How to clean charging port on iPhone easy

Anyone who owns an iPhone — or any smartphone, for that matter — is eventually going to need to clean the charging port. While we usually protect our iPhones with a sturdy case, we tend to shove them in purses and pockets without much thought toward protecting the charging port.

In all honesty, your iPhone is a rugged beast, taking care of your business, as well as social and entertainment needs, without complaint. But one day, it will suddenly stop charging on you, and you’ll either panic and run to the nearest Apple Store, or you’ll learn how to clean your iPhone charging port as part of your iPhone’s regular care.

And while we’re on the topic of cleaning up your iPhone, it’s worth mentioning all that digital clutter that builds up on your phone over time — files, photos, videos, apps — taking care of your digital clutter is just as important as cleaning the outside of your phone.

Keep your iPhone charging port clean

The first time you clean your iPhone charging port, you will likely be amazed at the amount of dust, lint, and gunk accumulating in that tiny hole, eventually causing your iPhone to stop charging when plugged in.

The answer, of course, is to make cleaning your charging port a habit and not wait until it gives you problems. Yes, the charging component on your iPhone is quite fragile, no matter if your iPhone uses the lightning or USB-C port. If done incorrectly, you risk breaking the connectors, which would be a very expensive fix.

With the right tools and a little bit of finesse, you’ll find that cleaning your iPhone’s charging port isn’t as difficult as it seems.

Step-by-step guide for how to clean your iPhone’s charging port

It doesn’t matter what type of port your iPhone has; the process for cleaning it out is the same. Here’s what you’ll need to get started:

  • A toothpick
  • A flashlight or headlamp
  • (optional) compressed air

Once you’ve gathered your materials, turn off your phone completely. You can do this by holding down either volume button and the power button on the right side of your phone until you see the power-off slider. For older phones, hold down the top power button until the power-off slider appears.

Slide to power off and follow these steps to clean your iPhone’s charging port:

  1. First, put on your headlamp or grab your flashlight and shine it into your iPhone’s charging port. Do you see debris? Use your light to periodically check on your progress as you are cleaning.
  2. Using a toothpick, very gently swipe the tip around inside the charging port to dislodge any debris. Do not push into the port and do not use anything metal inside the port.
  3. If you notice debris on the toothpick, wipe it off on a napkin or cloth before going back into the port for a second swipe. Gently move the toothpick from side to side to dislodge as much as possible. Use very light pressure!
  4. Once you’ve worked with the toothpick to the best of your ability, try plugging your iPhone in to see if it is charging properly.
  5. If your iPhone is not charging, consider using a few short blasts of compressed air into the port. It’s worth mentioning here that Apple does not recommend using compressed air, so complete this step at your own risk.

Giving your iPhone charging port a few gentle swipes with a toothpick should be all you need to keep your port clean. If the combination of toothpick cleaning and compressed air does not do the trick, you can assume that your charging port is faulty and contact Apple Support.

A gentle reminder to clean up digital clutter, too

Now that you’ve got a handle on cleaning your charging port, consider taking a few minutes to clean up your digital clutter. Check out this article — it provides a step-by-step guide for keeping your digital clutter under control.

Bonus tip: If you take a lot of photos and videos on your iPhone, download Gemini Photos, which will allow you to sort your photos based on similar and duplicate images so you can quickly delete the ones you don’t need. Videos are sorted by file size, meaning a few minutes of sorting and deleting will save you lots of storage space.

Your iPhone works hard to ensure that you have the digital world at your fingertips. It’s up to you to keep your iPhone working properly, and keeping the charging port clean is one of the best things you can do for your phone.

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