How to fix battery drain issues on your iPhone following a software update

Battery drain can happen after software updates, due to out-of-date settings or holdovers from previous versions. Cory Bohon explains how to fix these battery drains after performing a software update.

Battery drain

Apple is always releasing updates to fine tune it's software and make it better, faster, and, of course, preserve the battery life. But, sometimes with these updates and changes, your previous settings can make for worse battery life under the new configurations that Apple has put into place. Take, for example, the iOS 8.4.1 update, which has some users reporting battery life issues since upgrading. Fortunately, these things are usually easily correctable. Let's take a look at some ways to tweak your settings after an update if you're experiencing battery drain issues.

Step 1: Recalibrate the battery

Recalibrating the battery can often fix issues related to the battery life on your device. You can perform these steps on any of your iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch):

  1. Charge your device to 100%
  2. Discharge the device until it shuts off itself
  3. After the device shuts off, plug it back in and charge it back to 100% without any interruption
  4. After the device is fully charged, perform a hard reset by holding down both the power/sleep and home buttons at the same time until the device restarts. Release the buttons once the device reboots.

Once you've performed these steps, the battery will have been re-calibrated.

Step 2: Hard reboot

Sometimes, the most simple things can fix issues with iOS, and one of the easiest that you can try is a hard reboot. To do this, follow this simple step: Hold down the power/sleep and home buttons at the same time until the device restarts. Release the buttons once the device reboots.

Step 3: Reset settings

If the above steps refuse to fix your device, you can always delete the device settings without affecting the data stored on your device. To do this, perform these steps:

  1. Open Settings
  2. Navigate to General | Reset
  3. Select the Reset All Settings option (Figure A)

Figure A

Figure A
You can easily reset all of your settings.

Resetting your settings will not remove the data stored on your iOS device--only personal settings like wallpaper and network connections.

If you have Touch ID or a password set on your device, then you'll be prompted to enter it. After this, you'll be given a chance to change your mind about this operation, choosing to continue or cancel.

By continuing, your device will reboot and have its personal settings removed (networking settings for Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, Do Not Disturb, Notifications, General settings, Sounds, Brightness, and Privacy settings).

Step 4: Manage your location settings

One of the biggest battery drains on iOS devices is using apps that provide consistent access to your location information. I've previously written a guide to managing apps using your location. Taking a look at that article and make sure that any apps you no longer wish to use your location information in the background have been disabled.

Step 5: If all else fails, clean install

While this step is a bit drastic, a clean install for major iOS updates will ensure that old settings, old apps, and more importantly, old habits are not carried over to the newly released version of iOS.

To perform a clean install of iOS, check out this handy overview from the Apple Support website.

What other tips or tricks do you know for fixing iOS battery drain after iOS updates? Share your knowledge in the discussion thread below.

Also see

By Cory Bohon

Cory Bohon is an indie developer specializing in iOS and OS X development. He runs a software company called Cocoa App and is also a developer at MartianCraft. He was introduced to technology at an early age and has been writing about his favorite te...