(FIXED) Drone Not Recognizing The SD Card (Why, How to Fix)

SD card is so important because it is the external storage of the drone where your epic sceneries and shots are stored. It allows you to copy or move videos and images taken by drone to another device. So you are able to store them safely and forever.

But if your drone not recognizing the SD card, you won’t be able to do anything mentioned before. Actually, if the drone not recognizing the SD card and is unable to record and capture, It makes the drone almost worthless. Therefore this issue needs to be fixed.

So as always I went to many forums, articles, videos, and conversations to figure out why drones do not recognize SD card and how to fix it. Thankfully, there are some effective ways to fix the issue which are figured out by guys who also have faced the same issue. Hopefully, this article would help you to fix the issue.

Why drone not recognizing the SD card.

In most cases, drone not recognizing SD card because of the invalid file type of the SD card. So many people were able to fix the issue just by formatting the SD card. Also there are some other reasons like firmware issues, malware, and corrupted SD cards.

Because there are some reasons that can cause your issue, we would go through almost every reason that would cause and how to fix it. So you would be able to tackle the cause of your problem and how to fix it.

Reason 1: Corrupted SD card.

This is the most common reason why drone not recognizing the SD card. SD cards can be corrupted by some user actions and software issues. The most common thing that causes corrupt the SD card and we all do is pulling out it instead of ejecting first. Even though you think your SD card is not corrupted try these options below. Because most people were able to solve the issue by following these methods.

Option 1: Use the command prompt and repair the SD card.

You can repair a corrupted SD card free using the Windows command prompt.

  1. Click the windows icon in the left bottom corner and search “cmd”. Once you searched that, the command prompt would appear in the results.
  2. Then click it and open the command prompt.
  3. Then type “chkdsk” and leave a space and specify the SD card driver letter (Ex: chkdsk D). and hit enter.
  4. After that, you’ll have to wait patiently until the process is done.
  5. Once the process is finished, your SD card should be fixed and ready to go.

Option 2: Format the SD card.

Formatting the SD card resets all the settings and ready the SD card to use a new purpose. So if you have a backup of files on your SD card or there are no important files inside the SD card, it’s worth trying formatting the SD card. Connect your SD card to your PC and enter the File Explorer. Then right-click on the SD card driver and select the format option. Wait a few seconds until it’s done. After that insert the SD card into the drone and check whether it’s recognizing the SD card.

Reason 2: Outdated firmware or firmware glitches.

This is another common reason that causes this issue. Firmware is so important to manage software operations inside the drone. Because of that updating, the firmware of the drone is essential to avoid software operation failures like this issue. Also if your current firmware version has glitches, it also would cause this issue.

Solution: To solve this update firmware of the drone and controller to the latest version. If you suspect the current version has some bugs, refresh the firmware or revert the firmware to the recent one.

Reason 3: Improper SD card installation.

Simply, In order to recognize and read the SD card, the metallic contact of the SD card needs to be aligned with the pins of the reader. If you haven’t inserted enough or the SD card doesn’t fit with the slot, it won’t align perfectly with the reader and won’t be recognized.

Solution: I know it’s kinda silly to advise you on how to insert an SD card to the drone. But there are some situations that you need to push the SD card little bit further to recognize the Sd card. So try gently pushing the sd card further and holding it until it recognize.

Reason 4: Debris and dust are accumulated inside the SD card slot.

Accumulating dust and debris inside slots is so common in any electronicic stuff. It would be your phone, laptop, drone, etc. Those accumulations cause to block the SD card slot and cover the pins and metallic contact of the SD card.

Solution: Open the SD card slot and check whether there is any accumulation. If yes, take a cotton bud or brush and remove debris and clean the SD card slot gently.

Reason 5: Viruses and Malwares.

If you have inserted the SD card into a virus-infected device recently, it could cause the reason why this it’s happening. Viruses and malware can malfunction the SD card operation and won’t permit the drone to recognize the SD card.

Solution: If you have done some actions that cause virus infections like surfing the web with the SD card connected, it’s better to scan your SD card. If you haven’t installed an antivirus program on your PC, choose a good antivirus program and install it. Then connect your SD card to your PC and scan the SD card.

Reason 6: SD card write protection.

If you are connecting the SD card to the drone using an adapter, you would have to check whether the Write-Protected is on. So when this feature is turned on, devices won’t be able to recognize the SD card for the purpose of writing data. To fix this issue you need to remove the write protection of the SD card.

Solution: Inspect the SD card to find the lock switch located on its left side. The lock switch can be toggled up or down. Usually, the upward position unlocks the SD card and removes the write protection feature and the down position locks the SD card or activates the write protection feature. Slide the lock upwards to unlock your SD card.

write portected sd cards

Reason 7: Incompatible SD cards.

Some drones require some high-quality SD cards to perform those actions that’s why some manufacturers have emphazie and recommend some SD cards. So check whether you are using a recommended SD card from the manufacturer. Many drone manufacturers recommend the SanDisk SD cards for users. If you are using a common SD card buy a SanDisk SD card.

Reason 8: Damaged SD card or reader.

As I mentioned before SD card and the reader need to be aligned to recognize and read the SD card. So if any of them have been damaged, it would be hard to read properly. Scratches on the metallic contact is the most common SD card damage. If your SD card is not severely scratched and recognized by other devices, that’s totally fine. Reader’s pins get damaged and bent very rarely but check whether reader pins are bent.

Solution: If there are some scratches on the metallic contact but it is recognized by other devices, it’s safe. If it’s severely scratched apply some ordi cologne on it and clean it. If the reader pins are bent, that would be a little bit harder to fix. You’ll need to have some professionals help or send it to the manufacturer to fix it.

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