How can I fix a broken ring/silent switch on the iPhone?
Sometimes the ring/silent switch on the side of the iPhone starts malfunctioning. When this iPhone mute button no longer works, you may think the device is set to silent but then it rings at the worst time possible. How can you fix this broken switch?
First of all, if your iPhone is covered under warranty or Apple Care, take the device to Apple for service. You can check the current warranty status of your iPhone online.
Without coverage from Apple, you are faced with a large bill or a difficult physical repair. Instructions can be found online, but they involve following 46 intricate steps to take apart and reassemble your device. Here are some suggested workarounds to replace the ring/silent switch without turning off your iPhone:
1. Turn on Airplane Mode. Calls will go straight to voicemail, but at least you can still use Wi-Fi in Airplane Mode. Receipt of texts will be delayed until Airplane Mode is turned off. Navigate to Settings -> Airplane Mode -> ON.
2. Turn down the ringer volume. Although not ideal, if your iPhone is in a bag it might be quiet enough. Taking the volume down to one notch (the minimum) will quiet down the sound considerably.
3. Temporarily silence your incoming calls by setting a silent ringtone on your iPhone as the default. You can easily add a silent ringtone to your iPhone with iTunes. Navigate to Settings -> Sounds -> Ringtone.
4. Silence incoming text messages and other alerts. Navigate to Settings -> Sounds -> Text Tone -> None. Other alerts such as New Voicemail, New Mail, and Calendar Alerts can be individually toggled on and off from the menu at Settings -> Sounds.
6. Last but not least, another jailbreak option is to install the utility Auto Silent. Although it costs $3 you can completely circumvent and control the broken hardware ring/silent switch with this app.
Although none of these fixes are as convenient or easy as a functional ring/silent switch, they might be preferable to an embarrassing unexpected ring.
If you are looking for the opposite fix, because your iPhone is stuck on mute and won't ring, then follow this link for instructions on how to turn the sound back on with a broken ring/silent switch.