Your iPhone’s charging port can easily get clogged with dust and debris. Here’s how to clean your iPhone’s charging port safely.
What to know:
- The best way to clean your iPhone’s charging port is with a can of compressed air and a toothpick.
- Blasting it with compressed air will shake loose dirt, which you can then clean out with the toothpick.
- If a charging port isn’t working, it likely needs to be cleaned.
Charging ports on iPhones are constantly at risk of getting filled with dust, dirt, and other debris.
It’s not hard to understand why. If you frequently put your iPhone in your pocket or a bag port-side down, loose debris can be forced into the small opening.
If your iPhone’s charging port has stopped working or looks a little dusty, here’s how to clean it safely.
Why is it important to clean your iPhone’s charging port?
Dust and debris can stop your iPhone’s charging port from working correctly. Ensuring that your charging port stays clear of debris is important for ensuring that the port functions properly and that you don’t inadvertently damage your iPhone.
charging port connections that aren’t clean may interfere with charging or iPhone function.
How to properly clean iPhone charging port
The charging port on your iPhone is sensitive, so you need a gentle hand when cleaning it. By far, the safest way to clean the charging port on your iPhone is with compressed air. Compressed air will loosen dust and blow out dirt without you needing to insert anything into the port.
Having said that, if you’re planning to insert anything into the port to pull out wedged-in dirt, there’s only one acceptable tool for the job: A toothpick.
You should get a flashlight, or work under a bright LED desk lamp — the brighter the better, since you need to see deep into the charging port.
- Power off your iPhone completely. Go to Settings > General > Shut Down.
- Start with the can of compressed air. Use the straw-like attachment to blast air into the port in short, controlled bursts; hold the can straight up so you don’t blow any of the liquid contained in the can. If you’re lucky this may be the only step involved.
- If you still suspect there’s debris in the port, find a toothpick, a disposable dental pick, or a similar object small enough to get into the port that isn’t metal, sharp, or fuzzy.
- gently insert the cleaning tool from step 3 into the port and lightly scrape it against the inside wall of the port. Don’t apply pressure to the inside wall that’s closest to the front of the phone, because there are delicate pins there. Overall, it’s important to be gentle, because in addition to those pins, the sides are home to two small spring-mounted anchors that latch onto the charging port when you insert it (that’s why it "snaps" into place when you push the cable in). If you break anything, its charging days will be over permanently.
- Finish by blowing compressed air into the port one more time to eject any debris you loosened with the toothpick or dental pick.
- If there’s still material in the port, repeat steps 3 through 5.
What you should avoid when cleaning your iPhone charging port
At least some of these points may seem obvious, but keep them in mind.
- Never try to clean the charging port with anything harder than wood, like any sort of pin or metal rod. There are delicate electronics in the port, and ramming it with a sharp metal pin can permanently damage it.
- Avoid getting liquids into the port, whether from a compressed air can or something else. If this does happen, make sure the device is powered down and allowed to dry. You can use cool air to speed things up, but not a hot-air dryer.
How to stop dirt from getting into your iPhone’s charging port
If you have frequent problems with your iPhone’s charging port getting dirty, try changing the way you carry or transport your device. The easiest solution is to insert it in your pocket or bag upside down, so the port goes in last and isn’t being driven towards dirt and debris.
If you work in a dusty environment, it’s worth investing in a set of anti-dust plugs or a iPhone case with built-in port covers. These will prevent dirt from getting into your lightening port in the first place and you won’t need to clean it out so often.