond to touch and I can’t restart it because it wont move the slider. So can someone help me I need help csuse it drives me crazy.

1 year ago
Reply to  Koda

Hi. I am having the same problem. haven’t dropped it. no spills. It was plugged into my laptop and I was trying to do a backup to my itunes. it kept failing so after several tries I ran out of time and needed to leave, so I just unplugged it from my laptop and since then, I cannot get the touchscreen to function. I cannot reset it because I can’t slide it to off. I don’t have a backup so I don’t want to do a factory reset or I will lose everything. so stressful. I don’t know what could… Read more »

1 year ago
Reply to  lisa

yes same, similar situation
touch screen no longer responsive, cant even turn off the phone how frustrating

1 year ago

Thanks for the advice was able to reset my Iphone 11 and touch screen worked fine. Thanks 👍

1 year ago

I have been trying to fix my iPhone (6 s plus) with no avail. When I press a button the screen shows it, so I don’t think it’s a digitizer problem, but the screen doesn’t work at all. Shutting down the phone doesn’t work either nor does replacing the screen. I only want the data on the phone. Is there a solution?

1 year ago

im so suprised the mcgyver solution worked, i was irritated lashed out at my phone and just pressed on it really hard and it somehow fixed?? im so greatful for this website

1 year ago

NONE of these fixes worked on my iPhone – what else can you suggest please?

Robert Taylor
1 year ago

Thanks for the information on hard reset as my phone was unresponsive. Very grateful

Christine Evans
2 years ago

Many thanks for the information about the hard reset. I’d not heard of it before and it fixed the completely non-responsive screen on my iPhone 12 mini which happened out of the blue for no reason that I could figure out.

Mike Barnes
2 years ago

My iPhone 12 : Yes, your article was helpful. The ‘solution’I had found ‘by accident’ was to press the RH button (close/power off) together with volume down. In fact, this came up with a couple of options, one of whech was ‘power off’, so I powered down and switched back on – all now working perfectly. Yes, the power button had stopped working at all, but the interesting thing is that only the apps display had stopped responding (no swiping left or right and no app would start). HOWEVER, The four apps in the ‘permanent display’ at the bottom of… Read more »

2 years ago

I was having response issues with an aftermarket screen on my iphone 7. I got a new apple screen put on but it is worse. It randomly freezes and I cant swipe or move it . And occassionally while typing messages the letters and numbers disappear from the keys on the keyboard. Is the actual phone stuffed or is it a dodgy screen?

2 years ago

i dropped my phone and the dead pixels have completely covered my phone so the touch screen is unresponsive. the phone still turns on and other components like siri and the volume buttons work. how can i fix this ?

David Lynch
2 years ago
Reply to  qarisha

Unfortunately, it sounds like you’ll have to get the screen replaced.

2 years ago

You showed me to press power and volume down at the same time. Your article is really clear.

2 years ago

Hello there! I have a iphone 8S. The screen will not respond with touch, hard shutting down ,nothing. I get the emergency logos on my screen when I press the volume buttons but still nothing. Receiving notifications with no problem. There was a update several days ago. Last night took a photo and when I went to edit it, the screen started creating black marks on the screen like I was drawing on it. When I went to get out of editing to undo, is when the screen stopped reacting to touch. Cannot log into google or gmail online without… Read more »

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