Smart homes can be complex beasts, an amalgam of many different accessory brands, and sometimes multiple platforms. That beast can get out of hand, even in the case of Apple’s HomeKit. Here’s how to reset HomeKit and why you might want to consider doing it.
To reset HomeKit, open the Home app for iPhone or iPad, then tap the house icon in the upper-left corner. Make sure the home you want to reset is selected, then tap Home Settings. Scroll down on the following page and choose Remove Home. Follow the prompts, and all of that home’s data will be deleted, including automations and accessories. You’ll need to re-pair accessories when you create a new home.
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How do you reset Apple HomeKit?
Normally, there’s no true “reset” button for HomeKit. But Apple does organize the platform’s data into “homes,” and it’s relatively easy to delete these from the Home app for iPhone or iPad, especially since most people only have one living space at a time.
Follow these steps to delete a HomeKit home:
- Open the Home app, and tap on the house icon in the top-left corner of the screen.
- Make sure the name of your home is selected in the drop-down menu. It will likely be pre-selected, unless you’ve intentionally added a second location.
- In the same drop-down menu, tap Home Settings.
- Scroll down and choose Remove Home.
- Follow the prompts.
Be aware that if you do this, you’ll lose all the information associated with a home, including accessory pairings. You’ll need to re-pair everything if you want to start fresh, which can be time-consuming even if you’ve saved HomeKit codes for scanning. It’s good to gather those codes in one place for future reference.
You’ll see a reset button if the Home app gets stuck at a Loading Accessories and Scenes screen. If this happens, tap Reset Home Configuration, and once confirmed, your data will be scraped just as if you’d followed the steps above.
Why would you reset Apple HomeKit?
There are a couple of reasons. The first, as mentioned, is if the Home app gets stuck at Loading Accessories and Scenes. This is an unlikely problem, and there are other measures you can attempt before a HomeKit reset. These include rebooting any Home hubs (Apple TVs, HomePods, iPads), or signing out of iCloud then back in. You can even try resetting an affected iPhone or iPad and restoring a backup from before things went wrong, but this is time-consuming in its own right without a guarantee of success. You might also lose data saved post-backup.
The other reason is that your HomeKit configuration has become unwieldy. Over time, it’s entirely possible to accumulate a collection of unused accessories, scenes, and automations, in which case a reset can be a shortcut to a sleeker configuration, so long as you have all the codes gathered to re-pair accessories. In fact we recommend removing unused accessories from HomeKit at regular intervals, since Wi-Fi routers can start dropping device connections if they become oversaturated.
Read more: The best smart home devices you can buy