Is your phone's charging cable getting easily loose? Hard to charge your phone? It's a simple fix!

Is your phone's charging cable getting easily loose? Hard to charge your phone? It's a simple fix!
Photo by Steve Johnson / Unsplash

Have you ever experienced a situation where your phone stops charging after moving it slightly, or the cable goes loose very easily? If so, you might have a dirty charging port on your phone. This can happen due to lint or dirt accumulating in the port from being in your pocket a lot. This can affect the connection between the cable and the port, and prevent your phone from charging properly.

Again, the overview of the usual symptons:

  • Phone stops charging after moving it slightly
  • Cable goes loose very easily
  • Need to apply hard pressure to start charging
  • Some perfectly good cables stop working alltogether (this is due to the connector being slightly shorter. Combine with dirt and now the pins won't reach at all!)

Fortunately, there is a simple and cheap solution to this problem: cleaning the port with a wooden toothpick. A wooden toothpick is thin enough to fit into the port, and gentle enough to avoid damaging the metal contacts.

The final nail in the coffin for writing this post is due to my phone running out of battery due to the charger moving slightly. I have a new job and missed my alarm on my second day.

I tolerated it for months but it's actually a 5 minute fix!

This problem can happen with all phones. I had it on my Xiami Redmi Note 4 and now on my current Google Pixel 7.

DISCLAIMER: I am not liable for any possible damage you may do to your phone due to following these instructions. Proceed at your own risk.

Here's how to fix it - works for most ports - USB-C, microUSB, lightning port etc..

How to clean your charging port (easy, simple way)

1. Turn off your phone and unplug the cable

2. Find a wooden toothpick and a knife. You can use any kind of toothpick, as long as it is not metal.

3. Use the knife to shave the toothpick thinner, so that it can easily enter the port. Be careful not to cut yourself or break the toothpick (the toothpick may break while you battle with the dirt/lint though).

Shaving a toothpick with a knife to be able to fit a USB-C port

4. Gently insert the toothpick into the port and scrape out the lint or dirt. You might need to do this from different angles and directions, depending on the shape of the port and the amount of debris. You can also use a flashlight to see better inside the port.

5. Repeat the process until the port is clean and clear. You might need to use more than one toothpick, as they can break or get dirty.

6. Plug the cable back into the port and turn on your phone. Check if the charging is working normally. If not, you might need to repeat the cleaning or try a different cable.

That's it! You have successfully fixed a dirty charging port on your phone. This method is easy, effective, and inexpensive. It can save you from buying a new cable (which wouldn't work) or a new phone (needless expense), or taking your phone to a repair shop (expensive). However, be careful not to use too much force or damage the port while cleaning it. Also, avoid getting the port wet or exposing it to dust or moisture - although it's probably fine if your phone has some sort of waterproofing rating.

But wait! There's also another way that we used at work when I was an iPhone repair guy..

How to clean phone your phone charging port (using isopropyl alcohol and an electric toothbrush)

  1. Turn off your phone and unplug the cable.
  2. Soak your electric toothbrush's brush with isopropyl alcohol
  3. Turn it on and brush the insides of your phone's charging port
  4. Blow periodically
  5. Repeat step 3 until sparkling clean
  6. Wait a few minutes for the isopropyl alcohol to evaporate


I hope you found this post helpful and it saved you a headache. If you did, please share it with your friends and family who might have the same problem. Thank you for reading!