Ways to Troubleshoot Mobile Phones

Like most electronics, your cell phone may not always “obey” you.

Cellular phones don’t always function as perfectly as you might wish. These tips offer some solutions for common problems with these devices. If you don’t find an answer here, bring your phone to an authorized cell-phone center. Avoid taking apart the phone, because this will void most warranties.

Technical Difficulties:

If the phone doesn’t turn on, make sure battery is charged and fully plugged into phone. Remove battery from phone and use rag to brush away dirt that may interfere with connection. Reconnect and try again. If using cigarette-lighter adapter, make sure it’s properly plugged in. Make sure charger is properly plugged into outlet and into battery.

When the battery doesn’t charge, plug lamp or other electrical device into outlet to verify that outlet works. Borrow friend’s charger to see if charger or battery is problem. Replace charger or battery if necessary.

In case the phone gets wet, remove the battery from the phone and allow both to dry thoroughly. If rust or corrosion develops, wipe it off with a stiff brush. If phone still does not work, replace it.
Should the display not be working, try getting it to room temperature, extremely cold or warm conditions may affect display functions.

If the keys don’t work, look for a display of a symbol that looks like a lock. The keypad may be locked. The display often tells you how to unlock it. If not, check owner’s manual.

Problems While Talking:

During times of bad reception, make sure antenna is up, check to see if the battery is low. If you’re indoors, move toward window or go outside to get better reception. Remember that tunnels, basements and elevators interfere with cellphone reception. In case of storm, wait for it to subside. Contact your service provider if you have chronic static; phone may be defective.

If you can’t hear the other person, make sure the volume is not turned down entirely.
Check that antenna is up if you get interference from another call. Change locations for better reception or switch to a digital phone.
When you experience many dropped calls, check the battery. It may be low. If you constantly lose calls, consider switching to provider with better coverage and/or to digital phone. Providers that offer digital service combined with analog tend to have better coverage.

Dialing Issues:

If you can’t dial out, try again. The network may be full. Change locations to get a better signal. If the display says “No SVC” or “No Service,” you are in area with no service. Wait until you enter area with service. Check to see if battery is low. If you are outside the service area, contact customer service (try 611 on cell phone). Some service areas require PIN numbers to protect against fraud.

If you can’t receive calls, confirm that neither call forwarding nor automatic voice-mail pickup is activated. Make sure ringer volume is turned up. Confirm that ringer is on (not in silent mode). Change locations for better reception. If display says “No SVC” or “No Service,” you are in area with no service. Wait until you enter area with service. Call customer service. You may have restrictions on incoming calls.

If you can’t make long-distance calls, call your service provider (try 611 on cell phone). You may be out of calling range and/or may need PIN number to dial long-distance numbers.
When problems occur with your service provider, call customer service to register complaint (try 611 on cell phone). If that does not resolve problem, contact: FCC Consumer Information Bureau Customer Services Network Division 445 12th St. SW Washington, DC 20554.

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