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How to reset Apple HomeKit (and why you might want to)

Any reset should be a last resort, but it's a tool you need to keep handy.
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Published onJanuary 2, 2024

Smart homes can be complex beasts — they’re an amalgam of many different accessories, usually from several different brands. That means the beast can get out of hand, even in the case of Apple HomeKit. Here’s how to reset HomeKit, as well as why you might consider doing it in the first place.

QUICK ANSWER

To reset HomeKit:

  1. Open the Home app for iPhone or iPad, make sure the Home tab is selected, then tap the triple-dot icon in the upper-right corner.
  2. Make sure the home you want to reset is selected, then tap Home Settings.
  3. Scroll down to the bottom of settings and choose Remove Home. Follow prompts, and all of that home's data will be deleted. You'll need to re-pair accessories if you set up a new home.

JUMP TO QUESTIONS

How do you reset Apple HomeKit?

There’s usually no reset button for HomeKit. But Apple does organize the platform’s data into “homes,” and it’s relatively easy to delete these from the Home app for iPhone or iPad, especially since most people only have one living space at a time.

Follow these steps to delete a HomeKit home:

  • Open the Home app. With the Home tab is selected, tap on the triple-dot icon in the top-right corner of the screen.
  • Make sure the name of your home is selected in the drop-down menu. Unless you’ve intentionally added a second location, it should already be highlighted.
  • In the same drop-down menu, tap Home Settings.
  • Scroll down to the bottom of settings and choose Remove Home.
  • Follow prompts.

Be aware that you’ll lose all the information associated with a home if you do this, including accessory pairings. You’ll have to re-pair everything if you want to start fresh, which can be time-consuming even if you’ve saved HomeKit or Matter codes for scanning. It’s good to gather those codes in one place for future reference.

If the Home app gets stuck at a Loading Accessories and Scenes screen, tap Reset Home Configuration. Once confirmed, your data will be scrapped just as if you’d followed the steps above.

Why would you reset Apple HomeKit?

 

The HomePod 2nd gen on a couch

There are a couple of reasons. The first, as we hinted, is if the Home app gets stuck at Loading Accessories and Scenes. This is an unlikely problem, and there are other measures you can try before a HomeKit reset.

Those include rebooting any Home Hubs (Apple TVs or HomePods) by unplugging them and plugging them back in, and/or signing out of iCloud then back in. You can even try resetting an affected iPhone or iPad and restoring a backup from before things went wrong. That option is time-consuming in its own right though, without any guarantee of success. You’ll also lose any data saved post-backup.

The other reason to reset HomeKit is that your smart home has become unwieldy. Over time, it’s entirely possible to accumulate a collection of unused accessories, scenes, and automations. A reset can be a shortcut to a sleeker configuration, so long as you have all the codes needed to re-pair accessories.