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Motorola Moto G problems and how to fix them (April 2022)
The Moto G was first released eight years ago and offered an impressive affordable option for Android users. The Moto G series has grown and multiplied since then. In its tenth generation, there are plenty of options to choose from. Want a stylus? The Moto G Stylus series is perfect for anyone who doesn’t want to splurge on an expensive Samsung. The Moto G Power series offers impressive multi-day battery life, and the Moto G Lite and G Play are perfect for anyone looking for an ultra-affordable smartphone. Unfortunately, with every new generation comes a new set of Moto G bugs and glitches. But we’re here to help! Here’s a look at some common Moto G problems and how to fix them.
Read more: The best Motorola phones
In this roundup, we will be focusing on the most recent Motorola G-series releases like Moto G Stylus (2022), Moto G Stylus 5G, Moto G Power (2022), and their predecessors, going back to the Moto G7 series.
Problem #1: Can’t wipe cache partition through Recovery Mode
Some Moto G users can’t find a way to wipe the system cache partition after going into recovery mode. Unfortunately, this is a feature and not a bug. The option isn’t available for recent Motorola smartphones.
- You can still clear the cache of individual apps. Go to Settings–>Apps and notifications–>See all apps and find the app you want. Tap on Storage and cache, and then tap on Clear cache. If you’re clearing the cache as a troubleshooting step, you might want to also Clear data.
- If you are already subscribed to a mobile anti-virus program, most have a good cache cleaner option. Motorola recommends using the Files by Google app to clear the app cache. Open the app, tap on the Clean tab, and clear the data in the Junk files or temporary app files section. It’s an excellent app to use if you want to free up some storage space.
Problem #2: Moto G mic or speakers not working
Some Moto G owners face problems with the mic or speaker not working during calls or when using them with other apps during video calls.
- If you’re having an issue with connectivity during calls, try resetting the network settings. On your Moto G phone, go to Settings–>Backup and reset–>Network settings reset and select Reset settings. Remove the SIM card and put it in the phone again, and this should reestablish the network connection automatically. If not, find the APN settings from your network provider and go to Settings–>Wi-Fi and network–>Sim and network, tap on your SIM card, and access point names.
- It could be a hardware issue. Open the Device Help app (Device Care on some devices) and go to Device diagnosis–>Hardware test–>Full test. It will tell you the functional status of all the hardware on the phone, like the mic and speakers. It’s best to run a diagnostics test in Safe Mode (instructions are in the Guide section below) to confirm an app isn’t causing the issue.
Problem #3: Cannot screencast to a TV from Moto G
Some Moto G users aren’t able to cast content from their phone to a TV.
- Recent Motorola smartphones don’t support Miracast, so if you have an older TV, your only option is to get a Chromecast.
- If you have a Chromecast or a TV with Chromecast built-in, make sure that your phone and TV are on the same network. Some TVs don’t support 5GHz Wi-Fi. If you have a hybrid connection, you might want to decouple the two bands to make the link easier.
- You can use Wi-Fi Direct to cast personal media if your TV supports the feature. Since the setup process is a little different depending on the TV brand, go through the user manual to see how to use Wi-Fi Direct.
Problem #4: OEM unlock not available/greyed out
Many Motorola’s Moto G smartphones are available directly from network carriers and MVNOs in particular. Unfortunately, this means that the phone might be locked to that carrier.
- First, make sure that your Moto G phone meets the requirements to be unlocked. Carriers like Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, MetroPCS, and more have different requirements you have to meet before the phone is eligible. This usually involves having an active paid account for a minimum period.
- Call your network carrier and get an Unlock Code if the device is eligible.
- If the OEM Unlock button is greyed out, it is likely a network connection issue. Ensure that your phone is connected to Wi-Fi or mobile data for at least 72 hours, and that will automatically fix the OEM Unlock toggle. After 72 hours, restart your phone. If the option still doesn’t show up, contact the network carrier. Some Moto G users found that having them lock the phone again worked.
Problem #5: Moto G performance issues
Some Moto G users face various performance problems like apps freezing, random reboots, and the phone getting uncomfortably warm.
- A rogue app might be causing the issue. Boot the phone into Safe Mode (instructions are below) and see if the issue persists. If it doesn’t, an app is a problem. Uninstall any recently installed or updated apps and see if the problem disappears.
- Some users face performance issues after a major software update. In this case, what has worked for them is to perform a Factory Reset (instructions below). Make sure you back up any critical files and data, though.
- Try clearing the app cache and data if a particular app is getting stuck. Go to Settings–>Apps and notifications–>See all apps and tap on the app. Tap on Storage and cache and select Clear cache and Clear data. You can also try uninstalling and reinstalling the problematic app.
- If your Moto G phone is overheating, go through the steps above to fix the problem. However, while the phone is running hot, it’s best to turn off the phone and let it cool down first. Take off the case if you have one and keep it in a cool place and away from direct sunlight.
Problem #6: Mobile payments are not working
Some users have problems using mobile NFC payments with their Moto G devices. Mobile payments aren’t an option or stopped working after a software/app update.
- Keep in mind that many Moto G smartphones in the US don’t come with NFC. Make sure you check the phone’s specs sheet before buying it if NFC payments are vital. You can also try importing an international version, but that will have warranty issues.
- If NFC payments stopped working, it might be because the device isn’t certified anymore. Open Google Play Store, tap on the profile icon at the top right corner, and go to Settings–>About. It will say so under Play Protect certification if it isn’t certified. Google removes Play Protect certification if the device is rooted, has an unlocked bootloader or custom ROM, or the device OEM didn’t approve the device.
- Motorola is aware of the issue and is actively working to fix the problem where the device is losing Play Protect certification after a major software update.
- Clear the app cache and data if you’re running into an issue with a particular app like Google Pay. Go to Settings–>Apps and notifications–>See all apps and tap on Google Pay. Tap on Storage and cache and select Clear cache and Clear data.
Problem #7: Android Auto problems
Problems connecting to Android Auto are pretty standard with new phones, and the Moto G devices are no exception.
- If you’ve set up your new phone by porting apps and settings over from an older device, there might be an issue. Find the Android Auto app in the Play Store and uninstall and reinstall it. Go to Settings–>Apps and notifications–>See all apps–>Android Auto and tap on Force Stop. Then tap on Storage and cache and select Clear cache and Clear data.
- Go through the Android Auto setup process again. “Forget” the device connection on your phone and the car and set it up again. If you’re having a problem getting Android Auto Wireless to work, it’s best to set up a wired connection first.
- The phone might not automatically move to the correct setting when using a wired connection. Tap on the Android System notification in the notification panel and change it to Transferring files/Android Auto.
Problem #8: Delayed notifications on Moto G
Some users are seeing a significant delay in receiving notifications. Notifications sometimes only show up when the app is open.
- Your notifications might be delayed because of the phone’s built-in battery optimization. Go to Settings–>Apps and notifications–>See all apps and select the app. Tap on Battery and select Don’t optimize.
- Motorola also has a built-in app to make managing your apps easier. Open the Device Shield app, go to Background running, select the app, and tap on Allow running in the background. On the main app page, go to Apps auto-start and ensure that the apps in question are activated.
Moto G troubleshooting guides: Factory reset, boot into Safe Mode
Note: If you’re running into significant software issues or the phone doesn’t work after you’ve rooted the device, you can try Lenovo’s Rescue and Smart Assistant app.
Factory reset Moto G
- Turn off the phone.
- Press and hold the volume down button and the power button simultaneously until the phone turns on.
- Use the volume button to navigate Recovery mode and tap the power button to confirm.
- Go to Wipe data/factory reset using the volume buttons and press the power button to confirm.
Boot Moto G into Safe Mode
- Press the power button while the phone is on.
- Touch and hold the Power off pop-up.
- Tap OK when the option to boot into Safe Mode appears.
- Reboot the phone to exit Safe Mode.