iPhone Recovery Mode: How to Enter and Exit iPhone Recovery Mode

by J. Robertson Macaulay D. Young Updated On Aug 25, 2022 Published On Aug 8, 2022 Basic iPhone Tips Ideal for Newbies

If your iPhone has ever experienced any system issues, then you are probably familiar with iPhone recovery mode.

Recovery mode is one of the most reliable ways to fix the most common issues that can affect the iOS system and it works in connection with iTunes, allowing you to get your iPhone in normal working order.

Here, we will be discussing this very useful solution and how it can help you keep your device in good working order.

What is iPhone Recovery Mode?

Recovery mode is a state that you can put your device into when the operating system is not functioning properly.

When your iPhone is in recovery mode, you will not be able to use it, but it is one of the best ways to reinstall iOS on the device using iTunes.

Recovery mode in itself will not cause data loss. But if your device gets stuck in recovery mode, you may need to restore it to factory settings to fix it.

This often means that you will lose all the data on the device, although if you have a backup, you can simply restore the data onto the device once it is fixed.

If you don’t have a backup and you don’t want to lose any of your data, you can have a data specialist analyze the device to see if there is any way to save the data.

But if you put your device in recovery mode intentionally, you can easily get out of it by restarting it and you shouldn’t lose any of your data.

It is however very important to always have a backup of your data, just in case something happens and you need to restore it to fix it.

When To Use Recovery Mode?

Recovery mode is useful in the following situation:

  • When you are installing an iOS update and the device gets stuck on a boot loop. If this happens, there could be a problem with the update or the battery was too low during the installation.
  • When you’re updating your device’s operating system or restoring the device via iTunes, but the process fails or takes longer than usual.
  • If you are updating the device to a beta version of iOS and a system bug causes a malfunction.
  • When the device’s screen is stuck on the Apple logo or the Connect to iTunes screen and all other solutions don’t work.

How to Put Your iPhone in Recovery Mode

You can put your iPhone in recovery mode using these steps:

Step 1: If you are using iTunes, make sure that you have the latest version installed on your computer. Make sure you also have the latest version of macOS.

Step 2: On a Mac with macOS Catalina and newer, open Finder. For macOS Mojave or earlier and PC, open iTunes. If iTunes was already open, close it and reopen it.

Step 3: Connect the iPhone to the computer and use the following processes to put your device in recovery mode:

iPhone 8 or later and iPhone SE (2nd generation): Press and quickly release the Volume up button. Press and quickly release the Volume Down button and then press and hold the Side button until the “Connect to iTunes” screen appears.

iPhone 8 or later in recovery mode

iPhone 7 and 7 Plus: Press and hold the Top/Side button and the Volume Down button at the same time. Keep pressing both buttons until you see the “Connect to iTunes” screen.

iPhone 7 in recovery mode

iPhone 6s or earlier: Press and hold both the Home and the Top/Side buttons at the same time. Keep holding both buttons until the “Connect to iTunes” screen appears.

iPhone 6s in recovery mode

Step 4: Find the device on your computer and when presented with the option to “Restore” or “Update” the iPhone, choose “Update.” Your computer will reinstall the software without erasing the device.

finder recovery mode notification

Keep the device connected while your computer downloads and installs the software. If the process takes more than 15 minutes, your device will exit recovery mode and you may need to repeat the steps above.

How to Exit Recovery Mode on iPhone

Once you are done with recovery mode, you may want your device to go back to normal mode. The following steps will help you exit recovery mode on your iPhone:

Exit Recovery Mode on iPhone 8 and later:

Step 1: Press and release the Volume Up button and press and release the Volume Down button.

Step 2: Then press and hold the Side button until the Apple logo appears on the screen and it restarts.

Force Restart iPhone 12

Exit Recovery Mode on iPhone 7 and 7 Plus:

Press and hold both the Side button and the Volume Down button. Keep pressing both buttons at the same time until the Apple logo appears.

Force Restart iPhone 7

Exit Recovery Mode on iPhone 6 and earlier:

Press and hold both the Home Button and the Power button until the device restarts and you see the Apple logo on the screen.

Force Restart iPhone 6S

What If Recovery Mode Doesn’t Work?

If recovery mode doesn’t work, then whatever problem you were trying to fix may be more serious than you thought.

Trying to resolve such a problem on your own can cause more damage to the device. We, therefore, advise that you try this iOS system repair tool, contact Apple Support or make an appointment at the nearest Apple Store to get help.

Recovery mode has long been a very effective way to fix some of the most problematic issues with iOS devices.

It is an ideal solution for a device that is unresponsive, an update process that simply won’t work, or a device that is stuck on the Apple logo or the black screen.

And now you know how to enter and exit recovery mode on any iOS device.

J. Robertson Macaulay D. Young

Mako is a technical writer with a passion for all things tech. Whether you're wondering about how to fix your iPhone or Android device or trying to get something to work in your settings, Mako is your go-to for professional help. He loves writing, testing solutions, and most of all, making sure his research is factually accurate.

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