What To Do When Your Phone Says Emergency Calls Only

Troubleshoot your phone showing Emergency Calls Only by restarting, checking airplane mode, making calls, fixing SIM card, and resetting network settings.

when your phone says emergency calls only

It can seem there’s a gremlin in your phone, sometimes. It decides when to work and when to work your nerves.

Let’s troubleshoot what to do when your phone says emergency calls only, so you don’t throw it into the river (especially when you really do need it to work).

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Why does my phone go to emergency calls only?

Android phones, especially, are prone to throwing an emergency calls-only error. And, we’re very well not going to call 911 and ask them how to fix our phone.

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The likely issue is that, for whatever reason, your phone isn’t connecting to the network.

What to Do When Your Phone Says Emergency Calls Only

We don’t know why a cell phone disconnects from a network, but we do know ways you can fix it.

Turn It Off and On

You’ve probably already done this. But, just in case. Rebooting a phone disconnects all networks at once, giving it a better chance of coming back and acting right.

  1. Touch and hold down the power button.
  2. Select Restart from the menu.

Soft reset

Turning your phone off and on may not be enough to wake the Android up.

  1. Unplug your phone from the charger.
  2. Remove the battery.
  3. Wait 30 seconds to a minute and reinsert the battery.

Airplane Mode

Half of all people have no idea why airplane mode even exists, and the other half forget to turn it off.

Turning airplane mode off and on your Android is one of the first fixes you should try to get past the emergency-only screen. It sometimes resets your network connection.

  1. From the top of the Android screen, pull down.
  2. Touch Airplane mode to enable.
  3. Take a ten-second wait.
  4. Choose Airplane mode again to turn it back off.

How do I turn off emergency mode on Android?

If you’ve called 911, even by accident, your Android assumes you’re in trouble and shuts it all down. And, just like airplane mode, sometimes it’s activated by accident.

  1. Take the battery out while the device is on.
  2. Let it stay out for about 5 to 10 minutes.
  3. Put the battery back in.
  4. Turn the phone back on.

You can go through menus and manually turn the emergency mode off. But the softer reset automatically resets your device.

Make an Outbound Call

Sometimes your phone or device is lying to you. We don’t know why. But we do know that every once in a while, making a regular phone call will wake your Android up and clear the Emergency Calls Only error.

SIM Card Trouble

A SIM card is such a tiny thing and can cause a giant headache if it wiggles loose or is improperly inserted. You need it to connect to the network and resolve the no-service error.

  1. Pull the SIM tray out.
  2. Carefully take the SIM card off of the card slot. 
  3. Slip the SIM card into the slot properly.
  4. Gently push the train back into your cellphone.

Multiple Networks

Androids can support multiple networks because it’s always looking for the best quality network coverage. If a service provider doesn’t allow you to use your preferred network mode, it may throw your phone off.

  1. Open settings on the Android phone.
  2. Select Wi-Fi and Network.
  3. Choose SIM and Network.
  4. Touch Preferred network type.

Manually Select the Network Provider

We are back to the fact that Android devices love to decide the relevant network. 

You can manually choose your network carrier to try and clear up an Emergency Call Only error.

  1. Open settings.
  2. Choose Wi-Fi and Network menu.
  3. Select SIM and Network, and choose your SIM.
  4. Touch Network Operators in the SIM menu.

Just Reset the Network Altogether

Connections can get corrupted, or your Android can once again make the wrong decision. Either way, sometimes resetting the network will get you out of the Emergency Calls Only loop.

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Touch System and then Reset options in the Settings menu.
  3. Choose Reset Wi-Fi, Mobile, and Bluetooth in the reset menu.

Factory Reset as a Last Resort

A factory reset is the last thing anyone wants to do but in many cases, it is the one thing that will for sure eliminate the Emergency Calls Only error. 

  1. Touch Settings.
  2. Navigate to System and then Reset Options.
  3. Choose Erase all data – factory reset.

If it doesn’t work, it’s the phone, and we are sorry.

Cellphone Bill

Of course, if you’re not in good standing with your network provider, they aren’t going to let you do anything but make emergency phone calls.

Even with Wi-Fi access, SMS and phone calls are not possible.

How do you fix your phone when it says emergency calls only?

  • Turn your Android device on and off.
  • Double-check that you’ve not accidentally activated airplane mode.
  • Try to call someone you know; it may rid you of the emergency calls only error.
  • Make sure the SIM card is installed correctly.
  • Your phone may be connecting to multiple networks.
  • You can manually go in and choose your network provider.
  • Reset network connections, including removing corrupted connections.
  • Factory resets are painful but sometimes required.

FAQs about Emergency Calls

Why is my Android phone going straight to voicemail?

It is way too easy to turn on the Do Not Disturb (DND) option on an Android. It only takes a few seconds to check and fix. Just swipe down and select the Do Not Disturb icon.

Why won’t my phone make or receive calls?

It could be one of the same reasons why it throws an Emergency Calls Only error. You will follow the same steps to try and resolve the issue of not being able to make and get phone calls.

How do I get my phone to ring?

You will want to go to Settings and tap Sound or Sounds and Vibration. From there, you will tap the Phone Ringtone or Ringtone option in the menu.

Why am I not receiving calls but can make them?

Well, the good news is that your phone, network, and phone line are active and working. 

The bad news is that it’s a software or configuration problem if you’re making calls and not receiving them.

Why is my SIM card not showing network?

The SIM card is not showing network because it might have become loose or fallen out of its slot. It is important to ensure that the SIM card is properly in place. If this does not resolve the issue, you can try using a different SIM card from a different carrier. If your phone still fails to recognize the SIM card, there may be a problem with the SIM card itself.

How do I turn off emergency call on my iPhone?

To turn off emergency call on your iPhone, you can open the Settings app and navigate to Emergency SOS. From there, you have the option to toggle the Auto Call feature on or off.

How to turn off emergency calls only on Android Lock Screen?

To turn off emergency calls only on the Android Lock Screen, you can navigate to your device’s settings. From there, choose either ‘Lock Screen and Security’ or ‘Screen Lock Type’ option. Next, you will need to enter your current security PIN, password, or bio-method. Finally, select either ‘None’ or ‘Swipe’ to disable the emergency call feature.

How do I get my iPhone out of emergency calls only?

To get your iPhone out of emergency calls only, you can try resolving the issue by performing a simple restart. For iPhone 8 or later models, start by pressing the volume up button and then releasing it quickly. Next, press the volume down button and release it quickly as well. Finally, press and hold the side button until you see the Apple logo on your screen. This should help fix any system glitches that may have caused your iPhone to be stuck in emergency mode.

Why is my phone not getting service?

Your phone may not be getting service due to various reasons. To troubleshoot the issue, you should contact your carrier to ensure that your account is active and in good standing. Additionally, verify if there are any outages in your area. It is also important to check if your device is not blocked from receiving cellular services and if it is properly set up with the correct data plan.

Why is my cellular data not working?

Your cellular data may not be working because the mobile data option, which allows you to receive data on your device, might be turned off. To resolve this issue, you can go to the settings app on your device, whether it’s an Apple or Android phone, and look for the “Mobile Data” or “Cellular Data” option. Ensure that this option is enabled to restore the functionality of your cellular data.

Why is my phone not allowing me to make calls Android?

My phone is not allowing me to make calls on Android due to various reasons. Some possible causes include being in a dead zone, having airplane mode turned on, unpaid bills, malware affecting the phone, or a software issue.

Why is my phone not allowing me to make calls iPhone?

My phone is not allowing me to make calls on my iPhone. To resolve this issue, you can try resetting your network settings. To do this, go to Settings, then General, then Transfer or Reset iPhone, and select Reset. From there, choose Reset Network Settings. Keep in mind that this will remove all current saved settings, such as Wi-Fi passwords, preferred networks, and VPN settings. Additionally, you can attempt to make or receive calls in a different location to see if the issue persists.

Why is my Samsung phone not letting me make calls?

My Samsung phone is not allowing me to make calls for various reasons. It could be due to being in a bad network area, selecting the wrong cellular network or mode, or using an outdated version of Samsung One UI on my phone.

Why is my Samsung phone going straight to voicemail when someone calls?

Your Samsung phone is going straight to voicemail when someone calls because of several possible reasons. To resolve this issue, you can try the following steps: First, disable Do Not Disturb and call forwarding settings on your phone. Additionally, you can attempt turning Bluetooth off and on, or replacing your SIM card with a new one. If these steps do not work, it is recommended to check your network coverage and contact your mobile provider as a final option.

Why are my calls going straight to voicemail?

Your calls may be going straight to voicemail because call blocking or call forwarding is enabled. This can result in all incoming calls being directed to voicemail. To resolve this, you can check your phone settings to see if any numbers are blocked or if unknown and spam calls are being blocked. If you find any blocked numbers, you have the option to disable this feature.

Why is cellular network not available?

The cellular network is not available due to various factors, such as glitches in settings, tower service problems, or billing issues. To quickly and effectively resolve this issue on your Android device, you can try enabling and disabling Airplane Mode followed by restarting your device.

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