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Does your Android phone keep shutting off? Here's how to fix it!

Samsung Galaxy Note 10
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 (Image credit: Android Central)

The best Android phones are great. THey're powerful, they're getting Android 12 soon, and they have all the trimmings. But the second trouble occurs, it can be a major pain in the butt. One common issue people often experience is their phone repeatedly shutting off unintended, and if this happens to you, it's not a good time.

No matter if it's a result of a low battery, easy-to-fix bug, or something more serious, here are a few tips on how to stop your phone from shutting off when you don't want it to.

Restart your phone

Power menu on a Pixel 4 XL

Source: Joe Maring / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Joe Maring / Android Central)

If you have a phone that keeps shutting off over and over, you may just need to restart it. As silly as it may sound, turning it off and on again really does work in many cases.

There are a couple of ways to restart your phone, the most common of which just requires you to hold down the power button and tap on the Restart option that appears on the screen. This will power your phone off and boot it back up, hopefully making it so things once again run like normal.

If that doesn't work, it's worth doing what we call a "hard reset." This also resets your phone, but does so using a combination of the volume and power buttons — something that comes in handy if you're having trouble accessing the power menu mentioned above.

To do this, hold down the power button and volume-down buttons until you're taken to the Fastboot Mode screen. Then, press the power button again to start the phone up. If you don't see the start option, use the volume-up and volume-down buttons to cycle through the various options until you find it.

If your phone decides to stay on and go back to normal after a good restart, you can stop reading here and go on with your life. However, if you're still having issues, there are a few other things we can try.

Charge it up

Wireless chargers

Source: Ara Wagoner / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Ara Wagoner / Android Central)

Another possible solution to your phone problems is to charge your device up. If your phone keeps shutting off or refuses to turn on, that could just be a sign that your battery is low.

Find your charging cable, plug your phone in, and leave it be and keep it charging for at least an hour so it can get some much-needed juice. Come back after a while, and if the battery looks like it's charging normally, you should be good to go.

If you find that your phone isn't taking a charge, try moving the charger to a different wall outlet or using a different cable/AC adapter. If that still doesn't work, something may be messed up with the charging port. If your phone supports wireless charging, place it on a supported wireless charger and see if that works. If you do that and the battery still isn't charging and/or your phone keeps shutting off, you have a bigger issue on your hands.

Factory reset and restore

Factory reset settings

Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)

Still no dice? It might be time to go a step further.

If you can use your phone long enough to tap the necessary buttons, backing up your data and performing a factory reset is worth a shot. A factory reset essentially takes your phone back to when you originally bought it (aka how it was when it came out of the factory).

Doing this will delete all of your apps, games, photos, and other personal data, so making sure that everything is backed up before initiating the reset is extremely important. Assuming it is, you'll be able to restore your phone back to how it was when going through the setup process. Google One can also periodically back up your phone to make sure everything is up to date as often as possible.

Factory resets can be very effective for improving performance, helping battery life, and many other things. There's a good chance it could stop your phone from repeatedly turning off, but because of how intensive of a process it is, we don't recommend it be your first course of action. Only if the above two steps don't work should you go down this route.

For step-by-step guides on what the backup and reset process looks like, check out the two articles below.

Contact the manufacturer

Samsung logo at CES 2019

Source: Android Central (Image credit: Source: Android Central)

If you exhaust these DIY tips and still aren't making any progress, it's time to call your phone manufacturer and see what your options are. Most phones come with a manufacturer warranty to cover problems like this, assuming you haven't seriously damaged or worn out your phone and potentially caused the problem yourself.

Additionally, if you bought insurance for your phone either through the manufacturer or from a retailer like Best Buy, you should be able to take advantage of that to keep costs as low as possible for yourself.

We can't list the contact information for every phone maker out there, but here are the customer service numbers you'll want to call for some of the most popular brands.

  • Samsung: 1 (800) 726-7864
  • Google: Go to Tips & Support in the Settings
  • OnePlus: 1 (833) 777-3633
  • LG: 1 (800) 243-0000
  • Motorola: 1 (800) 734-5870

It might be time to move on

Google Pixel 4 XL, Galaxy S10+ and OnePlus 7 Pro

Source: Andrew Martonik / Android Central (Image credit: Source: Andrew Martonik / Android Central)

If your current phone is a couple of years old and you can't get it fixed, it may be time that you part ways with it and move on to something else.

Getting two to three years out of a phone is great, with anything beyond that being gravy. But, unfortunately, phones degrade as time goes on, and if you've been using them regularly, it's only natural for problems to pop up the longer you hold on to it.

We recommend consulting your needs and budget before going out and buying something. If you'd like some recommendations to point you in the right direction, we've rounded up the best smartphones currently available that are worth checking out.

Adam has been writing and podcasting the mobile tech space for almost a decade. When he's not writing, he hosts the Benefit of the Doud podcast, spends way too much time on Twitter, and redesigns his office space over and over.

  • You forgot one thing...if your phone uses a microSD card for internal or external storage...remove it. ESPECIALLY if it has been carried over from older phones. Some are old, slow, worn out...especially if they were formatted for internal storage, which is not advised...the higher "write" wear on a microSD card formatted for internal storage can make it wear out faster. They all have a limited number of write cycles. Note that if a microSD card was formatted for internal storage and it is removed, you are factory resetting your phone anyway. Try running the phone for a while without the microSD card...if it is stable, replace it with a newer, faster microSD card. I've had to diagnose several phones that randomly rebooted...the common culprit was the 3rd party microSD card.
  • Nonsense, you are not factory resetting your phone if you remove or format your micro SD card..... Wtf?
  • The removal of MicroSD storage doesn't cause a factory reset...but if the microSD card is starting to fail, it can cause random reboots of the phone.
    Again, for problem determination purposes (like random reboots), run the phone without "externalities", like a 3rd party microSD card, see how it runs....if it is stable, (but was not before removal), there is a good change your crazy reboot issue was from a 3rd party MicroSD card. A lot cheaper (if that is the problem) than buying a new phone.
  • Ok. My apologies if I sounded rude.
  • Smh, don't play the "oblivious to thine self" game, you know you were being rude... I think you meant to say "for being rude" not "if I sounded rude" ... lol nonsense ;)
  • So, after a two or three years, dump the phone for a new one. I do not disagree but find it ironic that over on the Pixel 6 forum, they are jumping for joy if Google will keep updating OS for four years and security updates for five years.