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How to fix Samsung Galaxy S5 screen that’s blank, flickering & unresponsive

In this post, I will answer four of the screen-related problems with the Samsung Galaxy S5. The issues I included here are from our readers. The first one is about the blank screen that started after the phone fell and hit the floor. Common sense would tell us the drop may have messed up the phone and we really don’t know the extent of the damage. If you encountered this kind of problem as well, read on to know what needs to be done.

Samsung-Galaxy-S5-Blank-Screen

The second problem is about the screen flickering when the brightness is set at a certain level. While screen flickering issues can either be hardware or firmware problem, in this case I think it’s the firmware that has an issue because if it were the hardware, the screen will flicker randomly even if the brightness is set at the highest level.

The third and fourth problems are about the screen brightness fluctuating and the top portion being unresponsive. The latter started after the lollipop update. Learn how to address this issue and why it may be normal for the Galaxy S5 screen brightness to fluctuate.

Before going into the specifics, if you have other concerns with your phone, visit our Galaxy S5 Troubleshooting page as we already addressed hundreds of problems since the device was released. Find issues related or the same as yours and try to follow the solutions we provided. If they didn’t work for you, then feel free to contact us as we are always willing to help you. Just fill up this form accurately and hit submit.

Galaxy S5 screen went blank after hitting the floor

Problem: Hi I dropped my Samsung Galaxy S5 from my dining table. It fell onto the floor and when I picked it up. It had a blank screen but the soft keys are lit up and when I press them I don’t get any response or vibrations. It has been 1 week now and I have tried all kinds of solutions found on youtube and google but no success.

Can you help me please, I can’t live without my phone and its not insured silly me and I don’t think I can afford to get it repaired. Many thanks.

Troubleshooting: Most of the time blank screens are caused by minor hardware or firmware glitch. The fact is a simple reboot can fix it but that is always not the case if the problem is caused by liquid or any physical incident. In this problem, our reader made it clear that the blank screen with his Galaxy S5 started after the it fell on the floor. Of course, it’s physical damage but we really don’t know as to what extent. But when it comes to these issues, what you need to do is pretty straightforward–if you can’t fix it on your own, then find someone who can.

But before you send your phone in for repair or checkup, do a soft reset first and try to boot it in recovery mode. Here’s how and why…

  1. Remove the back panel of the phone.
  2. Pull the battery out.
  3. While the battery is out, press and hold the Power key for a minute. That should be enough to drain stored electricity in some components.
  4. Place the battery back in.
  5. Attempt to turn the phone on.

Soft reset is very effective against minor hardware and firmware glitches; it refreshes the memory of your device as well as drained stored electricity in the components. If your phone didn’t turn on after this, then try booting it in recovery mode.

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, and Power key.
  3. When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  4. When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.

Do this procedure just to verify if the phone can boot up in that mode because if it can, then the hardware is fine, otherwise, go ahead and have a technician take a look at it.

Galaxy S5 screen flickers when brightness is set at certain level

Problem: When the screen brightness is lowered to the lowest setting, the lower half of the screen begins to flicker. Raising the brightness a few notches stops the flickering. I have not dropped the phone or exposed it to water – the issue started out of the blue and it’s driving me mad! Please help.

Troubleshooting: Screen flickering issue can be hardware or firmware problem and since there’s not much information here, you have to other option but to rule out the possibility that it’s just a firmware issue (which I really think it is) by performing hard reset. Of course, backup all your important data before doing that as they will be deleted.

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, and Power key.
  3. When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  4. When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

If the hard reset failed, then have a technician check the problem for you.

Galaxy S5 screen brightness fluctuating

Related Problem: My screen seems to be fluctuating in brightness.. Just so slightly. And my auto brightness adjust isn’t on. Wasn’t sure if this is something I need to worry about progressively getting worse or what.. Just get back to me if you can!

Troubleshooting: When you actually look closer, the screen in your Galaxy S5 fluctuate even if the auto-brightness is disabled. The traditional LCD screen has backlights that project light through the pixels and brightness can be adjusted by actually dimming these lights. Your Galaxy S5, however, uses the AMOLED technology where every pixel emits light. Brightness is adjusted by changing the amount of current that flows through these pixels. Reduced current may cause this “fluctuating” or pulsating brightness and more often, it happens when the battery is almost empty. So, to answer your question, you really don’t have to worry as long as the phone didn’t endure any physical or liquid damage.

Top portion of Galaxy S5 screen is unresponsive

Problem: When my phone is turned on, for the first 5-10 minutes, the touch senses for the top of my phone doesn’t work. I can pull down the screen menu. This started after the lollipop update. But it recently started to do it after its been on a while. Also, it started getting really “jittery” like getting stuck on an action then repeating it over and over.

Troubleshooting: How’s the performance of your phone after the update? If the performance is poor, then it could be that the unresponsive part of the screen is caused by freezing or lagging, which is firmware-related. We can spend all day trying to find what the culprit is without the guarantee of a resolution. So, to save you from all the hassles, try wiping the cache partition first, and if it didn’t work, backup your data and perform hard reset.

Wiping Cache Partition 

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, and Power key.
  3. When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  4. When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  5. Press the Volume Down key to highlight ‘wipe cache partition.’
  6. Press the Power key to select.
  7. When the wipe cache partition is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  8. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Doing the Master Reset

  1. Turn off the device.
  2. Press and hold the following three buttons at the same time: Volume Up key, Home key, and Power key.
  3. When the phone vibrates, release the Power key but continue to press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key.
  4. When the Android System Recovery screen appears, release the Volume Up and Home keys.
  5. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

I hope this helps.

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14 Comments

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  1. Green flickering screen on S5 fixed by using suggestion on Samsung blog
    Go to ‘settings’
    Select ‘Display’
    Turn off ‘auto adjust screen tone’
    Then turn off phone and restart.
    No reset or safemode needed.
    Can even switch on ‘auto’ by brightness slider and no green flickering occurs.
    Phone works like new.

  2. My screen has been getting worse over several months. It flickers at low darkness, sometimes has a severe yellow tint on the screen (which doesn’t show up on screenshots) and on the bottom quarter of brightness adjustment, most of the bottom half and sections of the upper half of the screen turn almost completely yellow with lines throughout the screen. However, by turning the phone upside down and pressing the screen onto a hard surface (specifically a spot to the left and slightly below the camera), the yellow tint will disappear. The lines and flickering won’t go away unless I turn my brightness up. Is there a permanent solution to this problem? Does anyone know what part of the phone I need to replace? Thanks!

  3. Yes you will have the same number but try to backup all your phone numbers and all your important dat a then us then factory reset.

  4. My S5 it has the same problem but when l turns off my phone and then turn it back on blank picture comes out I can’t see nothing I got to keep turning on and off on and off for I could get my screen back but usually I gotta keep playing with my phone to get my screen back

  5. These solutions didn’t work for me. After several months I’ve realised the blank screen and flickering issues occur when my phone isn’t warm. Sounds strange but I have to warm the screen side of my phone in order to get it to work. When I’m at a public toilet the hand driers work great, unfortunately I don’t carry around a mobile hand drier. I have to resort to using body heat or generating heat by rubbing the phone on my clothes for about 5 minutes in order to warm it up enough to work. BTW the phone hasn’t been water damaged. I’ve taken it in to be repaired under warranty where they resealed some black rubber thing as a solution, but the problem reoccurred within the day. I’ll eventually get around to taking it back to get replaced with a new phone. Before I realised this makeshift solution to the problem it had already left me in several stressful and emotional situations. Cold at night and no means of communication, no internet banking. It’s scary how much I rely on my mobile, which is why my mobile needs to be reliable.

  6. I was having the same problem. I was pushing the storage to the limit. I cleaned out the photo gallery (to free up space) and it seemed to solve the problem.

  7. I have been having the same problem as number 2, but I have a question. I’m willing to reset it to factory settings, but does that mean that it will no longer have my phone number? Or will it wipe all the stuff but still have my number? Trying to do thus in-house. Thanks

  8. Funny enough, I called my carrier and they said my phone came with a manufacturer warranty I still had a bout a month left of. They’re sending me a new phone, because they determined my screen is going out, and it will eventually cripple my phone.

  9. You know what’s really weird? I got this problem too, and it seems to appear at the exact same time… I call planned obscolescence…

  10. I’ve been experiencing the flickering too. Couldn’t it be a malfunction with the AMOLED display causing the flickering? A factory reset didn’t change the low-brightness flicker at all. And this just popped up today. 4x in a row that part of my screen flashed green until I touched it. Now it’s doing this low-brightness flicker. The warranty has already ran up on my phone because it’s been over a year, so any repairs I would have to do out of pocket.

  11. Galaxy S5 screen flickers when brightness is set at certain level

    It’s unlikely to be firmware. I’ve had this problem now for several months – the lower half of the screen flickers at low brightness. It also happens every time I switch off and on the screen. I have just done a refresh install with the latest firmware available and its still happening. Sadly. It appears to have got worse, so I’m thinking its the hardware.

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