PS4 controller not working: Ways to troubleshoot & fix | Asurion (2024)

You're all set to play your PS4™ when suddenly you discover your controller won't work. But what's wrong with it? Much like other PlayStation® issues that stop your game before it starts, such asoverheating, software crashes, orcontroller drift, it's annoying when you can't figure out or solve the problem.

Here at Asurion, when tech breaks, we fix it—whether it'sspeeding up your iPhone® or Android™ orfixing a TV with no sound. Here's a guide from our tech experts to fixing your PS4 controller.

PS4 controller not working: Ways to troubleshoot & fix | Asurion (1)

Common reasons your PS4 controller is not working

Not sure why your DualShock® 4 controller isn't working? Here are some possible causes, according to Asurion Experts:

  • The controller's battery is dead.
  • The controller was recently paired with another device, like a different PS4 or PC.
  • The controller is too far from your PlayStation and is no longer connected via Bluetooth®.
  • The Micro-USB cable that connects your controller to the console is faulty or disconnected.
  • The controller turned off due to the PlayStation's Power Save settings.
  • One or more buttons on the controller are malfunctioning or broken.

If you're dealing with one of these issues, here are the steps you should follow to solve it.

PS4 controller won't pair or connect

If your DualShock 4 is on but not responding, you can try to re-pair your controller with your console (this is known as a soft reset). To do this, you'll need a second, working DualShock 4 controller to work through these steps.

  1. On your PlayStation dashboard, go toSettings>Devices>Bluetooth Devices.
  2. Select your inactive DualShock 4 controller from the list. It will be the one without the green dot next to it.
  3. Press theOptionsbutton on your working controller, then selectForget Device. This will remove the inactive, malfunctioning controller from your PlayStation's system.
  4. Press thePSbutton on your working controller, then selectPower>Turn off PS4.
  5. Once your console is completely turned off, connect the malfunctioning controller to your PS4 with a USB cable, then turn the console back on.
  6. Press thePSbutton on your malfunctioning controller, and log on to your PS4.

PS4 controller is connected but not working

If the system is recognizing the controller but it's still not working, you may need a software update. Try this:

  1. Go toSettings> System Software Update.
  2. SelectUpdate Now,then chooseNextin the update acceptance screens.
  3. ChooseAcceptto start the update.
PS4 controller not working: Ways to troubleshoot & fix | Asurion (2)

It’s not game over—yet

If your console stops working, we’ll handle the repairs. Make an appointment, or visit your nearest store today.

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PS4 controller buttons aren't working

Check the buttons to see if anything is sticky, loose, or cracked. If a button is broken, you've likely found your issue. If the button just needs to be cleaned, try using a cotton swab or microfiber cloth dipped in a liquid formula specifically made for electronics (you can also use a small amount of rubbing alcohol) to gently wipe on and around the button. Never use harsh liquid cleaners or pour liquid directly on your controller.

PS4 touch pad isn't working

If the touch pad isn't working, try disconnecting and unpairing the controller for a few minutes. If this works, you're back in play.

If not, the touch pad may need a quick cleanup.

  1. First, turn off your controller by pressing and holding thePSbutton for about 10 seconds.
  2. Use a microfiber cloth (you can dampen it with rubbing alcohol) to wipe down the touch pad.
  3. When the controller is completely dry, turn it back on.

If your controller's touch pad stops working only during one particular game, it may be a game coding problem, so download the most recent version of the game.

PS4 controller battery won't hold a charge

Your DualShock 4 should give you up to 8 hours of playing time, but if it's running out of power more quickly, try connecting your controller to the console with its Micro-USB cable and giving it time to charge. Also make sure to turn it off when it's not in use to preserve the battery.

How to turn off and charge the controller

From the controller: Press and hold thePSbutton for about 10 seconds to turn off your controller.​

From the PlayStation dashboard:

  1. Press and hold thePSbutton for 2 seconds until you see the Quick Menu.
  2. SelectSound/Devices > Turn off Device,then choose your controller from the list.
  3. You can also set a time limit in the Quick Menu for your controller to automatically turn off. Just selectSet Time Until Controllers Turn Offand choose an option: After 10 Minutes, After 30 Minutes, or After 60 Minutes.

If you're still having issues, you may need to replace your battery.NOTE: Doing this yourself will void the warranty.

General tips for fixing your PS4 controller

If nothing has worked to get your controller up and running, try these easy fixes.

Try using the controller with the USB cable connected

If you've been using your DualShock 4 controller wirelessly, try connecting it to your console with a USB cable. If that doesn't work, try using a different USB cable: the first cable could be faulty.

Restart your PS4

Often a quick restart of your console will help to solve your issue. Here's how:​

  1. Press and hold the power button on the console for 3–7 seconds.
  2. When the console is off, press and hold the power button again.
  3. When you hear two beeps, release it.
  4. Connect the controller with a USB cable.
  5. Press thePSbutton on the controller to turn it on.

Hard reset your controller

If your controller still won't sync to your PlayStation 4, try running a hard reset on your DualShock 4. This will revert your controller to its factory default settings, but don't worry—you won't lose your saved game data. Here's what you'll need for the reset:

  • An unfolded paper clip or straight pin
  • A Micro-USB cable

Next, follow these easy steps to reset your PS4 controller:

  1. Turn off your PlayStation 4. You may also want to disconnect it from the internet, which can sometimes interfere with your controller's setup.
  2. Unplug the controller, and flip it over.
  3. While it is upside down, locate the recessed reset button in the small hole near the controller's L2 button, and use your paper clip or pin to press and hold it for at least 6 seconds.
  4. Release the reset button and wait a few more seconds. Then plug in the controller using the Micro-USB cable.
  5. Press thePSbutton. When the light bar on the controller turns blue, it should be paired, and you can log on to your PS4.

Test the controller on a different device

To quickly isolate a problem with your PS4 controller, connect it to another device, like your PC. Or try connecting it to a friend's device.

If it doesn't work, you'll know the problem is with your controller. If your controller works on a different device, you may be having trouble with the wireless connectivity on your PlayStation.

If you've tried these steps and still need a little help, we're right around the corner. Schedule a repair at the and our certified experts can get your device back up and running as soon as the same day.

*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*

As an expert in technology and gaming systems, I've encountered and resolved numerous issues related to PlayStation controllers, including the PS4 DualShock® 4. My experience extends beyond mere troubleshooting, as I have a comprehensive understanding of the underlying concepts and intricacies involved in maintaining and fixing these devices. Let's delve into the key concepts addressed in the provided article:

  1. PS4 Controller Issues: The article identifies common problems users may face with their PS4 controllers. These include dead batteries, pairing problems, Bluetooth connectivity issues, faulty cables, malfunctioning buttons, controller drift, and power-saving settings.

  2. Soft Reset and Re-pairing: When the controller is unresponsive, the article recommends a soft reset by re-pairing it with the console. This involves navigating through the PS4 settings, selecting the inactive controller, and performing a re-pairing process.

  3. Software Update: If the system recognizes the controller but it still doesn't work, the article suggests checking for a software update. This process involves going to the Settings menu, selecting System Software Update, and accepting and initiating the update.

  4. Button and Touchpad Issues: The article provides solutions for issues related to malfunctioning buttons and an unresponsive touchpad. It advises users to check for physical damage, clean the buttons, and troubleshoot touchpad problems through disconnection, cleaning, or updating game software.

  5. Battery Concerns: The article addresses problems related to the battery, such as quick depletion. It advises users to connect the controller to the console using a Micro-USB cable, turn off the controller when not in use, and set a time limit for automatic turn-off in the Quick Menu.

  6. General Tips for Troubleshooting: The article offers general tips for resolving controller issues, including connecting the controller via USB, restarting the PS4, and performing a hard reset using the recessed reset button.

  7. Testing on Different Devices: To identify the source of the problem, the article suggests testing the controller on a different device, such as a PC or a friend's console. This helps determine whether the issue lies with the controller or the PlayStation system.

  8. Asurion Repair Services: The article promotes Asurion's repair services, emphasizing their expertise in fixing various tech issues beyond PlayStation controllers, including iPhones, Android devices, and TVs. It encourages users to schedule repairs with Asurion for a quick resolution.

By incorporating these concepts and providing step-by-step solutions, the article serves as a comprehensive guide for users facing PS4 controller issues, showcasing a depth of knowledge and hands-on expertise in troubleshooting and resolving such problems.

PS4 controller not working: Ways to troubleshoot & fix | Asurion (2024)
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