My iPhone Won’t Ring! Here’s The Real Reason Why.

Picture this: You’re waiting for an important phone call. You’ve double-checked your iPhone to make sure the ringer is on and you’ve turned the volume all the way up. When the phone rings, you’re going to hear it. 5 minutes go by and you glance at your iPhone, only to find out you’ve missed the important call! Don’t throw your phone at the cat. In this article, I’ll explain why your iPhone won’t ring and I’ll show you exactly how to fix it.

Update: If you have an iPhone 7, this article will work for you — but you may want to check out my new article called My iPhone 7 Won’t Ring for an iPhone 7-specific walkthrough. Otherwise, keep reading!

Martha Aron inspired me to write this article when she asked, “My iPhone does not ring on all calls, I miss lots of calls and texts because of this. Can you help me?” Martha, I’m here to help you and everyone else that has missed incoming calls and texts because their iPhone isn’t ringing.

You Probably Know This, But Check Anyway…

If you’re reading this article, you probably already know that for your iPhone to ring, the Ring / Silent switch on the side of your iPhone has to be set to ring.

If the switch is pulled toward the screen, your iPhone’s ringer is turned on. If the switch is pushed toward the back of the iPhone, your iPhone is on silent and you’ll see a small orange stripe next to the switch. You’ll also see the speaker icon on the iPhone display when you flip the switch.

Once you’re sure the Ring / Silent switch is set to ring, make sure your iPhone ringer is turned up so you can hear your iPhone ring when you get a call. You can turn up the ringer volume by pressing the volume up button on the side of your iPhone.

You can also turn up the ringer volume by opening Settings -> Sounds & Haptics. Drag the slider under Ringer And Alerts to the right to turn up the ringer volume on your iPhone. The further you drag the slider to right, the louder the ringer will be.

iphone ringer slider

If your iPhone isn’t making any sound at all, my article about what to do when an iPhone speaker stops working will show you how to fix that problem. If you’ve already done all this, here’s why your iPhone isn’t ringing:

Here’s The Fix: Turn Off Do Not Disturb!

Most of the time, the reason an iPhone isn’t ringing for incoming calls is that the user has accidentally turned on the Do Not Disturb feature in Settings. Do Not Disturb silences calls, alerts, and notifications on your iPhone.

How Do I Know If Do Not Disturb Is Turned On?

The easiest way to tell if Do Not Disturb is turned on is to look in the upper right hand corner of your iPhone, just to the left of the battery icon. If Do Not Disturb is enabled, you’ll see a small moon icon there.

do not disturb icon indicates on

If you’d like to dive deeper into Do Not Disturb and set up an automatic schedule, instance, head to Settings -> Do Not Disturb to see all the options available to you.

How Do I Turn Off Do Not Disturb?

Ever since Apple released iOS 7, it’s been easy to turn Do Not Disturb on and off. Swipe up from the bottom of your iPhone screen to open Control Center. Tap the moon icon to turn Do Not Disturb on or off. That’s it!

This can vary for different iOS versions. If you have an iPhone X or newer, open Control Center by swiping down from the upper right-hand corner of the home screen.

toggle do not disturb in control center

You can also turn off Do Not Disturb by going to Settings -> Do Not Disturb and turning off the switch next to Do Not Disturb. You’ll know Do Not Disturb is off when the switch is white.

turn off do not disturb on your iPhone

Turn Off “Silence Unknown Callers”

One reason why you have an iPhone ringing problem may be because your block unknown callers feature is turned on. This feature is great for stopping telemarketers and robocalls in their tracks, but unfortunately it also filters out some people that you actually do want to talk to.

To turn this off, head over to Settings -> Phone and then switch off Silence Unknown Callers. Once you’ve done that, your phone should be able to ring again when someone who isn’t in your contacts tries to call you.

What If My iPhone Still Won’t Ring?

I’ve received a couple of comments from readers who have taken all of the suggestions and whose iPhones still aren’t ringing. If you’ve made it this far and your iPhone isn’t ringing, there’s a good chance you may have a hardware problem.

Often times, when gunk or liquid gets into one of the ports (like the headphone jack or lightning / dock connector), your iPhone thinks there’s something plugged into it, when in fact there isn’t. My article about how to fix an iPhone that’s stuck in headphone mode explains why that happens and how to fix the problem.

It’s a long shot, but you can take an antistatic brush (or toothbrush you’ve never used before) and try to brush out the gunk from your headphone jack or lightning / dock connector port. Antistatic brushes are helpful for cleaning all sorts of electronics, and you can pick up a 3-pack on Amazon for less than $5.

If you’re successful, the issue should resolve itself. Unfortunately, most of the time the damage has already been done. Something has shorted out on the inside of your iPhone, so the only solution is to visit your local Apple Store or use the mail-in options at Apple’s support website to have your iPhone repaired.

Apple Store repairs can be expensive. If you’re looking for a less-expensive option, I recommend Puls, a repair company that will send a certified technician to you who can meet you and fix your iPhone within an hour.

Now might also be a good time to upgrade your iPhone. Repairs can be expensive, especially if more than one thing is wrong with your iPhone. Rather than spending hundreds of dollars on a repair, you could use that money to purchase a new phone. Check out UpPhone’s cell phone comparison tool to find a great deal on a new iPhone!

Wrapping It Up

Do Not Disturb is one of those great features that comes in handy if you know how to use it, but it can be really frustrating if you don’t. To Martha and everyone else who has missed important calls or yelled “My iPhone won’t ring!” at an innocent bystander, I hope this article has you to solve your silent iPhone problem. If you have follow-up questions or other experiences to share, post them in the comments section below. I look forward to hearing from you!

All the best,
David P.

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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Michael
1 day ago

i did everything iphone 11 till not ring? Why?

KAY
5 days ago

I have turned off the Silencing of unknown numbers. Now will all those robocalls ring? what about blocked numbers/

Kay
3 days ago
Reply to  KAY

Can you reply to this question ?

Tryce
7 days ago

Thanks so much! I’ve read other articles but yours is the only one that said the button is a “push/pull”. Reading the other articles, I thought it was an in/out button. (I can’t see the button well because it’s a (new to me) work-issued device and I am NOT to remove the case.) Again, thank you!

Elaine
8 days ago

Your awesome!

John Gonzalez
8 days ago

Seems like Apple likes to keep information hidden! Thanks for this tip!

Billie O'Rourke
14 days ago

Thank you! I was about to upgrade bc I constantly miss calls!!! You saved me so much money!!!

Steven Babb
16 days ago

I went through all the suggestions; still no ring. Just as I was about to contact Apple, I scrolled down about half way in setting and clicked the a Phone icon; there it was, another area, SILENCE UNKNOWN CALLERS and it was ON.
once I turned it off, my phone rings again.
i hope this helps

Steve B from Maine

NABEEHA
3 days ago
Reply to  Steven Babb

THANKS! I HAD THE SAME SITUATION AND NOW IT HAS BEEN SOLVED!

Jen
22 days ago

You saved my phone from being chucked at the cat! I had no idea about the switch.

Jane
30 days ago

Great information. I have another tip. Settings>Phone> “Silence Unknown Callers” might be selected. I just found that after missing half a dozen calls.

Georgina
29 days ago
Reply to  Jane

OMG thank you! This is why I keep missing calls!

Chris
28 days ago
Reply to  Jane

That’s the ticket!! Thanks

Katrina Bolden
28 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Thanks Jane!!!!! I read the article and was like that doesn’t make sense if I hand anything plugged in the outlet would would display something on the screen but not make noise. Mine just pops up with a message missed call. Honestly I was probably messing around in my setting and clicked it and completely forgot smh. Anywho thanks Jane!!!!!!

Jon Brown
23 days ago
Reply to  Jane

OMG! This!!!! @David and Liam you need to add this to the article!

I’ve been trying for weeks to figure out why my phone kept acting like DND was on even when I turned it off. Turns out I had silence unknown callers set. Which is a great option, except those rare occasions I’m waiting for a call from shipping company or something like that.

Editor
Liam Shotwell
23 days ago
Reply to  Jon Brown

I’ll look into getting this added to the article. I’m glad this solution worked for you! As iPhone software changes over the years, our articles need to update as well!

Karen
18 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Thank you so much. This specific step resolved the issue. My IPhone SE is now ringing again

Steven Babb
16 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Sorry I didn’t read your post sooner.

Ross Cordy
16 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Brilliant that’s my problem thanks so much

Patty Hanenberg
1 month ago

I’m why can’t I uncheck the silent when phone is locked or Always . I don’t want either?

Jen
28 days ago

Same thing just happened to me. I’m trying everything. Let me know if you figure it out.

Barbara
1 month ago

I have an iPhone 6 Plus. When I test it from my landline it rings but other I/c calls don’t make my phone ring. The do not disturb is not on.

nanako
1 month ago
Reply to  Barbara

the same problem

Tara Sitaram
1 month ago

I have an iphone ten. i wish you would tell me if the silence all calls is on or off with the light background or the dark one.

David
1 month ago

We have a new iPhone. It rings loudly and then decends in volume. Any ideas? Thanks

Editor
Liam Shotwell
1 month ago
Reply to  David

Not really sure what that could be, but I wonder if changing the ringtone might help? Not sure

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