Why Does Phone Say No SIM Card and How to Fix

If you are wondering why your Android phone says no SIM card even though you have a SIM card, there might be something wrong with the card or your device. This guide tells you how to fix this issue on your Android phone.

Joy Taylor Last Updated: Jan. 13, 2021

It is frustrating when your phone says no SIM card is detected even though you have correctly installed a SIM card on your device. If this error continues to appear no matter what you do, you can not make phone calls, text someone, and cannot use your phone normally. So why does your Android phone say no sim card and how can you get rid of this error message?

Here are some possible reasons your phone does not recognize your SIM card and you will learn some fixes to this issue.

Also Read: Solutions to SIM Not Provisioned MM2 Error >

What Might Have Happened When Phone Says No SIM Card?

The reason why does your phone show no SIM card error is that your phone is unable to properly read the contents of your SIM card. This usually happens when your SIM card is not installed properly, it is damaged, or your phone has software problems after a software update. Read the following methods to repair this issue.

Don’t miss: What to Do When Android System Update Fails to Install >

How to Fix No SIM Card Error on Android

You do not need to get your SIM card replaced right away, as there are some fixes that you can apply on your phone and these can potentially fix your problem.

If these do not work, then you can go ahead and get your SIM card replaced.

Fix 1. Reboot Your Phone

Sometimes, there is not a clear reason as to why your phone cannot detect your SIM card. At these times, you can try rebooting your device and see if that fixes your problem. Rebooting your phone often resolves many minor glitches.

To reboot your phone, press and hold down the Power button. Then, choose the Restart option and your phone will turn off and then turn back on its own.

Shut Down and Restart Your Android Phone

Shut Down and Restart Your Android Phone

Fix 2. Pull Out the SIM and Put It Back In

Since this issue has to do with your SIM card, you can try ejecting your SIM card from your phone and then putting it back in. If your SIM was not installed properly, or if the SIM card tray was loose, this should fix that for you.

Eject the SIM card tray on your phone, take the SIM out, wait for half a minute, put the SIM card back in, and slide the tray into your phone. After phone rebooting, check if the device reads your  SIM card.

Fix 3. Enable and Disable Airplane Mode

The purpose of Airplane mode is to help you disconnect from all network services when you are on a flight. However, you can use this mode to fix many network-related problems. There is no guarantee that using Airplane mode will fix your issue but you can give it a go as it will not harm your device.

Make sure you have saved your work before you do this as your phone will be disconnected from the Internet as well.

Step 1. Open the notifications panel on your phone.

Step 2. Tap the Airplane mode icon to turn the mode on.

Step 3. Tap the icon again to disable the mode.

Enable Android Airplane Mode

Enable Android Airplane Mode

Fix 4. Ensure You Have a Valid IMEI Number

It is a must for each phone to have a valid IMEI number. If your phone does not have this, which is very rare, your carrier will not be able to provide you with their services. You can actually check for an IMEI number right on your device without needing any apps.

On your phone, head into the Settings menu, tap About phone at the bottom, tap Status and you will see your phone’s IMEI number.

Another way to check the IMEI number is to dial *#06# from the dial pad on your phone.

Find Android Phone IMEI Number

Find Android Phone IMEI Number

Fix 5. Enable Your SIM Card

On most phones where you have dual SIM cards, people often forget to enable the second SIM. This might be the case with you, and your phone does not detect the other SIM card because that card is not enabled.

Luckily, you can enable and disable SIM cards with a few taps on your Android phone.

Step 1. Open the Settings app and tap Wi-Fi & network.

Step 2. Select SIM & network on the following screen.

Step 3. Tap the SIM card that is not detected and ensure the toggle next to the SIM number is turned on.

Enable SIM Card on Android

Enable SIM Card on Android

Fix 6. Wipe Phone Cache

Your phone stores something called cache files on its storage. These files help your system to provide you with fast response, however, these files sometimes cause issue with the phone. To get rid of the no SIM found notification, you can try clearing these cache files on your Android device.

On some phones, you will find the option to clear the cache in the Settings app. However, if you do not have this option, you can use the clear cache option in recovery mode which should be available on most phones out there.

Step 1. Press the Volume Up + Home + Power keys on most devices to enter recovery. If this does not work for you, consult your phone’s manual.

Step 2. When recovery opens, select the Wipe cache partition option to delete your cache files.

Wipe Cache Partition Using Recovery

Wipe Cache Partition Using Recovery

Fix 7. Reset Network Settings

Your network settings tell your phone how to connect to your carrier. If there is an issue with these settings, you might want to reset the network settings and potentially fix the problem.

Step 1. Go to Settings > System > Reset options on your device.

Step 2. Tap Reset Wi-Fi, mobile & Bluetooth.

Reset Network Settings on Android

Reset Network Settings on Android


That’s all for the possibles reasons why your phone says no SIM card. And you can check the above methods to get rid of no SIM card notification on Android. If you got any ideas or questions about that, feel free to share with us in the comment below.

Joy Taylor

Member of iMobie team as well as an Apple fan, love to help more users solve various types of iOS & Android related issues.