Today almost every Android Smartphone support external SD card. The External SD card is used to store data such as pictures, videos, documents, songs, videos and other stuff. The phone also has internal memory, but when internal memory gets full then it will display ‘insufficient storage available’ error message and also slows down the speed of the smartphone and due to this, many user always want to keep the internal memory free as much as possible by transferring the files to the external memory card.

However, there are many users that has encounter that the SD card is not detected or recognized/read by the Android Phone.

Let Us Take Real Example Scenario

Hello everyone, I’m new here. This is my first time posting so I don’t really know if I’m posting at the right place.

Anyway, I don’t know how to start but I rooted my LG optimus G pro and everything was fine. I wanted to install a custom recovery and I downloaded this apk called G pro recovery. I installed it and everything was okay but as soon as I rebooted my phone, it took time to start but it did come on.

The apk did not work and no recovery was installed but after that my SD card stopped working. It stopped mounting and even though I try to “Mount external SD” it would just show, ‘sd card is inserted’ but nothing else happens.

I tried doing a factory reset but the problem persists. Please help as everything is okay except the sd card and I tried using it on other phones and it works fine and i tried using another sd card but it doesn’t work so the problem is within the phone. Please help as I have a titanium back up of my stuff on my external sd and I can’t restore it if it doesn’t work right? I can’t really type it all so please reply and I can provide further info.

                                                – Original Post from Android Authority Forums

10 Problems And Solutions To Solve SD card is Not Detected/Read/Recognized By Android Phone

Well, below find out some of the common problems why SD card/microSD card in Android phone does not get recognized and also their solutions.

These solutions can be applied for any Android phones or tablets (such as Samsung Galaxy, Lenovo, HTC, Google, Xiaomi, LG, ZTE, Huawei, Oppo, Vivo, Panasonic, Lava, Sony, etc)  that is not reading memory card or fails to detect SD card.

Problem #1 – The Card Slot May Got Damaged


These days smartphone are getting thinner and slimmer and because of this, the card slots also getting nifty as well. There are many users who like to use non-original battery to increase the battery life. But non-original battery sizes are thicker than original ones and hence it can damage the card slot and this cause SD card not to be detected.

SolutionCheck out that SD card slot is not damage and also remove the non-original battery and insert original battery.

Additional Reading: [Fixed]: “Android Black Screen Of Death” Issue

Problem #2 – May Be Your SD Card Is Not Clean


Mostly users do not pay attention towards their memory card. They may be not clean from dust or dirt. The dust or dirt may be creating problem from SD card detection by the phone.

SolutionJust check your card is free from dust and dirt and if it is not, then switch OFF your device and take out your external memory card out of the Android phone or tablet. Now clean the card with the help of piece of cloth. Finally, when you are sure that your card is clean, then re-insert the card into memory card slot and Switch ON your Android device.

Additional Reading: How to Fix Boot Loop Issue on Android without Losing Data

Problem #3 – May Be SD Card Slot Metal Wires Got Rusted or Twisted


Most of the user has bad practice or ejecting the card improperly from their Android device while it is running. The frequent pulling in and out of card may rust or twist the metal wires of SD card slot.

Solution – Switch OFF and take out the memory card out of your phone and if the metal wire has rust then remove the rust with the help of white colored rubber eraser to rub the metal wires (copper piece) on your SD card.

And if the metal wires got twisted then get it straight.

Additional Reading: How To Fix “Unfortunately App has Stopped” Error in Android Without losing data

Problem #4 – SD Card is Not Erased

When you purchase the new card, it is suggested that you should erase the SD card before using it on your Android phone. If you have not erased the SD card then follow the below steps to erase SD card.

SolutionBut before you proceed further to erase SD card, it is recommended that you must first transfer all the files from your Android device to PC because erasing SD card removes all the data from the card.

Steps to Erase SD Card on Android

  • Open Menu on your Android and go to Settings and then go to Storage.
  • Look for ‘Erase SD Card’ option and tap on it. Doing this will delete all the data and makes it as new memory card.

Problem #5 – May Be You Have Not Formatted The Card Properly

Since the formatting option of different electronic device such as of computer and mobiles are different. If your card is not formatted properly then it may not get detected.

Solution Re-format your card. Connect your card with the use of card reader to your PC and perform the format process.

  • Connect your SD card to your PC with the help of card reader. Create a new folder and give it a name that you want to give.
  • Now copy all the content from your card to the folder that you have just created. This is for taking backup to avoid data loss.
  • Now format the card. Once the format process completes, insert the card into your phone and check whether it is reading your card or not.

In most of the cases, this solution helps many Android users to fix SD card not detected problems.

Problem #6 – Virus/Malware Infection To SD Card


Many users install app on their external SD card. Some of the apps holds dangerous malware, which infect the card and makes them undetectable.

Solution – Connect your Card with the PC via help of card reader and scan the card with the help of anti-virus. If it still does not work then format your memory card, to do this just follow the above-mentioned solution – Solution 5.

Additional Reading: “Unfortunately the has stopped” – Best Fix

Problem #7 – Check Card For Errors and Corruption


It is possible that your memory card is corrupted or having errors and therefore, the SD card is not getting recognized by Android phone or tablet.

SolutionAt such stage you have to perform some more technical steps than just erasing SD card data or formatting the card.

  • Connect your Android device to PC with the help of USB cable
  • Now check that your device is connected as MSC (Mass Storage Mode) and not as MTP (Media Transfer Mode)
  • Next open Window Explorer on your PC and right click on the SD card driver. Now from the options, select Properties>Tools>Error Checking and click on Check Now This will start the process for checking errors on SD card.
  • Once, the process completes, properly eject the card and put it back to the memory card slot on your phone/tablet. Check whether the SD card is detected or not.

Problem #8 – Battery Power Supply

Some of the good quality memory card requires stable battery voltage and if your phone battery is not able to provide sufficient power supply that the original ones provide, then you will suffer from such kind of problem.

Solution – Simply change the battery and use the original one.

Additional Reading: [Solved] “No Command” Error In Recovery Mode On Android

Problem #9 – May Be SD Card is Broken


If your card is physically damaged or broken, then Android phone or tablet will not read the card.

Solution – In order to check whether the SD card is broken or not, you can just connect to your PC with the help of card reader. If you are able to access the content from the card then it is confirmed that your card is good. If not, then your card is broken or damaged.

Additional Reading: 45 Google Play Store Error Codes: How To Fix Them on Android [Part I]

Problem #10 – May Be Your Phone Has Technical Fault


If you have followed and checked the above mention problem and solution and found that the card is good, then in this case it may be that your phone has some fault.

SolutionAt such cases, you should simply show your Android phone/tablet to the device’s manufacture service center.

Frequently Asked Question [FAQ]

How do I mount my SD card on my Android?
  • Switch Off your Android phone
  • Insert the SD card to the memory card slot.
  • Switch ON your Android device
  • Go to Settings>Tap on “SD or phone Storage
  • Click on Format SD card – this will reformat your SD card, and prepare it for mounting a new SD card.
  • Once the reformatting process completes, select “Mount SD card” – this will mount your SD card and make the card available for use.
How to Un-mount an Android SD Card?
  • Open Setting on your Android phone
  • Look for Storage and tap on it
  • Now scroll down to the bottom of the screen and you will see option “Unmount SD Card” and tap on it
  • Finally tap on OK button to confirm
  • The SD card will unmount, and a notification will appear saying “SD card safe to remove”.
How do you format a SD card for Android?
  • Open Setting on your Android phone
  • Look for Storage and tap on it
  • Now you will see option either Erase SD card or Format SD card
  • Confirm by pressing the Format SD cardor Erase SD card This will format your card on your Android device.

Recovering Deleted/Formatted Data From Android SD Card

If you have lost/formatted/deleted/erased data on your Android SD card by following any of the above solutions to fix “Android phone fails to detect SD card”. And if you are looking to retrieve those lost data back, then you can use Android Data Recovery software, that is perfectly designed to restore data from Android external SD card.

Easily Recover Data From Android SD Card

Free Download Dr.Fone for Android(Windows)Free Download Dr.Fone for Android(Mac)

Supported file types that software can help you to recover are: contacts, photos, videos, documents, whatsapp messages, text messages (SMS), audio, notes, memos, call history and more.

Steps to Recover Lost Data From Android SD Card

Step 1: Connect your microSD card via Android phone or card reader

First of all launch Android Data Recovery and select “Recover” option from the available options and then select “Recover from SD card”.

And then connect your memory card with the help of Android device or a card reader. After this click on “Next” to continue.

This program will detect your SD card and after it you will see the window as given below. Choose your SD card and click 'Next' to continue.

Step 2: Choose a scan mode to scan your SD card

There are two scanning modes are available, first is 'Standard' and the second one is 'Advance'

Read the given description below the both options and select one from 'Standard Mode' and 'Advanced Mode' according to your requirement.

After selecting the recovery mode, click on the 'Next' to initiate the analyzing and scanning your SD card.

Step 3: Preview and Restore Data from your SD Card Selectively

It will scan your SD card and after the completion of scanning process, all the recoverable files will be displayed according to their categories. From the left sidebar, you can click on different data types to display the related files. You can check or un-check the files and then click 'Recover' to start the data recovery process.


Well, the above solution of each problem may help you to fix the error “External SD card is not detected by Android Phone”. You should always take good care for maintaining and keeping the card at good condition. Additionally, it is also important to recover and keep backup of data stored in SD card.

Android Data Recovery
Fix Android Device Doesn’t Detect or Recognize External SD Card Issue!
Fix Android Device Doesn't Detect or Recognize External SD Card Issue!
Article Name
Fix Android Device Doesn't Detect or Recognize External SD Card Issue!
Solution 1: Make sure your SD card slot is not damaged... Solution 5: Re-format your SD card to the device supported file system by default it is set to FAT32 form... Solution 7: diagnose your card with the help of your PC...
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Android Data Recovery Blog
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