It could be time to clean up your iPhone’s Lightning port if you’re having difficulties connecting or charging it. We’ll show you how to do it safely, as well as how to solve any other issues that may arise.
It’s critical to turn off your iPhone before cleaning the Lightning connector to avoid accidently producing shorts that could damage your phone. Depending on which iPhone model you have, you can accomplish it in one of two ways:
Without Home Button — Hold down the side and volume up or down buttons for roughly four seconds until the power-off slider shows.
With Home Button and Side Button — Hold down the side button for several seconds until the power-off slider shows on the screen.
With Home Button and Top Button — Hold the top button down until the power-off slider displays.
Swipe to the right when the “Slide to Power Off” slider appears on the screen, and your smartphone will switch off.
Look for and use a wooden toothpick
You’ll need a small tool that can fit into the Lightning connector on your iPhone without causing any damage now that it’s turned off. Here’s what you shouldn’t use to clean your Lightning port:
No metal items — The pins inside the Lightning connector can readily be damaged by a metal implement, such as a paperclip. It could also result in electronic shorts, which could harm your phone if you forget to switch it off. If you accidentally short your iPhone with a metal tool, restarting it generally clears the safety circuitry.
No compressed air — Years ago, we attempted to clean a Lightning port with compressed air, but it failed miserably. It caused dust to build up behind the screen of the iPhone, making it impossible to clean without disassembling the entire device.
Wooden toothpick works best: it doesn’t conduct electricity, so it won’t cause an inadvertent short, and it’s soft enough to avoid harming the Lightning port’s connector pins.
To begin, gently insert the toothpick into the iPhone’s Lightning port at the bottom. Try to scrape lint or dust out by moving it back and forth. To avoid harming the pins on the bottom side of the connector, maintain the toothpick centered in the port (between the front and back of the iPhone) while you move it (toward the back of the phone).
When using the toothpick, be careful not to exert too much power. If you use too much force, portions of the toothpick may break off, causing more problems than the lint you’re cleaning.
After that, gently brush away the lint and turn on the iPhone by pressing and holding the top or side button until the Apple logo appears in the center of the screen.
Insert a known-to-work Lightning cable to see if you can make a secure connection. If it still doesn’t work, try turning off the iPhone and cleaning the port again. However, if everything checks out, you’re good to go!
Wireless charging as a back-up option
If your iPhone’s charging port is still not operating properly after cleaning it, contact Apple service for assistance. For a fee, they can repair or replace your iPhone.
However, if you need to charge your iPhone quickly, you can utilize a wireless charging method like Qi (available in iPhone 8 and higher) or MagSafe (iPhone 12 and up). To make it happen, you’ll need a Qi charging station or a MagSafe charger.