What to Do If Your iPhone Screen Goes Black During a Call

iPhone screen goes black during call

Are you constantly bothered by your iPhone screen going black during a call? Or have you experienced a similar situation whereby the iPhone screen becomes unresponsive during a call? When this happens, we can continue talking with the other person, but cannot hang up or access anything else on the screen.

These problems can be easily fixed, so kindly browse through this article to learn more about the different ways of solving this problem.  

Quick Fix

If your iPhone is stuck on a black screen after the phone call and you want to get it back to normal at once, you can repeatedly press the side button which is also known as the sleep or wake button in other iPhone models.

If that doesn’t work, consider force restarting iPhone. The actual steps depend on your iPhone model. For instance, for iPhone models: X, 11, 12, 13 or 14, press and quickly release the volume up button, then press and quickly release the volume down button, and lastly press and hold the sleep or wake button until the Apple logo shows. This will help to turn your iPhone screen back on.

Force restart iPhone 12

If you are not ready to try the solutions below and need to answer the phone call now, here is a temporary fix that may help. It is to put the phone on speaker during calls. In this way, the iPhone screen won’t turn black.

Why Does the iPhone Screen Go Black During a Call?

This troublesome issue is usually the result of a defective proximity sensor. If you look closely at the face of your iPhone screen, you will see a small component just above the speaker and this is what we refer to as the proximity sensor.  Its purpose is to reduce the screen light in order to save the iPhone battery as well as to detect obstacles that are surrounding the device, usually 10cm away from the iPhone screen. You can not get rid of the proximity sensor as it is a built-in feature of every iPhone device. The only solution is to ensure that your proximity sensor is not malfunctioning anyhow. A faulty proximity sensor might be a result of the following :

  • Covering the proximity sensor

When you place your iPhone screen near your ear during a call, the screen quickly goes black in order to ensure you don’t accidentally tap any buttons. Similarly, any other shadow in front of the screen prompts the proximity sensor to automatically lock the screen.

  • Dirt and sweat on the sensor

Dust, sweats, and any other smudges on the iPhone screen gradually pile up hence blocking the proximity sensor in the long run. This could also cause it to stop functioning properly.

  • Software problem

Malfunctioning of the proximity sensor might also be caused by some corrupted files on your phone as well as outdated iOS software. As a result, your iPhone screen will constantly go black or be unresponsive during calls.

  • Defective proximity sensor

A faulty proximity sensor might be caused by misaligning the iPhone screen contents, especially during a screen replacement. It might also be caused by hitting the iPhone screen on a hard surface. Signs of a defective iPhone proximity sensor include the iPhone screen going into sleep mode during calls and remaining in sleep mode even after the phone call is ended and also the iPhone proximity sensor not working for no apparent reason.

How Can You Stop the iPhone Screen from Going Black During a Call?

According to the above factors that might cause the iPhone screen to be black during a call, we have included some solutions to troubleshoot the problem. Let’s get started.

Unblock the Proximity Sensor

Make sure there is no dust or grime blocking the proximity sensor. To do this, you need to cautiously wipe away dirt from your iPhone screen using a clean, dry lint-free cloth like the ones used to clean spectacles. Also blowing off any dust on the edges of the screen will easily unblock the proximity sensor. Where is iPhone’s proximity sensor? Check the circled part of the phone in the image below.

iPhone proximity sensor

Remove the Phone Case and Screen Protector

Another way of quickly troubleshooting the proximity sensor is to remove the phone case and especially the screen protector. Sometimes iPhone may think something is in front of the screen if the case is unsuitable for your model. Also, take off your iPhone screen protector to thoroughly clean the interface and to ensure that the proximity sensor is not blocked anyhow.

Phone case

Reset All Settings

Another solution that helps when your iPhone gets stuck on black screen during a call is to reset all settings on your iPhone. Resetting all settings erases all customized settings and configurations you made on your iPhone such as the network settings, privacy settings as well as location settings.  Your personal data will not be affected by this procedure. This is to prevent any setting issues that may cause the problem. To reset all settings, go to Settings, then scroll down and tap General, from there click Reset and lastly tap Reset All Settings. You also have to enter your passcode and tap Reset All Settings for confirmation.

Reset all settings on iPhone

Update iPhone Software

As explained, there might be some problem with the software when iPhone screen goes black during a call. Therefore you can check if there is any new version of the iOS. Go Settings > General > Software Update. If there is an update, you can click Download and Install to get the latest iOS version on your device. After the software update, the proximity sensor might work normally.

If you are not able to update iOS on your phone, you can use iTunes to do that. If your iPhone screen goes black during a call after an update, you can use this tool to downgrade the software.

Update iPhone software

Factory Reset iPhone

If all the above solutions don’t work, your iPhone has more problems than you think. The best way of solving this is to reset your iPhone to its factory settings. Factory setting deletes all your data and settings on your iPhone and it will leave it in the state it was in when you first purchased it. As such, before restoring your iPhone, you need to back up your data to iCloud or to your computer so that you can restore it at a later stage.

To factory reset your iPhone, simply go to Settings, scroll down and click General, then from there scroll down and tap on Reset and lastly click Erase All Content and Settings. You have to enter your passcode for confirmation. This process will take a few minutes depending on the size of your saved data. After the factory reset is complete your iPhone will restart.

Erase all content and settins on iPhone

You can also use a computer to restore iPhone to factory settings. If you are using a Windows computer, open iTunes but if are using a mac with a macOS such as Catalina or later, you need to open Finder. Using a USB cable, connect your iPhone to your computer and follow the onscreen guidelines. Also, select your device when it appears on the Finder or iTunes window. From there, click the Restore iPhone button and click restore again to confirm. Your computer will erase all content on your iPhone and install the latest iOS. After your iPhone restores to factory settings, it will restart and you will then be able to set it up again.

Restore iPhone via iTunes

Only if iPhone screen goes black during a call is caused by a software problem, restoring iPhone will be the most effective solution.

Book Apple’s After-sales Services

If your iPhone still gives you problems even after attempting all the above tips, you might consider booking an appointment with Apple support nearer to you for professional assistance. To book an appointment, you can visit the official website to choose the type of repair service you want. You can either choose to send the phone to Apple, choose an authorized service provider or go to the Apple store near your location.

Apple store

Even though the problem that iPhone screen goes black during a call is troublesome and annoying, it is not totally unfixable. You only need to follow some of the above quick and simple tips to turn the iPhone screen back on and enjoy using your device.

Joel Wilson

Joel Wilson

Joel is a fan of technology. He uses both iPhone and Android phones. Being interesting in exploring new features, he likes to share his experiences on how to use the devices in a better way. Because of his enthusiasm for technology, he becomes an "expert" to fix problems with phones and computers.

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