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.
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 doesn’t ring for incoming calls is that the user has accidentally turned on the Do Not Disturb feature in Settings. According to Apple’s support article, Do Not Disturb silences calls, alerts, and notifications.
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.
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 phone to reveal Command Center. Tap the moon icon to turn Do Not Disturb on or off. That’s it!
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, 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 getsupport.apple.com to have your iPhone repaired.
Apple Store repairs can be expensive. If you’re looking for a less-expensive option, I recommend iResq.com, a mail-in repair service that does great work.
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,