Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

If you have bought a new SIM card or an old SIM card and inserted it into your Android smartphone to access the Internet, you encountered an issue on your phone, which now says SIM card not detected. You have removed the SIM card several times to re-check if it is inserted correctly, but you still encounter the same error. You might be frustrated and out of options to try. If you are wondering how to fix this SIM slot not working issue, you are at the right article. Here, we discuss why the error occurs and the appropriate solutions to effectively solve the SIM card not working Android problem. Let’s get started.

Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

How to Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Below are the primary reasons for this Android issue:

  • Airplane mode is turned on
  • Unsupported network mode
  • Disabled SIM card
  • Incorrect network APN settings
  • SIM card inserted improperly
  • Corrupt cached data
  • SIM card problem

Note: Since smartphones don’t have the same Settings options, and they vary from manufacturer to manufacturer hence, ensure the correct settings before changing any. The following methods were tried on Moto G (8) power lite – Android 10 (Stock).

Method 1: Basic Troubleshooting Methods

Here are a few basic troubleshooting methods to fix SIM card not working on Android device.

1A. Restart Phone

SIM cards inserted might require a restart for it to initialize in case of a newly installed one. Follow the below steps:

1. Press and hold the power button.

2. Next, tap on the Restart.

tap on restart

1B. Clean Golden Side of SIM Card

The golden side of the SIM card attracts dust over time which can be cleaned with a soft cloth. Remove the SIM card holder and the SIM card to clean the golden side of the SIM card. Slide back the SIM inside. This may resolve the problem of the SIM slot not working issue.

sim card. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android
Photo by Manik Roy on Unsplash

1C. Try Another SIM Card

Sometimes, you may doubt the SIM slot not working. There might be a problem with the SIM card holder. It can be damaged or is not functional. If this is the case, you can try inserting another working SIM card in the SIM card holder to see if it works. If the device still displays the SIM card not detected error, there might be a problem with the device or the SIM card holder.

SIM card

1D. Try Another Android Mobile

If inserting another SIM card on your current Android device did not work for you, try inserting the SIM card in a different Android device, as there might be a chance of hardware issues in the device itself.

Android mobile. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android
Photo by Shiva ID on Unsplash

Also Read: Fix System UI has Stopped Black Screen on Android

1E. Disable Airplane Mode

An issue with the network reception can cause SIM cards not to detect the type of problems. So to overcome these problems, it helps to turn on and off the Airplane mode to block the problematic network reception and see if the SIM card gets detected.

1. Go to the notification panel on your device by swiping down the top notification bar on the screen.

2. Tap on the Airplane mode icon to turn it On if it is Off by default.

Tap on the Airplane mode icon to turn it On if it is Off by default

3. Wait for a few seconds and tap on the Airplane mode icon to turn it Off.

Wait for a few seconds and tap on the Airplane mode icon to turn it Off. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Method 2: Enable SIM card

You might have accidentally disabled the SIM card in the settings. In Android, there is a toggle to disable the SIM card while it is in use. Follow the below steps:

1. Swipe down on the home screen and tap on the cog icon to open the settings menu.

Swipe down on the home screen and tap on the cog icon to open the settings menu

2. Next, tap on Network & internet.

tap on network and internet. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

3. Tap on SIM cards.

tap on SIM cards

4. Turn on the toggle for the SIM cards inserted if it is disabled.

Turn on the toggle for the SIM cards inserted if it is disabled. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Also Read: Fix Android is Starting Optimizing App 1 of 1

Method 3: Update Android OS

Always keep your Android phone up-to-date to avoid any software and hardware conflicts. To update your phone, follow the below steps:

1. Go to Settings from the notifications panel.

Go to Settings from the notifications panel

2. Swipe down and tap on System.

Swipe down and tap on System. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

3. Now, tap on Advanced.

tap on Advanced

4. Then, tap on System updates to check for any updates.

tap on System updates to check for any updates

4A. If an update is available, install the update and reboot your device.

4B. If your Android OS is up-to-date, it will say Your system is up to date.

Method 4: Search Manually for Network Operators

Sometimes, your carrier operator settings may change due to system conflicts due to some network or data conflicts. Due to this, you might experience the SIM card not working Android issue. Follow the below steps to resolve the same:

1. Swipe down the notification menu from the home screen and tap on the Settings icon.

Swipe down the notification menu from the home screen and tap on the Settings icon. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

2. Tap on Network & internet.

Tap on Network and internet

3. Now, tap on Mobile network.

tap on Mobile network. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

4. Now, tap on Advanced.

tap on advanced

5. Turn Off the toggle for the option Automatically select network.

Turn off the toggle for the option Automatically select network. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

6. Now, tap on Choose network.

tap on Choose network

7. Now, choose your network operator manually.

choose your network operator manually

Also Read: How to Fix Slow Charging on Android

Method 5: Create and Update APN Settings

This issue can sometimes occur if your SIM card carrier access point network is not configured. You can try manually editing the APN to see if the SIM card not working Android issue persists. Follow the below steps:

1. Go to Settings and tap on Network & internet.

tap on network and internet

2. Tap on Mobile network.

Tap on Mobile network. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

3. Tap on Access Point Names.

Tap on Access Point Names

4. Tap on the three dots and select Reset to default.

Tap on the three dots and select Reset to default. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

5. Now, tap on the + icon and add the APN details.

Note: The details of APN will be available on the official carrier website (e.g., Vodafone).

tap on the plus icon and add the APN details

6. Once done, tap on the tick mark at the top right corner.

tap on the tick mark at the top right corner. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Method 6: Reset Network Settings

Older cached files and settings might conflict with the SIM card and cause network issues such as the SIM card not being detected. To fix this, you might need to clear the network settings cache on your phone manually.

1. Open Settings.

2. Scroll down and tap on System, followed by Reset options.

Scroll down and tap on System followed by Reset options

3. Finally, tap on the Reset, Wi-Fi, mobile & Bluetooth option.

tap on the Reset, WiFi mobile and Bluetooth option. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

4. Tap on RESET SETTINGS.

Tap on RESET SETTINGS

5. Enter your pin or password if prompted.

6. Tap on the RESET SETTINGS option again.

Also Read: Fix WiFi Keeps Turning Off Automatically on Android

Method 7: Clear SIM Card Cache

There is a system app called SIM card manager (or SIM toolkit on some devices). Clearing the data and cache of these can be helpful. Follow the below steps:

1. Go to the Settings menu from the quick access menu.

Go to the Settings menu from the quick access menu. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

2. Tap on the Apps & notifications.

tap on apps and notifications

3. Tap on three dots icon at the top right corner and select Show system.

tap on show system

4. Tap on SIM Toolkit.

tap on SIM toolkit. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

5. Next, tap on Storage & cache.

tap on storage and cache

6. Finally, tap on CLEAR CACHE.

tap on CLEAR CACHE. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

Also Read: How to Fix Queued Download on Android

Method 8: Clear Android Internal Cached Data

It is worth a shot to clear the internal Android cache as the cache gets clogged up over time and causes issues later on. Follow the below steps:

1. Swipe down the notifications panel and go to Settings.

tap on settings menu

2. Swipe down and tap on Storage.

tap on storage

3. Now, tap on Internal shared storage.

tap on internal shared storage

4. Finally, tap on Cached files to delete files.

This can solve the SIM card not working Android issue

Method 9: Boot into Safe Mode

There is a possibility that any apps can interfere with the initialization of the SIM card. If so, you can try booting your mobile into safe mode. Safe mode only loads the apps required to start the device without user-installed apps. If your SIM card works, then there might be problems with one of your apps.

1. Hold the Power button.

2. In the pop-up menu, press and hold the Power off option until the Safe mode appears.

press and hold the Power off option until the Safe mode appears. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

3. Tap on OK to restart in safe mode.

You will also see the words Safe Mode written on your home screen at the bottom.

Also Read: Fix Fast Charging Not Working on Android

Method 10: Perform Factory Reset

If all else fails, you can try a factory reset to see if that works. Use this method as a last resort as this will wipe all data from your phone. It is wise to backup all your data before performing this step. Follow the below steps to resolve the SIM card not working on Android:

1. Open Settings and tap on System.

next tap on system

2. Now, tap on Reset options, followed by Erase all data (factory reset).

tap on Reset options followed by Erase all data factory reset. Fix SIM Card Not Working on Android

3. Tap on the Erase all data button.

tap erase all data

4. Enter your PIN or pattern, if any.

5. Tap on Clear data to begin factory reset.

Method 11: Contact Customer Service Center

If none of the above methods worked and your Android mobile is still under warranty, you can provide your mobile to the nearby service center. If it is not under warranty, it is still worth taking your mobile to the service center since the service technicians can most probably solve the problems.

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We hope the above article on the fix SIM card not working Android issue was helpful and you could troubleshoot and solve your problem. Please let us know in the comments which one of the methods solved the problem for you. Also, don’t forget to share your queries or feedback on this article. Thanks!

Posted by
Elon Decker

Elon is a tech writer at TechCult. He's been writing how-to guides for about 6 years now and has covered many topics. He loves to cover topics related to Windows, Android, and the latest tricks and tips.

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