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How to Hard Reset an iPhone

This wikiHow teaches you how to force restart an iPhone that is not responding as well as how to reset an iPhone to the factory settings by erasing all its data and restoring a backup in iCloud and iTunes.

Method One of Three:
Force Restart an iPhone

  1. 1
    Check if the iPhone can be shut down normally. It is only recommended to force restart an iPhone only as a last resort if the device is not responding.[1] To shut down the iPhone normally:
    • Hold down the power button until the slide to power off message appears. Drag the slider to the right.
    • For IPhone X, press volume + and the side button.
  2. 2
    Press and hold the restart button combination. If the iPhone can't be shut down normally, simultaneously press and hold the right button combination for your iPhone:
    • iPhone 6S and earlier, iPad, and iPod Touch: Power button + home button
    • iPhone 7 and 7 Plus: Power button + volume-down button
    • iPhone 8, 8+, and X: Volume up, then volume down, then power button
  3. 3
    Continue holding the buttons buttons. Do so for 10 seconds until you see the startup Apple logo on your screen, then release the buttons.

Method Two of Three:
Factory Reset Using iPhone

  1. 1
    Open Settings. It's a gray app with gears (⚙️) that's typically located on your home screen.
  2. 2
    Tap your Apple ID. It's the section at the top of the menu that contains your name and image if you've added one.
    • If you are not signed in, tap Sign in to (Your Device), enter your Apple ID and password, then tap Sign In.
    • If you are running an older version of iOS, you may not need to do this step.
  3. 3
    Tap iCloud. It's in the second section of the menu.
  4. 4
    Scroll down and tap iCloud Backup. It's at the bottom of the "APPS USING ICLOUD" section.
    • Slide iCloud Backup to the "On" (green) position, if it's not already.
  5. 5
    Tap Back Up Now. It's at the bottom of the screen. Wait until the backup is complete.
    • You must be connected to a Wi-Fi network to back up your iPhone.
  6. 6
    Tap iCloud. It's in the upper-left corner of the screen. This will return you to the iCloud settings page.
  7. 7
    Tap Apple ID. It's in the upper-left corner of the screen. This will return you to to the Apple ID page.
    • If you are running an older version of iOS, you may not need to do this step.
  8. 8
    Tap Settings. It's in the upper-left corner of the screen.
  9. 9
    Scroll down and tap General. It's near the top of the menu, next to a gear (⚙️) icon.
  10. 10
    Scroll down and tap Reset. It's at the bottom of the menu.
  11. 11
    Tap Erase All Content and Settings. It's near the top of the menu.
  12. 12
    Enter your passcode. Enter the passcode you use to unlock your phone.
    • If prompted, enter your "Restrictions" passcode.
  13. 13
    Tap Erase iPhone. Doing so will reset all settings, as well as erase the media and data on your iPhone.
  14. 14
    Follow the on-screen prompts to set up your iPhone. Your iPhone will be in same configuration that it was when it left the factory, so you will need to set it up as if it were new.
    • During setup, you will be asked if you want to restore your phone from an iCloud backup. If you want to add all your media, data, and apps back onto your phone, agree to restore from the backup.

Method Three of Three:
Factory Reset Using iTunes

  1. 1
    Back up your data (if possible). If you are able to use your iPhone, back up the data so that you can restore it after resetting the phone. You can create a backup in iTunes.
    • Connect the iPhone to your computer and open iTunes, if it doesn't launch automatically.
    • Click on your iPhone from the row of icons along the top of the window.
    • Click on "This computer" and then click on "Back Up Now." Backing up your iPhone may take a few minutes.
  2. 2
    Click on your iPhone in iTunes. It's at the top of the window.
  3. 3
    Click on "Restore iPhone" to reset it. You'll be prompted to confirm that you want to erase everything on your iPhone. The reset process will likely take around 15-20 minutes.[2]
  4. 4
    Put your iPhone in Recovery Mode, if necessary. If it doesn't appear in iTunes, your iPhone isn't responding, or you don't know the screen passcode, you may need to put it into Recovery Mode first.[3]
    • Connect the iPhone to your computer with a USB cable, and ensure iTunes is running.
    • With the iPhone connected, follow the instructions for a Force Restart ↓.
    • Follow the prompts in iTunes to restore the iPhone to its factory settings. You won't be able to perform a backup first.
  5. 5
    Load your backup. After restoring your device, you can use iTunes to load your latest backup. With the iPhone connected to the computer and selected in iTunes, click the "Restore Backup" button and select the backup you want to load.
    • If you are resetting your iPhone because you didn't know your restrictions passcode, do not restore your backup, or your passcode will be restored as well. You'll have to setup your iPhone as new and then resync your content.
    • If you're setting up the iPhone as new, you'll be asked to enter the Apple ID password for the account that was previously associated with the iPhone. If you don't have access to this information, you'll need to contact the original owner and have them release the device from their account at

Community Q&A

Add New Question
  • If my iPhone is disabled, is there any way to get it working without losing my data?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • If you've recently backed up your iPhone, you'll be able to restore that backup after resetting your device, which will save your data. If you haven't backed up your iPhone before, then there is no way to restore functionality and save your data. Everything will be wiped from the iPhone when you reset it.
    Thanks! 37 15
  • I forgot my Restrictions passcode, how can I reset my phone?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • If you've forgotten your Restrictions passcode, you'll need to restore your iPhone using iTunes. If you don't have access to iTunes, you can sign into the iCloud website and select "Find My iPhone." Select your device and choose "Erase" to reset it.
    Thanks! 44 27
  • I can't remember my iPhone's passcode, how can I factory reset it?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • If you can't remember your passcode to access the Settings, you'll need to put your iPhone into Recovery mode and connect it to your computer. You can then use iTunes to reset the iPhone. See How to Put an iPhone into Recovery Mode for detailed instructions. Note that you'll still need the Apple ID password after restoring the device.
    Thanks! 31 19
  • How do I put an iPhone into recovery mode?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • Open iTunes, and connect the iPhone to your Mac. Press and hold the Home button and the Sleep/Wake button at the same time. As soon as the screen goes black, release the Sleep/Wake button. Continue holding the home button until iTunes pops up a message telling you that it has detected an iPhone in recovery mode.
    Thanks! 16 8
  • How can I bypass the activation lock after resetting the iPhone?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • The only ways to bypass this lock are to have the original owner log in with their Apple ID, or to have the original owner visit the Find My iPhone website and remove the device from their account. You cannot bypass the activation lock through any other means.
    Thanks! 37 27
  • What do I do if my iPhone 5 won't connect to my WiFi?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • Restart your iPhone, or turn off the WiFi on your phone, then wait for about 5 minutes. After that, turn it back on. If no devices in your house connect to WiFi, restart your router.
    Thanks! 10 5
  • What can I do if my phone's screen says "Disabled?"
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • If your iPhone has been disabled from too many passcode attempts, you won't be able to access the Settings app to reset the iPhone. Instead, you'll need to either connect it to a computer and use iTunes to reset it, or log into the iCloud website and use Find my iPhone to erase the device. If you've never synced the iPhone to your computer and never used iCloud, you'll need to put the iPhone into Recovery mode and then connect it to your computer. See
    Thanks! 32 29
  • How long does an iPhone update normally take?
    Answered by Adam Michael Sobers
    • Usually from about 5m - 1h, although if it takes less or more don't panic as this is probably normal.
    Thanks! 6 3
  • How do I fix lines running through my screen?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • This could be a problem with the screen. Consider visiting a nearby Apple Store or contacting Apple Support for assistance.
    Thanks! 7 6
  • Can I reset my iPhone without iTunes?
    Answered by wikiHow Contributor
    • If you are able to access your iPhone's Settings app and don't have a Restrictions passcode set, you can reset your iPhone directly from the Settings menu. You can also reset your iPhone from the Find My iPhone website, as long as you were logged into your iCloud account on your iPhone.
    Thanks! 14 18
Show more answers
  • What do I do if my iPhone gave an alert that it has reached its maximum iCloud limit and won't let me make an account?
  • I removed this app from my iPad two days ago. I have reinstalled it today, but it will not restart properly. When I try to start it, it freezes and closes. What can I do to restore it?
  • My 6s just died. How can I restart without losing anything?
  • I have recently found an iPhone 5 in a recycling bin, and upon activation, found that the last owners apple id is encrypted on the phone itself. What do I do?
  • If I restore my used iPhone to factory settings will the phone revert to the previous owner's account?
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Quick Summary

If you have an iPhone 8, 8 Plus, or iPhone X, press the volume-up button, then volume-down, then the Power button. If you have an iPhone 7 or 7 Plus, press and hold the Power and volume-down buttons for 10 seconds. If you have an iPhone 6S or earlier, press and hold the Power and Home buttons for 10 seconds.

About This Article

Tested By:
wikiHow Technology Team

This version of How to Hard Reset an iPhone was reviewed on March 18, 2017.

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