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What to do if your iPhone keeps restarting

It could be something simple (hopefully).
March 20, 2023

It’s very rare that an iPhone will crash and restart, but like any piece of hardware, it can happen occasionally. Therefore, you need to know what the possible causes of a crashing and restarting iPhone are, as well as ways to fix the problem. It could be something as basic and innocent as a buggy app, or something as serious as a hardware problem requiring a new battery or even a new device altogether. So if your iPhone keeps restarting, don’t panic. Read through this and see if you find your solution.


If your iPhone keeps crashing and restarting, start with basic things like a force-restart, updating your apps and iOS version, and resetting the network settings. Finally, erase the phone to factory settings. If those don't work, you may have a hardware issue, requiring assistance from an Apple Store.


Possible reasons for your iPhone crashing or restarting

Apple iPhone 12 Mini Apple stock photo 10

If your iPhone is constantly crashing and restarting, you may think it could be down to any number of things. But it can likely be narrowed down to one of five possibilities.

Your phone or an app isn’t running the latest version

If you’re running an outdated version of your phone or an app, it may have a bug in it causing your phone to crash. After all, this is why updates are pushed out in the first place — when a bug is found, an update is made to squash that bug. If you don’t apply the update as soon as possible, you’re still going to have that bug on your phone. Logical, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t bother with updating their phones — ever. It’s enough to give you a migraine.

An app or iOS has a bug that hasn’t been patched yet

The second possibility is that an installed app, or iOS itself, has a bug that hasn’t received an update yet. It’s unusual for Apple to delay bringing out bug patches — after all, it’s not in their best business interests for their customers to have crashing phones. But developers, on the other hand, might be a bit tardy with keeping up with app issues. They may not even be aware there is an issue.

Phone settings are conflicting with one another

The more you tweak and customize your phone, the more chance there is that two or more of these settings might conflict with one another. Again, this is a very rare occurrence, as Apple likely goes to great pains to ensure this doesn’t happen. But on the other hand, we can’t rule it out either.

You are running iOS beta software

If you are part of Apple’s Beta Software Program, it’s exciting to test-drive new features. But being beta, it comes with a certain amount of risk. The new operating system is not yet ready for prime time, and there will be bugs aplenty. This means apps not working, the phone crashing, buttons not working the way they should, your toilet spontaneously flushing, and more (OK, I made the toilet one up.)

The point is that if you are running iOS beta software, you have to accept that crashes and restarts are going to be a common occurrence.

Your phone has a hardware problem

Finally, the most serious possibility is that your phone has a hardware issue, either with the battery or the circuitry. In this scenario, you can take your phone to an Apple store to get it repaired, but a new phone is obviously not outside the realm of this possibility. You will want to hope the problem has not got this far.

How to prevent your iPhone from restarting over and over

Now that we have looked at the possible reasons for your iPhone restarting and crashing, let’s now get proactive and look at some solutions.

Force-restart the phone

restart iphone

Yes, it’s the old “have you tried turning it off and on again” trope. But sometimes, a force-restart can get rid of all the gremlins in the system. You have nothing to lose by trying. How to restart your iPhone depends on which model you have, but generally, it involves holding a volume button and the side button. If you have a Home button, hold that down. When you see the above screen, slide right on the slide to power off bar.

Apply all iOS and app updates

ios app updates page

The next step is to see what needs to be updated. You can check your app update status by going to the App Store and tapping your iCloud photo in the top right-hand corner. Scroll down to Upcoming Automatic Updates and tap Update All. You may have to refresh the screen first to make sure you’ve got all available updates showing.

ios software update

To check if there is an iOS update, go to Settings >General >Software Update. If there is something available, it will be there. It would be better if you plugged your phone into a plug socket for this. If you may have a dodgy battery, you don’t want to depend upon it for a big iOS update.

Reset all your settings

ios reset settings

Once everything has been updated, and the problem still hasn’t gone away, the next thing to try is resetting your phone settings. The iPhone has to deal with so many things that it’s quite possible that something is not working the way it’s meant to be. So it’s time to reset everything back to zero and start again.

Go to Settings >General >Transfer or Reset iPhone and select Reset. Start with Reset Network Settings, and if that doesn’t do the trick, do Reset All Settings. This will NOT erase the phone, but nevertheless, you should still do an extra phone backup as insurance.

Check the error logs

ios system logs

If you’ve got to this stage, it’s entirely possible that one of your apps may still be messing with you. So, go to Setting >Privacy >Analytics & Improvements >Analytics Data. Here, you will find the error logs.

They’re not exactly barnstorming page-turning reads, but you should still be able to spot if a certain app is mentioned more than once. If it is, it may be the one causing all the trouble. Uninstall it, restart your phone, and see if the problem has disappeared.

Erase the phone to factory settings

iphone reset

If all else has failed, then it’s time to go all out and erase the entire phone. Obviously, it’s preferable to avoid this, but if the previous tips have failed, then you likely have no choice. Go to Settings >General >Transfer or Reset iPhone >Erase All Contents and Settings. Make sure Find My iPhone is switched off, and of course, make that iCloud backup. Then follow the on-screen instructions.

I say to make a backup, but it is entirely possible that the bug may be inside the backup. So by restoring the backup, you could very well be putting the bug back on the phone, putting you back to square one. Therefore, it may be better to cut your losses and start the phone afresh with factory settings.

Contact Apple Support

Apple support

If erasing the phone back to factory settings hasn’t made a lick of difference, then it’s a hardware issue. Either you have a faulty battery, or you have a loose circuit somewhere. Either way, you need to go to an Apple store or licensed Apple repair shop to get the phone seen to. Make an appointment to see someone and take it in.

If your iPhone is under warranty, it’s possible the repair won’t cost anything at all. Of course, if you spilled a cup of coffee all over the phone, then that’s a different matter. Expect to get a bill.