iPad or iPhone Charging Slowly? Here's Why & How to Fix It

Why is my iPhone charging slow? Is it fixable? Learn the causes and the solutions.

iPad charging slow? What about your iPhone? Noticeable drops in device charging speed can not only be frustrating, but also cause for concern. Here are the reasons why your iPhone or iPad might be charging slowly, and how to fix them.

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How Long Does It Take for an iPhone to Charge?

If you suspect your device might be charging more slowly than it should, a good question to ask is, "How long does it take for an iPad to charge?" or "How long does it take for an iPhone to charge?" Many people charge their devices overnight, so they might not have a sense of how long the charging itself takes. An iPhone will typically take three to four hours to charge fully and an iPad will take from four to five hours. Both of course depend on the size of the battery and the cable being used, but the rule of thumb is helpful in diagnosing possible issues. For more Apple charging tips, check out our Tip of the Day!

Why Is My Phone Charging Slow?

There are several issues that could result in a phone charging slow, or make you Google "Why is my iPad charging so slow?" Once you have ascertained that your device is indeed charging more slowly than usual, you can dive into the possible solutions. Let's go over them one at a time.

Related: iOS 14 Draining Your iPhone Battery Life? 13 Ways to Save Battery on Your iPhone

Your Charging Cable Is Not Up to Snuff

A damaged, frayed, or substandard charger will affect your charging speed in a bad way. If your charger used to work well and has suddenly slowed down, there might be something wrong with it. Different chargers offer different charging speeds, though, and fast ones may not necessarily be that good for your device. You can read more about fast charging and other iPhone myths to see what charger might be right for you.

You're Charging from a Slow Source

No matter how good my cable is, every single time I charge my iPhone through a car port, the charging speed is glacial. The same is true when I'm charging from my computer. Consider the wattage of your source when dealing with a slow charge, and see if that is the cause of the issue. If you aren't sure, try using the same cable in a wall adapter of the correct wattage for your particular iPhone or iPad and see if the charging speeds up. An iPhone 12 requires a minimum of 20 watts for fast charging. The 5 watt adapters that came with older iPhones will charge a newer iPhone much more slowly and will struggle to charge an iPad at all. If your wall adapter is not the problem, it may be another issue.

Your Charging Port Is Clogged

Dirt and other junk can get into our charging ports more easily than one might think. This can cause slowed-down charging and much frustration. If your cable is working and your source is solid, try carefully cleaning out your port and seeing if you have better luck. Learn how to clean an iPhone charging port.

Your Battery Is Dying

Changes in charging speed can be a sign that your iPhone or iPad battery is on its way out. This isn't the most common cause, especially if the device is newer, but a bad battery will have a harder time taking and keeping a charge. If your iPhone or iPad isn't holding a charge or running out quickly even after being charged fully, it might be time for a new battery. Learn how to check your iPhone's battery health.

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Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both's picture

Author Details

Amy Spitzfaden–Both

Amy Spitzfaden Both is a Feature Writer at iPhone Life, an award-winning novelist, and an iPhone enthusiast. Over the past decade, her work in the publishing industry has included live coverage of industry events including the Yale Publishing Course and Magazine Innovation’s ACT 9 Experience, providing editing services for several start-up publishing houses, and acting as newsstand consultant for magazines such as The Old Farmer’s Almanac and The New York Review of Books. She graduated from M.I.U. with a Bachelor’s in Literature and Writing, and has gone on to publish two novels and two short stories. Her debut novel Untold won the 2014 Chelson Award for Fiction.
Writing everything from book reviews to skincare tips, Amy discovered a passion for bringing exciting and useful information to even the most casual researcher. The mix of usability and endless possibilities is what drew her to Apple products originally, and the more she learns, the more she loves.
Amy lives in New Hampshire with her husband and daughter. When she’s not writing or glued to her iPhone, she enjoys hiking, traveling, and creating her own tea blends.