iPhone Swipe Up Not Working? (Change THIS in Settings!)

No smartphone on the market is as recognizable and impressive as the iPhone in the eyes of many Apple enthusiasts. They are consistently impressive and always offer new features, but they don’t always quite work as intended. One of the most frustrating problems with modern iPhones is when swipe-up is not working.

An iPhone swipe-up not working is often due to a problem in your settings, and you need to enable the Control Center. Enter your settings, select “General” and scroll down to tap “Control Center” to adjust its settings. Select “Enable on Lock Screen” and “Enable Within Apps” so that you can swipe up to exit apps and open the Control Center.

Your iPhone’s swipe-up not working also often has to do with having a dirty touchscreen which you’ll need to clean with a lint-free cloth. Advanced software issues can be fixed with computer programs such as AnyFix that are easy to use. Follow along as we explore the best fixes and explanations for an iPhone swipe-up not working.

iPhone Swipe Up Won’t Work

Nothing is more frustrating than when you can’t swipe up to close apps or pull up the Control Center. This can happen for a variety of reasons ranging from a dirty or damaged screen to software problems. New generations of iPhones don’t even come with a home button so you are at a loss when the swipe-up function won’t work.

Older iPhones eventually lose touchscreen sensitivity due to prolonged use. Many users replace their iPhones every 3-4 years simply because of the sensitivity loss that can be limiting. Otherwise, the problem is as simple as having too much lint and dirt or grease on your screen.

Luckily, you can fix an iPhone when swipe up is not working in many cases no matter which generation it is. The last thing that you want to do is restore it to its factory settings, but that is often the last resort for this problem. Let’s take a look at the best fixes for an iPhone swipe-up not working so that you can avoid data loss if possible.

1. Enable Control Center

You need to enable the Control Center on your iPhone if the swipe-up function is not working. Open the settings menu from your home screen and tap Control Center. You will find it located right underneath the General tab.

Swipe the bar next to “Access on Lock Screen” to enable the Control Center. Newer iPhones also have a tab that says, “Access Within Apps”. Enable this function as well so that you can use the Control Center both within your apps and from your lock screen.

Attempt to swipe up and see if the Control Center appears. If it doesn’t that means that there is something else wrong and you’ll need to keep troubleshooting your iPhone. Similarly, I had to keep trying when I was dealing with the No Location Found Issue.

2. Reset Your iPhone

You may simply need to reset your iPhone if the swipe up or swipe down functions don’t work. Open the Settings menu, scroll down, and select General underneath Screen Time. Under General, scroll down to the bottom until you find a tab that says, “Transfer or Reset Phone”.

It will let you reset your phone entirely or simply reset the network settings and erase content. Resetting your iPhone will make you lose your custom settings. This is worth it in many cases because it can restore certain features such as the Control Center.

Check to see if swiping up or down works after you have reset your iPhone. This method often works, but the downside is that you will have to adjust your settings to how they used to be. This shouldn’t be a problem and it won’t take long if you had a few custom settings. You won’t lose your apps and messages unless you select “Erase Content”.

3. Change Your Phone Case

Sometimes, the problem could be as simple as your phone case interfering with the touch screen. Phone cases that come with a screen cover can limit your iPhone’s touchscreen capabilities. This is especially true if the case is thick and isn’t made out of tempered glass.  

Remove your iPhone’s case and screen protector and swipe up or down to see if it works. If it works, then you should consider replacing your case and screen protector.

Find a screen protector made of tempered glass so that you don’t lose any touch sensitivity. You can tell that something else is wrong if the Control Center doesn’t appear.

4. Clean Your Screen

The screen on your iPhone can quickly become dirty, especially with heavy use. Taking your iPhone in and out of your pocket throughout the day and touching the screen often can affect its sensitivity. Grease, sweat, dirt, lint, debris, and even food and drink stains can all reduce your iPhone screen’s sensitivity.

This can happen even if you have a screen protector, especially if there is a weak point anywhere throughout your case. Lint, fluids, and debris can slide between the screen protector and the screen itself. Remove your case and screen protector if you can tell that the screen is quite dirty.

Clean your iPhone’s screen with a lint-free cloth or else you may make the problem worse. You can reasonably get the lint-free cloth mildly damp if you are careful. Never soak a cloth or put water directly on the screen. Avoid getting the cloth near the charging port if it is damp to avoid damage or slow charging.

5. Disable VoiceOver

Many puzzled iPhone users have reported problems with the swipe-up function when VoiceOver is enabled. Luckily, you can easily disable the VoiceOver function in your iPhone’s settings. The VoiceOver function is useful because it provides audible descriptions of notifications and what is happening on your screen.

For some reason, this function can prevent many users from manually pulling up the Control Center. Open settings and scroll down to the Accessibility tab under Home Screen and above Wallpaper. You can find VoiceOver at the top of the Accessibility page under the Vision section.

Tap the bar beside VoiceOver to turn off this feature if it is currently enabled. The only downside to this fix is that you will lose the benefits of the VoiceOver feature. However, it is necessary if you cannot swipe up to access the Control Center which is more useful to most users. This limited functionality is annoying, like having to take phone calls on speakerphone.

6. Restore Your iPhone

You can restore your iPhone via iTunes if you don’t want to reset it through your device. Plug your iPhone into the computer that you typically use to sync it with a lightning cable. Open iTunes or wait for the prompt to appear on your screen within 30-60 seconds.

Several options will appear once iTunes recognizes your iPhone. Look for the option “Restore iPhone” next to “Check for Update”. Select “Restore iPhone” and keep your phone plugged into the computer until the process is complete. Once it is completed, you can swipe up to bring up the Control Center if it worked.

Back up your iPhone to either your computer or iCloud before this. That way, you can restore the latest backup if you lose any data or content during the process.

7. Try AnyFix

AnyFix is software that you can use to troubleshoot Apple programs and products such as iPhones. They offer sweeping general fixes that can solve several problems with iPhones including the swipe-up feature. The best option is their “Standard Repair” which can help fix many of the most common iPhone software problems.

Unfortunately, this won’t fix your iPhone if the problem is physical or has to do with your touchscreen. You can always try the “Advanced Repair” and “Ultimate Repair” options as well, but you will lose data. Only select the latter two options if you have backed up your iPhone to your computer and iCloud.

All that you need to do is press “Download” and AnyFix will take care of it for you. This software isn’t an ironclad fix in every case, but it’s a great option if nothing else helps.

8. Remove Custom Control Center Settings

Many Apple users love that you can customize the Control Center settings on an iPhone. This is a nice and convenient feature, but it can also lead to problems for many people. Customizing your Control Center can sometimes limit its function and even prevent you from swiping up or down.

This is especially true if you apply too many custom settings which may overcomplicate the device. Remove some or all of your custom Control Center settings to see if the swipe-up function starts working again.

9. Restore to Factory Defaults

This is the riskiest solution when your iPhone swipe-up feature isn’t working. However, it may be necessary if you simply cannot swipe up to open your control center. It is worth noting that you should only consider this option if you cannot solve the issue with another method.

Back up the data and contacts in your iPhone to iCloud or a physical hard drive before you restore it to factory defaults. Otherwise, you will risk losing important information, music, messages, and phone numbers. A factory reset erases all of the apps and information on your iPhone so that it is essentially a blank slate.

Open settings, select General and scroll to the bottom of the page. Choose “Transfer or Reset iPhone” and select “Erase all Content”. This will restore your iPhone to the original factory default settings. Luckily, you can recover data from a factory reset using iTunes and iCloud as long as they are synced.

Plug your iPhone into the computer you usually use and select “Restore Backup”. You can do the same thing if you sign into iCloud to restore the backup files. The process may take a while if you stored a lot of data on your iPhone and in iCloud.

How Do I Restart my iPhone When Swipe Doesn’t Work?

You can restart your iPhone when the swipe doesn’t work using the lock screen and volume buttons. Hold either of the volume buttons and the lock screen button simultaneously. After a moment, a bar will appear at the top of the screen that says “Power Off”.

Slide the bar to the right and your iPhone will turn off. Leave your iPhone alone for 1-2 minutes and turn it back on by holding the lock screen button on the side. This soft reset may even be enough to make your swipe-up function work again.

So, What’s the Best Best way to fix an iPhone When Swipe-Up Isn’t Working?

The best way to fix an iPhone that won’t swipe up is to enable the Control Center via settings. Toggle “Access on Lock Screen” and “Access Within Apps” so that you can swipe up out of apps and open the Control Center. You may also have to disable your custom Control Center settings to see if swipe-up will work again.

Disable the VoiceOver function in settings because it can interact with the swipe-up feature. Download the AnyFix program onto your computer if you suspect a software problem. This program can fix many of the most common iPhone problems without losing data.

However, exercise caution and back your iPhone up if you choose the advanced repair settings. The advanced and ultimate repair options can lead to data loss. That can also happen if you restore your iPhone to its factory settings. Otherwise, it could simply be a physical problem with your screen and you need to clean it with a lint-free cloth.