iPhone Battery Draining While Charging: Why It Happens and How To Solve It (2023)

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iPhone Battery Draining While Charging: Why It Happens and How To Solve It (1)

If you wake up and find your phone hasn’t charged up at all, it can be one of the most frustrating things in the world. Especially if you are out all day or have a long commute without any way of recharging your phone.

If you are charging your phone overnight, you could wake up in the morning to this happening to you and it could be because your iPhone battery is draining whilst plugged in instead of charging.

If you are asleep or stay busy when you put your phone on to charge, sometimes you might not even notice until it is too late.

However, when you discover your iPhone is losing charge when it is supposed to be charging up, you need to take a look at what might be the cause.

The problem can be easily fixed and if it is not fixed, it could lead to your phone being unusable.

Keep reading to find out more about why this might be happening to your iPhone and how you can solve it.

The Charger

Using the right charger for your device is vital for it to charge properly.

If you use the correct adaptor and cable, you should have no issue with the power flowing to your device as it should and charging up your phone as normal.

However, if you are using an off-brand, low-quality, or cheaply made charger, it might be the culprit for draining your battery whilst it is charging.

This is because your phone is not receiving enough power to charge it properly. iPhones in particular need to receive the right voltage for the power to be stored in your phone and for this reason, some wall chargers might not be able to charge your device.

Therefore, it is always worth checking beforehand.

To be extra safe and guaranteed that your charger will work, make sure you stick to using only Apple chargers to charge your phone. You might also want to check your outlet’s voltage to be extra sure.

If both these things are working as they should be, you should not be encountering issues with charging your phone and it might be down to one of the other reasons we are going to explore in this article.

Potential Causes Of iPhone Battery Draining Whilst Charging

We know how annoying it can be to discover your iPhone has been draining whilst charging, but finding out the cause of this will help you address the issue directly and get your phone charging again as soon as possible.

It’s common for people to blame the charger when their phone is losing charge whilst being plugged in, or even the battery itself, but often the issue is not related to these things.

These two factors could be two of many possibilities of what is causing the problem and in this next section of the article, we are going to run through a few potential causes of what might be causing the problem.

iOS Update Issues

After you have updated your system, you might experience your phone being drained of charge whilst plugged in. This is sometimes related to the new software you have just installed and the change in settings.

This will drain extra battery power. Often, these issues are only temporary and after the new system has indexed what is needed, it will resolve naturally.

Overusing The Battery

If the battery is charging slowly or not being charged enough or at all, this could be the reason for it draining whilst being plugged in.

In this situation, the apps and software you are using are overusing the battery and this means the battery drain increases and the battery doesn’t charge up properly as a result.

The charger’s power and the power used by the phone are almost equal and cancel each other out. This means the battery will only drain instead of charge.

Battery Misreads

Another issue that might be causing a battery problem is that your iPhone is not recognizing how much power is in the battery itself.

This often happens with lithium-ion batteries as they age because of their charge/discharge cycle.

If you notice your phone dropping quickly from 100% to 50%, and then taking its time to drain even further, this could be that the calibration of your battery is not correct.

Your phone is not able to measure how much battery is being used when this is the case and therefore it cannot improve its performance. These factors can often lead to battery drain when the phone is plugged in to charge.

Background Apps

Apps that do not tend to run properly or open themselves in the background can easily lead to battery loss. These apps might be running too often as a result of conflicting settings or they are apps that are not coded to fit the system software.

Background apps can be the culprit of extra battery drainage and could mean it continues to drain whilst being plugged in.

Unupdated Apps

Apps that have not been updated will begin to update automatically on some iPhones and then something might cause them to pause.

As a result of this, apps that are regularly open in the background as they try to update themselves can drain the battery. If apps are left half-updated, this can cause power drain even whilst charging.

To fix this, uninstall unwanted apps or make sure the ones you have left installed on your phone are updated when they need to be.


Although we have listed some common problems above on what could be causing your battery to drain whilst charging, to get a clearer idea of what is going on, you can open up your battery usage in your phone’s settings.

Once this page has loaded, you’ll be able to get a complete view of what is using up so much of your battery power.

Take a look through this page and pick up on anything which does not seem normal. If you see an app that only uses 3% of screen power for example but 30% of background power, this could be an app worth looking into and potentially uninstalling.

Once you have located the problem, it’s now time to fix it. The following solutions can fix many different software-related problems.

Do A Soft Reset

Resetting your phone is one of the easiest solutions to fixing a charging problem. You are also able to do this without having to delete and lose all of your data.

A soft reset is a forced restart and though this is simple to carry out, each iPhone has a different forced restart. A lot of current models require you to press down on the side and up volume buttons until the phone switches itself off.

A soft reset can resolve a lot of minor issues caused by glitching apps or a software bug too but if it does not solve your charging issue, it might be time to explore another solution.

Keep Operating Systems Updated

When apps are not updated properly, this can cause your phone to lose battery power, but the same applies when your operating system is not kept up to date either.

Most iPhones are built so that they update their operating system automatically. They might even have a feature that pushes you to update but you might still miss one and this can cause a loss of battery power.

To check whether your operating system is up to date, tap on settings and then navigate to general and click on software updates. If anything needs to be updated, here is where it will tell you.

Save what you need to and install the update when you get the chance. Once the update is installed and you continue using your phone as normal for a few days, your battery drain might improve.

The update should run on your phone for a few days as your phone relies on indexes to minimize the battery power it uses up and these indexes might need to be rebuilt after an update.

You should in this case give your phone a few days to get things reordered and settled again.

Check Installed Apps

iPhone Battery Draining While Charging: Why It Happens and How To Solve It (2)

Apps that you have installed on your phone might be causing excessive background usage and to fix this issue, it’s a case of simply making sure all your apps are up to date so they don’t continue to update in the background.

Apps that are not updated regularly enough to match the current OS patch can be the cause of your charging problem as it can upset the battery so it’s best to always check this.

To fix this and to stop your battery draining so quickly because of it, head to App Store and then update all of your apps. Once these have been updated, restart your phone to make sure everything is installed.

When you leave too many apps running in the background, this can prevent the battery from charging properly and this simply means you just have to close all of your apps whilst charging your phone.

Calibrate Your Phone Battery

When your phone is not properly reading the battery, calibrating your battery can help. To do this, you might need to take a day or two to complete the steps accurately.

Firstly, you need to allow the phone to drain through normal usage. You then need to turn it off and leave it unplugged for at least two hours.

Plug the phone back in after this and when it turns on, turn it off again and let it charge while in this mode. Allow the phone to charge completely and once fully charged, let it charge for two more hours.

Finally, you need to turn the phone on and perform a soft reset before using it again as usual.

If you follow these steps, you are allowing the battery to fully discharge and chargeback up again and after this, your iPhone should be able to get a more accurate reading of how much charge is left in the battery.

As iPhones use a battery management system to control the charge/discharge cycle, calibrating your iPhone battery can often fix a lot of battery issues.

Turn On Low Power Mode

Often, if your battery draining is not caused by any serious problem but your phone might not be as new as it once was, simply turning on low power mode can be a simple fix.

Low power mode will maximize the battery power you have left and keep your device running for as long as possible.

Your iPhone typically prompts you to turn on low power mode when your battery level dips below 20% and if you ignore this message, you will get another prompt at 10% battery.

To switch low power mode on, open settings and scroll down to the battery and tap the toggle next to low power mode so it turns green.

You will know it has been turned on as the battery icon at the top-right of your screen will be yellow instead of white or red and when your iPhone is at 80% battery or higher again, it will automatically turn off.

Low power mode works by reducing or affecting features such as email fetch, background app refresh, automatic downloads, and certain visual effects.

Your iPhone will also lock by itself after 30 seconds and if you are not actively using it, iCloud photos will be temporarily paused.

Final Thoughts

We hope by reading this article we have answered some of your common questions about why your iPhone is draining whilst charging and how you can fix it.

Ensure you are using a reliable wall outlet, charger, and cable, and to simply save power, don’t be afraid to use a low power mode or invest in a portable charger.

Finding the cause of your charging problem is always the key to fixing it and with this article, we hope you will be able to find the right solution to get your phone working normally again.


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Brett Jones

Hi, my name is Brett Jones, and I am a technical advisor. I decided to set up my site, Flux Chargers, as a way of sharing my vast knowledge of charging solutions with others. There are many alternative ways to provide power to devices such as phones, tablets, laptops, and desktops, and I want to showcase this.

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