Android Tips and Tricks: How to Perform a Factory Reset

A factory reset is usually a last resort when your android phone has stopped working properly, but it can also be used to get rid of malware and protect your privacy. If you’re selling, recycling or throwing your phone away, you should first encrypt your phone, then perform a factory reset, as this will prevent new users from accessing sensitive information stored on the phone.

Preparation

If possible, back up all of your data and settings before resetting your phone. A factory reset will erase all of your data, including any photos and files stored on the device.

If you’re performing a factory reset to fix a frozen screen, lagging phone or apps that are misbehaving, you may want to try a simpler option first. For a frozen screen, try performing a soft reset by holding down the power button for 30 seconds. The phone should then reboot itself.

For a lagging phone, try clearing the cache and updating your phone’s firmware. If specific apps are misbehaving, you can try updating or removing them. If these steps don’t work, a factory reset may be the best option.

Factory Reset

If you have full access to your phone, you can perform a simple factory reset through the settings menu. Navigate to the Backup and Reset section of your settings and select Factory Data Reset. You may need to enter your passcode to continue. All of your data will now be erased and your phone will restart.

If your phone’s screen has frozen or you’re unable to access the settings menu, you can perform a factory reset in recovery mode, although this is a little more complicated. 

Factory Reset in Recovery Mode

To access recovery mode, you will need to shut down your phone completely. Next, press and hold the Volume Down button, while also pressing and holding down the Power button. Keep holding both buttons down until your phone starts. Release both buttons and press Start on the main menu. 

You should now be presented with a list of options. You can use the volume buttons to scroll through the list until you find recovery mode. Use the Power button to select and enter recovery mode. 

The Android image will now appear on screen. Hold down the Power button, tap the Volume Up button, then release the Power button. Use the volume buttons to scroll through the menu and highlight Wipe Data. Use the Power button to select the option. Press the Power button again to choose the Reboot option. Your phone is now ready to use. 

Once the factory reset has been completed, you will have to reinstall all of your data and apps. Remember that any previous settings, such as those designed to protect your privacy and make your device more secure, may also have been reset, so you will need to tweak your settings.