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3 Samsung Galaxy S4 microSD Card Problems and How To Fix Them

galaxy s4 microsd card

The Samsung Galaxy S4 has a microSD card slot that supports up to 64 gigabytes of data. That is more than enough to accommodate hundreds of multimedia files. The fact is, many owners use their phone as their external storage drives. But what if the microSD card suddenly fails?

We did received hundreds of emails related to the microSD card of the S4 and we were able to come up with three most common problems.

Mounting / Unmounting Problems

Here is a couple of email messages from our readers that explain well how these problems happen:

Mounting Issue 

Hey, I just want to ask why my Galaxy S4 cannot mount the microSD card properly. Though I’m not really a techie person, I know how to properly insert the card into my phone. I’m pretty sure that the problem isn’t about how I inserted the card but how the device mounts it. My phone couldn’t just find it. Help me, please.

Unmounting Issue 

I know that improper unmounting of the microSD card may eventually lead to corruption of data that is why I always take a few seconds to properly unmount the card from my phone. The problem is, the phone couldn’t unmount it. What’s the problem? Please help me fix the problem.

Possible Causes 

  • Temporary phone problem.
  • The microSD card is not supported by the device.
  • Either the microSD card or the slot was damaged.
  • The card is corrupted or hasn’t been properly formatted.
  • An application is using the microSD card.


Solution 1: To eliminate the possibility that it is just a temporary phone problem, we urge you to reboot or soft-reset the phone. Take the battery out for30 seconds then boot the phone normally, after which, try to see if the microSD card can be mounted / unmounted.

Solution 2: Check the specification of the microSD card and compare it with the specs that are support by the phone. Majority of the cards available in the market today are supported by the Galaxy S4 but there are brands that just won’t work with it.

Solution 3: Check the connector of the microSD card and make sure it’s not corroded, pushed in or missing. Then, check the microSD card slot to see if everything looks fine.

Solution 4: Perhaps, the card is corrupted or hasn’t been properly formatted. Let the computer read the card and backup as much data as possible then reformat it. See if the phone detects is now.

Solution 5: For instances that the phone refuses to unmount the microSD card, a third-party app may be causing the issue. A simple reboot may solve the problem or if you know which app is using it, you can force close the app to properly unmount the card.

Content Not Found

The following is the message from one of our readers experiencing this specific problem.

Hi TDG,   

My Galaxy S4 phone can detect and mount the microSD card properly, however, I cannot seem to find the contents. Is there a way to fix this?

Possible Causes 

  • Temporary phone problem.
  • Contents were inadvertently deleted.
  • The microSD card / slot was damaged.
  • Content is not supported by the phone.
  • Content is corrupted.
  • Content is protected by DRM (Digital Rights Management).


Solution 1: Soft-reset your phone before doing anything else. If the issue were temporary, this procedure will fix it.

Solution 2: Make sure that the contents you’re trying to access were saved in your microSD card. There are times when you inadvertently deleted contents but expect they’re still there.

Solution 3: Check to make sure your microSD card or the slot has not been damaged. Refer to the third solution in the first problem to know how to do this.

Solution 4: Make sure that the file you are trying to access has a file extension that is supported by the phone. Files that aren’t supported are often not visible.

Solution 5: Make sure the content you’re trying to access is not corrupted. Data that are corrupt may not be visible.

Solution 6: Digital Rights Management (DRM) restricted files may not be accessed using other apps. Make sure the content you’re trying to access is not DRM-restricted.

Unable To Format

Other owners complained not being able to format their microSD card using their phone. While the problem is not so common like the first two problems, it is easy to fix.

Possible Causes 

  • Third-party app is using the problem.
  • The microSD card is not supported by the phone.
  • The microSD card has been write-protected.
  • The card was damaged.


Solution 1: Reboot the phone to make sure the app that is currently using the microSD card would be stopped. More often than not, this problem is caused by an app that is accessing the data from the microSD card. If a reboot wouldn’t fix the problem, try booting the phone to Safe Mode.

Solution 2: Make sure that the microSD card you’re using is supported by the S4.

Solution 3: If the card was used in a previous device, it is possible that the card may be write protected. A write-protected card cannot be formatted. To remove the write protection, you will need to install the card in the original device and remove the write protection. If the original device is not available, you will need to use a different card in this device.

Solution 4: Make sure the microSD card hasn’t been damaged. Otherwise, buy a new one.

Tell us your phone problems

The solutions we provided here are based on reports and testimonies from owners who have encountered these problems. I also ask my XDA developer friends regarding some of the problems. Now if you have other problems or questions with your smartphone that you want answered, don’t hesitate to send us email at [email protected]

We don’t guarantee a reply to all emails because we receive hundreds of them daily, but rest assured your email messages will be read by me. But I urge you to provide as much details as possible so I could easily find references and compare your problems with reports from other owners. If your problem is as common as others, there could already be solutions that exist and I would surely point you to them. Screenshots often help so attach one if you can.

  • Guest

    The card was working fine in my S4. I restored some songs to my phone. Later when I tried to access all my pictures, music and files were not accessible. I can’t read it, write to it, or format it Phone has just stopped recogniizing it.

  • Ruslan

    The card was working fine in my S4. I restored some songs to my phone. Later when I tried to access all my pictures, music and files were not accessible.How to fix? I want to access files in my memory SD card.

  • Bill

    Performed update to my galaxy s4 on 10/25/2014. since then i cant access my data on the SD card. I can see the files but when trying to view them its a funky little logo…tried to access my SD data on my laptop with same result…..

  • Martin Nikdo

    Content not found – that’s funny, the solutions doesn’t work. SD card was at the phone 1 month ago, then S4 went to repair. And now is content “not found” but when you go to SD card with My Files app and try some content, you will see that it’s ok (you’ll hear the music) but the player doesn’t see it anyway.

    And sorry for my english :(

  • Guest

    My phone was working well with the sd card, I moved most of the apps to the sd card and now is telling me that the sd card is blank or has unsupported files. I cant even launch some apps and I have tried to mount the sd card and it would not let me, I also tried to format the sd card and it doesn’t do anything. Please anyone help i just bought the sd card

  • skunk98

    I dropped my phone the other day, from about 2 ft, and since then, the sd card has stopped working. It isn’t recognised by the phone, and shows on the computer, but can’t be accessed . I have put another card in the phone, and that works ok. I’m at a loss what to do with the card to retrieve info from it.

  • charlotte kidwell

    I haven’t ever used an SD card before and was running out of room on my Samsung Galaxy S4 so I had an associate at the store install a SanDisk 16 GB SD card in my phone last night. I don’t have the instructions & don’t know what I need to do. If I need to format the SD Card, can you please explain how to do that? Thank you!

  • cesar

    after a hard reset my s4 does not recognize the sd card

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