iPhone Vibrating But Not Ringing? We’ll help you fix it

iPhone 12 in blue, red, white, green, and black aluminium finishes.

Is your iPhone vibrating but not ringing? Here are some fixes to get your iPhone ringing loud and clear again.

When your iPhone is in your pocket or bag, a ringtone helps to inform you about an incoming call or text if you’re unable to feel the vibration. If you’re in a noisy place like a town, it’s important to ensure your iPhone vibrate and ring at the same time so that you don’t miss any call.

The problem of iPhone not ringing is not new as it has existed on almost all iPhone models. The issue has affected many iPhone models, including iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, iPhone X, iPhone XR, iPhone XS, XS Max, iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, iPhone 12, 12 mini, 12 Pro, 12 Pro Max, iPhone 13, 13 mini, 13 Pro, 13 Pro Max, iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, iPhone 14 Pro Max and iPhone SE.

Thankfully, there’s a handful of reliable tips and tricks to fix the iPhone not ringing problem. So let’s not waste any more time and try out these viable fixes to get your iPhone ringing loud and clear again!

First off, it would be better to get to the root of the problem, trying to figure out the reasons why the iPhone ringer is not working.

Why is iPhone not ringing?

There is no definitive answer to why an iPhone is not ringing. But, there are some possible reasons that cause the ringer on an iOS device to malfunction. From what I can tell based on my personal experience, it’s the bad sound settings and occasional software glitches that cause the problem.

Besides, you shouldn’t rule out the possibility of bugs preventing the iPhone ringer from working.

If your iPhone is just vibrating but not ringing, you don’t have to book an appointment with the Genius Bar just yet. Here are a handful of troubleshooting steps and fixes you can try to revive your phone’s sound if your iPhone is vibrating but not ringing.

How to fix the problem if iPhone is vibrating not ringing

1. Check your iPhone for dust, dirt, and damage

If your iPhone is vibrating but not ringing, look at your device and check for any damage such as dents or cracks—these could be a sign that your phone may need to be replaced, but we’ll hold off until we’ve tried a few other fixes. Next, check the speaker port for any dust or dirt, which you can easily remove by blowing it off or cleaning it with a cotton swab dipped in a drop of rubbing alcohol.

2. Restart your iPhone

The next troubleshooting step is to simply perform a reboot. This will restart all background services and give your phone a clean start in case anything had crashed since your last reboot and may have been causing the ringtone on your iPhone to stop working. Follow the steps below:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap Shut Down.

3. Turn the Ringtone Volume Up

If a simple restart doesn’t work, it could be an issue with your ringer volume, especially if you can still hear other media like music or videos. To check your volume settings, follow the steps below:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap Sounds & Haptics.
  3. Drag the sound volume Bar to the right to increase volume.

You might also want to turn off Change with Buttons. Doing so will prevent you from lowering the ringtone volume using the physical volume buttons. When this option is disabled, the volume buttons only change the volume for media, not your ringtone.

4. Make sure your iPhone isn’t on silent mode

If your iPhone is set to vibrate-only mode, it won’t ring when you get a call. To fix this, make sure that your iPhone’s Ring/Silent switch isn’t in the Silent position. It should, of course, be flipped up toward the screen. If it’s down (with a band of red visible) it’s set to silent, and your iPhone will just vibrate but it won’t ring when you get a call or text message.

The Ring/Silent switch is located on the left side of the iPhone, above the volume controls.

5. Check if it’s a ringtone issue

If you downloaded a third-party or purchased a ringtone to use on your iPhone and it isn’t working, it could be a software glitch causing the sound to fail when someone calls you. Try switching to one of the iPhone’s pre-set ringtones, and see if that solves your problem. Here’s how you can access your default ringtones list.

  1. Go to Settings
  2. Tap Sounds & Haptics
  3. Tap Ringtone.
  4. Choose default or any other ringtone.

6. Check custom ringtone

If your iPhone is vibrating but not ringing for incoming calls from only certain people, then the issue could be in their custom ringtone. You can fix this by following the steps below:

  1. Open the Contacts app and open the contact for which the ringtone isn’t working.
  2. Tap on Edit.
  3. Scroll down and tap on Ringtone.
  4. Change the ringtone to one of the pre-installed ones.

7. Check that your iPhone isn’t stuck in headphone mode

If your iPhone is vibrating but not ringing, there’s a good chance your phone is “stuck” in a mode in which it thinks it’s playing the ringtone, but it’s sending it to a device that isn’t connected, like earbuds that aren’t plugged in or a Bluetooth device that isn’t turned on.

Here are a few things you can try to “wake up” your iPhone’s audio connection so it’s working properly:

  • Plug earbuds into your phone and remove them again to coax the phone into recognizing there are no earbuds plugged in.
  • Make sure you’re not connected to another audio device by swiping up on the screen to display the Control Center. Then tap the Airplay icon in the music pane – it looks like a triangle with three circles – and if anything other than the iPhone is selected, choose the iPhone.
  • Enable and disable Airplane mode by tapping the airplane icon in the Control Center.

8. Reset All Settings

If all else fails, you can attempt to reset all settings on your iPhone. This process will return all settings on your iPhone to the default factory state.

If you have a lot of data on your device, the process can take quite a while, so you should only try this method when you don’t need to use your iPhone immediately.

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Select Transfer or Reset iPhone.
  4. Tap Reset.
  5. Choose Reset All Settings.

Make sure not to select Erase All Content and Settings, as this will delete all the data on your iPhone.

9. Get your iPhone serviced

If none of the other troubleshooting tricks solved your iPhone vibrating but not ringing problem, you probably have a hardware problem with your phone, like a damaged speaker or a fried port.

You can go to Apple’s support page and make a Genius Bar reservation to have someone look at it in person.

Successfully fixed iPhone vibrating but not ringing issue!

The problem of iPhone just vibrating not ringing can occur without warning, but being armed with the knowledge to handle it can help you to troubleshoot this kind of issue. By now, your iPhone vibrating and not ringing problem should be fixed, ensuring you do not miss future calls. To check, ask a friend or family member to call you.

Have you ever experienced ringer issues on your iOS devices? If so, share what caused them and what fixed them in the comments section below.

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