You must have heard about ESNs while you set out for buying a cell phone especially a used one. When in the market, people must have emphasized a lot on clean ESNs whether the phone they are buying is "clean" or not. So, what does ESN actually refer to, what is the significance of clean phone and how to check if a phone has a clean ESN? Let’s begin with the basics for clear understanding of the acronym.

Part 1. What Does Clean ESN Mean on Cell Phone

Having a thorough know-how on the subject of ESN can help to protect you as a consumer. Basically, ESN is the popular abbreviation used for "Electronic Serial Number". It is a unique set of identification numbers exclusively designated to each mobile device by the FCC. These ESNs are used for CDMA devices like sprint phones.

Now, why does clean ESN a matter of concern? Because the cellphones we buy are expensive and our mobile carrier providers keep a keen interest in them. They greatly subsidize the cost of our phones after we have signed the extended contract. ESN is their most powerful tool which they can use for tracking phones and also for banning them if any need to do so arises. There can be two prominent reasons which can lead your number in a blacklist- either your phone were reported stolen before you purchased it or your cellular carrier account linked with your phone has an unsettled balance.

So, in either case, you will have a bad status for your ESN. However, the case of stolen phones is much rare as when compared to users with huge amount of unpaid bill. But regardless of the root, the phone you are about to purchase does not have a clean ESN. Therefore, when you know how to check if a phone has a clean ESN or not especially of the used phone you are buying, you can actually protect yourself. You can refuse to buy a phone that has a bad ESN and save yourself from unwanted banning and other troubles.

It is not a good idea to spend hundreds of dollars on a phone about which you are not sure if you can activate it with your cellular carrier.

Part 2. How to Check If a Phone Has a Clean ESN

Among some other ways of finding out a clean ESN for the phone, one of the easiest solutions is to personally meet that person whom you are buying the phone from. You can also directly go to your cellular carrier provider representative and ask them to ensure if your phone is all clear to use without any problems in future. Calling on the support line of carrier provider that you are planning to use on your phone will also help you in knowing the current status.

But, in case you want to check the status of your phone yourself, it is extremely easy to accomplish. There are some reliable sites like Swappa and CheckESNFree for effective web-based checks. This way of checking your ESN status is quicker than calling a support line or meeting a customer care representative.

Step-By-Step Guide to Check If a Phone Has a Clean ESN

Step 1. The ESN of almost all phones is located underneath the battery where it is printed on a sticker. Open the back of your phone, remove the battery and find out your number.

remove the battery and find out your number

Step 2.After you have penned down the number, go to any web service like "CheckESNFree" for assessing the status of your phone. There will be an option to enter your ESN number. Submit all the digits carefully and in a correct order. When you have entered the number found under your battery, click on "Check ESN" for accurate result.

click on Check ESN

Step 3. The web-tool will perform a vigilant and quick search for displaying the status of your phone. It will determine if the phone has a clean ESN or not.

check if your phone has a clean ESN

The tool will clearly indicate what you have been looking for. Now, when you know that your phone has a clean ESN, you can buy the used phone with much needed peace of mind. Therefore, the clean ESN check of phone is extremely crucial to circumvent any possible trouble in future.

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