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Nexus 5 Troubleshooting

The fifth Google Nexus phone, model D820 (D821 internationally) manufactured by LG. Officially announced on October 31, 2013, it sports a 4.95" 1080p display, a 2.26 GHz Snapdragon processor, and LTE support as well as 802.11ac. Powered initially by Android 4.4, "KitKat," supported up to Android 6, "Marshmallow."

Phone won't turn on ¶ 

The phone won't start to boot at all and the screen remains black

Battery isn't charged or inserted/Dead Battery ¶ 

The most common issue with the phone not able to even start would be a battery that isn't charged, try plugging in the charger firmly, ensuring that there's no obstructions in the port and letting the phone build a charge for a while.

If the device still won't turn on after charging the problem may be a dead battery, or a cord that can no longer carry a charge. The manufacturer can sell both a new battery or replacement charger. Remember to try another power outlet when charging as you may have a dead socket.

Battery life is determined by many variables. Age is one of the biggest factors, but in considering age you are considering average use and average charge cycles.

Usually there will be specification on the average charge cycles of most batteries. But at the end of the day this information is irrelevant to the user because nobody remembers how many times it has died and recharged. The best thing to do is look out for these major indicators:

• Is the battery not getting a full charge, even after it has been plugged in all night?

• Is the battery icon giving you false readings? I.e. says 100% then 20 min later says 70%?

• Not holding a charge at all?

• Battery is swollen, meaning has an irregular shape/roundedness to it?

All of these are common issues seen by these devices. This is common in most every battery.

If you have answered yes to any of the above questions then you stand a good chance that you need a new battery.

Improper shutdown/Corrupted Data ¶ 

Sometimes after the phone turns off improperly it has a difficult time restarting, try using the device recovery steps to reboot the phone correctly by.

Hold down both the Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power buttons for 30 seconds or until you see the android lying on his back with his belly open. This is the bootloader. Use the volume keys to navigate to "Power off," and touch the power key. Trying powering up normally.

If it worked when you plug in your phone you should see indication of it charging.

If the above steps didn't work, another option is to wipe data to reset to factory settings (which means you would lose all your data currently on the phone!)

Once again hold down the Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power buttons for 30 seconds until the android icon appears. Using the volume up and down buttons navigate to "Recovery mode," and press the Power button. The Google logo appears, followed by an Android with a red exclamation mark. Hold the Power button down and click the Volume Up button to enter Recovery. Use the volume buttons to highlight "Wipe data/Factory reset" and click the Power button.

Overheated Device ¶ 

The Nexus 5 has had many problems with overheating. This includes your device warming up rapidly while playing music or using applications that require high resolution graphics. Some solutions or preventative measures to take include to avoid leaving or using the device in direct light and charging while using high resolution apps.

After using an app for a while it might help to close the app and restart your phone to reduce strain on the device. If you find that your device also overheats in sleep mode there is a high possibility that there is a defect and you should try exchanging or getting the device inspected.

If your device does overheat, leave it out with the power off in an area away from the sun or heat sources in order to cool off before trying to use it again

Internal power button is stuck ¶ 

The phone turns on but restarts and turns itself off ¶ 

When you start to turn on the phone it appears to work, but shortly in to the booting process it stops and turns off.

Improper shutdown/Corrupted Data ¶ 

Sometimes after the phone turns off improperly it has a difficult time restarting, try using the device recovery steps to reboot the phone correctly by;

Hold down both the Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power buttons for 30 seconds or until you see the android lying on his back with his belly open. This is the bootloader. Use the volume keys to navigate to "Power off," and touch the power key. Trying powering up normally.

If it worked when you plug in your phone you should see indication of it charging.

If the above steps didn't work, another option is to wipe data to reset to factory settings (which means you would lose all your data currently on the phone!)

Once again hold down the Volume Up, Volume Down, and Power buttons for 30 seconds until the android icon appears. Using the volume up and down buttons navigate to "Recovery mode," and press the Power button. The Google logo appears, followed by an Android with a red exclamation mark. Hold the Power button down and click the Volume Up button to enter Recovery. Use the volume buttons to highlight "Wipe data/Factory reset" and click the Power button.

An application causes the phone to freeze or lock up ¶ 

While using an application your phone stops responding and will no longer work

Faulty application ¶ 

Sometimes the application is out of date and just needs to be updated. Try the easiest fix first by looking for an update.

They application may have also downloaded incorrectly, to fix this issue uninstall the application and try re-downloading it to see if it solves the issue.

If you don't know if an app is responsible, try booting into Safe Mode. With the phone turned on, press and hold the Power button until the "Power off" message pops up. Tap and hold the "Power off" message until "Boot into Safe Mode" appears. Click okay.

When your phone reboots, most applications and customizations will not be running. Run the phone for a while. If the problem you encountered doesn't recur, it must be an application. Reboot normally and start uninstalling the most recently installed apps.

Phone doesn't have needed updates ¶ 

If you haven't updated your phone in a while, some applications may conflict with older software on your phone. Updating your phone might make the application run smoother without problems.

Start by opening your settings menu and navigate to the 'System' option. From there select the 'About Phone' option and select 'System Updates' to check if your device has any available system updates.

If there is an update available install it (Your phone might have to restart afterwards once or twice). Repeat this process until when you try again it displays that your phone is up to date. Then try and run the application again.

Application hangs but the phone is still on ¶ 

If you just can't seem to exit out of an app, open the settings menu and select 'Apps', you can select the application that's giving you problems from the menu and then select 'Force Stop' to terminate the program manually.

Speaker Static ¶ 

Static noise accompanying the audio you are trying to hear

Phone doesn't have needed updates ¶ 

If you haven't updated your phone in a while. Updating your phone might solve the issue.

Start by opening your settings menu and navigate to the 'System' option. From there select the 'About Phone' option and select 'System Updates' to check if your device has any available system updates.

If there is an update available install it (Your phone might have to restart afterwards once or twice). Repeat this process until when you try again it displays that your phone is up to date. Then try and run an audio test.

Improper Settings ¶ 

If your listening to music and frequently have this problem, try changing your audio equalizer(EQ) settings. On both the phone and application you are using. Turning off virtual surround sound may help. Often conflicting EQ setting can cause speaker malfunction.

Corrosion on speaker diaphragm ¶ 

The good thing about speaker (in the sense of hardware) either they work or they don’t. But sometimes you get an in-between state. This is when you speaker(s) has failed.

• It will create an awful static noise accompanying the audio you are trying to hear.

At this point you need to replace the speaker. Possible explanation of failure. The speaker on most devices are located at the bottom of the phone which is most likely exposed to moisture. Once this happens corrosion will set causing an imbalance on the speaker diaphragm this is a common source of the static noise you can hear.

Camera won't connect ¶ 

The camera application will open but it won't be able to connect to the camera itself

Phone doesn't have needed updates ¶ 

If you haven't updated your phone in a while. Updating your phone might solve the issue, several users with the same problem have been able to solve it by updating.

Start by opening your settings menu and navigate to the 'System' option. From there select the 'About Phone' option and select 'System Updates' to check if your device has any available system updates.

If there is an update available install it (Your phone might have to restart afterwards once or twice). Repeat this process until when you try again it displays that your phone is up to date. Then try to use your camera again and see if this solves the issue.

Other applications are interfering ¶ 

This error typically arises when using the camera application and exiting out of this application by pressing the home button. Another possibility for this error message to occur is when you install multiple camera applications. Overall ensure to exit any applications which make use of your camera before using it again.

The camera application has stopped working ¶ 

This issue occurs most frequently when using the device in HDR mode but it could happen in other situations as well.

Go to Settings>Apps> and swipe along to All. Scroll until you find the camera application you are encountering issues with, tap it, and in the next set of options select “Clear Cache” This should also be used for the gallery Application. Then try using the camera again

The camera is faulty and needs to be replaced ¶ 

The microphone has low volume or gives static feedback when used ¶ 

Using the microphone in phone calls or recording gives poor quality with low sound or static

Phone doesn't have needed updates ¶ 

Some people have indicated that updating to a newer software package has given better results with the microphone. While it may not always be the cause of the problem it's still an easy possible solution that is generally a good idea for your device in general

Start by opening your settings menu and navigate to the 'System' option. From there select the 'About Phone' option and select 'System Updates' to check if your device has any available system updates.

If there is an update available install it (Your phone might have to restart afterwards once or twice). Repeat this process until when you try again it displays that your phone is up to date. Try recording a message on your phone and play it back to see if the quality has improved.

Dust or dirt in the microphone grill ¶ 

Using a can of compress air, blow out the grill on the bottom to the right of the micro-USB port.

The noise-cancelling microphone is causing an issue ¶ 

While speaking, cover the microphone hole on the top of the phone with your finger.

The microphone is faulty and needs to be replaced ¶ 

See the teardown guide for this device to access the microphone.

Need more help? ¶ 

Check the Nexus 5 device page for other guides and techniques.

25 Comments

Hi,

Thank you so much for this post. You have saved my phone! I think I am going to be visiting ifixit.com a lot more to solve my problems. Again, thank you for this post.

-Macallister Dale

caldale22 - Reply

Hi,

My Nexus 5 screen keeps black even when I charge it in full, It can ring and the LED notification flashes when i receive sms or email but nothing on screen not even Google Logo. If connect to PC I can see it in my computer as Nexus 5 normally. Any suggestion that might help?

James Saleem - Reply

Phone got wet today in rain whilst running. Opened up the back and left so visibly dry. however despite screen and all other operations functioning ok, the power / sleep buttion on the right and volume button on the left do not function. Is this just a case of being patient and allowing the phone to dry properly or should I go straight to a repair shop?

many thanks

Steve - Reply

Hi,

My Nexus 5 dies, even when on full or substantial charge, if it isn't connected to a charger. Also, when it dies, the only way to reboot it is if it is connected to a charger. When the phone is rebooted, it will still have a substantial charge, i.e. whatever it was before it died (even if it was 95%).

I just factory reset the phone and the problem is persisting. Please help - this has been happening for months now. If I do have to change the battery, how do I go about doing this, seeing as there is no removable cover?

Thanks.

Stefon Khan - Reply

I inherited my Nexus 5 when my eldest child upgraded to a Nexus 6. I installed Marshmallow when it was released but 3 or so weeks later it started chewing through the battery. Factory reset but nothing change so I used your excellent instructions to replace the battery. The original battery was only 18 months old but was swelling up and was trying to push the rear cover off. Something to watch for if you have a phone cover.

Thank you for the repair tutorials as I have now used several successfully. Much appreciated.

Joseph King - Reply

Hey Thanks for those tips... I thought my phone was finish.

Alexe Charlot - Reply

I got this very neatly used 32GB Nexus 5 and on arrival yesterday afternoon it worked well except for the reboot problem the seller indicated. I flashed stock all over and rooted and installed ElementalX kernel for tap to wake and everything was going well, until last night when it just died on me. I thought maybe the battery was drained and I plugged it on the charger. It wasn't charging so I left it overnight. On waking up the phone is still dead. Doesn't charge, doesn't boot, nothing. I've opened it up, disassembled it to check all the parts, and everything looks fine. I also tested the battery by touching the tip of my tongue to the connector and I got the normal tingy feeling indicating the battery still has juice in it. I also checked the two LDIs and they are all still white; no water damage. I'm just at my wit's end now and considering getting another motherboard if that would fix it, but I just want to ask if there is any hope through any kind of fix before I commit to getting a new motherboard.

Eze Uba - Reply

Hi, 2 days ago a problem on my phone appeared which was about two of my soft keys miss functioning (Home and Recent keys) and also the notifications which are not shown anymore.

It occurred after my phone turened off because of a low battery and when I charged it and turned it on, this happened.

So I searched a lot but no specific solution was found. I waited for an answer from the google support and they didn't give me a feedback.

So I just installed the latest update of Android 6 for nexus 5, but the problem still remains.

Please let me know if there is a solution.

Thanks

Navid Maani Ghafouri - Reply

Hey my nexus 5 keeps showing the google sign and vibrating but it does not turn on. This happens when i charge it because when it is not charging it doesn't show anything. Please help.

Ersild Sherja - Reply

i phone give the google sign with vibration can't access anything please advice

Ahmed -

I've tried everything and nothin works, when i turn it on it shows the boot animation and but doesn't load the lock screen or ui

freakbrother91 - Reply

Hi, I have a nexus 5 which has ,for the past few days, been continuously turning off( or staying on , i dunno , screen is off anyway) after everything distorts, and goes blank , so i try pressing the power button for 10 secs to try and reboot and it vibrates, but instead of the google logo, the screen is pink with white dots, and then ir has yellow lines, and then sometimes the boot animation appears black and white etc.

But this dosent happen every time. It normally happens when it is NOT connected to the charger.

And also, if it works properly when the charger is connected, it screws up when it is removed.

Puttting it on the charger also seens to fix it, but sometimes it don't work.

This also normally starts as soon as the power dips below 15% and gets better when the charger is comnected and left in until the power reaches 17%

Aaryan Dwivedi - Reply

When using text messaging, I am not able to send or receive pictures. Any suggestions?

klw913 - Reply

Hey .. i got a problem,when i record my screen and save by any recording app like mobizon, the save file becomes black, i have used many apps,bt every one is same.what can i do?

Arefin - Reply

Mi nexus 5 pierde la coneccion telefonica, ya se reviso la antena, y esta bien,

Que otro problema puede tener, podria ser el prosesador?

Guillermo Bogacz - Reply

I have google nexus 5 android version 6.0.1

I updated my phone when it is restarting boot animations are coming and deos not going ahead i wait for 2 hours but not started

Please Help Me

meinjassi5101999@gmail.com

Jassi Singh - Reply

hi when i got up this morning my phone was on charger very warm and i couldnt get the screen to turn on. I turn it on and off. Finally I got a screen to come on But it would freeze in the screen. I was finally able to make a call when I was done I couldnt even shut it off. I would try to shut it off it would shut off and turn back on on its own. I finally gave up and did a reinstall. I get to the welcome screen its frozen again and I try to shut it down, It did the same thing shut off and turned back on. Its warm again and now I can't get it to do anything again. Any suggestions. DId I saw how much I HATE the Nexus 5. This is the 4th cell phone they sent me IN LESS THAN 1 1/2 YRS and now I don't have a warranty to send it back to them to repair or exchange. :( For what I paid for this phone it was so not worth it.

hipattiann12 - Reply

Phone makes clicking sound after every key stroke

Ed mccarthy - Reply

Great stuff. I was convinced that I had a hardware problem, but your advice of a factory reset did the trick. And then Google reloaded all my apps etc, so everything is back as it should be. Thank you.

Jim

Jim Davies - Reply

After years of zero issues suddenly my Bluetooth will disconnect shortly after connecting and functioning. Anybody else having this issue? Solution? Thanks.

J.Jasmer - Reply

Have acquired a lg nexus 5 and it turns on and then the google 'icon' turns into five or six circular characters passing a yellow 'ball' between themselves device is unresponsive to power off or anything I did once manage to get to the hard reset bootloader 'page' but it $@$* off low batt. Trying still is this phone worth anything in parts cause it's causing me nothing but frustration checked the IMEI and it isn't blacklisted

Rob - Reply

Hi this is Randy

I don't know what is my phone problem I am using Nexus 5x I have updated it recently to 7.1.1 and there was no issue for almost a month later, it used to switch of by its own troubled me alot, and all of a sudden it got switched off and is not getting switched on again and when I contacted LG service center they stated dat it's software issue due to that the mother has got shot, but my doubt is that how can they tell that my mother got shot that too with out dismantling it And my mobile is not getting charged nor even getting switched on and when ever I connect it to charging the indicator light is continuously blinking. Please guide me with this seanario

randy hook - Reply

I was very stupid and took apart the phone without shutting it down it now wont turn on. Any advice?

Azaria Kelman - Reply

Hi, My Nexus 5X is turned off, I tried to turn it on using recovery mode. After Google logo is appearing, there is no Android with a red exclamation mark appearing on the screen and phone again turns off. Please let me know if there is any other solution to it.

Ankit Dev Asthana - Reply

Hi.. I have tried all the ways mentioned by you in this article, and yet my phone doesn't turn on.

My Nexus 5X turned off thrice today on its own. Once, when i tried to turn it on, it showed a message saying Decryption not possible or something similar and that i will have to reset it to factory conditions. Then when i tried to reboot it, it came back to normal. I was not near my computer at that time so i decided to take back up of all my data when i reached home and then reset it to factory conditions. But then after a while, it froze for a few seconds and turned off on its own again. Now I cannot switch it on, even when I connected it to the charger for half an hour. I also tried pressing and holding the power and volume down buttons, and it doesn't even open the bootloader. Is there any other way i can recover my phone again ? I really need my phone urgently and i don't know what to do about this situation. Please Help!

Drushti - Reply

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