How to Reset an iPhone

ResetHow to Reset an iPhone

There are many possible reasons for needing to know how to reset an IPhone.  Among them are:

  • iPhone frozen or locked up
  • iPhone apps not working correctly
  • iPhone cannot start
  • iPhone rebooting

But there are too many to count here. There are also many kinds of resets, including full resets, and soft resets. When you do a full reset, it is important to be aware of the fact that it will wipe your phone. This means it will delete your accounts and data – it will delete your AppleID, your Facebook Account, your SnapChat Account, email accounts and all other accounts on the phone.  It will also delete the data associated with those accounts.  And last but not least, it will delete all your media – pictures, videos, music, etc.  This may be what you are expecting if you are doing the reset before sending it in for repair or selling it, but it may be an unintended consequence (and a huge surprise) if you are doing the reset for other reasons.  A full reset like this should only be done in extreme circumstances – either to wipe the data intentionally, or if all else has failed.  There are other, less destructive procedures for soft resets, along with ways to protect your data, below.

iPhone Full Reset Procedure – Overview:

You will do this from the settings menu.

Settings > General > Reset > Erase all content and settings. You will be prompted to enter your passcode and Apple ID.  Assuming you get those correct, the reset will complete.  This can take a few minutes.

iPhone Full Reset Procedure – Detailed Steps:

Select Settings > General.

Scroll down until you see Reset.

Select “Erase All Content and Settings”

If you have setup a Passcode or Restrictions Passcode , you will be required to enter that passcode to continue.

Enter your AppleID and password.  This must be the existing AppleID and password that is being used by the phone. Since you are doing it here, after the phone is reset, it will no longer be asking for a specific ID.

The reset will commence.  This will take a few minutes.  When it completes, the iPhone will come up to a welcome screen where you can swipe to continue.  The phone is back to the condition it was the moment it came out of the box when it was new.  At this point, you can do whatever it is you needed to do – either stop here and sell/repair the phone, or continue from here to setup the phone as new.

iPhone Soft Reset Procedure

If you are having an immediate problem with your iPhone, like it is locked up, the buttons are unresponsive, or as an initial troubleshooting measure, you can do a soft reset on the device.  This will NOT erase your data and it may be all you need to get your phone back to working properly.  Also, this will work even if you don’t have access to the menus on the iPhone.

Hold the power button and home button down simultaneously until it shuts off.

When it turns back on and you see the apple logo, you can then let go of the buttons.  When the device starts up, it should be working properly.  If not, you may have to continue with the full reset.

How to back up an iPhone

Before getting to the point of having to do a reset – and especially now after you have done one, it’s a good idea to do a backup to your local computer.  Even if you use iCloud, which will do automatic backups, it’s a good safety measure to do your own, local backup, occasionally. It’s also very easy to do.  To backup an iPhone or an iPad to your local computer, just connect it to your computer, unlock it, and wait for it to appear in iTunes.  Once you see it in the left hand pane of iTunes, click on it.  This will open the Summary screen.  From that screen, select Backup and select “this computer” and if you wish to encrypt your backup data, select that as well.  This will also allow the backup to include your passwords.  Do this weekly or monthly for the ultimate peace of mind.

iPhone Backup Settings