How to factory reset the LG G3 for better performance

lg g3 lollipop
© NextPit

If your LG G3 is acting erratically, it might be haunted - but it’s more likely to be suffering from a technical glitch that’s easy to solve than any interference from the spirit world. Read on to discover what to do with app and Android issues, and how to factory reset the LG G3 for better performance.

lg g3 lollipop
Factory reset the LG G3 to clear data and fix phone problems. / © ANDROIDPIT

Before you do anything

You do have a backup of anything important, don’t you? This is something every smartphone and tablet user should do as a matter of course, even when their device is working reliably: you never know when disaster, small children or hardware failure may strike, so it’s essential to make backup part of your regular routine. The more it matters, the more copies of it you should make, just in case.

The alternative solutions we’ll discuss here won’t wipe your data, but a factory reset will - so if you don’t have a backup, make one now!

What a factory reset does to your LG G3

A factory reset, sometimes known as a hard reset or a factory data reset, restores your phone to factory-fresh condition - so the software should be as fresh as the day your LG was made. The reset won’t wipe out any Android updates you’ve done, so for example if you’ve installed Lollipop it’ll still be there after the reset, but it will remove your apps and data.

AndroidPIT Galaxy S2 Factory Reset
You can reset most Android devices, including the G3, from Settings.  / © ANDROIDPIT

When you should do a factory reset on your LG G3

If you’re selling your phone or giving it to somebody else, you should factory reset it; that way you’ll remove all of your personal data and your Google account details.

You should also factory reset your LG G3 if you’re encountering problems such as crashes and freezes, but before you go for the nuclear option you should try clearing the app cache, clearing the system app and removing, rebooting and re-installing any troublesome apps first. In many cases that will solve your problems without requiring a full reset.

If you like the sound of that, we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to cleaning up your Android device that tells you what to do and what apps will do it for you. We’ve also put together a detailed tutorial on how to fix common LG G3 problems such as camera lag and overheating. Think your problems may be with Lollipop itself on your LG G3? We’ve got a guide for that too.

You should factory reset any phone you're selling or giving away. / © ollyy / Shutterstock

How to factory reset the LG G3

There are two ways to factory reset the LG G3. You can do it via software, or you can do it via the hardware buttons. The latter option is for when you can’t get into the software options, for example when the phone has frozen. Whichever option you use, always make sure you’ve got a good amount of battery life remaining - or better still, plug your LG into the charger so it can’t run out of steam half-way through doing something important.

To carry out a factory reset using software:

  • Back up your data
  • Go to Apps > Settings > General
  • Tap Backup & Reset
  • Assuming you’ve already backed up your stuff, you can uncheck Back up my Data. Leave it checked if you haven’t backed up yet.
  • Select Automatic Restore if you want to restore from your Google Account after the reset is complete
  • Tap on Factory Data Reset
  • Select Erase SD Card if you want to clear that too.
  • Tap Reset Phone
  • Tap Erase Everything
  • Tap OK
lg g3 lockscreen teaser
Performing a factory reset will freshen up your LG G3. / © ANDROIDPIT

If you can’t get into the software option, here’s how to do it with hardware. This option doesn’t give you the chance to backup your data before proceeding, and it doesn’t let you specify that you want it to restore from your Google Account on completion, so make sure you really can’t get into the software reset options before taking this step.

  • Press and hold Power and Volume Down on the back of your G3
  • Wait for the LG logo
  • Keep holding the Volume Down button and release then re-press the Power button
  • You should now see the Factory Data Reset screen
  • Use Volume Down to navigate to Yes
  • Press Power to confirm
  • You should now see the Erase All User Data and Restore Default Settings screen
  • Navigate to Yes with the Volume Down button
  • Press Power to confirm

Now you've done a factory reset to the LG G3, it should now restart and restore itself back to factory settings. You’ll need to re-enter your Google Account details and start the process of re-downloading everything afterwards.

Have you found problems magically disappear with a factory reset, or does cleaning the app and system caches fix 99 percent of all known irritations? Let us know in the comments!

Gary Marshall

Gary Marshall
Freelance writer

Former lion tamer, Girls Aloud backing dancer and habitual liar Gary Marshall has been writing about technology since Google was two guys in a garage. He's written for many fine magazines, newspapers and websites, written a range of how-to-books and a novel, co-written a BBC documentary series and dishes out weekly tech advice on BBC Radio Scotland.

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  • Ali Oct 21, 2018 Link to comment

    Can you anybody help me
    Lg g3 factordata resat

  • John N. Mar 5, 2018 Link to comment

    Hi all. When I follow these steps, my phone displays the LG screen for about five seconds, then goes black, then repeats. I haven't been able to reach the factory reset screen yet. Is there any other way to reach it? I tried buying a new battery / switching chargers.

  • Steve Morey MC Compere Presenter May 25, 2016 Link to comment

    Fantastic! I had almost given up being able to salvage my LG G3 after a disasterous firmware update. I had tried everything to no avail and so had made the decision to go to a local store to purchase a replacement phone. Just before I set off for the store I thought I would make one last attempt and my search enquiry brought up this article. I worked through the instructions and BINGO! Success! Thank you so very much as this has saved me hundreds on a replacement phone that I didn't really need.

  • Laura Garcia Feb 4, 2016 Link to comment

    How long does the reset take? The led on the phone is just blinking blue and green with the lg logo on the screen, but nothing happens? The phone does not come back from a hard reset, what can I do?

  • Jimmy Rioux Jan 4, 2016 Link to comment

    I've tried to factory reset my G3 and I've also tried hard reset. In both case the light flashes red and blue and the phone doesn't turn back on.

    • Daniel Gomes Jan 4, 2016 Link to comment

      Just take out the battery and turn your phone on. Alternatively, hold the power button and the volume down button simultaneously and your phone will be as it was.

  • Jeanette Jul 13, 2015 Link to comment

    Thank you so much for this. I just made the switch from Blackberry to Android and mostly using the phone is easy but stuff like this I do not find user-friendly! (then again I am a writer who still writes with pen and paper) I just hope it works I deemed to have picked up some type of virus!

  • Tommy Square May 23, 2015 Link to comment

    Should I reset when swiching carriers ? To uninstall all carrier installed apps?

    • Jacob Silverthorn Apr 5, 2016 Link to comment

      Carrier installed apps cannot be deleted easily. Resetting will not change this. When switching carriers just an store employee what they would recommend. If your switching carriers that means your unlocked, you should be able to just uninstall them the usual way.

  • KNason Mar 29, 2015 Link to comment

    What about photos and files if I don't have them on an sd card? Will it back up and restore those?

    • Jacob Silverthorn Apr 5, 2016 Link to comment

      Nope if you reset all your pictures will be gone. As a rule of thumb its a good idea to backup them up before hand either in the cloud or PC.

  • Rogue Tomato Mar 7, 2015 Link to comment

    I can't wait for your tutorial on how to press the Home button on a Galaxy phone.

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