[Solved] Apple CarPlay not working when plugged in

Apple’s wireless CarPlay is gaining popularity amongst iPhone users and car owners alike. Although some still prefer a wired connection.

Regardless of preference, both connections can still encounter problems including Apple CarPlay not working when plugged in.

With this in mind, here are things you can do to get your Apple Carplay working again.

Causes Apple CarPlay not working when plugged in

Incompatibility and hardware issues are some of the common problems behind an Apple CarPlay that’s not working when plugged in. Regardless, there are a series of troubleshooting steps you can attempt to help you fix your CarPlay. In this case, let’s check the easy things first to the most troublesome ones.

Check for the latest updates

Out-of-date iOS and Firmware commonly cause compatibility concerns. Though the minimum requirement is just an iPhone 5 running iOS 7.1, updating to the latest versions is recommended. Regardless of its iOS or firmware, these updates come with drivers and bug fixes that’ll help resolve system glitches.

Enable Apple CarPlay on your iPhone

Enabling CarPlay allows its users to pair their iPhones to their infotainment system.

  1. Go to the “Settings” app
  2. Go to “General
  3. Tap “CarPlay
  4. Tap your car’s name in the list
  5. Start Pairing

Furthermore, to make sure it works smoothly, better check if it’s enabled in screen time.

  1. Go to “Screen Time”
  2. Go to “Content & Privacy Restrictions”
  3. Tap “Allowed Apps
  4. Toggle the CarPlay button on

Make sure Siri is enabled

When launched in 2014, Apple CarPlay was introduced as a “Safe Driving Companion” since you can access your iPhone apps hands-free. And this would not be made possible with Siri disabled. To make sure Siri is enabled, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the “Settings” app
  2. Select “Siri & Search
  3. Make sure that the following are turned on:
    1. Listed for “Hey Siri”
    2. Press the side button for Siri, if you’re using an iPhone with Face ID
    3. Press the home button for Siri, if you’re using a different model
    4. Allow Siri when locked

Turn off iOS Security Feature

During long drives, we tend to leave our iPhones locked. In specific cases, it will cause your Apple CarPlay to stop working even when plugged in. The reason behind this is the iOS security feature. Its purpose is to restrict the USB function of your iPhone if left locked for an hour. Though unlocking your iPhone will resolve this issue, we recommend disabling this feature to avoid similar problems the next time you hit the road.

To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the “Settings” app
  2. Select “Face ID & Passcode
  3. Under the “Allow access when locked”, toggle the “USB Accessories” button on

Enable CarPlay when your iPhone is locked

Aside from the iOS security feature, even if plugged in—unless you turn this feature on—CarPlay won’t generally work if your iPhone is locked. So to turn this on, follow the guide below:

  1. Go to the “Settings” app
  2. Go to “General
  3. Tap “CarPlay
  4. Tap your car’s name in the list
  5. Toggle the “Allow CarPlay when locked” button on

Doing these series of troubleshooting steps should’ve now helped you get your CarPlay working again. Otherwise, consider going the extra mile by doing these:

Forget and Re-connect to CarPlay

This approach is very typical and pretty much solves common connectivity issues. In your case, you can do this to re-establish the connection between your iPhone and your car, regardless if plugged in or wireless.

  1. Go to the “Settings” app
  2. Go to “General
  3. Tap “CarPlay
  4. Tap your car’s name in the list
  5. Forget car
  6. Repeat setting-up CarPlay

Restart your iPhone and Reset your car’s infotainment system

To restart your iPhone, see the following guide:

  1. For iPhone models with a home button:
  2. iPhone 5 & SE 1st Gen. Press and hold the power button located at the top to turn it off until it turns back on
  3. iPhone 6, 7, 8, & SE 2nd Gen. Press and hold the power button located on the right side until a slider shows up, then slide right to turn it off. Press and hold the power button until it turns back on.
  1. For iPhone models without a home button. Press and hold simultaneously the power button on the right and the volume button on the left until a slider shows up, then slide right to turn it off. Press and hold the power button until it turns back on.

On the other hand, you can do different types of resetting on your car.

  1. Soft Reset. Typically done most of the time to address minor system concerns. Moreover, doing this will not delete your saved data in the infotainment display.
  1. Hard Reset. In contrast, it restores settings to factory default.

The procedure to restart your car’s infotainment system, however, may vary depending on your car brand, year, model, and trim. It’s best to check your car’s user manual or call your car dealer.

If there were no improvements at all, then the issue causing your Apple Carplay not to work could be hardware. Perhaps, a damaged USB cable and/or faulty ports.

In this case, here are some troubleshooting steps to know the cause/s and the fix/es you have to perform.

Check if the USB cable is damaged

Make sure that your cable is in good condition or not worn out. If it looks physically good, but you’re having doubts, you can either:

  1. Try plugging it into your computer, or
  2. Try using a different USB cable. If you don’t have a spare, buy one.

Always keep in mind to use an original USB cable or at least one that’s Apple-certified. Otherwise, it will not work at all.

Anyway, doing this will let you arrive at a conclusion if the problem is your USB Cable or your car’s USB port. If it’s the latter, then move to the next point.

Check for faulty USB ports

If you have more than one port, try a different one to test.Keep in mind that there are CarPlay-supported ports, though the location may differ for each car. These ports are mostly seen in the dashboard and center console and have a CarPlay or smartphone integration symbol. Otherwise, check your user’s manual or try all ports one by one.

If neither the USB cable nor the USB port is the issue causing your Apple CarPlay to not work when plugged in. Then we recommend calling Apple Support to see if they can help you with this concern.

People Also Asked

Looking for reason/s why your Apple CarPlay is not working when plugged in can be very frustrating. However, keeping your focus can really help address these issues easily. In this case, here are a few interesting questions people also ask related to Apple CarPlay that can also help you:

Why is Google Maps not working with Apple CarPlay?

Technically, it should. But it requires running iOS12 or later versions. Making sure that you meet at least the minimum requirement will make things easier for you, especially when troubleshooting. Anyway, here are some tips to consider about using Google Maps:

  1. Check if your iPhone’s location services are enabled
  2. Verify if you have set the correct date and time settings
  3. Check if you have an active connection
  4. Restart your Google Maps App if necessary

What other factors cause Apple CarPlay not to work?

While there are a number of factors to this. Aside from the points mentioned above like out-of-date iOS, disabled Siri, and defective hardware, the basic ones are:

  1. CarPlay Availability. There are select regions where CarPlay is available and you can access this list of over 30 countries on Apple’s Official Website.
  1. CarPlay Supportability. It was mentioned above that there are only certain iPhone models where CarPlay works. Similarly, not all cars, or at least not all trims per specific car model, adapted the CarPlay technology. You can easily know this through:
  1. Google Search. Just type in your Car Brand, Make, Model and Trim to know if your Car supports Apple CarPlay.
  2. Apple’s List. There are over 600+ models listed that support Apple CarPlay in their official website.
  3. Your Car Dealer. As easy as the above mentioned, you can just directly ask your car dealer for this information.

Are there settings for Apple CarPlay?

Yes. You can access this through your vehicle’s built-in controls and pretty much change your wallpaper, enable driving focus, modify the appearance of CarPlay on your car’s display, hide or show suggestions on the dashboard, etc.