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6 most common iPhone problems

When you experience a problem with your iPhone, it can feel like the end of the world. We’ve become so reliant on our smartphones, the idea of having to send it off for repair is far from ideal.

Sure, you know deep down that you’ll survive without it until it is back having been repaired, but for many people, they’d rather not have to part with it at all.

It’s one of the reasons that you see so many people go around with a cracked screen or scratched housing – that and the fact it can cost a pretty penny to have an iPhone repaired.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter how cautious you are with your gadget, accidents can and do happen, so taking out iPhone insurance is a must.

Gadget Cover policies can protect your iPhone from things like accidental damage, liquid damage and theft, and you can pay for additional protection against loss.

Sometimes an iPhone will go wrong through no fault of your own, because that’s just what technology does from time to time.

If you do have a problem with your iPhone, you can guarantee that somebody, somewhere will have experienced, or is experiencing the same issue as you.

While in some cases that offers little comfort, sometimes there’s a quick fix that gets your iPhone back in full working order.

We’ve rounded up six of the most common iPhone problems experienced by Apple users (based on the issues reported online) and what you should do to get your particular issue rectified. Here we go…

  1. Smashed screen

A 2018 study from Mintel found that almost a quarter (24%) of smartphone owners in the UK have broken their mobile phone screen in the past two years.

Given how much we now use our phones, is it at all surprising? All it takes is a slip of the hand or a nudge in the back for your iPhone to go flying and if you’re unlucky, it will land face down and crack.

To prepare for such a scenario, 57% of smartphone owners said that they have kept their old phone to use as backup.

Over a quarter of respondents (26%) claimed that they took out insurance for their phone – though that still means three quarters of smartphone owners are walking around unprotected.

Mintel’s senior technology analyst, Adrian Reynolds, commented: “Screen repair is an increasingly expensive issue, particularly among the young, as the costs associated with smartphones continue to rise.

This is primarily due to increased usage and the fact that most young consumers have their phones with them at all times.”

If you’re a heavy iPhone user – and even if you’re not – there’s a strong argument to invest in a heavy duty protective case like this one for the new iPhone 11.

Placing a tempered glass film over your screen will also help to protect your iPhone screen in the event of an accident.


Repair tip

Without the knowledge and materials, self-repairing a smashed screen isn’t an option – you will need to take it to a repair shop.

The cost to fix a broken screen depends on what model you have.

To give you an idea, Timpson’s standard costs for screen repairs range from £39.95 for an iPhone 5 to £299.99 for an iPhone X.

  1. Water damage

Modern iPhones are built to resistant water up to a point, but it varies from model to model. And if you’ve had your device’s screen or battery replaces, the protection from what damage can be impacted.

The iPhone 11 Pro and 11 Pro Max each have an IP68 rating. According to Apple, these devices can withstand a depth of up to four metres for 30 minutes – that’s the closest Apple have got to making a “waterproof” phone.

The iPhone XS and XS Max have the same IP68 rating, but Apple says these devices can withstand a reduced depth of two meters for up to 30 minutes.

The iPhone 7, 8, X, and their respective Plus/Max models each achieved an IP67 rating for a depth of one meter up to 30 minutes.

The iPhone 6s – and the models that precede it – lacks any kind of water or dust resistant rating, still have a degree of water resistance.

So, the best way to stop your iPhone from becoming water damaged is to keep it away from liquids – don’t swim or bathe with it, or use it in a sauna or steam room. It’s not worth intentionally getting your iPhone wet.


Repair tip

If you do accidentally drop your iPhone into water, the first thing to do is check for water damage by looking at your device’s liquid contact indicator (LCI).

On newer iPhones, you’ll find the LCI in the same slot as the SIM card. If you’ve got an iPhone 4s or earlier, you’ll find LCIs in the headphone jack, charging port, or both.

A red-coloured LCI indicates that your iPhone has been water damaged. If the LCI is white or silver, you’ve got away with it.

If you device is water damaged, Macworld advises to take some quick action to dry it out:

  1. If the wet iPhone is in a case, remove it; take the SIM card out too.
  2. Wipe the excess and exterior liquid off everything you can reach and give it a shake to make sure all the ports and sockets are clear.
  3. If your iPhone is switched off, leave it off. If not, turn it off to prevent short circuiting it.
  4. Either put your iPhone in a big bowl of uncooked rice or surround it with silica gel and leave it for 48 hours.
  5. If you’re confident in doing so, dismantle the iPhone – removing the battery – and apply a soft cloth to all the internal nooks and crannies.
  6. After a couple of days, turn the device back on and see if your efforts have worked. If not you’ll have to take it to a repair shop.


  1. Can’t backup to iCloud

If you own an iPhone and regularly take photos or screenshots, there’s a good chance that you’ve received the “iPhone Backup Failed” notification at some point, indicating you don’t have enough space in iCloud to back up your device.

If you don’t do anything about it, the danger is that, should anything happen to your iPhone, all the data that can’t be backed up to your iCloud could be lost.

This includes any treasured photos there might be in the surplus data.


Repair tip

The first thing you need to do is to find out your Next Backup Size and how much iCloud storage you have available.

  • On iOS 11 or later and iPadOS: Go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Manage Storage > Backups. Tap the device you’re using.
  • On iOS 10.3: Go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > iCloud Storage > Manage Storage. Tap the device you’re using.

After you’ve checked to see how much iCloud Storage you have, Apple advises the following steps to complete your backup:

  1. Upgrade your iCloud storage plan.
  2. Reduce the size of your backup.
  3. Delete any data that you don’t need.
  4. If you can’t complete a backup, check that you’re connected to Wi-Fi and ensure your device is up to date.
  5. If you still need help, contact Apple Support.


  1. Device turning off by itself

In 2017, Apple admitted that it slowed down older iPhones, a feature introduced to protect against problems caused by ageing batteries.

The company explained that when a smartphone battery is in a poor condition it may not be able to supply the required maximum current demanded by the phone’s processor at full speed.

That means the iPhone could shut down without warning in an effort to protect the internal components.

Apple defended its actions in a statement, saying: “Our goal is to deliver the best experience for customers, which includes overall performance and prolonging the life of their devices.”

However, it didn’t go down well with users, who had long suggested that this was the case only to be told different by Apple experts.

Repair tip

To appease angry users, in 2018 Apple offered to replace ailing iPhone batteries for just £25. However, the iPhone battery replacement programme ended on 31st December 2018.

If your iPhone is switching itself off despite it showing there is some charge left in the battery, you might need to invest in a new battery.

If your iPhone is covered by warranty, AppleCare+, or consumer law, Apple will replace your battery at no charge. If you don’t fall into one of those categories, you’ll have to pay to have your iPhone’s battery replaced.

The cost of battery replacement depends on what model you have – sending it off to Apple for replacement, it’ll either be £49 or £69.

  1. Rapid battery drain

If you’re experiencing a rapid battery drain, where the “Low Battery’ notification pops up within a couple of hours of it being fully charged, it can render your iPhone unusable (unless it’s constantly plugged in).

Typically, battery life problems are encountered after an iOS upgrade, with the updated system putting extra stress on the battery. But a battery replacement might not be necessary…

Repair tip

First, try a factory reset to see if that cures your battery performance issue. Resetting and wiping a device can clear out problems that cause it to get stuck in a loop, appear sluggish or otherwise impair performance.

Remember to back up your device first with either iTunes or iCloud to ensure you don’t lose any of your data or apps. To perform a factory reset go to Settings > General > Reset > Erase All Content and Settings.

If that doesn’t help, it’s time to free up a bit of memory by getting rid of any photos that you don’t want, uninstalling unused apps and generally just clearing some data.

Is your phone not even charging in the first place? Take a look at our post with 6 reasons why this might be the case.

  1. Bluetooth connection unsuccessful

More and more people are investing in Bluetooth speakers and earbuds for their music-listening needs.

According to electronics specialists Currys PC World, a portable speaker was the most in-demand item for Christmas 2019, underlining the shift to wireless music systems.

When you buy a Bluetooth device, it will come with some instructions on what to do to get it connected to your smartphone – on the iPhone it’s as easy as going into Settings > Bluetooth then looking for the relevant Bluetooth device.

However, if you’re connecting to multiple Bluetooth devices with your iPhone, your smartphone can get confused.

No matter how many times you press on the Bluetooth device, just as you did the last time, you’re greeted with the “Connection Unsuccessful” message. So, how can you get around the issue?


Repair tip

Thankfully, solving the issue often only takes a couple of taps on your iPhone.

But before you do anything, check that your Bluetooth device is switched on and open to receiving a new connection (usually a blue LED with be flashing to indicate this).

If it is, go to Settings > Bluetooth, select ‘Forget this Device’ and then again try to pair it.

In most cases, this solves the issue immediately – you might have to do it every time you connect, which is a bit of a faff, but it’s better than having to rely on your iPhone speakers.

Find mobile phone insurance in the UK

With your iPhone now problem-free and operating at peak performance, make sure it’s covered with iPhone insurance courtesy of Gadget Cover.

We can provide insurance for your phone if it’s less than 18 months. Once purchased, there’s no limit to how long your gadget can be covered.

You also need to make sure your device is in good condition and full working order, and that you’re able to provide proof of ownership.

For peace of mind that your smartphone is well protected against life’s little mishaps, get iPhone phone insurance with Gadget Cover today.

Get a quote – and in the meantime, why not check out our other blog on 12 iPhone apps to improve your life?

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