iPhone / iPad Text Sound Notifications Not Working? How to Fix

You may lose text sound notifications with incoming texts alerting you with a sound whenever you receive a text. This article explains what to do when your iPhone or iPad is not making any sounds when you get a new message.

Devices: All iPhone models (e.g., iPhone 6, iPhone 5, iPhone 6s ), all iPad models (e.g., iPad Air, iPad 2).

If you’re not getting notification sounds, then this article is for you.

See also: Apple Watch Not Getting Notifications From iPhone, Fix

How to fix sound notification problems

If iPad or iPhone notification sounds are not working, meaning if your iPhone (or iPad) does not let you know when you receive an incoming text message (e.g., iMessage), here is how to fix:

Before you do anything, make sure that you are using the latest version of iOS or iPadOS. On your device, go to Settings > General > Software Update. And if there is an update available, then follow the onscreen instructions.

1– Make sure that you do not have Do Not Disturb turned on. You may check this by going to Settings > Do Not Disturb. Set this to “Off”.

Turn Off Do Not Disturb
Turn Off Do Not Disturb

2– Make sure that Do Not Disturb is not turned on for any particular contacts. To check this, launch the Messages app where you can see your messages.  Does any message have any moon sign? If there is, this means that you enabled Do Not Disturb for that contact:

Messages Do Not Disturb
Messages Do Not Disturb

To disable this, tab “Details” and turn off “Do Not Disturb”

3– Tap Settings > Notifications > Messages, make sure that “Allow Notifications” is turned on.

See also: Notifications Disappearing From Lock Screen? Fix

4– Your device has a mute switch (ring or silent). On your iPhone, this switch is located on the left side of your device, on your iPad, it is located on the right side of your iPad:

iPhone Mute Switch
iPhone Ring Silent Switch

Make sure that the mute button isn’t turned on by pushing the “Ring/Silent” switch to the “Ring” position.

5– Try setting the alert to a different sound. On your iPhone or iPad, go to Settings > Notifications and select an app (e.g., Messages) and tap Sounds and select a different one.

6– Restart your device. Here is how you can restart your iPhone or iPad.

  • iPhone X, 11 or later: Press and hold the volume up (or down) and the side or top buttons together until you see the power off slider. And drag the slider and wait for your device to turn off. Press and hold the side or top button until you see the Apple logo.
  • Other iPhone or iPad models: Press and hold the side or top button until the power off slider appears. Then drag the slider and wait for your device to turn off. Press and hold the side or top button until the Apple logo appears.

7– Restart the Messages app. You can force the Messages app to close. Simply press the home button twice, find the Messages app, and swipe up to close it. Then relaunch again.

If you do not see the contact names, see this article.

See also: WhatsApp Push Notifications Not Working on iPhone

Dr. Serhat Kurt worked as a Senior Technology Director. He holds a doctoral degree (or doctorate) from the University of Illinois at Urbana / Champaign and a master’s degree from Purdue University. Here is his LinkedIn profile.

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153 thoughts on “iPhone / iPad Text Sound Notifications Not Working? How to Fix”

  1. I followed all the steps, but it did not solve my problem. I have an iPhone 8 with the most current update. When I go to Settings – Notifications – Messages – Sounds, there is a line at the top of the screen which says ‘Vibration Default’. If I tap “Default”, it opens another screen with the following word at the very top “Vibration”. The first line on that screen says
    Synchronized (Default)”. Then, there is a list of sounds I can choose from. When I tap on any or all of the sounds, all I get is a vibration. The vibration differs depending on the sound I choose. But, I still can’t hear the sound.

  2. Thank you. Spent a long time trying to set sounds and finally discovered your article. #4 did it. Didn’t realize that the new phone was on mute. Top left button. Whew!!!

    • texting and making phone calls seem to have been the last thing on their minds when designing these handheld computers with cameras.

  3. I have the same issue with intermittently not getting the audio alert. I think this is occurring when the message app is resident in memory. This is similar to if you are exchanging a series of texts with a person, each additional text does not activate an alert.

    Since my phone is also my pager and the pages come through messages this is more than an inconvenience. My solution is to swipe kill the message app after each message. So far that has solved the problem.


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