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A guide to recovering and managing iPhone Screen Time passcode

Ever wondered what the Screen Time passcode feature on your iPhone means?

It is more than another password, as it acts like your own personal advocate, a gatekeeper to protect your privacy settings and parental controls within your device.

This article takes a look at the purpose of screen time passcode on iPhones, how it works, and why it’s important to maintain the right balance with children’s devices.

What is Screen Time Passcode on iPhone?

The screen time password on your iPhone is a four-digit code meant to limit the use of select features on your device.

The idea behind this function is to enable you to track usage and schedule the time for unlocking your iPhone, especially on a few apps or even strictly during some hours of the day.

Additionally, as this PIN code is also a password, only you and anyone who knows the password can change your screen time settings.

It provides you with the needed cover to ensure your balance of interests, which includes safety while keeping you entertained and productive at the same time.

How to set up Screen Time Passcode on iPhone

Setting up a Screen Time Passcode adds another security layer to your iPhone’s usage management functionality.

Here’s how to do it in just a few simple steps:

Go to Settings on your iPhone.

Scroll down to the Screen Time icon and tap it.

If you still need to activate Screen Time, choose “Turn on Screen Time” and follow the onscreen instructions.

Turn on screen time

Scroll down and select “Use Screen Time Passcode.”

Type in a four-digit pin of your choice.

set a screen time passcode

6.Type in the passcode one more time to confirm.

How to turn off screen time passcode?

If, down the line, you find no need for the extra security of a Screen Time Passcode, you can undo the security settings process. It is just as easy as setting it up.

Here’s how:

Proceed to the Settings app of the iPhone.

Go down and press “Screen Time.”

Then after, it will request that you put the Screen Time Passcode.

Scrolling down reveals “Change Screen Time Passcode,” then you tap it.

Choose “Turn off Screen Time Passcode” from the pop-up.

Verify your selection by entering your device password or Touch ID/Face ID.

turn off screen time

What to do if you forget Screen Time Passcode

If you forget your Screen Time passcode, the situation can be quite irritating, especially when you are almost going to make some adjustments to the controls.

Luckily, you have the alternative of resetting your Screen Time passcode if you just can’t remember it.

Nevertheless, it is important to note that you would be expected to provide your Apple account ID and passcode for the Screen Time app.

How to reset or change screen time passcode?

Regrettably, there is no straightforward way to uncover a foregone Screen Time passcode. The only way you can regain control is by resetting it completely. Here’s how:

Open the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.

Scroll down the settings Menu and locate “Screen Time”.

Tap on “Change Screen Time Passcode” and then again on “Change Screen Time Passcode”.

change screen time passcode

Click on the the button “Forgot Passcode?”.
Provide the Apple ID and password that were originally used when you first set up the Screen Time Passcode.
Enter your own four-digit Screen Time Passcode and confirm it.

What happens after 10 failed Screen Time passcode attempts

Different from the primary passcode on your iPhone, entering the wrong Screen Time Passcode 10 times won’t necessarily make you unable to access the device.

Nevertheless, it has a short-lived drawback. In the tenth unsuccessful attempt, you will be restricted from using Screen Time features for 1 hour.

That simply means Screen Time settings like app limits, content restrictions, and downtime scheduling won’t be editable or accessible during this period.

On the other hand, you can still use your iPhone to carry out other activities like making calls, using the internet, and other applications.

After completing the 1-hour lock period, you’ll have another go to enter the correct Screen Time Passcode.

Can children change screen time passcode?

Although the Screen Time Password is a considerable asset in controlling kids’ digital balance, the fact is that many of tech-savvy kids can find ways to bypass screen time rules.

This includes the ability to potentially change the Screen Time Passcode.

While Screen Time has some invaluable attributes, it should equally be noted that it is not 100% foolproof.

What to do if your Kids change Screen Time Passcode?

If your child manages to change the Screen Time Passcode on their device, regaining control requires different approaches depending on your Screen Time setup.

Use your Apple ID

This approach is exclusively relevant if you use family sharing to manage your kid’s screen time.

If your child changed the Screen Time Passcode on their device and you’re the Family Organizer, here’s what you can do using your Apple ID:

Open your iPhone or iPad (the Family Organizer device) Settings application.

Tap on “Screen Time.”

Select your child’s name from the “Family” section.

Tap “Change Screen Time Passcode” and “Change Screen Time Passcode” again.

Select “Forgot Passcode?” and enter your Apple ID and password to set up the Family Sharing.

Screen Time

Make up a new Screen Time Passcode and confirm it.

Restore from Backup

While restoring from the backup, it’s important to note that all data on the child’s device since the last backup will be erased.

This refers to pictures, messages, applications, and other data. If you understand the risks and have a suitable backup, follow these steps:

Connect your child’s device to your computer, and then open iTunes (for older computers) or Finder (for newer Macs).

In the software, find the location of your child’s device.

If necessary, input your child’s device passcode or Face ID/Touch ID.

At the bottom of the child’s device’s summary, click “Restore Backup.”

Restore from Backup

Select the most recent backup before the probable passcode change.

Follow the on-screen guidelines to complete the restore process.

Restore backup

Once the restore is done, you need to set up the new device again, including setting up Screen Time and creating a new Screen Time Pass Code.

Factory Reset

If your kids change the Screen Time password and you must regain control over your device, you can perform a factory reset. Here’s how:

It is essential to back up all the data, as a factory reset erases everything.

Go to “Settings” on your iPhone.

Go to the bottom of your screen and click on “General.”

Tap on “Reset” from the bottom of the list.

Pick “Erase All Content and Settings.”

Once the action is confirmed in the device passcode

Factory Setting

Use a Parental Control app like FlashGet Kids

Through the help of a specialized parental control application such as FlashGet Kids, you are liberated from being caught in a situation where you have forgotten your Screen Time passcode and you cannot access your child’s device.

FlashGet Kids is a convenient solution that allows parents to not only manage their child’s device but also limit screen time.

It provides comprehensive features to enforce healthy digital boundaries, and to access its services; you need to follow these steps:
Download the FlashGet Kids app versions for your phone and your kid’s. The parental control version is for your phone as the parent, while the kid version is for your kid’s phone.

FlashGet Kids for child

Open the FlashGet Kids app on your device and click on the “Parental Account” button. Type in your email address and devise a secure password to register your parent account.

create an account

On your child’s device, access the FlashGet Kids app and press the “Add Child” button.

You will get a personalized pairing code. Launch the FlashGet Kids app on your kid’s device, press “Pair with Parent,” and then enter the device pairing code to connect the device to your parent account.


Now that your mobile phone is linked to your child’s device, go to the dashboard within the FlashGet Kids app on your device.

6.From here, you can establish app time limits, content filters, and other restrictions without needing to know their Screen Time passcode.

Bonus: Why can my child ignore downtime limits?

There are several reasons why your child might be ignoring the downtime limits you’ve set on their device:

Block at downtime

One of the reasons why your kid might disregard the downtime limits is that the iPhone is not actually being restricted entirely during scheduled downtimes.

To ensure the set downtime is enforced, go to the Screen Time settings and switch on “Block at Downtime” for your child’s device.

This, in turn, means that the use of the device is totally ruled out during times when the system is down.

In addition, be sure to disable the “Ask for More Time” setting, which lets children request more time beyond predetermined no-play intervals.

Confirm that your child does not have the Screen Time passcode to circumvent Downtime manually.

Strength of Screen Time passcode

If your child has learned or can easily guess your Screen Time passcode, they can bypass any restrictions on time limits automatically, including bedtime restrictions.

Selection of a good, random passcode that your child cannot crack is important for security. Do not use such weak passcode options like 1234 or their birthday.

Never share your Screen Time passcode with your child, and do not save it where your kid can find it. Only parents should have this information.

Make sure to change the passcode if your child has already seen the passcode. Frequent alterations distort earlier grasps.


Can you bypass the iPhone screen time passcode?

No, you cannot bypass the iPhone screen time passcode. If you don’t know the passcode, you’ll have to erase the target iPhone and set up the passcode from scratch.

Can a child override Screen Time on an iPhone?

Yes. Your child can override screen time on iPhone depending on how the screen time settings were configured. They can also guess the passcode if you use common pins around the house.

Can a child delete Screen Time?

No, kids cannot delete screen time as it is a built-in feature on iPhones. However, they can disable the Screen time feature if they know the screen time passcode.

At what age should parents stop controlling screen time?

There is no specific age when you should stop controlling your kid’s screen time. As long as you trust their judgement and online behaviors, you can allow them to surf the internet and use their phones as mch they want.

Kidcaring, Chief Writer in FlashGet Kids.
She is dedicated to shaping parental control in the digital world. She is an experienced expert in the parenting industry and has engaged in reporting and writing different parental control apps. For the past five years, she has provided additional parental guides for the family and has contributed to changing parenting methods.

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