Your Passcode Is Required to Enable Face ID? Here’s the Fix

A common issue with Face ID is frequently system notification that your passcode is required to enable Face ID. There are several ways in this article to help you bypass this error.

Author Avatar Joy Taylor Last Updated: Oct. 29, 2021

In order to get maximum protection for their iPhones, users can set up complex passcodes or use other highly secure solutions for unlocking the screen, such as Face ID. While this feature is usually very practical and easy to activate, occasionally your device will ask you to enter the passcode to enable your Face ID feature.

Also Read: 4 Methods to Fix iPhone X Face ID Not Working >

This message can appear even if you do everything exactly the same way as before, and it will remain on the screen until you find a suitable solution. In the next paragraphs, we discuss the possible reasons why the iPhone requires a passcode to enable Face ID, and what are the best solutions to overcome this problem.

Why Does My iPhone Require A Passcode to Enable Face ID?

In a case that you don’t turn on your iPhone for a few days, or you use the Find my iPhone option to unlock the screen, the device operating system may require a passcode to enable Face ID. There are more possible reasons for such a message, and we listed the most common ones.

Passcode Required to Enable Face ID

Passcode Required to Enable Face ID

  1. Five consecutive unsuccessful attempts were made to unlock the iPhone by using Face ID.
  2. You restarted a new iPhone for the first time after setting it up.
  3. You activated SOS emergency from your phone.
  4. You just turned on on the iPhone after 48 hours of inactivity.
  5. The passcode wasn’t used for more than six days.
  6. Find my iPhone feature was used from another device to bypass the screen lock and change the code on the phone you are currently using.
  7. iPhone fails in the process of recognizing your face.
  8. Malicious code is present on the device.
  9. There is mechanical damage or dirt on the device or camera.

How Do I Turn off the Passcode for Face ID?

Although the situation might seem serious because your device is not responding, there are appropriate ways for fixing this problem without delay. So, let’s begin.

Way 1. Check and Reset Your Face ID Settings

If your iPhone still requires a passcode for your Face ID after updating, you’ll need to reset your Face ID and set a new one. Those simple steps will allow you to do exactly that:

Set up A New Face ID

Set up A New Face ID

  1. Open the Settings menu and choose Face ID, and then Passcode.
  2. Select the Reset Face ID option.
  3. Set up a new Face ID.

Way 2. Check If There Is An Update on iPhone

Apple provides regular updates for iOS with the objective to fix any errors and bugs from the previous version and introduce new features. If your iPhone isn’t updated with the latest version, it could behave in unpredictable ways. One of the system errors that could materialize in this scenario is the required passcode for Face ID.

To eliminate this possibility, check if a new iOS version might be available for your device by following the steps below:

  1. After opening the Settings menu, go to General and click on the Software Update button.
  2. The operating system will check if there is a new iOS update available for your device.
  3. If the search results show that an updated version is indeed available, download and install it.

Way 3. Add An Alternate Appearance

The characteristics of your face are changing almost daily. Sometimes those changes are visible to you, but sometimes even you might not notice them. The device can fail to recognize you and deny unlocking the screen with Face ID.

Also, if you are wearing too much makeup, or have grown a beard since you last set up your Face ID, the camera will catch every little difference and might not let you access your iPhone. Therefore, it’s a good idea to set up an Alternate Appearance if your face looks significantly different from your original photo.

Click on Set up An Alternate Appearance

Click on Set up An Alternate Appearance

  1. Go to Settings and then select Face ID item and then click on Passcode. If the system asks you to provide a valid passcode, enter it and go on with the procedure.
  2. Click on the Set Up an Alternate Appearance option.
  3.  Take care that you position your face directly in front of the camera, right into the center of the iPhone screen. Slowly move the device to complete the face scan.
  4. Press the Continue button.
  5. The system will require confirmation, so move your head slowly in front of the camera once more.
  6. Click Done to complete the process of saving a new appearance.

Way 4. Clean True Depth Camera

As we already mentioned above, one of the typical reasons why a passcode is required to enable Face ID is a dirty front camera. iPhone’s front camera or True Depth camera is often covered with a layer of dust, which can prevent it from properly recognizing your face. Also, you need to take care that your hand or finger doesn’t cover your camera and block your face.

The Bottom Line

Although this iPhone system error is not common, it’s certainly confusing to anyone who finds themselves in such a situation. We hope that this text clarifies why you can have a problem when you want to unlock the screen with your Face ID, and why the system requires you to enter the passcode for the Face ID lock. Ultimately, you should be able to overcome this problem by following some of the listed methods. If you have other questions or solutions, tell us in the comments.

Author Avatar
Joy Taylor Twitter Share Facebook Share

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

Back to Top Icon