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Galaxy S5 has bootloop issue after OTA update fails, among other issues

Hi everyone! Our post today provides solutions to the common problems like bootloop, random reboot, OTA update, screen failure, and connection issues that some #GalaxyS5 users are experiencing. We’re hoping that this article can give light to some of these questions. For more troubleshooting regarding the S5 device, don’t forget to visit this page.

  1. Galaxy S5 keeps randomly freezing and rebooting by itself
  2. Galaxy S5 has bootloop issue after OTA update fails
  3. Galaxy S5 won’t complete installation of OTA update
  4. Galaxy S5 black screen problem
  5. Galaxy S5 not receiving calls and messages as it’s unable to connect to network

If you are looking for solutions to your own #Android issue, you can contact us by using the link provided at the bottom of this page, or you can install our free app from Google Play Store.

When describing your issue, please be as detailed as possible so we can easily pinpoint a relevant solution. If you can, kindly include the exact error messages you are getting to give us an idea where to start. If you have already tried some troubleshooting steps before emailing us, make sure to mention them so we can skip them in our answers.


Problem #1: Galaxy S5 keeps randomly freezing and rebooting by itself

Ok. I apologize in advance for the frustration oozing through this long explanation. Not unlike many fellow consumers on this website, just about everything is wrong with my phone and I feel as though I’ve exhausted my ability to troubleshoot & fix it, or to even find additional information.

Several months back, around Christmas, my phone was sitting in my lap, in bed, and I noticed the screen went black, it shut off, and would not turn back on. It wasn’t dropped, exposed to extreme temperature or liquid. I had not just performed any updates recently. Just simply shut off and was useless. After researching and troubleshooting, I did a factory reset from Recovery Mode, then was able to get it working again by leaving it plugged in to charge for several hours.

My phone was pretty much normal for less than two weeks before it began to RANDOMLY freeze, reboot, and be fine. It started out happening maybe 1-2 times a day. After 3-4 days of this, it again shut off, unable to boot. I was able to borrow an iPhone 4 during the several WEEKS my S5 would not boot (no matter WHAT). Luckily I was able to bring it back to life when the iPhone was returned to its owner.

The S5 has now been limping along, off and on, for two weeks. In its factory reset condition, it did everything mentioned above. Then, I reluctantly proceeded with AT&T’s forced software update, to 5.1.1 Because the phone reboots itself, it’s first attempt to update was interrupted. Second time successful.

Now, it CONSTANTLY, sometimes uncontrollably, freezes, and reboots. There are moments when the phone will reboot until it stops booting at all and I have to remove battery to hold down Power button for a minute to release charge. If I leave it alone, it seems to reboot less. But there has not been any indication of what is causing this. It happens in every app, or sometimes even on the home and lock screens. There are occasionally periods of several hours that it doesn’t freeze/reboot. However, the problems have not gone away, and have only gotten worse.

Before the screen freezes and phone reboots occasionally, there is a really loud static sound (sometimes obnoxious beep instead). Or, black & green lines appear across the screen as it freezes, then reboots. I’ve tried literally everything:

Factory reset, Wipe Cache Partition, Booted into Safe and Recovery Modes, Enabled Developer Mode, deleted browser cache, reset settings on built-in apps such as Camera and more, modified settings to use less RAM while carefully being sure not to mess with any system apps that are needed to function properly, the list goes on and on.

Finally, the device now says it is Custom upon boot, and in Settings under Device Status, In my research, I’ve learned that this is normally due to a Custom OS. However, I have not modified anything in regards to the OS. It has had these problems for 3 months now, and has only recently stated it is Custom, several days after updating to 5.1.1. It has even told me I have software not authorized in its own reboot attempt, and to take it to a professional, only to reboot itself right back to the regular screen.

Because it now says Custom, I believe that means my warranty is void, when it otherwise wouldn’t be. PLEASE HELP ME!

I have spent countless hours just trying to understand what’s wrong and fix it, as I am paying a monthly fee on a device that hardly works and is less than a year old. I put a down payment on the brand new phone May 2015. To boot, I run a small home business and need to have a phone with all the amazing capabilities that my S5 has. Unfortunately, I cannot be without a phone similar to this for more than a few days without losing substantial income. — Melissa

Solution: Hi Melissa. First of all, no apologies needed as we appreciate your effort in providing us a detailed description of the problem. The more details a user gives us, the easier it is for us to identify a potential solution. Now to your issue!

The causes of a random reboot or freezing problems in Android phones can generally be broken into two groups — hardware or software. Your S5 is an amazing computing machine that relies on both hardware and software to work in harmony all the time. If any of the two starts to deviate from its normal way of operation, problems can manifests in a lot of ways including the ones you are experiencing right now. Your first task is to isolate what the true cause is.

As a general rule of thumb, we always recommend that a user must begin to do software troubleshooting as majority of causes are software in nature. If all software-related steps fail to change anything, a user can then assume that a hardware error must be to blame.

Now, you can only do so much when it comes to software troubleshooting. In fact, it looks like you’ve already did all of them before you contacted us. To try to solve a possible software issue, a user must do things like wiping the cache partition, booting the phone in safe mode, clearing an app’s cache and data, and ultimately, performing a factory reset.

Sometimes, third party apps can cause freezing or random reboot problems as well. Doing a factory reset then re-installing the same set of apps will surely not help in this case. Try to do another round of factory reset and observe the phone for 24 hours without installing any third party application. This is a good way to determine if one of the installed apps is to blame.

If none of these software resolutions won’t fix the problem, the next steps involves doing limited hardware checks and troubleshooting (depending on the problem at hand).

In the context of your problem, hardware troubleshooting necessitates that you check if the phone shows signs of overheating or charging issues as that might suggest a battery-related problem. If your handset does not get uncomfortably hot during charging or when using it normally, then there must other reasons causing the problem. Random reboot issue can be caused by a malfunctioning battery as well so you want to check if a new battery will fix it. A Lithium-based battery like the one on your phone degrades over time. If you’re a heavy user and charges your phone more than twice every day, there’s a chance that the battery may have simply lost significant capacity and it can no longer hold a charge for long as before. Getting a replacement is the best way to check this aspect.

If the phone continues to reboot on its own even with a new battery installed, there must be other hardware component errors that causing the problem. Because diagnostics of a hardware issue is time consuming and complicated even for a trained professional, there are not many online resources for them. Samsung, in order to save time and money on repairs, would even simply recommend a replacement rather than go through a thorough diagnostics and repair. If a phone is indispensable to your business, we suggest that you invest in a replacement instead.

Problem #2: Galaxy S5 has bootloop issue after OTA update fails

I got a message of OTA update on my SAMSUNG GALAXY S5 SM-906S which i downloaded and installed. After completion of installation it started in a weird way… restarting again and again and finally got stuck on Samsung S5 logo. From here starts the boot loop.

I did Samsung Kies emergency firmware was successfully completed without any error but same boot loop issue. I manually updated the latest official firmware through Odin 3 times and was passed in all 3 attempts. But boot loop was still there.

Then i used four of files along with pit file and have gone for Nand erase all, re-partition and was successfully passed. But boot loop was still there.

I can go into download mode but not in recovery.

One thing more. Whenever i have flashed firmware with Kies or Odin it was passed without any error…but it still get stuck on Samsung S5 logo and on the top left corner in blue color it says booting recovery, and after 6-7 seconds it restarts again.

Can you please tell me what am i supposed to do or what is the problem with my mobile?

Thanks. — Hammad

Solution: Hi Hammad. There are as many as 40 S5 models around the world at this time with about 3,000 firmware available for them. Are you positive that you install the correct firmware? One of the most common reasons for a bootloop issue is by flashing an incorrect or incompatible firmware. You must know exactly what firmware to flash in order for the phone to work. Some of the things to consider when picking a firmware includes the following:

  • name of the wireless carrier
  • country
  • firmware version prior to flashing

Samsung builds the S5 depending on the design specifications from carriers (with the exception of the International version). Some S5 models have sets of features that may be unique to a certain carrier even if they are from the same country. For example, the S5 built for T-Mobile has different network configuration compared to those built for Verizon. Installing a firmware designed for T-Mobile S5 will most likely result to problems when flashed to a Verizon S5.

Also, some firmware will only work if they replace a certain firmware version. Flashing a firmware version designed to replace Android 4.4.2 may not work when replacing a 5.0 version.

Make sure that you consider these things when flashing in the future.

Now, since it’s impossible for us to know what you did right during the initial process, we recommend that you also ensure that your device’s bootloader is working fine. Sometimes, a bad bootloader can also lead to boot loop issue so try to check this third party guide to see if it helps.

Problem #3: Galaxy S5 won’t complete installation of OTA update

My system downloads a ‘latest version” of the OS, but every time it tries to install, it fails. It downloads, reboots, and I can see tiny writing on the logo screen where it says it is trying, gets to 1% and then install fails.  I’ve tried multiple times and it doesn’t take it. I’ve tried using Kies, but Kies says I have the latest install, so, it won’t download/try to install anything.

The only thing that comes to my mind is perhaps some of the software I have on it that has “device administrator” rights: MobileIron, Android Pay, and Android Device Manager. I also have “GalleryVault”, but the checkbox is not checked, and I cannot “check it” for some reason.

I’d rather not do a factory reset; wondering if there is another idea/option. — DJ

Solution: Hi DJ. If the phone won’t install an OTA update (over-the-air update provided by your wireless carrier), then consider manually flashing an official firmware via Odin. You can use Google to search for complete instructions how it’s done.

Problem #4:  Galaxy S5 black screen problem

I was using Facebook Messenger to text my brother while charging my phone, when my screen went black. So i thought the phone just turned off but the screen continued to be black after i tried turning it on. I also tried using the home screen button but that didn’t do anything except activate the beep from the S Voice. Now only the notification light seems to work. It’s either solid blue when i tried to press something, red when its plugged in to charge or flashing green.

I tried turning on recovery mode but the screen is just completely black and the blue light flashes. Also, when I shake my phone there is a rattling sound around the camera region. The arrow and app overview button flash on and then go off and the phone vibrates every time I hold either the power button or the home screen button. I don’t drop it often, and I also have a defender otter-box to protect it. — Agnieszka

Solution: Hi Agnieszka. Most of the time, a black screen issue like the one you describe here is an indication that the screen assembly has failed. This assembly has three major components — the LCD, the digitizer, and the flex cable. Any failure on one of these components can render the entire assembly totally unusable. There’s very little to nothing that we can do in terms of troubleshooting when the screen is not working so your first task here is to check if the screen has indeed failed. If the phone is still covered by a repair warranty, make sure to have it diagnosed. Better still, skip repair entirely and simply have it replaced.

Problem #5: Galaxy S5 not receiving calls and messages as it’s unable to connect to network

Hi there. I checked out your page but it doesn’t include my particular problem — so I’m emailing you. I spent the weekend in an area without service so couldn’t receive or send texts. When I returned home, I assumed it would pick up my home service and work service networks and return to normal. But it hasn’t.

When I write a text, hit send, I get the looping circle at the bottom. And it stays like that for hours. Sometimes I get a message saying:

“Currently unable to send your message. It will be sent when the service becomes available.”

And continues to loop. I haven’t received any texts either–probably since last Friday. Please help!

Thanks. — Michelle

Solution: Hi Michelle. Smartphones are designed to automatically reconnect to a cellular network once it detects the right signals. However, in some rare cases, this may not always work. What you can do in this case is simple. First, you want to make sure that the phone is restarted. Simply turn the phone off, remove the battery and wait for at least 10 seconds before turning it back on. After that, you want to manually “log off” from your wireless carrier’s network. Simply go to Settings>More networks>Mobile networks>Network operators>OK. Once you see the list of available networks, select one that is NOT your own network and try to connect to it. Wait for the error to come up saying that your device is unable to connect to that network. Then go back to Network operators menu and select your own wireless network this time.

Doing this procedure will refresh and re-establish mobile connection to your network. It should work.

If nothing changes though, make sure to contact your carrier to ask for direct assistance.


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