How to fix a Galaxy S9 that keeps restarting and asking for PIN

Hello and welcome to another troubleshooting article. This time, we would like to bring to your attention three issues for the #GalaxyS9. As usual, we took the liberty of posting the issues sent our way by some members of our community. We hope you’ll find our suggestions helpful.

Problem #1: How to fix a Galaxy S9 that keeps restarting and asking for PIN

I have a Galaxy S9 which sometimes keeps stuck in a reboot loop or asks for the PIN code because it says its been rebooted while its not. I had to apply factory resetting 3 times already which cleans all software to factory resetting. This is because it was the only solution to get my phone working again. Soft rebooting or cache cleaning didn’t work. I only use a few apps that are widely used, because of my fear of a corrupt software in one of the apps. Sometimes my phone works fine for a week or so and then for no reason it falls back in the rebooting loop. I wonder if it could be a hardware problem, but the strange thing is that the phone works normally for a week and then suddenly falls back in the reboot loop. One time this occured while warching a video, but also it occured 2 times while I was not using the phone. I hope you can have some support on this issue. Thank you very much.

Solution: For this type of issue, you need to narrow down the possible factors. There’s no direct way to identify the reason for your problem by simply telling us the behavior of your device.

Check for bad third party apps

Bad app can be one of the reasons for this problem so the next best thing to do is to restart your phone to safe mode. With your phone in safe mode, all third party apps, those that you added, will be suspended. If your device works normally and won’t reboot in safe mode, our suspicion must be correct.

To boot your S9 to safe mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the model name screen.
  3. When “SAMSUNG” appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see Safe Mode.
  8. Observe the phone for at least 48 hours to notice any difference. Do not restart the phone during this period.

Remember, safe mode is just a utility tool but it won’t identify the problematic app. If your S9 works fine on safe mode only, you can bet there’s a bad third party app behind it. To identify which of your apps is causing the trouble, you should boot the phone back to safe mode and do the process of elimination.

  1. Boot to safe mode.
  2. Check for the problem.
  3. Once you’ve confirmed that a third party app is to blame, you can start uninstalling apps individually. We suggest that you begin with the most recent ones you added.
  4. After you uninstall an app, restart the phone to normal mode and check for the problem.
  5. If your S9 is still problematic, repeat steps 1-4.

Alternatively, you can also do the opposite by wiping the phone again (factory reset), and checking what happens after installing an individual app. Make sure to set aside long enough time to observe the phone after adding one particular app.

Stick to official apps only

Another way to keep bad apps from causing issues is to be stringent when it comes to your choices. If you are adventurous when it comes to apps and does not screen what stuff you add to your device, it’s only a matter of time before you’ll encounter problems. Apps, like Android, can sometimes be poorly coded. If you happen to add an inefficiently coded app, it may be trying to interfere with the operating system at all times causing the system to crash. Apps in your phone are your responsibility so there’s really no one else to blame but you if you encounter problems from one of them. Make sure that you check reviews by other users so you’ll know if there are other people experiencing problems.

Avoid installing apps from unknown or untrusted source. If you are fond of getting apps outside the Play Store, make sure that it’s compatible with your operating system.

Return software to stock

If your S9 is rooted, running a custom ROM or any unofficial software, try to restore everything back to stock (official Samsung software). Once you’ve done that, let your phone run for at least a day and see how it works. If the random reboot issue won’t occur, the software you’re using must be incompatible or buggy.

To minimize problems, try to use official software only. Custom ROMs are less stable compared to official ones.

Hardware malfunction

Your Galaxy S9 is a sophisticated gadget which requires good working software and hardware. In your case, the problem is most probably being caused by a software or app or something that you add later on after a factory reset. To help yourself narrow down the causes, be mindful of what you do with your phone after a factory reset. For instance, if the phone starts to reboot only after a particular app is back in the system, that may be the reason for the problem. Undo your recent change and see what happens.

If all the software tweaks above won’t help though, you can assume that the problem may not be fixable at your level. In this case, you want to get help from Samsung. It’s for them to decide whether or not they’ll repair or replace it.

Problem #2: What to do if your Galaxy S9 stopped charging after it got wet

I spilled a cup of liquid on the dining table. The phone was plugged up to the wall charger; SOME water went on the bottom of the phone where the wall charger connected. I dried off the phone and it worked o.k. I also dried off the cord connection to the phone and thought everything was alright. The next morning the phone would not charge. So I left it another day. Then the phone read “charging” and it did so. But the next time I tried to charge, the battery with the lightning bolt came up, then changed to the yellow triangle with an exclamation mark. I have since tried charging it a couple times, but it either does NOT show the charging icon, OR (once or twice,) the yellow triangle and exclamation mark came on for a few seconds then went off.

Solution: The Galaxy S9 has water-resistance protection and will automatically stop charging if it detects water or moisture in the charging port area. A moisture detected warning or error will also warn you in such a case. What you have to do is to dry the charging port thoroughly and leave the phone for a few hours. Once you’ve done that, charge it again.

If the phone still refuses to charge at this juncture, you should consider using a different set of charging accessories. If possible, use an official Samsung charging cable and adapter for the S9. Try to borrow one from a friend or from your local Samsung store.

If your phone still refuses to charge, wipe its software and return everything back to stock by doing a factory reset. Here’s how:

  1. Create a backup of your data.
  2. Turn off the device.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

If nothing changes following a factory reset, the problem must be hardware-related. There may be an issue with the charging port or it may be damaged. You should contact Samsung so they can set up a repair appointment for you.

If you don’t want to send the phone to Samsung right away, you can try using its wireless capability in the meantime. Wireless charging is slower than regular cable charging so do it sparingly.

Problem #3: Galaxy S9 keeps getting ad popups after an update

After the following update, my camera and messaging apps were corrupted and I had to reinstall. After rebooting and restarting, I find that I am bombarded with ads. When opening my phone I must delete 4 or 5 ads just to get to my homepage. Ads are popping up at any time regardless of where I’m at throwing me out of text conversations and off Facebook back to my homepage. I have never experienced this issue before and don’t know what’s causing it or how to fix it. Not sure I can remove the update. Update: G965USQS3ARG8 Applied August 23, 2018 10:06 am.

Solution: Android updates don’t bring ad pop ups. The most likely reason is a bad app that you installed. Wipe your phone with factory reset (refer to steps above) and then make sure that you screen what apps to add back. Avoid re-introducing apps you don’t recognize or those from suspect publishers. Keep in mind that app building is a expensive. If not a lot of people install apps, or if a product does not make enough money, its developer may opt to use less legit means, like hijacking a device and forcing it to display ads all the time. The more ads are shown, the more revenue it is for the developer.

Some malicious apps may appear legit initially but will hen change to something sinister later on. Some may allow a hacker to harvest personal information or lets other apps to be installed in the system without your permission. Such apps will then take over the system and bombard it with ads. Some of these malicious apps may come in the form of games, personalization apps, or anything under the sun.

Antivirus app

While some free antivirus apps may warn you and prevent some forms of malicious apps and codes, there’s only so much that they can do. You have to be vigilant and not rely on automated systems to protect you and your personal information. Only add apps from trusted sources. Do not install apps unless you absolutely need them.

If the problem continues after you’ve successfully factory reset the device, that means you are not careful enough with your apps. Do another system wipe and this time, be very selective with your apps. We can’t emphasize this enough but you are your phone’s first line of defense. Blame yourself if the issue returns.

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