How to Reset a Cell Phone

By Kefa Olang

Updated September 28, 2017

There are times a cell phone may freeze, crash or lock up unexpectedly, so performing a reset is necessary to restore normal functions. Performing a reset varies with different makes and models; however, it's a troubleshooting procedure that reboots the cell phone's firmware. It also restores default settings and clears saved data depending on the type of reset included with the phone. If your cell phone isn't performing well, reset it quickly and safely.

Flip your phone over to expose the battery compartment if you're using a phone with a replacable battery.

Open the battery compartment and remove the battery. Wait a few seconds, and then reinsert it. Press the "Power" button to turn on the cell phone to automatically perform a reset.

Launch your phone's settings from the home screen and locate the reset or clear option if the phone is still behaving erratically. The location of these options varies with different phones, so refer to your device's manual or documentation for the reset or clearing options.

Select the "Reset" or "Clear Data" option and then confirm your selection. The phone reboots automatically and restores the default factory settings.


The process of resetting a cell phone varies with different makes and models, so always refer to your device's manual or documentation.

Some cell phones use a two- or three-key combination to perform resets. These combinations vary with different makes and models, so refer to your device's manual.

Some resets can also be performed using a computer. This is especially common with smartphones that use synchronization software.

If you're using a smartphone, always create backup copies of your files so you can re-sync content to your phone after performing a reset that clears saved data.


Depending on the type of cell phone, a reset usually clears saved settings and restores the device to the default state. Some resets even delete saved data such as contacts and messages, so perform resets as a last troubleshooting resort if your phone is still not working properly.