How to Factory Reset iPad Step-by-Step

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How to factory reset iPad

Want to know how to factory reset iPad? You may wonder why you would need to do this from time to time. Actually, there are several reasons to do this, including ensuring your privacy and freeing up space when you give your iPad to someone else to use. Factory resetting is basically returning your iPad back to the settings that were installed when it was produced. In this post, I’ll cover how to factory reset your iPad, using several different methods, with and without entering your passcode.

What Does Factory Reset Mean?

Factory reset means erasing all the settings and information on your iPad and restoring it to its original system settings. Another name for this process is hard reset.

So, what happens when you factory reset your iPad? To sum it up, all your photos, contacts, customized settings, and other data are erased. Your device returns to its original state and factory settings. Before you do that, it’s important to back up any information you would like to keep, because factory reset will impact all of your data without exception.

Why Factory Reset Your iPad?

Why Factory Reset Your iPad

Image: AppGeeker

There are many reasons you may need to factory reset your device. In some cases, when software issues persist, you can troubleshoot them by factory resetting your iPad. For instance, if you keep getting a frozen or locked screen, and your iPad doesn’t respond even after you’ve restarted it, you may need to reset it. This will return your device’s settings to their original state and take care of any software issues.

If you plan to sell or give your device to someone else, factory resetting it first is a good idea. This will erase all your personal data, ensuring that no one will see your personal files that you’ve accidentally forgotten to delete.

It may also be useful for privacy reasons if you intend to give your device for repairs or use it in settings where you cannot be sure that no one will touch it.

Preliminary Steps Before Resetting Your iPad

Before you start with a factory reset, there are a few things you need to consider:

  • Make sure you back up your data. The easiest way to do it is by using iCloud to store your data. Go to Settings>iCloud>iCloud Backup. Then select the “Back Up Now” option. Backing up your files is a simple way to transfer all the data before you erase it from your device. This way, it will stay in the cloud until you need it and can be retrieved whenever necessary.
  • Keep your Apple ID and password close. You’ll need them for many of the methods enumerated below. In either case, you’ll need your passwords to log back into your accounts, since the factory reset will erase any saved logins.
  • Run any available updates to make sure your iPad software is the latest version.

How to Reset iPad to Factory Settings Easily Step-by-Step

Quickest Method

Here’s the easiest and most straightforward way to factory reset your iPad:

  • Go to “Settings”
  • Select the “General” section
  • Click “Reset” (on some versions “Transfer or Reset iPad”)
  • Choose the option “Erase All Content and Settings” 
Erase all content and settings

Image: CNET

iPad Models Covered

These steps apply to the following iPad models: iPad Pro, iPad Air, and iPad Mini. Apart from the slight difference in the name of the Reset option, the steps are the same for all iPad devices.

How to Factory Reset iPad Without an Apple ID Password or Passcode

If you can’t remember your Apple ID, don’t worry. There are ways to erase data from your iPad without entering the Apple ID password or passcode. Here are some of them: 

Using “Find My iPhone” Feature from Another Device

If you’ve got iCloud on another device, you can erase data from your iPad remotely using the handy “Find My iPhone” feature. Here are the steps:

  • Go to the iCloud website
  • Select the ‘Find My iPhone’ option
  • Choose “All Devices” and find your iPad on the list of available devices
  • Click “Erase iPad” and confirm
  • Wait until iCloud erases all the data
Erase iPad

Image: LifeWire

Recovery Mode Using a Computer

There’s another method to factory reset your iPad without the Apple ID password. This method requires a computer. Here are the steps:

  • Use a USB cable to connect your iPad to your computer.
  • Put your iPad into recovery mode. To do this, use the buttons on the side of your iPad – quickly tap the ‘Increase volume’ button and then the ‘Decrease volume’ button. Then push the power button on top of your device. If your iPad has a ‘Home’ button, tap the ‘Home’ button simultaneously with the power button.
  • When your iPad is in recovery mode, you’ll see a cable and laptop symbol on your iPad’s screen.
Laptop and cable symbols

Image: MacReports

  • On your computer, launch iTunes (check that you’re using the latest version of iTunes).
  • You’ll see a pop-up window with the option to ‘Update’ or ‘Restore’ your iPad. Choose the ‘Restore’ option in the first window, and the ‘Restore and Update’ in the next.
  • Wait for the updates to load. This can take up to 30 minutes. iTunes will erase all the previous data on your iPad and load the newest software version effectively factory resetting your device.
Restore iPad

Image: LifeWire

Contact Apple Support

If none of the other methods works, contact Apple Support and explain your problem. They will guide you through the process and help you recover your Apple ID and password.

Factory Reset iPad Without Passcode or Computer

There’s also a way to factory reset your iPad without using either the passcode or a computer. 

Using the “Find My iPad” Feature from Another Device

If you use the same Apple ID on your iPhone, you can use it to erase all the data from your iPad. You’ll simply need to use the “Find My iPad” feature on your phone.

  • Go to ‘Find My’
  • Choose your iPad from the devices list
Choose your iPad from the device list

Image: Business Insider

  • Select the ‘Erase iPad’ option
  • If prompted, enter your Apple ID
  • Wait until the data from your iPad is erased

More iPad Tutorials:

How to Factory Reset iPad: FAQ

Q: Will factory resetting remove all my data?

A: Yes. A factory reset will erase all your personal data from your device and return it to the settings it had when it was new. This is why it’s important to back up your data before initiating the factory reset.

Q: Can I recover data after a factory reset?

A: Yes, you can but only if you’ve made a backup of your data with iCloud. Another important condition is that you need to have access to your Apple ID and password in order to be able to sign into iCloud. That’s why you can factory reset your iPad and later retrieve your data, whereas someone you sell your iPad to won’t be able to do this since they have no access to your iCloud.

Q: Is it possible to factory reset a locked iPad?

A: Yes. You’ll need to put your iPad into recovery mode. This method requires a computer. After you’ve connected your iPad to the computer with a USB cable, put it in recovery mode. Then launch iTunes on your laptop, find your iPad, and select ‘Restore and Update’ in the pop-up windows. This will erase all the data on your iPad and update it to the newest software version. You can then choose a different passcode, as the old one will be erased with the other data.

Q: How do I completely wipe my iPad?

A: The easiest way to completely wipe all data from your iPad is to go to Settings>General>Reset. Then select “Erase All Content and Settings”. Remember to back up any data you don’t want to lose before doing this.


Knowing how to factory reset your iPad is important when you need to completely delete all personal data from your device. There’s a variety of methods you can use, both using a computer or another device. Most of them, however, require that you know your Apple ID password or your iPad’s passcode, so it’s best to get hold of this information before you start with the reset. 

Sometimes you don’t even need to factory reset your iPad to resolve technical issues, so be sure to check out the official Apple Support website for a quicker and easier solution to a minor problem. If you need to use factory reset after all, make sure that you’ve done a backup so that none of your personal data is lost in the process. It’s always a good idea to learn how to reset end-to-end encrypted data, as well.


Remember that factory resetting is a last resort option and should be handled carefully. Before you do a factory reset on your iPad, always consult Apple’s official resources. The best way is to get professional help if you’re unsure of any of the steps.


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