Why My iPhone 3GS kept Shutting Off Unexpectedly and How I Fixed It

Recently, my iPhone 3GS kept on shutting off out of the blue, and did so on a pretty regular basis. However, I only let this happen for a day or so before I took action, did research, and fixed it. I can not let anything happen to my beloved iPhone. It’s in integral part of my businesses.

Here is what happened and how I fixed it:

My iPhone 3GS was acting crazy saying there was 37% of the battery power left, then 5%, then 17%, and then it would shut off. It kept on doing this. To get it to turn back on, I would have to wait a few minutes, plug it in, and then it would come back. It was acting as if it didn’t remember how much of the battery was left. Never had that happened before, and I have had it for about 1 year.

At first I thought it was the battery, but decided to do more research. I did some research online and talked to some guys at Fry’s. Some people online said it might be because it got wet or that it just needed to be re-jailbroken. The guy at Fry’s suggested that I re-jailbreak it. I didn’t really care to do that, as I am running 3.0.1, and did not want to go through the hassle of finding the new jailbreak for the latest version of the OS. Plus, I either want to wait for OS 4.0 to come out (hopefully June 7 at WWDC) and jailbreak that when it comes out, or if Steve Jobs rocks our world and releases the iPhone 4G at WWDC, then I’ll buy that.

I decided to try some other things first, as this problem did not happen gradually. It happened suddenly. So I figured it was probably something that I did.

So, I tried a couple of things.

1. I deleted the most recent app that I installed (it was a free alarm app that is in the top 50 free apps in iTunes)
2. I copied all of the pics and videos that I had in my Camera Roll in my Photos app onto an external hard drive and deleted them from my iPhone (there were over 1300 pics and videos, which totalled up to about 1GB of data).

Since I did both of the above actions, the issue is resolved. I’m not sure which action fixed it. Maybe it was a combo of the two, but I had just installed the alarm app (even though I already had a different one already installed), and that’s pretty much when things started going crazy.

With regard to how much space I had available on the hard drive of my iPhone before and after, before I took the above actions, I had a little over 1Gb of hard drive space left, and after, I now have 2.3GB of space left, and I have a 16GB version.

So that’s it. That’s how I fixed it. I’m surprised that fixed it, as I really did think the battery was going.

If this helped you or someone you know, or if you have any questions, please comment below. Thanks!

UPDATE: After I did this, the percentage for the battery power was no longer fluctuating, however two days later, it shut off unexpectedly again. So I did some more googling, and found a fix. I blogged about it here.

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About Ian Brown

Ian has been involved with computers since very young. He took his first computer class when he was just 8 years old. He always had an affinity for computers, but never really took it seriously. It was not until he graduated from college and experienced the real world for a while did he realize that computers may be where his talent and passion lie. He has since branched out into Internet marketing and LOVES it. He currently resides in Los Angeles where he services clients ranging from residential to small business to celebrities.

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3 Responses to “Why My iPhone 3GS kept Shutting Off Unexpectedly and How I Fixed It”

  1. Unlock iPhone 3.1.3 Says:

    I want to jailbreak and unlock my new iphone 4. All sites only have unlock iphone 3.1.3 3GS. Any help anyone?

  2. Ian Brown Says:

    Doesn’t seem like it’s been released yet.

    Check out this link:


    And keep checking back at the blog below, as this is the team that creates the software that does all of the iPhone unlocking and jailbreaking:


    Btw, did you get your iPhone 4 through the normal channels, or did you get it somewhere else? If you get it from somewhere else, where did you get it? I’m looking to buy one to unlock and jailbreak myself.


  1. Update on my iPhone 3GS shutting off unexpectedly issue | ianbrown.cc - May 30, 2010

    […] Sale Why My iPhone 3GS kept Shutting Off Unexpectedly and How I Fixed It May […]

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