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How to fix vertical or horizontal lines on your phone screen

It indicates that your display has been damaged, and only replacing the hardware assembly can fix it.
By

Published onMarch 20, 2024

Android phones come in all shapes and sizes, and they work pretty well for the most part. However, users frequently report weird issues that sour their phone experience. Many have complained that their phone suddenly develops vertical or horizontal lines on the phone screen. If you’re facing this issue, we will shine some light on the cause of the problem and how you can fix the vertical or horizontal lines on your phone screen.

QUICK ANSWER

The vertical or horizontal line issue on phones is a display hardware problem that software cannot fix. The display of the affected phone needs to be replaced, and such repair can possibly include replacing the display assembly and the motherboard, depending on the phone model. Please get in touch with customer support to initiate a repair.

Since the cause for most such issues is either accidental damage or user negligence, the standard warranty on the phone will not apply. Some extended warranties may cover the issue. In most cases, expect to pay up to 30% for a display swap and more if other components are also damaged.


JUMP TO KEY SECTIONS

What causes vertical and horizontal line issue on phones?

Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus Green line issue 1
Green line issue on Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus
Smartphones have become more robust and more durable over the years, but they are still relatively fragile pieces of tech we carry in our pockets daily. They have a limited life, and the components are bound to break down during everyday use, by the passage of time, or even by mishandling. After using your phone for a while, you may see vertical or horizontal lines appearing on the display. The display may or may not function properly once those lines appear.

The lines could be black, white, green, pink, or any other color. So you could very well get white stripes on your phone screen, black lines, or a combination of colors. All of it indicates that something is wrong with your phone display, which is very likely damaged.

For most of the reports we have seen and investigated, vertical and horizontal lines start appearing on phone screens, usually after either water damage, a drop, or other mishandling. The lines may not appear immediately and may take some time, but in many cases, not taking good care of your phone will cause vertical or horizontal lines to appear on the display.

Unfortunately, these lines indicate hardware damage. Depending on the mishap your phone has experienced, a variety of factors could cause vertical or horizontal lines to appear on your phone. Some of them include:

  • Pressure on the phone screen: The screen may have received unexpected stress, perhaps because the phone was accidentally bent. Applying pressure beyond what the phone display can handle can cause the display to show vertical and horizontal lines.
  • Physical damage due to dropping: If you dropped your phone, there are chances that your phone has suffered physical damage in some format, even if the externals of the phone appear fine. Your phone’s motherboard or other components within could have suffered damage, which in turn could cause damage to the display circuitry and cause vertical and horizontal lines to appear.
  • Water damage: If you have water damage and attempt to turn on your phone, you can short-circuit critical circuitry, which could cause vertical and horizontal lines. Water damage includes submerging your phone underwater or even having drops of water causing condensation within your phone.
  • Overheating: There are situations where prolonged overheating could damage essential components of the display. This rare occurrence would require prolonged high temperatures, like wirelessly charging inside a hot car.

In all of these instances, if you have vertical or horizontal lines, the display assembly (and possibly other parts) has been physically damaged. This is unlikely a software issue unless you are playing with custom ROMs using experimental graphics drivers. So for most users, this indicates that your phone’s display has been permanently and irreversibly damaged.

Some users may find that they have green lines on their phones right after a software update. This also indicates that the phone’s display is damaged, possibly due to heat emanating during the software update. Some OEMs have taken cognizance of this green line issue on smartphones and offer free repairs, but most others are not providing any such relief. So you will likely still need to pay out of pocket for a repair.

How to fix vertical or horizontal lines on your phone screen

Apple iPhone X Green line issue
Green line issue on iPhone

Much like the green line issue on AMOLED phones, vertical and horizontal lines on your phone screen indicate physical damage to the display assembly.

Unfortunately, replacing the display is the only way to fix your phone screen’s vertical or horizontal line issue. Nothing can be done on the software end by an end user that will fix the problem.

Restart your phone to rule out a software issue

As a troubleshooting step, we recommend restarting your phone once when you see the vertical or horizontal line issue on your Android phone. This step merely rules out the possibility of a software issue. It is not a fix, but it can save you from an unnecessary trip to the service center.

Visit a service center or RMA your phone

Once you have made sure that the issue is not caused by software, you will need to visit the service center or RMA your phone and get it repaired. Contact your phone’s support team for the next steps that you should take. We would also suggest backing up your phone before sending it in.

The service center will likely adjudge the vertical or horizontal line issue as a hardware failure for the display assembly, which will require replacing the display and possibly the display assembly. For certain phones, it could also involve replacing the motherboard, depending on how the phone is manufactured.

Customer service will likely quote you somewhere between 10-30% of your phone’s selling price for a display swap. The amount varies depending on the brand, model, and complexity of repair.

Is the vertical or horizontal line issue covered under warranty?

Vertical line issue Realme GT ME
Vertical line issue on Realme GT Master Edition

Unfortunately, the answer for most of these issues is that it is unlikely to be covered under warranty. To get the benefit of a warranty, you will need to prove that the problem was caused by a manufacturer defect and not by external damage by you as the user.

The vertical and horizontal line issue is caused by accidental damage and user negligence in most cases. The warranty will not cover the same, even if your phone is relatively new and covered under a standard warranty. Some extended warranties, like AppleCare Plus, cover accidental damage, though you are usually charged a small processing fee.