- You can reset an iPad to its factory settings if you’re experiencing significant problems with it or are planning to sell it or give it away.
- You can restart your iPad with the push of a few button combinations.
- A restart should clear your iPad’s memory and solve the majority of technical problems.
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Apple might try to disguise it, but your iPad is really a computer. And like any computer, it can suffer from problems that are easily solved by restarting the device or, in some cases, resetting it to its factory settings. You might be familiar with the way rebooting a sluggish or glitchy laptop can restore it to working order; the same is true of your iPad.
Restarting an iPad is easy and risk-free; it’s the equivalent of turning it off and back on again. It’s a good option if your iPad is sluggish, the web browser won’t open webpages properly, or you find an app won’t start or is misbehaving.
A reset should be reserved for more serious issues. Called “Erase All Content and Settings” in the iPad’s Settings app, it wipes out all your personal information, installed apps, and data related to your Apple ID. Because it restores the iPad to factory settings, it’s what you should do if you’re selling or giving away the iPad, or having serious problems that repeated restarts have not resolved.
A reset should be your last choice, though. Afterward, you will need to set up the iPad and reinstall your apps and data, either manually or from an iCloud backup.
How to reset an iPad
You should think of a reset as the ultimate “nuclear option” when troubleshooting and resolving issues with your iPad. Unlike a restart which is little more than turning the iPad off and then on again, a reset generally means a factory reset, which erases all the information off of your device and restores it to the way it was when it came out of its box.
You should only do this if you are selling or giving away the iPad, or if you absolutely need to in order to solve a very serious glitch. That’s because you’ll need to restore data from a backup or install all apps and settings manually.
1. If there’s a chance you might need to restore your iPad, make sure it’s backed up to iCloud first. You can do that in the Settings app by choosing “Passwords & Accounts,” “then iCloud Backup,” and tapping “Back Up Now.”
2. When you’re ready to perform the reset, tap the Settings icon and then tap “General.”
3. Tap “Reset” and then tap “Erase All Contents and Settings.”
4. Tap “Backup Then Erase” if you want to make a copy of your iPad’s content before the reset. If you’ve done this recently or do not need a backup, you can just tap “Erase Now.”
5. Enter your iPad’s passcode.
When complete, your iPad will behave like it did when you first used it, displaying the initial setup screen.
How to restart an iPad with Face ID or the Home button
Normally, it only takes a moment to restart your iPad if it is misbehaving or you need to restart it for troubleshooting. The process is slightly different, though, depending upon whether or not your iPad has a Home button (models without a Home button support Face ID; those with a Home button do not).
1. Display the iPad’s restart screen by doing the following, depending on your iPad model:
- If you have an iPad with Face ID, press and hold the Power button (located on the side, opposite the volume controls) and either of the volume buttons. After a few seconds, a slider should appear.
- If you have an iPad with a Home button, press and hold the Power button (which you’ll find on the top or side, depending on which model you own). After a few seconds, a slider should appear.
2. Drag the slider to the right. Your iPad should turn off automatically.
3. Wait a few moments for the iPad to power down completely. Then press and hold the Power button until the Apple logo appears. Your iPad should restart normally.
How to force-restart an iPad with Face ID or the Home button
A normal reset should solve most iPad problems most of the time. But if your iPad suffers a more serious problem and won’t respond to a restart procedure, you should try to perform a “force-restart” instead. A force-restart does the same thing – it reboots your iPad – but the way you trigger it is a little different.
If you have an iPad with Face ID, press this button combination:
1. Press the Volume Up button for one second and release it.
2. Press the Volume Down button for one second and release it.
3. Press and hold the Power button for five seconds until the Apple logo appears.
If you have an iPad with a Home button, press this button combination:
1. Press and hold the Home button; at the same time, press and hold the Power button.
2. Continue to hold both buttons for about 10 seconds until you see the Apple logo appear.
If a force-restart does not work
Regardless of which kind of iPad you own, if your iPad is having serious technical troubles, the force-restart process might not work. Don’t worry; there’s another solution that can usually get it working again.
1. Connect your iPad to AC power and let it charge for at least an hour. Don’t disturb it while it charges.
2. After that, see if it has restarted on its own.
3. If not, try another force-restart using the procedure above.
If that still does not work, you might have no other option but to contact Apple for service.