What to Do When Your iPad Freezes

By Allen Bethea

A device as complex as your iPad might malfunction from time to time. When this happens, the iPad's operating system provides several ways you can regain full use of your device if it suddenly seizes, freezes or goes kaput. Your options include closing frozen apps, turning your tablet off and back on, resetting the device or restoring the iPad's software to its original, factory settings.

Close Frozen Apps

Even if an iPad app freezes and becomes unusable, it may not have any effect on the rest your system and you still have access to the tools you need to force a nonresponsive app to close. To shut down a frozen app under iOS 7, tap the "Home" button twice, locate the app's preview image and then swipe it up and off the screen.

Restart Method

If tapping the "Home" button has no effect on your system, restart your iPad. The restart process is no more than turning the iPad off and turning it back on again. To turn your iPad off, press and hold down the "Sleep/Wake" button until a slider appears on screen. After you move the slider to the right, the iPad shuts down. Press the "Sleep/Wake" button again to turn the iPad back on.

System Reset

If the restart is ineffective and your iPad is still frozen, it is time to reset it. To reset your iPad, hold down both the "Sleep/Wake" button and the "Home" button simultaneously until you see the Apple logo on a blank screen. Apple recommends not using reset until a restart has proven ineffective.

Recovery Mode

If your iPad freezes repeatedly, try one more procedure before you take it to the shop. If you have a Mac or Windows PC with iTunes installed, you can restore your iPad to its original, factory settings. The process deletes everything on your iPad including iOS, your apps and media files. Next, the current version of iOS is installed. If you previous backed up your iPad's files to iCloud or iTunes, you can get back all your music, videos, apps and personal system preferences by restoring the backup.