iPhone Home buttons do go wrong from time to time, often a year or so after the warranty runs out. If you have an iPhone 6 or older with a hardware Home button you will likely have experienced it not working at least once since you got it. This is a common complaint, but we may be able to offer some advice on getting it fixed.
There are two main reasons for a iPhone Home button not working, software or hardware issues. If it is software, we can work around it or fix it. There is one useful trick to tell whether your Home button problem is hardware or software. Press the button in all different positions to see what happens. To press it at the very top, the far left, far right and very bottom. If the button works in some positions and not others, it is likely a hardware issue.
Fix Software Issues
There are a few things you can do to address Software Issues with home button.
Open the Apple clock app. Hold down the sleep button until you see the power off slider then release. Hold down the Home button until it returns to the home screen. This may work for you, it may not.
Backup and Restore
It is the another way to fix a faulty Home button caused by a software issue. It takes a little longer but is more effective more often so is definitely one to consider. We will use DFU mode to do a full restore.
- Connect your iPhone to your computer and back up through iTunes. Leave it connected.
- Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button and Home button together for 10 seconds.
- Release the Sleep/Wake button but continue holding the Home button. You should see a message in iTunes that says something like ‘iTunes has detected an iPhone in recovery mode’.
- Release the Home button. The iPhone screen should be completely black. If not, repeat the entire process again.
- Restore your iPhone through iTunes.
- Reboot and retest.
Using DFU mode has risks so should be regarded as a last resort. It reloads all firmware and has the potential to brick your iPhone if it has hardware issues, damage or minor problems.
Try this one! Navigate to Settings and General on your iPhone. Navigate to Accessibility and Assistive Touch. Toggle Assistive Touch to on and software controls should appear on your screen. One of which will be the Home button.
Fix Hardware Issues
First, let us check that the charging port hasn’t knocked the Home button.
- Plug your charger into the port on your iPhone.
- Hold the iPhone in one hand or lay it flat on a surface.
- Press down gently on the edge of the connector where it meets the cable. The intent is to
- push the other end of the connector upwards inside the phone.
- Press the Home button while pushing on the connector to see if it works.
This is a simple but very effective test. If you have owned your iPhone for a while, the connector port will have gone through a lot. It may have become loose, or ever so slightly dislodged. It isn’t a permanent fix but it can keep you going for a while.
The only other way I know to fix a hardware fault with the iPhone Home button is to replace it. If your phone is still under warranty, get Apple to do it. If it isn’t, you can either do it yourself or take it to a phone store and have them do it.
So that's it! All the Touch ID equipped iPhones have reliable Home buttons that appear not to be prone to failure - although if your experience differs, please do get in touch and let us know in the comments.