Home Do It Yourself What to Do When Your Phone or Tablet Won’t Charge

What to Do When Your Phone or Tablet Won’t Charge

If your phone just stops charging, even when it’s plugged in, it doesn’t mean it’s time to shop for a new one. Here are a few simple steps you can take before thinking of buying a new phone.

Below are the troubleshooting tips to get your phone charging.

Try Another cable or Wall Adapter

Your cable or wall adapter could be damaged, resulting in a bad connection that leaves your phone deprived of power. If you have another charger lying around, try a different cable, adapter, and even a different wall outlet. If your phone charges fine after swapping those out, you know one of them is probably the problem, and can start doing some detective work to narrow it down.

In some cases, you may just be using the wrong charger — not all adapters are rated for the same power delivery. (The wall adapter that came with your old e-reader probably won’t charge your new iPad Pro, for example.) In that case, you just need to make sure you use the right one for the right device.

While we’re at it, make sure you plug your device directly into a wall outlet. Plugging your device into a computer (or a USB hub meant for computers) may not provide enough juice for your device to charge. Even if your USB hub has a dedicated AC cable plugged into the wall, the ports themselves may not be rated for the level of power delivery your device requires.

This is more common with tablets (which require more power to charge at a decent rate), but it can happen with phones too on certain USB hubs. If you’re plugged into a power strip, take the charger out and try plugging it into a wall too, since you never know when a power strip’s port might die.

Check the Charging Port for Lint or Bent Contacts

It sounds silly, but charging problems can often be something as simple as a dirty charging port. When your phone lives in your pocket, it’s bound to pick up a little dust and lint, and every time you plug in your cable, you pack that lint in a little tighter. Eventually it may prevent the cable from connecting securely in the charging port.

Check your If the “tab” in the centre of the port is bent. This may also be a major problem.

Try and adjust it and plug your charger again.

Thankfully, both issues can be solved with a simple toothpick. Stick it into the port (lightly, lest you risk breaking the tip inside your phone) and try to grab any dust or debris that has accumulated inside. If you have a bent tab, gently bend it back toward the center and try plugging your phone in again. You may be shocked to find that a little toothpick surgery was all you needed to bring back its full charging capabilities.

Stop Using the Phone While It Charges

If your phone says it’s charging but the battery indicator barely seems to move, it could be because you’re using your phone too much while charging it. You won’t likely notice this if you’re just browsing Facebook, but if you’re playing games, using turn-by-turn navigation, or running some other power-hungry app while plugged in, your phone can discharge as quickly as it charges.

So if you’re having problems, try plugging in your phone and letting it sit for a while. If the battery percentage increases normally, it’s likely that nothing’s wrong with your device — you just need to charge it during low-usage periods. And don’t worry about putting it in Airplane Mode or turning it off — that will only shave a few minutes off the charging time. Just try to charge it when you aren’t actively using it.

When All Else Fails: Call the Professionals

If none of the above options helps you diagnose the problem, you’ll need to consider the possibility that your phone is damaged or defective.