A boot loop is an issue that can occur on LG smartphones where the phone gets stuck in an endless reboot cycle. When a boot loop happens, the phone will turn on, show the LG logo, then turn off and restart again. This loop continues indefinitely, preventing the phone from fully booting up and accessing the operating system.
This problem has impacted various LG phone models over the years, especially the LG G4 and LG V10. It seems to stem from a hardware defect causing components to disconnect and fail to properly initialize during the boot process. LG has acknowledged the manufacturing flaws leading to boot loops in some models.
When an LG phone is stuck in a boot loop, it renders the device unusable since you cannot get past the startup sequence. Fortunately, there are some troubleshooting steps you can try to potentially fix the boot loop issue and regain access to your phone.
Determine the Cause
There are two main causes of boot loops on LG phones – a software issue or a hardware issue. Determining the root cause will help guide the troubleshooting steps.
A software issue like a system file corruption or software bug can often be fixed with software-based solutions like a cache reset or factory reset. Try these non-invasive software fixes first before assuming a hardware failure.
Hardware issues like a faulty power button or damaged motherboard require physical repair or replacement. However, software issues can sometimes masquerade as hardware issues. So try software fixes before taking the phone apart or paying for hardware repair.
Pay attention to when the boot loop occurs. If it starts right when you power on the phone, it may indicate a hardware defect. But if it happens after the LG logo shows up, it is likely a software glitch. Understanding the timing provides clues to diagnose the underlying problem.
Also note any recent changes prior to the boot loop, like an OS update or new app installation. Reversing these changes can resolve software-related boot loops. Check forums as well to see if other LG phone owners report similar issues after an update.
Try a Soft Reset
A soft reset, also known as a reboot, can help resolve boot loop issues caused by minor software glitches. To perform a soft reset on an LG phone:
- Press and hold the Power button until the phone turns off.
- Once the phone is fully powered down, press and hold the Power button again until the LG logo appears.
- Let go of the Power button once the reboot process begins.
This will restart the phone and boot it back up normally. If the soft reset does not resolve the boot loop, you will need to try other solutions like booting into safe mode or factory resetting the device.
For additional tips, see this guide on soft resetting an LG phone stuck in a boot loop: https://www.coolmuster.com/android/lg-phone-stuck-in-boot-loop.html
Boot into Safe Mode
One way to troubleshoot and fix boot loop issues is to boot the LG phone into safe mode. Safe mode loads only the essential apps and services required to run the operating system. This allows you to determine if third-party apps or software is causing the boot loop.
To boot into safe mode on an LG phone:
- Make sure the phone is powered off completely.
- Press and hold the Power button to turn on the phone.
- When the LG logo appears, release the Power button.
- Immediately press and hold the Volume Down button until you see the lock screen.
- “Safe mode” will appear in the lower left corner to indicate the phone is in safe mode.
While in safe mode, check if the boot loop issue persists. If the phone boots up normally in safe mode, a third-party app is likely causing the problem. You can either uninstall suspected apps while in safe mode or perform a factory reset to wipe all apps and data (see source).
If the boot loop continues even in safe mode, it indicates a deeper system-level issue. You may need to try flashing the stock firmware or take the phone for hardware-level repair (see source).
Clear Cache Partition
Clearing the cache partition can help fix boot loop issues by deleting temporary system files that may have become corrupted. Here are the steps to clear the cache partition on an LG phone:
- Turn off the phone completely.
- Press and hold the Volume Down key and the Power button at the same time until you see the LG logo.
- Let go of the buttons and immediately press and hold the Volume Down key until you see the Factory data reset menu.
- Use the Volume keys to highlight “Wipe cache partition” and press Power to select it.
- Select “Yes” to confirm.
- Select “Reboot system now” when it’s finished.
This will wipe the cache partition without erasing any personal data. If the boot loop persists, you may need to try other troubleshooting steps like a factory reset. But clearing the cache is a good first step that often resolves boot loop issues.
For reference, see how to clear the cache partition on an LG phone according to this Reddit thread.
Try a Factory Reset
A factory reset will wipe the phone and restore it to original factory settings. This can help resolve software issues causing the boot loop. To perform a factory reset on an LG phone:
- With the phone powered off, hold down the Volume Down and Power buttons at the same time until the LG logo appears.
- Use the Volume keys to highlight ‘Factory reset’ and press Power to select it.
- Select ‘Yes — delete all user data’ to confirm the reset. Allow several minutes for the process to complete.
After the reset is finished, the phone will reboot. Set it up like new and test if the boot loop issue is resolved. Note that a factory reset will erase all user data, so be sure to back up anything important first. If the boot loop returns after resetting, a deeper hardware or software issue is likely the cause.
Flash Stock Firmware
Flashing the stock firmware can help resolve boot loop issues by overwriting any corrupted system files. To flash stock firmware on an LG phone:
1. Download the correct stock firmware package for your specific LG model from a trusted site like this XDA thread. Make sure to match the firmware to your exact device variant.
2. Extract the firmware file on your computer. It will contain files like an LG image file (ex. kdz file), flash tool, and instructions.
3. Install the flash tool if required, such as LGUP or LG Flash Tool. Connect your phone to the computer using a USB cable.
4. Open the flash tool. Follow the steps to enter Download/Fastboot mode on your LG phone. This usually involves holding down volume and power buttons.
5. In the flash tool, load the firmware file and start the flashing process. Do not disconnect the phone during flashing.
6. Once completed, the phone should reboot out of the boot loop into the stock firmware. You may need to redo initial setup.
If the boot loop persists, there may be a deeper hardware issue. Contact LG support or consider professional repair.
If trying the software fixes does not resolve the boot loop issue, the problem may be caused by a hardware failure that requires repair or replacement of components. Some options for hardware repair include:
Official repair through LG: LG offers an out-of-warranty repair service to fix hardware issues causing boot loops. According to a reddit thread, LG charged $150 USD to fix a bootloop on an LG G4 with a cracked screen (Source). The components repaired are usually loose solder joints on the motherboard according to a forum thread (Source).
Third party phone repair shops: Local repair shops may be able to diagnose the hardware issue and replace any components that have failed, such as the motherboard. Costs can vary depending on the shop.
Replace the phone: If the repair costs exceed the value of the phone, replacing the device may be the most cost-effective option.
Data Backup Options
Before attempting any resets that could wipe data, it’s important to try and back up any data you want to keep. This can be difficult when the phone is stuck in a boot loop, but there are some options to try:
If you can get the phone to boot into recovery mode or download mode, you may be able to use ADB or LG software like LG Flash Tool or LG UP to backup data from the phone. Instructions can be found here: How to Fix LG Phone Stuck in Boot Loop [5 Tips Provided].
For some LG phone models like the LG G4, you can boot into download mode and potentially use a USB OTG cable to connect an external SD card and transfer data that way. Instructions can be found in this Quora post: I have an old LG G4 phone that got stuck in a boot loop.
As a last resort, if the phone is not responding at all, professional data recovery services may be able to repair the phone enough to pull data before attempting any resets. This can be expensive but may be worth it for recovering irreplaceable data.
Prevent Boot Loops
While boot loops can sometimes occur randomly due to software issues, there are a few tips to help prevent them from happening in the first place:
- Avoid installing apps from untrusted sources – Stick to the official Google Play Store for app downloads. Apps from unknown sources may contain malware or bugs that could cause system issues.
- Keep your phone up-to-date – Install system software updates as soon as they become available. Updates often include fixes for bugs that could potentially lead to boot loops.
- Don’t overload the device – Having too many apps, photos, videos and other files taking up storage on your phone can impact performance and stability. Try clearing cache and deleting unneeded files regularly.
- Handle the phone carefully – Dropping or damaging your phone could result in hardware issues that cause boot loops. Use a protective case and avoid exposing the phone to moisture or extreme temperatures.
- Backup data regularly – Using your phone’s built-in backup to Google Drive or third party apps like Coolmuster Android Assistant to backup contacts, photos and other data could help you recover if a factory reset becomes necessary.
Following best practices for installing apps, managing storage, updating software and handling your device carefully can go a long way towards avoiding frustrating boot loop issues.