The Kindle Fire is an affordable and surprisingly capable little tablet extremely well-suited for home and travel use. Despite its very low price point, the Kindle Fire tends to have solid performance and, in terms of features, is competitive with tablets in higher price ranges.
However, as with any computing device, as time goes on and more and more files are installed and uninstalled, the machine may begin to slow down. You may notice that your Kindle Fire device has gotten slower and you’d like to restore it to its original performance. Or, you might have decided to sell your Kindle Fire and want to preserve your privacy by getting rid of all your old data and photos. In either case, the solution is simple: do a factory reset of your Kindle.
In this article, I will show you how to factory reset your Kindle Fire device.
Is a Factory Reset Necessary?
Before you do a factory reset, consider – would a soft reset possibly solve the problem?
If you’re just having some instability in an app or have had your Fire up and running for a long time, you don’t need a drastic factory reset. You just need the much quicker and less consequential soft reset, which is the process of rebooting the machine and starting it over without losing any data.
For 1st through 4th generation Kindle Fires, a soft reset is accomplished by pressing and holding the power button for 10 or 20 seconds, until the machine turns off. For 5th generation and newer Kindle Fire models, press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons for 10 seconds until the device shuts down.
Since a factory reset will result in the loss of your data and customization settings, be sure to try a soft reset to check if it resolves your issues before proceeding.
Enable Amazon Auto Backup
Before factory resetting your device, you’re going to want to backup your data in order to ensure you don’t lose anything important.
To enable auto backup of your Kindle Fire device, follow these simple steps:
- On the home screen of your Kindle device, swipe down from the top of the Kindle Fire. This pulls open the shade where you can access Settings.
- Next tap the gear icon which takes you to the Settings menu.
- Then, tap Device Options. Scroll to Backup & Restore.
- After selecting Backup & Restore, toggle the Backup & Restore button to the on position. It will appear orange when enabled.
Backup for your Kindle Fire occurs when your device is in standby (or sleep mode if it’s connected to your Wi-Fi).
You’ll also notice the option to save your Wi-Fi passwords to Amazon as well. Toggle that on as well, if you’d like them to be stored in the cloud.
By following these simple steps, you can proceed to factory resetting your device without permanently losing all of your data.
How To Factory Reset Your Kindle Fire
Now that you’ve backed up your device, it’s time to factory reset your Kindle Fire. To do so, follow these steps:
- On the home screen of your Kindle device, swipe down from the top of the Kindle Fire. This opens the shade where you can access Settings.
- Next, tap on Settings. It’s the gear-shaped icon.
- On the following screen of your Kindle Fire where it says Device, go to the bottom of that list of choices. Then, tap on Device Options.
- Then, you’re going to select Reset to Factory Defaults.
- An alert message gets displayed telling you that you’re about to reset you Fire to factory defaults. Doing so removes all your personal information, your Amazon account information, downloaded content and applications from your internal storage. When you’ve got an SD card installed in your Kindle Fire device data on it remains untouched.
If you’d also like to erase your SD card, the alert box that pops up instructs you on how to do that as well. Otherwise, you’re ready to go.
Unless you’re selling your Kindle Fire or giving it to someone else once the factory reset completes, you’ll need to re-enter all your Amazon account information.
If you’ve got the auto back feature enabled before you reset your Kindle Fire, it’ll ask you if you want to restore your device from the backup once you turn it on again.
Sometimes, the only way to restore your Kindle Fire to working order is to perform a full factory reset.
You’ve learned what’s needed to reset your Kindle Fire to factory defaults as well as how to enable auto backup. Do a factory reset if you experience any issues with your Amazon Kindle Fire or you’re looking to see it or hand it off to someone else. Don’t forget to do a backup or simply enable the auto backup feature so you can do a full restore of your previous Amazon Kindle Fire setup. Otherwise, just start a new and have a blank canvas with which to work.
If you’d like information about making a Kindle Fire kid-friendly, check out our article on the topic. And if you’re interested in seeing what the top of the Kindle line looks like, check out what these 32 GB 10″ 1080p HD monsters look like.