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Face ID not working? Quick Fix

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  • 5 min read

Apple has moved relatively quickly through phone unlocking methods than its Android peers — moving from passcode to Touch ID and now to Face ID. The newer versions of the iPhone don’t feature Touch ID, and the users either have to rely on the older passcodes or their face to unlock their iPhone.

However, Face ID comes with its own caveats. While you can always use the passcode to unlock the device, if you’ve got a Face ID setup, chances are you don’t want to be doing that every time you’ve to check a notification or quickly reply to a message.

Like any other tech, Face ID can also fail at times, and if your iPhone’s Face ID isn’t working, we’ll help you fix it here. Follow the possible fixes below to get your iPhone’s Face ID up and running again.

Why is Face ID not working?

Face ID might not work directly without inputting the passcode in the following conditions.

  • You’ve restarted or switched on the device.
  • You haven’t used Face ID in the past four hours.
  • You haven’t unlocked the iPhone in the past 48 hours.
  • You haven’t unlocked the device using the passcode for six and a half days.
  • If your iPhone was locked remotely.
  • After emergency SOS.

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How to fix Face ID not working issue?

Follow the seven methods mentioned below to fix any Face ID issue on your iPhone.

Restart your iPhone

Restarting your device can go a long way in fixing a lot of issues you might be having. A simple restart can help clear any cache files or background processes that might be hindering iPhone’s Face ID from running smoothly.

Moreover, since it’s one of the most elementary ways to fix the ‘Face ID not working’ error, we recommend that you try restarting your iPhone before moving on to the relatively more complex fixes.

Update your iPhone

Check for updates to your iPhone. Newer OS versions could address specific bugs that might be causing software or hardware incompatibility issues and potentially fix the ‘Face ID not working’ error.

Follow the steps mentioned below to update your iPhone.

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  • Tap on General.
  • Then tap on Software Update.
  • If an update is available, you’ll see that on the next page.
  • Tap on Download and Install to proceed.

Check for hardware limitations

  • Ensure that the TrueDepth camera on either end of the notch on your iPhone isn’t covered by the case, screen protector, dirt or residue.
  • Wearing sunglasses or eyewear which isn’t accounted for in the appearance during the Face ID setup for the first time might also cause issues.
  • It’s also important to face the TrueDepth camera.

Also read: How to fix ‘Facebook notifications not working’ error?

Disable/Enable Face ID

If the Face ID not working issue persists, try disabling the feature and enabling it again promptly via iPhone’s settings.

Face ID not working? 7 fixes | Candid.Technology
  • Scroll down and select Face ID & Passcode.
  • Disable and enable Face ID unlock feature using the toggle button beside IPhone Unlock option.

Reset Face ID

If the method mentioned above doesn’t get the Face ID issue fixed, you can also try to reset Face ID through iPhone’s settings and try again.

Face ID not working? 7 fixes | Candid.Technology
  • Scroll down and select Face ID & Passcode.
  • Scroll down and tap on Reset Face ID.

Now setup Face ID again and the issue should be resolved.

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Reset your iPhone’s settings

If nothing so far works, try resetting your iPhone’s settings. Open iPhone’s settings and follow the steps mentioned below.

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  • Tap on General.
  • Select Reset. 
  • Then tap Reset All Settings. 

Add alternative appearance

If nothing else works, probably there was an issue while you were setting up Face ID. To fix this, you can try to set up an alternate appearance for Face ID so that your phone recognises you easily.

Note that wearing a mask doesn’t count as a new appearance as the latest iOS versions have already remedied the Face ID and mask issue.

Follow the steps mentioned below to set up an alternate appearance for Face ID on your iPhone.

  • Go to your iPhone’s settings.
  • Scroll down and select Face ID & Passcode.
  • Now tap on the Set Up Alternate Appearance option.
  • Follow the on-screen instruction and once the scan is done, tap on Continue.
  • Complete the verification and tap on Done.

Also read: How to make your phone not reachable? 



Writes news mostly and edits almost everything at Candid.Technology. He loves taking trips on his bikes or chugging beers as Manchester United battle rivals. Contact Prayank via email: