How to fix an iPhone that won’t turn on

iPhone not turning on is a common issue that any user would encounter. Most of the time, it’s likely because of a software crash and can be fixed easily. Sometimes, your iPhone may have had some serious problem with the hardware that prevents it from booting up.

In this article, I will show you the step-by-step guide on how to check and fix this issue. It can be easy or not, depending on the cause. Keep reading – You’ll learn the reason why your iPhone won’t turn on and what to do with it 😉


1. Software problems

A software crash may have occurred and caused the device to freeze completely. This can happen to anyone. If you’ve installed a new app, upgraded an app or the firmware, then it’s likely that some conflict has occurred in the system.

The solution to this is dead simple, you just need to perform a “hard reset” to restart the iPhone forcibly. Here’s how to do it.

On iPhone 6s or older, press and hold down the Power button (the Sleep / Wake button) and the Home button simultaneously for about 15 seconds. If it works, the Apple logo should appear on the screen and your iPhone spring back to life.

On iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus, press and hold down both the Power button and Volume Down button for at least 10 seconds, until the Apple logo appears.

Hard Reset iPhone 7

On iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, performing a hard reset takes three steps

  1. Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.
  2. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button.
  3. Press and hold the Power button (the Side button) until you see the Apple logo.

In most cases, performing a hard reset is enough to solve the issue and most users can stop here feeling satisfied 😉

Why does it work? Because when the software crashes, iPhone or iPad will display an unresponsive black screen. You think your iPhone was not turning on, but actually, it was on the whole time. It just froze itself. The only way to make it boot back up is by using the “magic” button combination above.

If your iPhone wakes up and has no more issues, you’re good to go. But if it keeps happening, you need to restore your iPhone with the DFU mode.

How to restore an iPhone in DFU Mode:

Step 1: Hook up your iPhone to your computer with a cable and open iTunes. It doesn’t matter if your iPhone is on or off.

Step 2: Put your iPhone in DFU Mode.

iPhone 6s and older:

Press and hold both the Power and Home buttons simultaneously for 8 seconds. Then release the Power button but keep holding the Home button until you see this notification on iTunes“iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode”. Release the Home button.

iPhone 7, 7 Plus: 

Press and hold the Power button and the Volume Down button together for 8 seconds. Then release the Power button but keep holding the Volume Down button until iTunes says “iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode”. Release the Volume Down button.

iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or X:

  1. Press and quickly release the Volume Up button.
  2. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button
  3. Press and hold the side button (the Sleep/Awake button) until the screen goes black.
  4. As soon as the screen turns black, press and hold the Volume Down button while continuing to hold the Side button.
  5. After 5 seconds, let go of the Side button but keep holding the Volume Down button until your iPhone shows up in iTunes. Now you can release the Volume Down button.

Step 3: Now your iPhone is in DFU mode and you can start restoring it. If it’s not, try again from the beginning.

If that doesn’t solve the problem, check the next troubleshooting.


2. Recharge, check your charger and cable.

Make sure your iPhone’s battery is not totally drained. Well, if the battery is completely dead, you cannot turn it on for sure. Generally, when the battery life is significantly getting lower, you will see some sort of  “low battery” indicator on the screen. But, when it’s completely dead, you will just see the unresponsive black screen.

Try charging your iPhone and don’t expect it to turn itself on immediately. If the battery is completely drained, it will take a little while to display the charging indicator. Give it at least 15 minutes and see if your device restart.

If it doesn’t work, make sure your charger is working by trying charging the device with another cable and charger. Alternatively, you can borrow someone else’s iPhone and try charging it to see if your charging accessories are broken or not.

If there is nothing wrong with the charger and cable, then try using a USB port on your computer instead (Don’t use the USB ports on your keyboard).

If you usually charge your iPhone with your computer, then this time try charging it using a wall outlet. Sometimes, unresponsive iPhones will only charge either when connected to a computer or when plugged into a wall power outlet.


3. Hardware problems

If nothing above worked, your iPhone likely has a hardware problem. First, we will check if it’s a display issue or not.

Plugin your iPhone into your computer and launch iTunes. If your iPhone appears as an icon in the upper-left corner of the iTunes window and you’re able to sync content with it, then your iPhone is on and there is a problem with the display.


Back up your iPhone right away to keep your data safe, then you need to have it repaired.

Now whether it’s a problem with the display or another hardware part, you need to take it to the nearest Apple Store to determine what exactly is happening to your iPhone and get it fixed.

If your iPhone is under warranty and you didn’t cause any physical or liquid damage to it, Apple Store will repair it for free. Even if it’s out of warranty, they would also repair for no charge if the issue is easy to fix and nothing needs to be replaced.

For example, if your iPhone’s LCB cable is dislodged from the main board and make the screen turn black, Apple tech will simply open your iPhone and reconnect them.

If the hardware is broken and needs to be replaced, Apple can be expensive.

Wrap It Up

Hopefully, you can solve the “iPhone won’t turn on” issue after reading this article without having to check and repair your iPhone’s hardware. If things are more complicated, then you’ve also known what you have to do at this point, right? Don’t forget to share with us how you got your iPhone fixed in the comments section. It would be very helpful to other readers. If you have any questions, also feel free to leave a comment below. I’m always willing to explain further and help my readers out 😀

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