How to factory reset an iPhone or iPad

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By Peter Cruickshank
15 Mar 2018

If you're having problems with your iPhone and need to wipe it and start again, we're here to help. Our guide will show you just how to reset your iPhone back to its factory settings and get rid of any software issues.

Soft reset: Force a frozen iPhone to restart

If your iPhone screen is stuck and pressing the Home button doesn't seem to work, you can force your iPhone to turn off and back on again with a few button presses. Read on to find out how to unfreeze your iPhone and start using it again.

iPhone X, iPhone 8, or iPhone 8 Plus

Press and release the Volume Up button, then the Volume Down button. Then immediately press and hold the Power button until you see the recovery mode screen. All three buttons should be pressed within a few seconds of each other.

iPhone 7 or iPhone 7 Plus

Press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons at the same time. Hold them down until you see recovery mode.

iPhone 6s and earlier, iPad, or iPod touch

Press and hold the Home and the Power buttons at the same time. Hold them down until you see recovery mode.

iTunes reset: Wiping your phone when it won't turn on

Sometimes your iPhone may not let you in at all, whether you've forgotten your unlock code or the software on your phone needs repairing. If you've tried the soft reset method to force your iPhone to restart and still can't see your Home screen, it might be time to connect your iPhone to iTunes and reset it through a computer.

Connect your iPhone to your computer with the USB charging cable, open iTunes then follow the instructions above for soft-resetting your iPhone.

Once your iPhone is in recovery mode, check the iTunes screen on your computer. You will be asked to Restore or Update your iPhone. Choose Restore and wait for your software to finish downloading.

After the download has completed, your iPhone will restart. When it turns back on, your personal data will be wiped and you must set up your phone and re-add your accounts.

That's everything you need to know to reset your iPhone or iPad. If you're still having trouble with your device or want to make sure it's ready to sell or trade in, check out our suggested articles below for more helpful tips.