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

Get back to gaming in no time.
May 1, 2023

The Nintendo Switch remains a popular console, its biggest selling point (beyond exclusive games) being its namesake ability to switch between mobile and TV play. That makes things all the more problematic, however, if the device becomes unresponsive. Here’s what to do if your Nintendo Switch won’t turn on.

See also: Common Nintendo Switch problems and how to fix them


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

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

Check if the device is charging

dock nintendo switch
Curtis Joe / Android Authority

Most likely your Switch isn’t turning on because it’s out of juice. Test your charger and cable with another device if you can, and look closely for torn or frayed cords. You’ll need a replacement if things are damaged.

If you’re planning to get a third-party charger, ensure it meets Nintendo’s minimum requirements. The Switch supports USB PD (USB Power Delivery) over USB-C, and charges quickly with an 18W charger. We recommend getting a 25-3oW charger, however, to fast-charge whenever possible. You’ll need at least a 45W charger for the official Switch dock.

If you normally plug your Switch into the dock to charge, it could be a placement issue. The green LED indicator will light up for a few seconds when you insert the console correctly. That light isn’t a charging indicator though, so check whether it’s a problem with the dock by plugging your charger directly into the console. If the Switch powers up, you’ll need to replace your dock.

Once you’re able to charge your Switch again, wait a few minutes, then press the power button at the top of the Switch to turn it on. The Switch takes about 3 hours to charge completely, so the longer you can wait, the better. Going forward, try never to let the battery of the console drain completely.

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 second, then press the power button once as you usually would to turn it on.

Use Maintenance Mode

Nintendo Switch Header 17
Curtis Joe / Android Authority

If the Switch isn’t turning after 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 your Switch still isn’t working, 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.


It’s a controller issue if you can turn on your Switch using the power button, but not your Joy-Cons. Ensure that the Joy-Cons are charged and otherwise functioning properly. If there’s a problem with just the Joy-Cons’ home button, you’ll have to send the bad controller in for repair, or pay for a replacement.