Fixing Your iPhone's Charging Issue Is Easier Than You Thought

cleaning iphone charging port
Cole Saladino/Thrillist
Cole Saladino/Thrillist

Over the course of your ongoing love/hate relationship with your iPhone, you'll inevitably end up in the Apple store seeking a fix for any number of pain-in-the-ass quirks. But before you book a Genius Bar appointment to fix a mysterious charging issue, give this trick a try.

It turns out that one of the most common causes for charging malfunctions isn't hardware at all, it's pocket lint. Even the smallest bunch of dust or fibers lodged in your charging port can screw things up. If your phone is giving you random error messages about an incompatible charging cable, or not fully charging after being plugged in for several hours, try this out before you strut into the Apple store.

toothpick retrieving lint from iphone 6s
Cole Saladino/Thrillist

Using a wooden toothpick, gently scrape the inside of the cable connector from end to end. If you have a can of compressed air laying around, give that a go, too. It's crazy how much gunk can be found lurking in there.

toothpick cleaning iphone 6s headphone jack
Cole Saladino/Thrillist

The same problem affects your headphone jack, so if you're having connection issues up in there, try the same thing. It's entirely possible that your problems are much more complicated and this won't do a damned thing, but you'd be silly not to give it a go. It's one of the first things an Apple Genius will try, anyway.

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Joe McGauley is a senior writer for Thrillist. Based on his circumstantial evidence, his pockets are pretty linty.