how to reset Samsung Galaxy S3

How To Reset Samsung Galaxy S3 to Clean the Cobwebs

If you’re tired of waiting for the latest update to fix software issues on your Samsung Galaxy S3, then you can take some action on your own by resetting the phone. While the latest smartphones come with top-notch features, not many users are aware of the software glitches. Resetting your device is the only way to overcome these glitches.

ALSO READ: 10 Best Samsung Galaxy S3 Accessories: Be Inspector Gadget

You can browse through the XDA Forums and see that there are so many users who have accidentally done something wrong and they can’t get their devices back to normal. Some of them have flashed the wrong ROMs and others have installed mods that aren’t supported by their phones.

If you find yourself in a similar position, you can easily learn how to reset Samsung Galaxy S3 using one of the methods mentioned below. Even if your phone is working fine, you might want to do a factory reset in order to clear important data, such as your contacts and accounts.

Tips Before Resetting

While soft resetting your phone won’t delete any data, hard resetting will delete everything from your device and it will be like a totally new smartphone. Therefore, make sure that you create a full backup of your phone, including all your important files, videos, pictures, account details and settings.

You can either backup your device using the default backup option in your phone or you can use a third party backup app from the Google Play store in order to backup apps. Once the backup is complete, make sure that you transfer this backup file to your PC or any other device. Syncing your phone with your Google account is also the smart thing to do as you’ll get back some of the data if you sign in with your Google ID after resetting your phone.

Method 1: Soft Reset

This method is the easiest and fastest way to reset the Galaxy S3. Soft resetting might not fix the major problems but it has successfully helped users overcome minor issues. This method won’t delete anything from your device.

If your device is usable or you don’t want to lose data from your phone, then trying a soft reset before proceeding to a hard reset is definitely the right option. If this method doesn’t solve your issue, then you can proceed to the hard reset methods.

Step 1

Click and hold down the Power key and click Power off to turn off your device.

Power Off

Step 2

Take off the back cover and remove the battery.

Step 3

Remove your micro SD and SIM card.

Step 4

Wait for about 15 seconds and put the SIM and micro SD card back in.

Step 5

Put in your battery and attach the back cover.

Step 6

Switch on your device. That’s it! You have successfully done a soft reset on your phone.

Method 2: Hard Reset Through Settings

If Method 1 didn’t work with your device or if your device isn’t functioning normally, then you’ll need to perform a hard reset in order to get back your device in a fresh condition. Hard resetting will delete everything off your device, including settings and account information.

While not many users are fans of doing a hard reset, it is likely to fix most of your problems. If you want to sell your phone, then this is the perfect way to clean your device. This particular method can be used if you can access your device’s settings menu. If your device is not usable or is not switching on, proceed to the Hardware Keys method.

Step 1

Open the Settings app on your Galaxy S3 and tap on Backup and reset below the Personal tab.

Step 2

Tap on Factory data reset. You can back up your data by enabling the Back up my data option.

Factory Reset

Step 3

Tap on the Reset device button.

Reset Device

Step 4

Press the Delete all button. Wait for the app to reset your phone. Once the process is complete, your Galaxy S3 will automatically reboot. That’s it! You have successfully performed a hard reset.

Delete All

Step 5

Restore your backup in order to get all your data back on your Galaxy S3

Method 3: Hard Reset Using Hardware Keys

This is an alternative method for hard resetting your device and like Method 2, this will also delete everything from your device. If your Galaxy S3 is not usable or it is not switching on, then you’ll need to use this method in order to reset your device.

This method uses the recovery menu to factory reset the Galaxy S3 without actually booting the device and this is the last resort for most users who feel their devices are bricked or unusable.

Step 1

Make sure that your Galaxy S3 is switched off.

Step 2

Click and hold the Volume Up and Home buttons simultaneously. Without letting go of these two keys, click and hold the Power key until you see a menu on your device.

S3 Reset

Step 3

Use the down Volume key to scroll down to the Wipe data/factory reset selection and choose it using the Power button.

Recovery Wipe

Step 4

Scroll down to Yes — delete all your user data and select it using the Power button.

Recovery Confirm

Step 5

Wait for the resetting process to complete. You’ll be taken to the main recovery screen once the process is done. Press the Power button to choose Reboot system now. That’s it! You have successfully performed  a hard reset, and the Galaxy S3 will now reboot.

Recovery Reboot

Step 6

Restore your backup by transferring the backup files from your PC to your Galaxy S3.


The Galaxy S3 is one of the most popular Android smartphones in recent years and even though the device is a relatively old flagship, it is still an excellent Android device with some fantastic hardware and software features. You can install most of the apps from the Google Play store and root your phone to enjoy custom ROMs and mods. However, you might face some problem due to an incompatible ROM or an app might mess with your device’s software. Keeping an Android device free from issues is not easy since Android phones are prone to hardware and software issues.

WHAT NEXT: 15 Ways To Customize Your Samsung Galaxy S3 For Incredible Experience

Whether you want to overcome a major issue such as significant battery drain and lag or you just want a fresh start with your device, you can use any of the methods mentioned above to reset your Galaxy S3. Method 1 is perfect if you’re facing a minor issue and don’t want to lose data and Methods 2 and 3 should fix most of your major problems. Whichever method you choose, make sure that you follow all the instructions properly on how to reset Samsung Galaxy S3, and feel free to shoot any questions below!

Similar Posts


        1. Hi,
          You need to switch your phone and then hold these buttons. Also, don’t release the buttons until you’re booted in recovery. Trust this helps!

      1. I tried to follow all the steps on method 3 and now for some reason my phone doesn’t even switch on. what can the problem be now ? please help

        1. Hi Shalen,
          Try taking out the battery for about a minute and then try turning it back on. Sometimes the solution is that easy, but I want to get that out of the way. Please let me know what happens.

      1. Im pressing the volume up button at the same time as the home button and nothing happens.. the phone is off too..

        1. First switch on the phone by holding power button. If it is not ON, then there is problem with your hardware. Sorry, good luck!

  1. Had to factory reset. No problem except this box on my home screen starting from PDA down to UN. My fear is that information is jeopardizing my device’s security. How could I go about clearing this box off my home screen?

  2. This doesn’t work for me either. I’ve searched the internet sort support with this issue but I can’t find anything. I’ve posted this on Yahoo and so far had no decent responses, can you help?
    “I’ve got an old Samsung Galaxy S3 mini that used to belong to my sister. It’s locked with a motion password and no one knows what account is attached to it so there is no chance of a reset. I want to wipe it clean and start over but the factory reset method (vol up + home + power) doesn’t work, it just boots the phone up normally and takes me to the password screen. It allows me to put it into download mode (vol down + home + power) so I’ve tried rebooting it with Odin but that doesn’t seem to wipe it either, just reboots and goes back to the password screen.

    How do I just wipe/reset the phone? Is there any way I can just reinstall the firmware and start fresh bearing in mind that it won’t let me enter factory reset mode using vol up + home + power.”

      1. I am certain of it. I must of tried it a hundred times. I even considered whether the volume up button was faulty but when I go to the emergency call option, both volume up and down work fine. It’s really weird, I can’t find any other example of this problem. Do you know of any reason why this wouldn’t work or do you know of another way to activate this mode?

  3. I was trying to do a hard re set and had the Android man appear and then about 30 seconds later my battery fell out (I didn’t have the back on) and since then all I get is a white screen when I turn my phone on!!! Any ideas


    1. Sharon
      Sounds like a hardware issue. Can you boot into recovery or do you get a white screen there as well? If you still get a white screen, then you probably need to send your phone for repairs under warranty.

  4. It doesn’t work on me as well! I tried those three button for at least 10 times! but didn’t work! Someone said its a firmware issue! couldn’t fine any solution yet! Weird!

  5. Hello all, By the time I woke up yesterday morning, my fully charged samsung galaxy s3 had gone off on its own. When I tried turning it on, it went as far as flashing the samsung logo but does not get past that.I have tried taking the battery out several times and restarting, also tried holding the power button + home screen + volume and it gives me a message about about Support Help! Warning!! A custom OS can cause critical problems….
    I chose the option to download to continue and it says downloading… do not turn off target. I left it for about an hour but nothing seems to be happening.
    I don’t know what to do now. Help Pleaseeeeee !!!

    I know I may have to do a factory reset at some point if this continues but I need to get my data out first
    (P.S. I tried connecting it to my PC, it seems to be charging but I cannot access my data, my systems does not seem to recognize that my phone is even plugged in)

  6. I installed avast antivirus and it suggested me to install another app to save battery. I think the other app was called saver. After I installed the battery started dying quicker and was not being charged when plugged. When the battery was over, the phone turned off and it doesn’t start working again. There was a message on my laptop saying the app failed to be installed. What should I do to make my phone work again? It’s a Samsumg S3 mini.

  7. Trying to hard reset on galaxy3
    when I use the button sequence given, I never get a menu.
    The screen remains black until I finally release the buttons on then the phone tries to turn on and it keeps getting stuck on the tmobile screen
    Phone is out of warranty

    1. Hi, try holding the Power, Volume Up and Home buttons simultaneously and release the Power button only when your phone vibrates.

  8. I didon’t every thing method 3 and I worked buthere now is trying to turn back on put gets stuck and doesn’t turn on all the way.

  9. I did the hard reset using the buttons, but now every time i try to turn the phone on it freezes on the AT&T logo. Please Help!

    1. Hi Jill,
      A soft reset is known to fix a number of issues such as lag or sluggishness, but have you tried downloading a battery saving app. I use DU Battery Saver and it works great for me. Hope this helps.

  10. On my S3 , I can`t remove anything from my favorites list , and I can`t go back to my phone list on my “device” please help .

  11. I was trying to do a hard re set and had the Android man appear and then about 30 seconds later my battery fell out (I didn’t have the back on) and since then all i get is the Samsung Logo in that blue and white blinking when I turn my phone on!!! Any ideas

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *