Unable to Check for Update? Try These Fixes

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When you try to update your iPhone manually because it didn’t happen automatically, you may get an “Unable to check for update” error.

Like any other tech company, Apple releases firmware updates to keep its devices running smoothly and without glitches.

So, in order to update your iPhone so you can take advantage of the most recent updates and features, you need to get rid of this error first.

This article will step you through possible fixes for when your iPhone displays “Unable to Check for Update”.

How to Fix “Unable to Check for Update” Error On iPhone

Here are all the tips you’ll learn about in this guide.

  1. Enable Wi-Fi
  2. Reset Network Settings
  3. Check Apple Servers
  4. Restart Your iPhone
  5. Free Up Enough Storage
  6. Update iPhone using Finder or iTunes

1. Ensure That Wi-Fi Is Enabled and That There Is a Strong Signal

One of the most common issues is not being able to connect to a Wi-Fi network or have a weak Wi-Fi signal.

To avoid being disconnected in the middle of an update download, you should start the process with a strong network connection.

First, make sure your phone’s Wi-Fi is turned on and that you’re connected to the network you want to connect to.

1. First, go to the Settings app.

Open settings app
Open Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Tap on Wi-Fi.

Go to the Wi-Fi option. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Ensure Wi-Fi is toggled on and you’re connected to the network.

Toggled on Wi-Fi
Enable Wi-Fi. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Reset Network Settings

It’s possible that the issue stems from the Network settings. If this is the case, resetting the network may be able to resolve the problem. 

1. Launch the Settings app.

Open settings app
Launch the Settings app. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Open General.

General Menu in Settings
Tap on General. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Scroll down to find the Transfer or Reset iPhone, then tap on it.

Transfer or Reset iPhone in General menu
Select Transfer or Reset iPhone. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

4. Now, select Reset.

Reset in Transfer or Reset iPhone
Select Reset option. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

5. Choose the Reset Network Settings option. You will have to enter the password of your device to confirm the action.

Reset Network Settings in iphone
Tap on Reset Network Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

It is worth noting that all the settings will be erased without affecting the device’s data.

3. Check Apple Servers

Once you make sure that your connection is strong and your network setting is fine, then it’s time to check if Apple servers are working correctly.

Unfortunately, servers may go down from time to time, and in this case, you have to wait for a while and try again after some time.

You should visit the Apple System Status web page to check apple servers. If the server status is yellow, that means there are some issues with the server, and that’s why the update is not showing up.

Apple Servers
Apple System Status. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

If the status symbol is green, that means everything is fine.

4. Restart Your iPhone

If the servers are working fine and the Wi-Fi you are using is strong, then it’s still possible that your iPhone is experiencing a software glitch.

These kinds of issues can get fixed by restarting your iPhone. To restart your iPhone, follow the steps below:

1. Press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons simultaneously.

2. Now, turn off your phone with the slider.

3. Wait a few moments and then turn on your phone.

Now check to see if the issue is fixed. If not, proceed to the next step.

5. Before Checking for Updates, Free Up Enough Storage

Before checking for updates, make sure to free up enough space on your iPhone. That way there’s enough space for your iPhone to install the latest iOS updates.

You can start by deleting unused apps or large files to make room for the update. We’ve put together a helpful guide on how to free up storage on iPhone. Feel free to check it out to learn more.

So, first, let’s check the available space on your iPhone:

1. Go to the Settings app.

iPhone Settings App
Go to Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. After that, tap on General.

General Menu in Settings
Choose General. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Select About.

Tap on About. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

4. Now, you can see how much free space you have on your iPhone by looking at the Available field.

Available space
Available Storage. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

Deleting large media files, offloading, or uninstalling unused apps will help you free up space if you don’t have enough storage.

1. First, go to Settings.

iPhone Settings App
Tap on Settings. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

2. Then, select General.

General Menu in Settings
Go to General. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

3. Tap on iPhone Storage.

iPhone storage
iPhone Storage. Screenshot: Farhad Pashaei/Gotechtor

4. Now, find and tap on the app you don’t use.

5. Select Delete App.

6. Update iPhone Using Finder or iTunes

If you still can’t figure out how to fix the problem, you can update your iPhone through Finder or iTunes. Follow the steps below to do so:

1. Connect your phone to a Mac or Windows PC and open Finder or iTunes, respectively.

2. Go to the Summary tab and create a backup of all your data first.

3. Next, click on the Check for Updates option.

3. The updates will show up, and you get an option to Download and Update your device. Click on it.

With this method, you can easily bypass iPhone Unable to check for update errors.


We hope you found the tips in this guide useful in helping you get rid of the “Unable to Check for Updates” error on your iPhone.

If you’re installing the update, the progress bar might appear to be moving slowly. This is because the time an update takes depends on the update’s size, Wi-Fi signal strength, and internet speed.

Importantly, if your iPhone’s battery is low, make sure to connect your iPhone to a power source. If your phone goes down in the middle of an update due to a low battery, connect to a power source, switch it on, and try again.

Remember to enable auto software update in your iPhone setting. And make sure to keep all your iOS devices, including your iPads and iPods, updated to benefit the most from Apple services and keep all your devices synchronized.

Photo of author
Over the last decade, Farhad has gained hands-on experience with smartphones, laptops, accessories, wearables, printers, etc. If he's not writing, you can bet he's trying to keep up with the latest technology. He oversees coverage of iPhone, iOS, and Apple Watch for Gotechtor.

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