How to Turn On/Off Silenced Calls iPhone

Are you getting far too many calls from spam callers on your iPhone? iPhone has a handy anti-spam feature that will automatically silence all unknown callers and send them straight to voice mail. It’s a good way to get your phone to stop ringing at random times of the day.

On the other hand, the silence unknown callers feature can introduce some problems. For example, blocking non-spam phone calls from friends or muting all of your calls.

In this article, I’ll show you how to turn on/off silenced calls on iPhone to block spam callers while also keeping your phone open to important contacts. Getting the right configuration can be tricky!

Let’s take a look.

How to Turn On Silence Unknown Callers on iPhone

Silence Calls iPhone

To turn on the Silence Unknown Callers feature on iPhone:

  1. Open settings
  2. Tap on Phone
  3. Enable silence unknown callers

When the feature is enabled, unknown callers will be redirected to your voice mail and a record will be sent to your phone’s recent callers list.


Before you enable Silence Unknown Callers, make sure to add your most important contacts to your favourites list. If you don't have any contacts in your favourites, your phone might block calls from them.

Another point to keep in mind is iPhone will not block callers that already called you once before. If you keep getting spam calls from the same number, head to recent calls, tap the information icon next to the number, and select Block this Caller.

How to Turn Off Silence Unkown Callers on iPhone:

In some situations, your iPhone will automatically enable Silence Unknown Callers which can block important phone calls. It usually happens after an IOS update.

Luckily, turning off the silence unknown callers feature is very easy. To turn off silence unknown callers on iPhone, open Settings, tap on Phone and toggle Silence Unknown Callers. When disabled, you will be able to receive calls from any number.

Silence Unkown Callers not Available

Don’t see the Silence Unknown Callers option? If you don’t see the silence unknown callers feature, it’s likely because your iPhone does not support it. The feature is only available on iPhones using IOS 13 or later. It’s not available on iPhone 4/5/and 6 series.

iPhone Silencing Every Call

There’s a frustrating issue a lot of people are running into where their iPhones silence every call, including contacts on their favourites list.

Disable Do Not Disturb Mode

If you’re iPhone is silencing every call, open Settings, tap on Do Not Disturb, and toggle Do Not Disturb Off. Don’t worry about the Silence options because they won’t apply when Do Not Disturb mode is disabled.

In the same menu, make sure Do Not Disturb While Driving is set to manual. There are some cases where the iPhone detects rapid movement, assumes you’re in a vehicle, and automatically enables do not disturb mode.

Bear in mind you can quickly toggle Do Not Disturb mode in the quick settings by dragging up from the bottom of the screen. It will show a number of icons. The crescent moon icon is for the Do Not Disturb feature, make sure it is not on.

You can also schedule do not disturb mode for nighttime only.

Check Ringer Volume

Open Settings and tap on Sounds & Haptics. Make sure the ringer and alerts volume slider is turned up.

Check if Silence Switch is Pressed Down

Finally, one simple tip that is often overlooked is to check the physical silence switch button on the side of your phone. If the switch is down, the phone will be in silent mode.

It’s easy to overlook the silence switch button when your phone is in a case. The case could also have accidentally pressed it down. Also if you’re new to iPhones, you might not have noticed the silence switch in the first place. Flip the switch up to unsilence the phone.

Disconnect Bluetooth Devices

Your iPhone might be sending the call audio to a Bluetooth device such as a headset or AirPods. Take a look at your phone to see if Bluetooth is enabled and check which devices are connected. In most cases when you disable Bluetooth the audio will be redirected to your phone and you can receive calls again.

Restart Your iPhone

In some cases, your iPhone runs into software issues that block all incoming calls. Most of the time restarting the phone can fix the problem. To restart an iPhone you hold the side button until the power down option appears. Drag the slider to the right to confirm. Wait until your phone reboots and that should fix your problem.

The Bottom Line

The silence unknown callers feature on iPhone is pretty handy when you receive too many spam calls. But it can also block important calls from numbers that are not on your contacts list. It can also sometimes silence every call on your phone. I would only enable it if you do not expect any important calls from unknown callers.

Was this article helpful?
About Tim Gagnon

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.