How to fix your Motorola Moto X4 that won’t send/receive SMS or text messages [Troubleshooting Guide]

SMS send and receiving issues in mobile devices are usually due to network errors like when the cellular network is down or when the device is getting intermittent to no network signal. For problems with outgoing SMS messages, account-related issues can likewise be the root cause. In some instances, a device won’t be able to send or receive SMS or text messages due to some software issues like when the messaging app in use is going rogue or when some settings on the phone got messed up from an update or faulty configuration. The worst possible cause would be physical or liquid damage on the phone. This is most likely to blame if your phone stops sending or receiving text/SMS after it fell or got wet.

Some network components on the phone might have acquired some damage from that prior incident. The same thing can happen when the SIM card is damaged. Unfortunately for hardware-related texting problems, there’s nothing much you can do on your end as that already require service. But for SMS/text problems that are software-related, you still have a chance to fix that with some workarounds. The solutions that I’ve mapped in this context are applicable to SMS problems on a Motorola Moto X4 smartphone. If you own this device and suddenly find trouble sending or receiving SMS or text messages, then this post may be able to help you out. Read on for further information.

Before we proceed, if you’re looking for a solution to a problem with your phone, try to browse through our troubleshooting pages to see if we support your device. If your phone is in the list of our supported devices, then go to the troubleshooting page and look for similar problems. Feel free to use our solutions and workarounds. Don’t worry it’s free. But if you still need our help, then fill up our Android issues questionnaire and hit submit to contact us.

How to troubleshoot Moto X4 that can’t send / receive text messages

If you’re only having trouble sending SMS/text messages but receiving is fine, then it’s likely an account issue. In that case, contact your service provider or carrier to check and ensure that your account status is good. Service providers usually impose temporary disconnection or soft disconnection to accounts with unsettled balances or other issues. When this happens, outgoing services including sending of SMS/text messages couldn’t be used until the account problem is settled. If you’re certain that your account status is good, then try these workarounds to rule out software problems from the underlying causes.

First solution: Force stop messaging app then restart your phone.

If it suddenly occurs on your device to stop sending or receiving text/SMS messages, then it could be just a random glitch on the messaging app in use. Apps can become rogue when triggered by some factors like when a faulty update is installed or after opening a message containing some malware. Should this be just a minor glitch, clearing the messaging app can help. Here’s what you should do then:

  1. Tap the Apps icon from the Home screen.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Select Apps from the Device section.
  4. Swipe left or right to navigate to the Running tab.
  5. Select the messaging app.
  6. Tap Services.
  7. Tap Stop.
  8. If prompted with the Stop system service? message, tap OK to confirm.

After quitting the messaging app, soft reset/reboot your Moto X4 with these steps:

  • Press and hold the Power button for about 10 to 20 seconds. If this doesn’t work, then press and hold the Volume Down and Power buttons simultaneously for 30 to 40 seconds. Release both buttons when the phone reboots.

After the phone reboots, create a sample SMS/text message to send and receive and see if it’s already working.

Second solution: Clear cache and data on your messaging app.

Errant cache files stored on the messaging app can also cause you such trouble. Temporary files that are stored as cache on the messaging app are useful when it comes to faster reloading of similar data for the app but they can also yield to bad symptoms especially when they become corrupted. This is why it’s also recommended to clear app cache from time to time. Aside from clearing the app from glitches, doing so will likewise free up some space of the app’s memory and likewise on the phone storage. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Navigate to Apps section.
  3. Select All apps from the drop-down menu.
  4. Select the messaging app.
  5. Tap Storage.
  6. Tap Clear cache.
  7. Tap Clear data, then tap OK to confirm. This option will delete all saved data from the messaging app.

After clearing cache and data on your messaging app, reboot your phone to refresh the operating system and then launch the messaging app again to see if SMS functions are already working as intended.

Third solution: Update phone software to the latest version.

Installing the latest system update on your device may also be the key to resolving the issue if software bugs and system errors are to blame. Aside from bringing in new features, system updates also offer fix patches for security enhancements. Device issues inflicted by malicious software will then be addressed. To manually check for and download system updates on your Moto X4 over-the-air, follow these steps:

  1. Tap the Apps menu icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap System.
  4. Then tap System Updates.

Your phone must be connected to the Internet, preferably through Wi-Fi to download and install OTA update.

If you’re using a third-party messaging app, installing the latest update for that app can also help clear the app from errors.

Fourth solution: Reset network/APN settings on your Moto X4.

It’s possible that your mobile network settings were changed and that caused conflict. This is most likely the trigger if the problem started after modifying some settings on your device. The same thing can happen after installing a system update. Some updates would automatically override the current network settings on the receiving device and that might have resulted to some network errors. Resetting network settings will delete all network settings including saved Wi-Fi networks and Bluetooth connections on your phone. Any incorrect network settings are likewise cleared in the process.

  1. Tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Scroll to and tap System.
  4. Tap Reset.
  5. Select Network settings reset from the given options.
  6. Then tap Reset Settings to confirm.

Once the reset is finished, reboot your phone. Your cellular credentials from your network provider are now restored. Be sure to reconnect to your Wi-Fi network to use the Internet on your phone again.

Fifth solution: Reset your Moto X4 to its factory default settings (factory reset/master reset).

You may have to consider performing a full system reset or master reset to wipe everything from your device including fatal errors affecting the phone’s network system. Doing so will likewise delete all your saved files and data on the phone storage. Thus, creating a backup is recommended before you continue. Once you’re all set, you can carry out a master reset or factory data reset through the settings menu on your Moto X4. Here’s how:

  1. Tap the Apps menu icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap System.
  4. Scroll to and tap Reset.
  5. Select Factory Data Reset option.
  6. Tap Reset Phone.
  7. If prompted, enter you screen lock credentials to continue.
  8. Then tap Erase Everything to confirm and start the reset.

Your phone will then restart once the reset is finished. To use your phone again, follow the setup wizard to enable the features you want to use on your device.

Software-related issues including SMS/text message sending or receiving issues should already be gone after the reset.

Other options

If the problem continues or your Moto X4 still won’t send or receive SMS/text messages after applying all possible solutions, then you’re likely dealing with hardware problems. To check and further assess your device components, take it to the nearest Motorola service center in your place. If hardware damage is present, then your device needs service. For further recommendations, contact your carrier or Motorola Support. Your APN settings may have to be reconfigured.

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