4-inch iPhone released in March 2016 with similar hardware specifications to the 6s. Available in Silver, Space Grey, Gold, or Rose Gold with 16/64 GB storage options. Model A1662 and A1723.

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Random freezes and restarts with artefacts

Hi everyone,

Back in May 2017 I bought an iPhone SE second hand. When I bought it I was aware that the phone would restart randomly, but I was confident that I could fix the issue myself. Back then I already succeeded by updating iOS to the latest version and was fine until about 2 weeks ago (Sep 2017) when the problem with the random restarts re-occured.

The phone would randomly restart and sometimes show artefacts (fine coloured lines) while doing so. I have already changed the components on top of the screen (the flex containing camera, proximity sensor and such), as well as the battery, but it keeps playing up sometimes and keeps surprising me with funny restarts. It's impossible to find a pattern that causes it (wobbling flexcables or checking connections won't have any difference).

What would your recommendation be for that? Any experience? Any parts that might seem suspicious?

Thank you.

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Intermittent problems are the worst. Display issues are generally either screen related or logic board related. You need to eliminate some variables if you want to find the root cause.

Before anything else, you may want to consider doing a full backup then a full DFU Restore (which will overwrite iOS, not just upgrade it).

In your case, I would try a new or preferably a known-good replacement screen. See if that works long term or not. If a known-good screen does the same thing, then you know your problem is on the logic board. What else do you know about the history of this device? That's the missing link here. Are the water indicator stickers red? Is the housing scratched or scuffed?

If it is a logic board issue, screen artefacts are not a "typical" problem and may be difficult to solve.

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You probably already know, but Mike and I try not to up vote answers after you have maxed out. So the next day if you haven't made it, we have things to look for. So if you don't get votes on what you think is a good answer.................


@mayer Thankfully you and @oldturkey03 do vote and vote regularly (as do a few other regulars), otherwise this place would be like the vast emptiness of space - cold and dark. I've stepped up my voting as well over the last few months to insure that good answers migrate to (and stay at) the top of the heap. I learned that you can max out on votes too!


Voting also provides about the only stokes most people get on this site. It can be hard to do this with no thanks from anyone, so your votes do help a lot. Usually the younger the answer provider the more they need it. So keep up the good work. But you have to up vote only correct answers so it really requires that you know the answer giving is correct. Your help in this is very much appreciated. You are quickly becoming a senior member around here and highly respected.


Hi Minho,

Thank you for your reply. Visually the phone is in excellent condition. Also no water indicators have been activated. Battery had been replaced once (with Original) but screen still is original.

Checked wrong screw placement on Logicboard (long screws digging into it) but couldn't find a sign of damage.

Will attempt an DFU restore in 2 days once I get proper internet (will be leaving on a bike trip in a few minutes). And if that doesn't work will attempt a screen replacement. If that also doesn't work I'll sell it as spare part donor, since replacing the logic board would be too expensive.

More details in my answer below (not sure if that was the correct way for iFixit but I was cut short in words .


Bike trip!?! - YAY!! enjoy it.

Proper form is to break out the lengthy comment into multiple parts or edit your question. With time, questions generate a lot of "answers", many of which are of the "me too" variety. After a while, it becomes difficult to navigate because things are not threaded., hence the previous discussion about voting to insure the right answers filter to the the top.


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Hi Minho,

Thanks so much for your response!

The owner said that - besides an original replacement of the battery - she never had any repairs done. The phone was visually in fine condition and the watermarkers didn't indicate any kind moisture being present or having been present inside of the devide..

She said the problem of the reboots just started appearing randomly. I'm not sure if she was saying the truth.

When I got the phone it wouldn't even boot into iOS since she was stuck in an upgrade loop + the instability issue (artecafts, random reboots after some minutes). So I fixed it by somehow being lucky with the loop, entering DFU (as you recommended) and installed the latest iOS on it.

After that I could get into the iOS while the problem of random reboots persisted - BUT - the rate in between the reboots diminished from day to day until at one point there where no more reboots and I could use it as a normal *reliable* phone for about 3 months.

Has anyone experienced this before? As if the voltage regulator or something inside the phone had to be conditioned properly ?!

2 weeks ago I got myself a good quality charging cable (anker) and charged it up before heading on a bicycle tour for the day. In the evening I noticed how it again started to bootup randomly again and I couldn't do anything to stop it from doing so. And this has been the status until this day.

I will make sure to try to DFU restore in the coming days (once I have access to a proper wifi) with iOS 11 . Maybe *hopefully* this is just a software issue that had been fixed.

And yes, I could also look into a screen replacement - although I'm certain that the one installed is original and of good quality. But I am aware of the fact, that even original parts can fail.

So, in a couple of days I'll attempt the DFU and if that doesn't cut it I will attempt a screen replacement once I'm back from my bicycle trip (lasting 10 days).

If this then STILL doesn't work I have no other option than to sell the phone as a spare-part holder and to try to forget about the whole thing since replacing the logic board would be financially illogic.

Thanks a lot for your replies and your precious time. I highly appreciate it!


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Even the original screen may have been damaged from repeated, even if slight, falls and drops. That's why you need to rule this out. Careful when purchasing your replacement though, the iPhone SE is a little bit picky on screen quality. Most replacement screens are sold as 5S/SE compatible but the lower cost (aftermarket) screens don't all work well with the SE. Make sure to buy "original" or premium quality from a reputable supplier (like iFixit).

BTW, where is your bike trip (aahh...the memories)?


Hi Minho,

I have replaced the screen with an original one but the problem persists. It seems as if it clearly is a logic board problem.

Now, the only thing I don't get is to why the system was okay for multiple month and then all at once from a day to another started playing up again without changing any parameters.

My bike trip will be passing via France, Spain, Portugal and then South America. It is predicted to take a good year.

Thanks again for your help.


I guess you have a bit of time on your hands...

Enjoy it!


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Julien Mueller will be eternally grateful.
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