Why Does My iPad Charge So Slow?

Does it seem like it takes hours to charge your iPad? I know how frustrating this can be, especially if you want to move away from the outlet and watch Netflix or play games in a spot that isn’t close to an outlet. Fortunately, there may be an easy fix to your problem. 

Your iPad might charge slowly if you use an adapter designed for an iPhone or with low power output. Charging your iPad from your laptop, car, or power bank takes longer than plugging it into the wall. Your iPad’s charging port may also be dirty. 

If your iPad is taking forever to charge, try these solutions. 

Make Sure You Are Using the Correct iPad Adapter

The adapter, or charging block, is the piece you plug into the outlet. You then plug the cable into the charging block. 

Using the correct charging block is critical. One of the most common reasons iPads charge so slowly is because people use iPhone adapters to charge iPads. 

Note that iPhones no longer come with power adapters in the box. Nevertheless, you may be using an old iPhone adapter. 

Different adapters have different power outputs. Adapters designed for iPhones will typically take twice as long to charge an iPad compared to an iPad adapter

Check your adapter for the output listed on it. It may be any of the following: 

  • 5W
  • 10W
  • 12W
  • 18W
  • 20W

You shouldn’t be using a 5W power adapter for an iPad. Sure, it will charge – but it will take a pretty long time. The minimum power output you should use for an iPad is 10W. Ideally, however, you’ll want at least 12W. 

The higher the power output, the better. Using a charger with a higher output won’t damage your iPad (you can even use an 18W adapter for AirPods). It will just charge quicker. 

It also depends on the type of iPad you have. An iPad Pro will take longer to charge than an iPad Mini with the same adapter. For an iPad Pro, go with an 18W or 20W adapter.

Use the power adapter that comes with your iPad. If you can’t find it, use another Apple-certified power adapter. 

It’s also worth seeing if the power adapter is broken. Trying a different power adapter or purchasing a new one may help.

Get a New Cable

Often, the problem lies with your cable. If you’re using an old charging wire that is frayed and broken, it might not work well. 

Similarly, I want to caution against using charging cables from third-party manufacturers as opposed to those manufactured by Apple. These third-party cables are frequently a fraction of the price of Apple products, especially when you buy them online, which is what makes them so attractive. 

At the same time, they don’t work as well as Apple cables. They break easily, and they may slow down the charging process. 

Plug Your iPad Into the Wall

If you’re using your computer to charge your iPad, it’s probably going to take longer to charge it. The voltage and power output of a laptop just doesn’t compare to the power output from a wall outlet. 

If you must charge your phone from your computer, make sure the computer is on (and not on sleep mode). Avoid multitasking with your phone or computer while it charges. 

Similarly, you may notice your iPad charging slower when you plug it into your car. That does depend on the car model and the amperage its charging port can produce. Despite that, you should not rely on your vehicle as your primary charging method but as a backup and a way to keep your iPad from losing power. 

Finally, are you using a power bank to charge your iPad? Again, you may notice that it takes longer to fill up your iPad’s battery. 

Clean Your iPad’s Charging Port

A dirty charging port might be the underlying cause of a slow charge. If you use your iPad often (especially while eating) and carry it in your backpack, some dirt, dust, or crumbs may have gotten into the port. Sometimes, simply blowing into the port can get rid of the dust inside. 

If it’s filthy, purchase a can of compressed air and use it to clear out the charging port. Avoid sticking needles or toothpicks into the port, as that can damage the pins and worsen the situation. If juice, soda, or some other sticky substance is in the port, you may use a Q-tip dipped in water or alcohol to gently clean it out. 

Stop Using the iPad While It’s Charging

Using your iPad while it’s charging will cause it to charge slower. Even as you charge the battery, you’ll be using it up. If the iPad is old, you may be using up so much of its power that the battery level doesn’t increase. 

If you are not using your iPad, make sure the screen is off and no apps are playing in the background. If your iPad is downloading large files, movies, or app updates, that can also put extra strain on the battery. 

Ensure the iPad Is Not Too Hot

If your iPad warms up or gets too cold, that may interfere with the charging process. According to Apple, you should be using your iPad in a place that isn’t below freezing and isn’t more than 95 degrees Fahrenheit. 

If your iPad is too warm, charging may slow down to prevent overheating. To avoid that, don’t leave your iPad in a place where the sun is shining, in a parked car, or near your oven or heater. 

Restart or Reset Your iPad

Sometimes, performing a simple restart can fix the issue, especially if it’s related to a download in the background or some simple software glitch. 

If it’s a software issue, resetting your iPad to factory settings may take care of the problem. Ensure you back up your data before performing a reset, as you may lose some downloaded files. 

Wrap Up

Finally, if you tried all of the above solutions, and none of them worked, consider taking your iPad to an Apple-certified technician. The technician can run tests on your battery and see if it needs to be replaced. Most of the time, though, one of the hacks listed above will do the trick and get your device working smoothly again.

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