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Nintendo Switch won't turn on? Here's how to fix it

Get back to gaming in no time.
By
November 26, 2022
Nintendo Switch Header 7
Curtis Joe / Android Authority

The Nintendo Switch is a popular console with a solid gaming library that includes Switch exclusives and free games. The Switch’s biggest selling point is its hybrid nature, allowing you to play games on a large screen or use it as a handheld while on the go. The console not working correctly while traveling is a problem, especially if it is entirely unresponsive. Here’s what to do if your Nintendo Switch won’t turn on.

Read more: Common Nintendo Switch problems and how to fix them

QUICK ANSWER

To fix a Nintendo Switch that won't turn on, make sure that the console is charged and perform a hard reset. Press and hold the power button for 20 seconds, release it, and press the power button once to restart the device.

How to fix a Nintendo Switch that won’t turn on

Check if the device is charging

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Your Switch is likely not turning on because it is out of battery. Use the charger and cable with another device and check for torn or frayed cords. You’ll need a replacement if it’s a hardware issue. If you’re planning to get a third-party charger, ensure it meets the minimum requirements to charge the device. The Switch supports USB PD (USB Power Delivery) over USB-C and charges quickly with an 18W charger. But we recommend getting a 25-3oW charger to fast charge the console in all conditions. You’ll need at least a 45W charger for the dock.

If you plug your Switch into the dock to charge it, it might be a placement issue. The green LED indicator will light up for a few seconds when you place the console correctly in the dock. However, keep in mind that the LED isn’t a charging indicator. Check whether it’s a problem with the dock by plugging the charger directly into the console. If the Switch charges, you will need to replace your dock.

Once you’re able to charge the Switch again, press the power button at the top of the Switch to turn it on and see if it’s working. The Switch takes about three hours to charge fully, so try turning the console on after an hour or so. If possible, try not to let the battery of the console drain completely before charging it.

Perform a hard reset

You can try a hard reset to turn on an unresponsive Switch. Press and hold the power button at the top of the device for around 20 seconds and then press the power button once as you usually would to turn it on.

Use Maintenance Mode

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If the Switch isn’t turning on with a hard reset, you can try going into Maintenance Mode to start up the console. Press and hold the volume up and down keys and press the power button. Continue to hold the volume keys until you see Maintenance Mode. Select Update system in case a software issue is causing the Switch to stop turning on.

If the system is updated, select Initialize console without deleting save data to keep your game files. Remember that this step will erase everything else, including cached files and other account information. Ensure that you pick the right option, as the other setting (Initialize console) will factory reset the device and erase everything.

Contact customer support for repairs

If the Switch doesn’t turn on after performing a hard reset, it might be a bigger hardware problem. You might have a damaged charging port, a faulty battery, or unresponsive buttons. Contact customer service to set up a repair.


Read more: The best SD cards you can get for the Nintendo Switch

FAQs

It’s a controller issue if you can turn on the Switch using the power button but not the Joy-Con. Ensure that the controller is charged and functioning properly. If there’s a problem with just the home button, you will have to send the controller for repair or get a replacement.