Factory Reset your Samsung Galaxy S3

  • Replies:96
  • OpenStickiedUnanswered
  • Forum posts: 1,338

Aug 2, 2013 3:09:56 PM via Website

Performing a Factory Reset on your device is very easy. If you don't know what a Factory Reset is, here's a quick definition:

Factory Reset
Restores a smartphone to its basic factory settings, which erases all applications that were installed by the user as well as all user data. A Factory Reset wipes everything, including the contents of your internal SD Card (photos, files, music etc). Whatever Android version you last installed will be the version you get back, but everything else will be wiped.

Please remember to back up any data you want to keep first! In the Factory Reset screen you also have the option to Backup My Data and Auto Restore. These are good options to tick before you Factory Reset if you're not too sure how to do this on your own.

Clear? Ok, let's proceed with the Factory Reset of a Samsung Galaxy S3 from within the menu settings:

Settings > Personal > Back Up and Reset > Factory Data Reset > Reset Device > Delete All.

(If you'd like a more detailed walkthrough, check out our full factory reset the Galaxy S3 article.)

Alternatively, you can type in *2767*3855# on the key pad and that will do the same thing.

Remember sometimes you don't need to go even this far to solve problems. First of all try just turning your phone off for a while, or removing the battery entirely. Sometimes something as simple as that is enough to clear up some simple problems.

If you're at all paranoid about your SIM card or SD card contents just take them out before you do the Factory Reset. Attention: if you reset your device to the factory default with SD card encryption setting enabled, the device will not be able to read your encrypted files. Disable this setting before resetting the device.

— modified on Oct 20, 2015 5:04:50 PM

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 1

Jan 27, 2014 3:04:39 PM via Website

Hi Admin. I am using Samsung S3 and I had just did the Factory Reset. May I know where is all my data being back up to? I couldn't recover my data especially all my phone friends numbers and sms/ texts messages. Please help me to recover? Thanks!

— modified on Jan 27, 2014 3:05:29 PM

  • Forum posts: 1,338

Jan 27, 2014 3:29:18 PM via Website

Hi @Donny, that depends where you backed up your data to. If you backed up your data to your Google account you should be prompted to restore your data when you sign back into that account after the reset. Otherwise, I assume you would have backed up to an app and saved your data either on your external SD card or the cloud? In that case, you simply need to follow that app's restore procedure.

If you didn't actually back anything up before you did the reset you can still recover your data as long as you haven't saved anything over the top of the old data. I wrote an article about that recently: www.androidpit.com/how-to-recover-deleted-text-messages
The guide is for text messages, but the programs I use can recover contacts, emails etc too. Just be sure that in future you back everything up and know how to get it all back before you reset!

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 1

Jan 29, 2014 3:46:08 AM via Website

I just factory reset my S3..... now it will not go past the Samsung start up screen, what should i do !!!!!
  • Forum posts: 1,338

Jan 29, 2014 5:46:00 PM via Website

Hi @Caitlyn, never fear. It's called a bootloop and it's pretty common. You can pull the battery and wait a while then retry (which you've probably already done). Then you can try to enter Recovery mode, which is (from powered off), press and hold Power, home and volume down until you get the recovery screen. From here you can do a wipe cache partition and, if necessary, another factory data reset. This should clear up the problem. If not try to restore your previous backup via Nandroid or whatever you used, and if all else fails you can try connecting to Odin and reflashing a stock ROM and trying again.

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 1

Jan 29, 2014 6:41:29 PM via Website

I have samsung galaxy tab 3 7.0 3G, my phone is suddenly got into black screen ( sounds are audible), phone receive calls and messages. I tried hard reset as per below procedure but no help, kindly suggest me the alternative.

Thank is advance.
  • Forum posts: 1

Jan 30, 2014 8:44:30 AM via Website

I have a quick question!!!
I tried to factory restore my galaxy s3 and now it is stuck on a black screen with the word Samsung across the middle and it is glowing blue around 'samsung'.
Does that mean it is still working on the reset or what?
I've tried taking the battery out, tried charging it, tried the home power down buttons and it just restarts and goes back to this screen.
Help would be greatly appreciated because its a fairly new phone and I'm scared!
  • Forum posts: 1

Jan 31, 2014 11:52:48 AM via Website

Yesterday I performed a factory reset of my S3 which had been buggy since 4.3 upgrade (I couldn't add to Contacts or modify). I backed up everything, and the recovery shows 1442 Calendar items restored, but all my prior Google Calendar data is missing and S3 Google Calendar no longer syncs at all, doesn't retain new items, and has wiped Google Calendar on all my devices including desktop. I tried uninstalling and reinstalling Google Calendar on S3, to no avail. Hoping you can help since I really need Google Calendar and the old data too. Thanks.
  • Forum posts: 4

Feb 3, 2014 3:23:47 AM via Website

I have a Samsung galaxy s3 which I have not been using since it crashed 3 months ago. Samsung and Telstra Australia both told me the phone needed to be reset and it would work again. However they also said I would lose all my data as phone was not synced to my computer. Because the photos in particular are very precious to me I have been living in Hope that. I will find someone who can tell me how I can retrieve my photos and contacts before or after I do the reset. I have come across this site and seen information that makes me feel there is some Hope. Does anyone think they can help me.
Many. Thanks,
  • Forum posts: 4

Feb 3, 2014 4:41:39 AM via Website

Hi Kris,

I have already posted a message on the. Forum today re my issue with my samsung Galaxy3. I see in one of your answers to someone lose you say "it depends where you have backed up your data before doing the reset" or something similar.
Am I correct in thinking there may be a way to back up my photos ( most important) & maybe my contacts before doing a reset to get phone going again?

Thanks for your time,

  • Forum posts: 4

Feb 3, 2014 10:59:23 PM via Website

Hi Kris,
Sorry to bother you again. I am a reasonably computer literate 65yr old but no tech head and I think maybe I am asking the impossible with my last two query posts re galaxyS3. WhatI have read on your posts re this lead me to think It may be possible but I have been told by family that because all I had in the phone was my SIM card and there was no SD card then I will not be able to retrieve my photos. My SIM card is now in a loan phone just so I can make and receive calls on my number.
What I can see in the S3 when I look in the back is the battery! and then below it 2 square metal cards silver with what appears to be some blue tape on them .the one on the left being slightly smaller than the right hand one.
What are these?
Is there nowhere in this device where my contacts and photos would be stored? How can it be that I was able to acces them to look at,use etc before the malfunction and now they are not there. Not anywhere? Or just not accessible?

I will be very grateful for any light you can shed on this for me please.

  • Forum posts: 1

Feb 4, 2014 12:16:19 PM via Website

Dear Kris,

Thanks for your info on S3 Reset. Very informative and helpful. You are exceedingly patient and detailed in your replies to everyone.

Just have one question

I did a backup of my S3 via Kies 3.0 It seems only Kies 3.0 can backup my device after upgrading to android 4.3

Will I be able to get all my data from this backup after a factory reset?

I would like to go back to the original software in the hope that all the glitches I am facing after upgrading can be reversed.

Thanks in advance for any advice you might have.


Ashwin Garg.
  • Forum posts: 1

Feb 5, 2014 10:27:30 PM via Website


I just recently got a Galaxy S4 (recently as in, last night). I upgraded from an S3, and would like to return it to the factory settings. I've done everything a hundred times at least, and it keeps making me put in my lock pattern and password over and over and OVER again. It's quite annoying. So I searched the internet machine and found this website, and tried your suggestions and none of them worked. Is there some other way of resetting this thing before I throw it at the wall?
  • Forum posts: 1

Feb 6, 2014 3:02:27 PM via Website

I have an samsung galaxy s3 (dubai version) and it is blocked because of to many mattern attempts and my internet conection and wi-fi are turned off....
please can anyone tell me how can i unblock it or factory reset ??? :(((( please ....
  • Forum posts: 1,338

Feb 7, 2014 4:42:26 PM via Website

@CLK, after a reset if there's any weirdness with apps showing up data, just go to App manager and clear the cache for that app. Your data should appear properly after that. If it says its restore 1500-odd calendar events then you've saved them fine.

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 1,338

Feb 7, 2014 4:45:32 PM via Website

Hi @Belinda, I actually just wrote about this yesterday. Check out this article on recovering lost data. The main thing is to act quickly, but if you haven't been using the device then your photos etc might still be intact, especially if nothing has been written over the top of your memory.

Even if you have no luck recovering straight away, copy your entire memory card contents over to your computer. Even if there's lost data on it you can still copy lost data - weird I know - and then work on the recovery from your computer while you reset your phone and try to get it running smoothly again. Once your phone is reset there's no going back though, any data on there is gone for good, so make sure you make a copy first.

As for the back of your S3, the two little blue squares are the SIM card slot and the microSD card slot. That's where you can add your own memory to the existing memory in the phone. If you didn't have a memory card in there then your data - and the stuff you lost - is in the internal memory on the phone. There could be some corruption, or some other malfunction. But with some software on your computer - usually available as a free or trial version - you have a very good chance of getting back your photos.

— modified on Feb 7, 2014 4:52:11 PM

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 1,338

Feb 7, 2014 4:55:56 PM via Website

Hi @Ashwin, my advice when it comes to backing up is to do it. Then do it somewhere else. Then do it again.

So I'd backup with Odin, and copy your essential files (photos, sms, contacts etc) to your computer regularly, and then use an app as well like Titanium or Carbon for Android. The more backups the better if you're at all worried about losing your data. Most of these can be set up to occur automatically too and be stored on your external microSD card, your computer when it's connected or the cloud. All are good options. Once burnt, twice careful!

So just backup, reset and then restore. If Kies doesn't prompt you to do it, then you have the app restore option and if that fails too then at least you've got the most important stuff on your computer!

Follow Kris on Google+ and Twitter / Forum Rules - Recommended for new AndroidPIT members! / Important to all community members: please read before posting

  • Forum posts: 2

Feb 8, 2014 12:02:28 PM via Website

Hello :)

I just want to ask if doing a factory reset for my s3 would help the issue I am having with the latest update to the 4.3 firmware?

I am having a hard time using my phone because some apps won't open and pop-ups like "Messaging has stopped" are constantly appearing. Same with Internet, Instagram, Viber and other apps particulary communication/social apps.

Also, if resetting my phone would be helpful, what kind of reset should I do, and how should it be done?

I've been stuck with this problem/issue for a week now. I hope you'll get to read this.

A response from you would be highly appreciated =)

  • Forum posts: 1

Feb 9, 2014 6:08:00 AM via Website

Hi, i am facing the same problems as Regina Villacorte. I tried to do Hard Reset Samsung Galaxy S3 with Hardware Key but the problems still appear once login to window, is it ready to do formatting?? Please help us on this. Thanks a lot.