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How to fix a Google Pixel 2 XL smartphone that won’t turn on [Troubleshooting Guide]

Power issues are usually associated with charging and battery problems. But contrary to what many people thought, many cases of device issues on power are tied to a software malfunction. This is especially true among new devices as every component is expected to be working perfectly as intended. Unless a physical or liquid damage is present and has inflicted problems to certain components including the ones involved in the boot up process.

This is what happens to some of the first few owners of Google Pixel 2 XL device, which surprisingly succumbed into a power issue at a very early operational stage. If by any chance you too are dealing with an issue on the Google Pixel 2 XL that does not power on, then you’re one of our target audience for this post. Read on to learn which among the possible factors has caused your new Android phone to not power on as intended and how to resolve the underlying cause.

In case you are trying to find a solution to a different problem, drop by our Pixel 2 XL troubleshooting page as we’ve already addressed some of the most common issues reported by the owners. If you still need our help, then fill up our Android issues questionnaire and hit submit to contact us.  

Common factors that can inflict power issues on your Google Pixel 2 XL

Considering that the battery and the rest of your phone components are free from any type of damage and working just fine, the blame is most likely on misbehaving apps and corrupted files installed and stored on the internal storage. A glitching app can also affect the phone’s entire functions, including the power features. And it may be even worse if a faulty software update has messed up the phone’s system functions. Aside from bringing in new and enhanced features, software updates especially major versions usually contain some bugs that can trigger various types of post-update issues on the receiving devices. Just like what happened to some Pixel phone users after installing the Oreo update or Android 8.0. One of the problems afflicting those who have downloaded and installed the update is on SMS messaging that suddenly stopped working on the device. Power issues can also be among the possible problems to surface after updating Android software.

Physical or liquid damage can possibly be the underlying cause especially if there were prior instances of dropping or liquid exposure on the phone. Even just the accumulated moisture can cause damage to any of the device components including the battery the moment it penetrates the hardware or circuit board. Symptoms including power issues may instigate sooner or later than expected.

Generally power issues that are tied to hardware damage on your Google Pixel 2 XL can be rectified by physical repair, which denotes the need for you to take a trip to a service center for tech service.

But if physical or liquid damage has been ruled out from the possible causes, you can try some means to get your device fixed and back to life. Should you wish to troubleshoot the problem at this very moment, you may refer to the highlighted workarounds below. These are generic methods which are likewise potential solutions to power issues, particularly on Pixel 2 XL that won’t turn on.

Workarounds and possible fixes to power issues on your Google Pixel 2 XL

As much as possible try to determine the most probable cause of the problem. One way to achieve this is by thinking of when the first symptom emerges. For instance, did the problem started after making changes to some settings on your device? Or did it occur when you installed a new update? Answering these questions will help you determine where to start and what to work on. But if identifying the possible cause is just too difficult for you to carry out, then what suits you best is a trial-and-error method. To help keep you on track when troubleshooting, a rundown of applicable workarounds are highlighted below. Feel free to use them whenever you’re all set to begin troubleshooting the problem.

Charge your phone

Again as explicated earlier, power issues can also be associated with charging issues. Your device may be able to power on but thing is that its battery has been fully discharged or completely drained and it is not charging. To make sure this is not causing your trouble, connect your Pixel phone to wall out then let it charge for at least 30 minutes. That should be enough time for it to accumulate enough power to boot up again. Also be sure to use only the original (OEM) charging equipment when charging your device. Some third-party chargers, adapter or cables are not really compatible with your device, thus can cause problems to arise like charging errors. You can plug your phone into a wall outlet or a computer port to charge.

If necessary, give your device more time to charge by keeping it connected to a power source for at least an hour or two. If it still won’t charge afterwards, then you need to deal with a charging issue first. Once your device charges, it will likely turn back on.

Force reboot or force restart

There are times when people would say that their device does not power on as its screen remains black. It is possible that the problem they are facing is on black screen and not related to power. This usually happens when an app or Android system itself crashes and eventually causes the device to get stuck on black screen. To eliminate this from the possible causes, performing a force reboot on the device can help. If you haven’t already, follow these steps to force your Google Pixel 2 XL to reboot:

  1. Press and hold down the Power button for at least 30 seconds or until the Google logo shows up.
  2. When the Google logo appears, release the button.

If it doesn’t show anything on the display, give it more time to charge.

Similar to the usual reboot, a force restart or force reboot won’t affect any data on the device thus it’s a safe process to begin with.

Boot into Safe mode (if possible)

Assuming that your phone is already able to power up, try to boot into safe mode and diagnose third party apps. Doing so will help you prevent the same problem to occur later on especially when a faulty app is triggering it. Try to diagnose apps while using your device in safe mode. If you suspect any bad apps, you can disable the app or uninstall it from your device. Here’s how to enter Safe Mode on Google Pixel 2 XL:

  1. Press and hold the Power button for a few seconds.
  2. Then touch and hold the option to Power Off on your screen.

When the Safe Mode label appears at the bottom of your display, it means that you are already in safe mode.

Another way to boot into safe mode on your Pixel 2 XL is through this method:

  1. Press the Power button until the Google logo appears.
  2. When you see the animation instigates, press and hold the Volume Down button on your device.
  3. Keeping holding the Volume button until the Safe Mode label appears at the bottom of the screen.

While in safe mode, you can diagnose apps or if necessary, remove any suspicious apps. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Connect your phone to a charger and let it charge.
  2. Swipe up the Arrow icon at the bottom of the Home screen. Doing so will show a list of apps.
  3. Go to Settings.
  4. Tap Apps.
  5. Locate then select the desired app.
  6. If system apps are not visible, tap the Menu icon located on the upper-right then select Show System option.
  7. Tap Force stop then tap OK.
  8. Tap Storage then tap Clear Data. Doing so will reset the app and delete saved information or data within the app. This option may not be available for some apps particularly stock or pre-installed apps.
  9. Finally, tap OK to confirm action.

Once you’re done diagnosing apps in Safe Mode, you can switch back to normal mode by simply restarting your phone.

Note: All third-party apps are temporarily disabled or not working in safe mode so it will be easier for you to determine whether or not the problem is isolated to a third party application on the phone.

Plug your Google Pixel 2 XL into a computer

If you have a computer available, you can use it to troubleshoot your device. If the computer is able to recognize and communicate with your Google Pixel 2 XL, it means that your phone is still alive and probably just stuck on black screen. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Unplug the cable from the power adapter.
  2. Check and ensure that your computer is turned on and connected to a power source.
  3. Connect your Google Pixel 2 XL to your computer’s USB port using the supplied USB cable.
  4. Wait for about 15 minutes.
  5. After the elapsed time, disconnect and then reconnect the cable from your phone. Do it within 10 seconds.
  6. If you see a battery icon within 1 minute, it means that your phone is powered off and is charging.
  7. If you see a red light, it means that your battery is completely drained or discharged.
  8. If you see a flashing red light, it means that your device has not enough power to turn on.
  9. Let your phone charge for at least 30 minutes.
  10. After 30 minutes of charging, press and hold the Power button for a few seconds, then tap Restart on your screen.

Use Android recovery / repair tool

If you already run out of option and still couldn’t get your Google Pixel 2 XL to power on, then you may resort to using an Android recovery or repair software to try to access and repair the device system if necessary. This however is just optional. If you wish to give it a shot, you can search online for the best possible and compatible Android recovery/repair software for your device. Before downloading your preferred software, read the previous reviews to learn to pros and cons based from actual performance then decide whether to go for it or not. When you’re decided, download and install the preferred software to use then follow the onscreen instructions to proceed with the actual process of Android system recovery or repair.

Escalate the problem and seek more help

If none of the prior methods is able to fix the problem and that your Google Pixel 2 XL still does not power on, contact your device carrier or Google Support to escalate the problem for further assistance and other options. Problem escalation is also recommended if the problem started after installing a new software update. Doing so will allow Google team to tag it among the post-update issues that should be fixed in the next update.

Or if your device is still under warranty then you may consider availing for warranty instead – either service or unit replacement, if necessary.

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