How to Hard Reset Your iPhone and iPad

Hard Reset Ipad Iphone

Sometimes your iPhone or iPad may start to act funny, such as running slow or freezing up. If this ever happens to you, there’s an easy solution that usually takes care of the problem right away. That solution is simply to perform a hard reset on your iPhone or iPad. Here we show you how to hard reset with and without a home button.

What Is Meant by Hard Resetting iPhone or iPad?

Before we jump to the steps, it’s important to know what a hard reset is. Typically, when any of your electronic gadgets stop working, you restart it. This is done using the Power button, turning it off and on, and in some cases reinserting the battery.

The same goes for the iPhone and iPad. If your device isn’t working properly, you can simply restart or soft reset it. However, that requires touching the screen. What if your device’s touch screen starts acting up or you are unable to access it for some other reason? That’s where hard resetting an iPhone or iPad comes into the picture.

For the unaware, to soft reset an iPhone or iPad, you would press and hold the Power button, then drag the “Slide to power off” slider to the right side to turn the device off. To turn the device on, press and hold the Power button until the Apple logo appears on the screen. Alternatively, you can soft reset by going to “Settings -> General -> Shut down” and dragging the slider to the right side.

A hard reset is just another way to restart your iPhone or iPad when the normal method doesn’t work. It’s like force restarting your device. It comes in handy when the device is frozen and cannot be restarted using the soft reset method. A hard reset usually involves the help of physical buttons on your device.

Note: hard resetting your iPhone or iPad is not the same as restoring it to a previous backup or resetting to factory settings. Some people often get the two confused. Resetting helps to reset buggy apps among other things. Basically, it’s like the restart function on your computer, so it will not delete anything on your device.

How to Hard Reset an iPhone

The steps to hard reset differ for various iPhone models.

Note: ignore the Slide to power off slider if it appears on the screen while you are performing the following steps.

How to Hard Reset an iPhone with an Home Button

For devices with a Home button, press and hold the Power and Home buttons simultaneously until you see a black screen. The device will automatically reboot. This method will work on iPhone 6s and SE.

Hard Reset Iphone 6s

For iPhone 7, press and hold the volume down and Power buttons until your device restarts automatically.

Hard Reset Iphone 7

How to Hard Reset an iPhone without a Home Button

For newer iPhone models (such as iPhone 8, iPhone X, iPhone 11, iPhone 12, etc.) that lack a Home button, follow these steps:

1. Press the Volume up button once.

2. Press the Volume down button once.

3. Press and hold the Power button until you see the Apple logo or the screen turns black.

Hard Reset Iphone X

How to Hard Reset iPad

Similar to an iPhone, an iPad can be hard reset two ways. If your iPad comes with a Home button, press and hold the Power and Home buttons simultaneously until you see the Apple logo on the screen.

Hard Reset Ipad Home Button

For iPads without a Home button, press the Volume up button once followed by the Volume down button once. Quickly press and hold the Power button until the Apple logo appears on the screen, then let go of the Power button.

Tip: find out how to restart an iPhone or iPad if it’s stuck on the Apple logo screen.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What’s the Difference Between Soft and Hard Reset?

A soft reset can be performed from Settings or using the Power key alone. In a hard reset, you need to use at least one more button apart from the Power button. It can either be the Volume buttons or the Home button. As mentioned earlier, a hard reset is used only when the soft reset doesn’t work.

2. Does a Hard Reset Delete Everything on an iPhone or iPad?

No. Hard resetting will not delete any of your personal files or data from your device. It won’t even reset any settings.

3. Are Hard Reset and Factory Reset the Same?

When you factory reset your iPhone or iPad, it completely erases all the content on your device. That is, your personal data will be deleted if it isn’t backed up. All settings will be restored to their original values. On the contrary, a hard reset does none of those things – it simply restarts your device.

4. Does Hard Reset Remove Software Updates?

Hard reset will not have any impact on your current operating system. That is, it will not remove recent software updates. If you are on iOS 14 or iPadOS 14, you will remain on that.

5. Do You Need a Passcode to Hard Reset?

It depends. Once your device restarts, you will be asked for your passcode if you do not use Face ID or Touch ID.

6. Can You Hard Reset without a Computer?

Yes. You don’t need a computer to hard reset your iPhone or iPad.

7. Does Hard Reset Help an iPhone’s Battery Life?

While there isn’t a proper answer to this question, both hard and soft reset will have a slight impact on your iPhone’s battery life. All apps will be restarted, and if any app was affecting battery life, a reset would help that.

8. Does a Hard Reset Make Your Phone Faster?

Similar to the battery, a hard reset will temporarily make your phone faster. But if your phone is getting slower due to lack of storage or any other reason, a hard reset will not help.

9. Does Hard Reset Remove iCloud Lock or Your Account?

No. A hard reset will not remove or delete iCloud lock or your account on your iPhone or iPad.

10. When Should You Hard Reset an iPhone or iPad?

If your iPhone or iPad is stuck, isn’t responding, or not working properly, you should first try soft resetting it. If that doesn’t work, you should hard reset it.

11. Is Hard Reset Bad for an iPhone or iPad?

Hard resetting the device will not harm it in any way. However, you should always soft reset the device first. Only when that doesn’t work should you hard reset it.

Resetting an iPhone or iPad is one of the ways to fix minor issues and bugs. If your device is showing a black screen, find out how to fix the black screen issue on iPhone. If you ever forget your passcode, hard resetting will not help. You will have to unlock your iPhone or iPad using other methods.  

Mehvish Mushtaq Mehvish Mushtaq

Mehvish is a technology enthusiast from Kashmir, India. A computer engineer by degree, she's always been keen to help when someone finds technology challenging. Her favorite verticals include how-to guides, explainers, tips and tricks for Android, iOS/iPadOS, Windows, social media, and web apps.

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