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iPhone 4 is running hot and battery draining faster than normal


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#1 Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:02

I've noticed all day today that my iPhone 4 has been a little warm (especially right above the "iPhone" labeling on the back). It was down to 50% at lunch and a co-worker suggested that it may be the location service, so I turned that off.

At 4 pm it was at about 20% and I was getting the low battery warning. It was 100% full when I left this morning, and under normal usage I'm around 60-75% full when I go to sleep at night. I can normally go 2 days without charging so I know something is up.

I'm doing a full DFU restore now. Hope this isn't a hardware problem. The device itself is working fine from what I can tell. The heat is evident and the power usage is evident.

I'm hoping its some strange software fluke and a full restore fixes it...


#2 Glassed Silver

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:07

Surely sounds like heavy battery drain, which causes the heat.

Is that iPhone jailbroken and which iOS version does it run?
In case it's jailbroken, what do you have installed?

Glassed Silver:mac

#3 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:08

It isn't Jailbroken. iOS 5.0.1 was on it and currently be reinstalled.

The only things I can think of that may be related (or completely coincidental) are:

* I cleaned some pocket lent out of the bottom port with a pocket knife blade yesterday... the connector looks fine, visually, and isn't otherwise having problems.

* Yesterday I was around the border and my phone kept connecting to a Mexico cell tower. And it was like...stuck on that damn tower even when I was quite a ways away and should have been well within range of a state side AT&T tower. I kept my phone off hoping to avoid roaming data charges (I suspect I'll be calling AT&T on that one). It was peculiar all the same. Kept connecting to "movistar". Maybe my phone got hacked by a drug cartel.

#4 Glassed Silver

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:21

It isn't Jailbroken. iOS 5.0.1 was on it and currently be reinstalled.

The only things I can think of that may be related (or completely coincidental) are:

* I cleaned some pocket lent out of the bottom port with a pocket knife blade yesterday... the connector looks fine, visually, and isn't otherwise having problems.

* Yesterday I was around the border and my phone kept connecting to a Mexico cell tower. And it was like...stuck on that damn tower even when I was quite a ways away and should have been well within range of a state side AT&T tower. I kept my phone off hoping to avoid roaming data charges (I suspect I'll be calling AT&T on that one). It was peculiar all the same. Kept connecting to "movistar". Maybe my phone got hacked by a drug cartel.


LOL, adored the last part! :p

Either way, in future, why not just switch off Roaming? :)

Well, I guess a Restore is your best bet atm, keep us updated! (Y)

Glassed Silver:mac

#5 Roger H.

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 02:35

Usually a restart is enough to cure such issues. It's normally some program not allowing the CPU to sleep that causes the heat which therefore kills the battery. A restart kills that app/service.

#6 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 03:04

I've tried multiple restarts and the problem persisted. "killed" the tasks in the task bar as well.

After re-installing the OS and restoring a backup, things seem to be working OK. We shall see.

#7 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 18:31

I'm really scratching my head on this one. The device felt cool last night after I had restored the OS and a backup. It seemed OK for most of the morning. Picked it up about an hour ago and it felt warmmer than usual. It still feels warmer than usual and my battery is down to 46%. Comparitively I have a co-worker with an iPhone 4 and his phone is at 97% and feels cold compared to mine.

#8 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 19:00

I did a test. In 11 minutes with the problem my batter when dropped 3% (43% to 40%). I turned on "Airplane Mode" on my phone and the device feels much cooler and after about 20 minutes the battery life hasn't dropped at all (still at 40%). Something is going on in the background that is causing this drain. Hmmm...

#9 Packet1009

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 19:03

tried cleaning the sim card yet?

#10 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 19:52

tried cleaning the sim card yet?


No, I haven't tried that. I will try that, but don't really understand what that will accomplish. The phone connects to AT&T just fine, anyway.

I did another test over lunch. I reset the cell data usage statistics and after about 5 minutes it had used 10MB total (6 down, 4 up). Something on the phone is sucking data. I turned off cell data and WiFi, and the phone cools back down and no dramatic battery life drain was observed. I just went through and disabled every notification service except for Phone and Messaging and have cell data on and WiFi off. I'm going to check in about 10 minutes to see if it is still leaking.

#11 Packet1009

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 19:56

tried killing all the running apps in the taskbar?

#12 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 20:06

tried killing all the running apps in the taskbar?


Yes. I turned off all the notification services as well except for Phone and Messages. Disabled all the syncing services (Mail, Calendar etc). I'm now deleting apps. I've deleted some apps and it is still using cell data for some reason.

#13 este

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 20:13

While maybe unlikely, it could be a hardware problem as well. Maybe you can exchange it for a new one at the store?

#14 OP Shadrack

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 20:28

While maybe unlikely, it could be a hardware problem as well. Maybe you can exchange it for a new one at the store?


I'm starting to think that maybe it is hardware related. Unfortunately, the phone is no longer under warranty.

I've now deleted every single non-stock app off the phone. Everything is turned off except cell data. Every iCloud feature. Every sync service.

I'm still observing about 1 KB/sec of cell data usage but the device feels cooler now. I'm going to give it about 30 mins and see what the data usage looks like.

#15 threetonesun

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 21:41

Settings > Location Services > System Services

Check that Diagnostics & Usage, Location-Based iAds, and Setting Time Zone are off. I've heard of people having issues with those services checking in way more often than they need to.