How to fix when iPad won’t turn on

Do you see a black screen when you try to turn on your iPad? Or does it seem to boot but is stuck at the Apple logo? Battery-related issues, faulty system software updates, and hardware-level issues are usually problems when your iPad won’t turn on.

However, before you ditch the towel and head to your local Genius Bar, you should go through the troubleshooting tips below to see if you can fix your iPad yourself.

Force restart your iPad

In rare cases, your iPad may freeze when you turn it on. If you see a completely black screen or a persistent Apple logo, force restarting your device may help it boot up correctly.

iPad with Home button

Press and hold both Home button and Top and at the same time until your iPad boots up and you see the Apple logo.

iPad does not have a Home button

Quickly press and release Volume up button and Turn down the volume button after button. Then hold down Top immediately until you see the Apple logo.

Apple logo

If your iPad turns on without problems, it’s best to back it up immediately. If the problem recurs, follow the settings or do a factory reset.

Continue with the rest of the fixes if nothing happens.

Charge at least one hour

While your iPad may have had enough charge the last time you used it, there are many reasons that can drain the battery quickly and your iPad won’t turn on. If you see a black screen and nothing happens when you press the force restart button combination, charge your iPad for at least an hour before trying to turn it back on.

Low battery icon

Lightning cable replacement

Charging cables tend to wear out after a few years (or even earlier in some cases) and can stop charging your iPad altogether. If you can’t turn on your iPad even after it’s been connected to a power source for an extended period of time, that’s most likely the case.

Check for signs of degradation and use another Apple Lightning or USB-C cable. If you’re using a capable third-party replacement device, make sure it’s MFi-certified.

Apple Lightning Cable

Change the charging adapter

Charging cable aside, don’t discount the fact that you too may be dealing with a malfunctioning iPad charging adapter. If possible, try changing it. You can also use an iPhone charger (which will take longer but will still charge your iPad) or connect it to a Mac or PC instead.

Charger

Clean charging port

If your iPad still won’t charge, you should consider cleaning its Lightning or USB-C charging port. Sometimes, lint and other debris can build up inside, clogging the contacts and preventing the device from charging.

Blow out the charging port with a few short bursts of compressed air (avoid putting the nozzle inside the port) or gently pry off any dirt with a wooden or plastic toothpick to remove whatever is inside.

Try asking Siri something

Your iPad may have turned on properly, but there might be something wrong with its display. Try calling Siri — press and hold Home or Top buttons in seconds. Follow through by asking her for something.

Siri icon

If she responds, you may be dealing with a faulty display. Regardless, you should still work your way through the remaining fixes. That will help you back up your iPad as well as rule out additional software-related problems.

Connect to iTunes/Finder

Connect your iPad to your Mac or PC via USB and check if it shows up on iTunes/Finder. If so, select it and (provided you’ve previously ‘trusted’ the device) immediately create a local or iCloud backup.

Then choose Check for updates to install any new iPadOS updates. If that doesn’t help, choose Ipad Recovery to perform a reset (you should have previously turned off Find My iPad to use this option).

Check iPad Update and Restore option

Enter recovery mode

If iTunes/Finder fails to detect your iPad, you must put it into Recovery Mode. You can then update or reset your iPad even if you don’t “trust” it or have previously turned off Find My iPad. Before you begin, make sure to connect your iPad to your Mac or PC via USB.

iPad with Home button

Press and hold both Home button and Top until you see the Apple logo. Keep holding it until you enter Recovery Mode.

iPad does not have a Home button

Quickly press and release Volume up button and Turn down the volume button after button. Then immediately hold down Top until you see the Apple logo. Keep holding it until you enter Recovery Mode.

iPad Update or Restore Options

After entering Recovery Mode, select Update option to reinstall system software without losing any data. If it fails, use Ipad Recovery option to reset iPad to factory settings. For complete instructions, check out this iPad Recovery Mode guide.

Enter DFU mode

If your iPad won’t enter Recovery Mode, try putting it into DFU (Device Firmware Update) Mode. It’s an advanced recovery environment that you can use to reinstall system software from scratch. Again, make sure to connect your iPad to your computer before you begin.

Note: Unlike Recovery Mode, the screen on your iPad will remain dark even when entering DFU Mode.

iPad with Home button

Press and hold both Home and Top buttons for 5 seconds. Then release Top but keep it up Home until you see the Recovery Mode screen in iTunes/Finder.

iPad does not have a Home button

Quickly press and release Volume up button and Turn down the volume button after button. Then hold down Top instant button.

As soon as the screen goes black, press and hold Turn down the volume (without release Edge button) for 5 seconds.

Finally, release Edge but keep pressing Turn down the volume until you see the Recovery Mode screen in iTunes/Finder.

Restore iPad preferences

In DFU Mode, use Ipad Recovery option to reset your iPad. iTunes/Finder will download the latest system software package to your Mac or PC and reset your iPad. If it eventually succeeds in turning on your iPad, you can get your data back using a previous iCloud or iTunes/Finder backup.

Take it to repair

If none of the above fixes help and your iPad still won’t turn on, you’re probably experiencing severe battery deterioration or a faulty display. Various forms of physical damage (did you drop your iPad?) or liquid damage can also prevent it from turning on. Your next course of action would be to have an Apple Genius or an Apple certified technician take a closer look.

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