Phone Won’t Charge?

A situation where your phone won’t charge properly or worse, not charge at all can be a real pain. While most of us run to the service centers at the first sight of the problem, it should be the last option as the solution could actually be a lot simpler than you think.

The issue could be that the phone is charging very slowly or it might not be charging at all. A phone not charging issue does not automatically mean that your battery is a dud or that the charger has conked off on you. While these might turn out to be the causes, chances are there is nothing wrong with your hardware that a little bit of tweaking cannot set right.

Let’s look at some tips that can get your phone battery up and running, without any expert intervention. These might seem simple, but they definitely are effective for both iPhones and Android smartphones.

See Also: Is Leaving Your Smartphone Charging Overnight a Good Idea?

13 Reasons For Phone Not Charging and How to Fix It

#1 Check and Fix the Micro USB Port

Phone charging is affected when the insides of the micro USB port and the charger do not connect or come in contact properly. Continuous inserting and removal of the charger into the port can lead to minor hardware defects that might lead to improper contact.


While the issue might sound serious, after all, we are saying the defect lies in your phone rather than its accessories, it is in fact very easily rectified. Switch off your phone and take out its battery.

Once this is done all you need to do is take a toothpick and maneuver the little tab inside your device’s USB port a little higher. More often than not, your battery charging problems would be miraculously solved when you restart your phone.

#2 Clean The Charging Port

Another common problem is any kind of obstruction present in all the common types of ports – micro USB, Lightning or the USB-C port. This could be as small as a piece of lint from your jeans pocket or the inside of your purse, or just some dirt or dust accumulated in the port over a period of time. This can create a physical barrier against proper contact between the charger and the USB port. A simple blow of air to your USB port can get rid of the problem. 

If not, carefully insert something like a toothpick or a used toothbrush into the slot to dislocate and remove any obstacle present in the port. This is very useful for lightning port and USB-C ports as well – and did help me with charging issues on my old iPhone.

#3 Check the cables


Faulty charging cables can cause charging issues. While the main adapter of the charger is fairly hardy and can stand the test of time, the same cannot be said of the charging cables.

A frayed cable could be the cause of all your woes. Using another cable should give you an idea of whether the problem lies with your charging cable. If the phone charges with the other cable then you have your villain. If it doesn’t, then this is one less thing for you to worry about.

#4 Check the Wall Plug Adapter

If it is not the cable then it could very well be the adapter that you plug into the electric socket. This is especially important if you have a charger where the cable and the adapter are separate.


Try using the adapter and cable combination on some other device to check if the fault lies with the charger or your phone.

#5 Check your Power Source

This might seem rather silly, but often we overlook the most obvious cause of our problems. Your power source could be the issue here. Often while a power supply works for other things it might not be the right fit for your mobile charger. 

Try charging your phone in other sockets before you hit the panic button.

#6 Avoid Using the Phone While it is Charging

If you are in the habit of using the phone while it is charging, it may give the impression of slow charging. That is because the app you are using is consuming a good percentage of the charge and thus the battery charges slowly. While most of the apps you use should not have this effect, playing videos or games, or even using regular apps on a cellular network might cause your phone’s battery to charge at a slow rate. 

In extreme cases, when you use the phone while charging, the battery consumption might be so high that the battery may not charge at all or even lost charge – giving an impression that your phone won’t charge even when connected to a power source. 

To check if this is the root cause of the battery troubles you just need to not use the phone for a while and let it charge. If your phone still won’t charge, check other solutions listed here.

#7 Stop the Apps Running in the Background

Apps that you are not actively using but are running in the background can cause your phone to charge slowly. With newer phones having better hardware and improved operating systems, this is more likely to be a factor for older phones. It is easy to check if your phone has this problem.

Note the charging rate of your phone once in a regular charging cycle. Next time, clear out all the apps and services running in the background and keep it for charging. If there is any noticeable difference between the charging rates, you have your culprit!

This problem is quite unlikely to affect iOS devices simply because of the stricter control that iOS keeps on apps running on your phone.

#8 Remove the Problem Causing App

The plethora of third-party apps available to us sure makes our life a lot easier. However, there are a few that could wreak severe havoc on the charging of your phone. If you have recently downloaded an app after which the charging issue occurred then most probably uninstalling that app should get the job done.


The plethora of third-party apps available to us sure makes our life a lot easier. However, there are a few that could wreak severe havoc on the charging of your phone. If you have recently downloaded an app after which the charging issue occurred then most probably uninstalling that app should get the job done.

#9 Restart Your Phone to Fix a Software Crash

Here is a problem that is rather peculiar and difficult to detect. However, if you know that this could be a possible reason for your Android smartphone or iPhone not charging, then rectifying it is a piece of cake. At times, the phone stops charging altogether and refuses to mend even after trying different cables, chargers, charging sockets and more.


This could be the result of a software crash. While the charging equipment and hardware are all intact, the software that recognizes the charger and leads to the charging is not running anymore because of the system crash. A simple restart can get you going. 

A reboot (also called a soft reset) clears out all the apps and data from memory (RAM) but your saved data is safe. It also clears out any unnecessary processes that might be running behind the scenes causing a drain on the battery while charging.

#10 Update the Software on Your Phone

Both iOS and Android come up with regular software updates to improve the user experience and to fix performance and security bugs. If your device has battery charging problems and an OS update is available, it is worth it to update the software on the phone and see if it solves the problem. 

If nothing else, you will almost certainly rule out a software cause for your phone not charging problem.

#11 Rollback the Software Updates on Your Phone

Contrary to the above point, if your phone won’t charge properly after doing a software update, you might need a software rollback.

Also, it depends on how new your device is. Usually, a new device can definitely gain from an update but a bug in the software could cause problems while charging the phone. Older devices are often incapable of managing the higher demands of improved software. This can lead to several issues one of which could be a slower charging rate.

Doing an OS update rollback process might need some time and technical know-how, but it is worth it to avoid battery charging and daily use battery life issues.

#12 Does Your Your Phone Have Water Damage?

If your phone has had recent water damage, that may be the cause of why the phone’s battery won’t charge properly. If your phone is working fine but you have only battery troubles, your only option might be to get a battery replacement. 

With most new phone coming with a unibody design and unremovable batteries, your only option might be to take the device to a repair shop. You might want to contact the customer care of the device manufacturer and see if they have any other tips that are not listed here.

#13 Schedule a Service if Your Problem Still Persists

All the tips above should help you identify a root cause for your phone’s battery charging problems. If not, it is possible that you have a damaged charging port, or a damaged battery or your phone might just be a faulty piece and may need a replacement. For a manufacturing defect in the warranty period, you should get a free replacement. 

For non-manufacturing defects and conditions like water damage to the device, you are more likely to get a refurbished device at a low price. In any case, your best now is to contact customer care or visit the Apple Store or licensed repair shop for your device’s manufacturer and see what options to have to get rid of this problem.

The Bottom Line

These are some of the most recurring causes of battery charging issues. It is important to remember that an ill-treated battery can pose severe risks including an explosion of your device. Never buy cheap chargers or cables that are available for a deal online. It is a better idea to stick to tried and tested brands that offer the utmost security.

You should also ensure that you never charge your phone through the night as this could again lead to overheating and explosion. Keeping these simple tips in mind can help you manage all battery-related issues with impunity.

(Article Updated on 3rd January 2020)