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Galaxy Note 4 turns off by itself when battery is low, not reading SD card, other issues

Hello Note 4 users. We bring you another post that addresses some Note 4 issues we’ve received recently. If you already sent us your own inquiry but do not see it published here, please keep watching for more upcoming Note 4 articles in the coming days.

Below are the specific topics we are discussing for you today:

  1. Galaxy Note 4 unresponsive and won’t turn back on
  2. Galaxy Note 4 mmc_read_failed error, randomly rebooting
  3. Galaxy Note 4 turns on but screen remains black
  4. Galaxy Note 4 Bluetooth and Hotspot not working
  5. Galaxy Note 4 turns off by itself when battery is low
  6. Galaxy Note 4 shuts off when battery level reaches 30-15%
  7. Galaxy Note 4 not reading SD card
  8. Galaxy Note 4 won’t start in normal, recovery mode, only boots to download mode

If you are looking for solutions to your own #Android issue, you can contact us by using the link provided at the bottom of this page, or you can install our free app from Google Play Store.

When describing your issue, please be as detailed as possible so we can easily pinpoint a relevant solution. If you can, kindly include the exact error messages you are getting to give us an idea where to start. If you have already tried some troubleshooting steps before emailing us, make sure to mention them so we can skip them in our answers.

Problem #1: Galaxy Note 4 unresponsive and won’t turn back on

Hello! My Note 4 kept restarting a couple of weeks ago, and eventually turned off and never cut back on. It will not charge or respond at all. I have recently purchased a new phone (S8+) and after activation I realized that I do not have all of my contacts. Apparently only a few contacts were backed up to Google. Is there any way I can retrieve my contacts from my Note 4? I have tried a new battery, which did not work. I also went to Geek Squad and they told me it sounded like a mainframe problem and nothing could be done. Hoping there is some resolution!        — Ebony

Solution: Hi Ebony. The only troubleshooting that you can try on your end for this type of issue is to see if you can restart your Note 4 to different boot modes. If the phone remains unresponsive after trying all the three boot modes, a thorough hardware diagnostics must be run to determine whether it’s a general hardware issue, or a component failure like a bad charging port, which can relatively be replaced easily. If the Geek squad’s assumption is correct, there’s virtually nothing that you can do about it. The Nand chip that keeps your data is integrated to the motherboard so if a bad motherboard itself is the cause of the problem, there’s no way you can recover anything. That means that your phone is as good as dead.

For reference, below are the steps on how to boot your Note 4 to different modes:

Boot in Recovery mode:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and then hold the Home and Volume UP keys, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Samsung Galaxy S7 shows on the screen, release the Power key but continue holding the Home and Volume Up keys.
  4. When the Android logo shows, you may release both keys and leave the phone be for about 30 to 60 seconds.
  5. Using the Volume Down key, navigate through the options and highlight ‘wipe cache partition.’
  6. You can either wipe the cache partition or do a factory reset when in this mode.

Boot in Download Mode:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and then hold the Home and Volume DOWN keys, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Samsung Galaxy S7 shows on the screen, release the Power key but continue holding the Home and Volume DOWN keys.
  4. Wait until the Download screen appears.
  5. If you can boot the phone in download mode but not in other modes, that means that your only way out may be to flash a stock or custom firmware.
  6. Use Google to look for a guide on how to do it.

Boot in safe mode:

  1. Charge the phone for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Press and hold the Power button.
  3. Once the ‘Samsung Galaxy S7’ logo appears, release the Power key and immediately press and hold the Volume Down button.
  4. Continue holding the button until the phone finishes rebooting.
  5. Once you see the text “Safe mode” at the bottom left corner of the screen, release the Volume Down button.
  6. The only difference of safe mode from normal mode is that the former prevents third party apps from running. If you can boot the phone in safe mode but not in normal mode, uninstall all apps until the issue (that prevents you from booting normally) is eliminated.

Problem #2: Galaxy Note 4 mmc_read_failed error, randomly rebooting

Hi. My Note 4 had an error, mmc_read_failed, and i sent it to repair. They replaced a component, (think it was something like vga card, not sure thou) but the phone, despite not showing that error again, remains with problems. Unless i have it in the battery saving mode, it turns off and then keeps trying to reboot – it turns on, shows the first screen where it says “Samsung Galaxy Note 4” (even before the samsung logo, before asking for the pin) and then switches off again, and keeps this cycle, and only stops when i plug it to the charger. I don’t know what this problem is – maybe it is something battery related? Should i buy a new battery? Or is it something more severe? I got all the latest software updates, and did several factory resets, and soft reset fix and similar. Thank you for your attention. — Gonalo

Solution: Hi Gonalo. mmc_read_failed error is usually accompanied by other information about the phone but in general, it signifies an on-going component or motherboard failure. Since the phone has been repaired but still continues to act erratically, the only hope you have of fixing the problem is returning it back to the shop who did the repair, or by replacing it. At this point, the symptoms you’re reporting can be caused by different factors including a faulty battery so we can’t say for certain what they may be. In general, if you’ve already exhausted software troubleshooting for this issue including a factory reset, you should really start looking at hardware. We’re sorry but there’s nothing much that we can do to help in this one. Hardware troubleshooting requires that we check the device physically and we can’t obviously do that. If you think it’s worth another couple of hundred dollars to be repaired, we say you send it to another shop.

Problem #3: Galaxy Note 4 turns on but screen remains black

Good morning. I dropped my Galaxy Note 4 on the ground (I know, genius!), and while it shows signs of life–blue light, vibration when turned off and on–the screen is black. I have tried several methods for resetting it, including removing the battery and holding the power button for 1, 2, or 3 minutes; holding the power, volume, and/or home buttons in different combinations; and even gently smacking it. Still, nothing has changed. When I call this broken phone from another phone, it goes straight to voicemail. — Shane

Solution: Hi Shane. If your Note 4 was working normally before you dropped it accidentally, then you can assume that it may have a hardware malfunction at this time. Unnecessary shock from a drop can lead to all sorts of physical damage so it’s safe to say that bad hardware is to blame here. The screen assembly may be broken or came loose from the motherboard causing the black screen. Because you can’t obviously fix a hardware problem with software solutions, your only options right now are either to have it repaired or replaced.

Problem #4: Galaxy Note 4 Bluetooth and Hotspot not working

When I hit the button for Bluetooth it will not come on, it automatically shuts itself off. Same issues with my mobile hotspot. When I turn my hotspot on it doesn’t turn on it just shuts itself off. I have a Samsung Note 4 originally under T-Mobile but we now have Metro PCS. Both hotspot and Bluetooth worked fine under the new carrier. I have tried deleting any apps that I’ve downloaded, I’ve tried removing the battery and I’ve tried restarting the phone. I’m not even sure why it just stopped working as it was working fine the other day and then one day just stopped working any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you. — Andrea

Solution: Hi Andrea. There may be a software-related bug causing this problem so the first troubleshooting step that you want to perform is to wipe the cache partition. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Turn off the Galaxy Note 4 completely.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home keys together, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the Note 4 vibrates, release both the Home and Power keys but continue holding the Volume Up key.
  4. When the Android System Recovery shows on the screen, release the Vol Up key.
  5. Using the Volume Down key, highlight the option ‘wipe cache partition’ and press the Power key to select it.
  6. When the wiping of the cache partition is finished, highlight ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the power key.

Cache partition wipe addresses possible system cache issue but if nothing changes and both services (Hotspot and Bluetooth) remain as non-working, consider doing a factory reset to revert everything back to their defaults. Here’s how it’s done:

  1. Create a backup of your important files such as photos, videos, contacts etc. You can use Smart Switch for this task.
  2. Turn off the Galaxy Note 4 completely.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up and the Home keys together, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the Note 4 vibrates, release both the Home and Power keys but continue holding the Volume Up key.
  5. When the Android System Recovery shows on the screen, release the Vol Up key.
  6. Using the Volume Down key, highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’ and press the Power key to select it.
  7. Now highlight ‘Yes — delete all user data’ using the Vol Down key and press the Power key to begin the reset.
  8. When the master reset is complete, highlight ‘Reboot system now’ and hit the Power key.
  9. The Note 4 will restart but it will be longer than usual. When it reaches the Home screen, then begin your setup.

Problem #5: Galaxy Note 4 turns off by itself when battery is low

I own a Note 4 N910G variant. The issue I have is that whenever my battery reaches about 40%, the phone simply shuts off and to turn it back on, I need to plug in my charger. My phone is rooted and I’m currently running a custom ROM. However, the issue with the battery was also occurring even when I had my stock ROM even with no root. I bought the phone back in 2014, so I would like to know what could be the issue. — Jerry

Solution: Hi Jerry. If the phone is now over 2 years old, it’s very likely that the battery has already lost significant capacity to hold a charge, causing the phone to shut down  randomly. It may also just be software failing to read the true levels of battery level so there are three things that you want to try:

  1. recalibrate the battery
  2. factory reset the phone
  3. replace the battery

To recalibrate the battery, follow these steps:

  1. Use the phone by playing games or doing tasks to hasten power discharge, until the phone turns itself off.
  2. Turn the phone on again and let it turn itself off.
  3. Charge the phone without turning it back on.
  4. Wait until the battery says it fully charged to 100%
  5. Unplug the charger and turn the phone on.
  6. If the phone says it’s not 100% anymore, turn it off, plug the charger back in and wait until 100% charge is reached.
  7. Unplug the charger the turn the phone on again.
  8. Use the phone until you drain the battery down to 0.
  9. Repeat the cycle once.

If the phone continues to behave erratically after battery recalibration, you should wipe it with factory reset (steps provided above). If that won’t fix the problem either, consider getting a new Note 4 battery.

Problem #6: Galaxy Note 4 shuts off when battery level reaches 30-15%

Hello. I have a problem with my Note 4. At first the phone dies at 30-15%. now the phone screen freezes and goes black. Only the small indicating light is blue sometimes on and off and I have to take out the battery and try to turn it on again. sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t so I backed up my data and tried to factory reset it but it still is the same problem sometimes. when i’m talking on the phone it just hangs up and the screen goes black. not sure if it turns off or freezes that time. Any help? thank you. — Moe

Solution: Hi Moe. Your issue may be similar to Jerry above. If you’ve already tried factory reset before contacting us, now is the time to get a new battery replacement. If the issue lies on the battery, this should fix the issue easily. However, if the problem is caused by something in the motherboard, a repair or phone replacement may be your only effective solution. There’s no direct test that you can do to identify which component may not be working correctly but if factory reset won’t change anything, you can assume that bad hardware is causing the trouble.

Problem #7: Galaxy Note 4 not reading SD card

Good morning. I saw your site while trying to trouble shoot my problem and figured I would give you guys a shot. I have had my Note 4 for almost 2 years now and the first day I had got the phone, I had inserted a fresh SD card, brand new. One morning I awoke to find that my phone all of a sudden wasn’t reading the SD card. Is there anyway to fix the problem without a computer? And if I need a new SD card, is there anyway to salvage what’s on the old one without corrupting the new one? I hope you guys can help, thank you so much. —  Rich

Solution: Hi Rich. SD card troubleshooting is common sense troubleshooting only. It doesn’t need advanced software tricks to know if a problem lies on the card itself or on the phone.

The first thing that you want to do here is to insert your SD card to another phone. Make sure that you turn the phone completely off before removing the card. This is one of the most common reasons for SD card corruption (another is interrupting the device while it’s trying to read from or save something to the card). If a second device also fails to read the SD card, that’s a clear indication that the SD card has been corrupted. To use the SD card again, you should reformat it using the device you will be using it with.

It’s very rare to encounter a bug that causes a phone to not read an SD card but if the  second phone will read your SD card fine, that means that the problem must be on your Note 4. You should do device troubleshooting like the cache partition and factory reset to fix it.

A corrupted SD card means a portion or the entire memory module is damaged or became unreadable. In either case, there’s often no way an average user can check which of the two is true. If you think recovering the files from that SD card is worth hundreds of dollars, you can try to use the services of some companies that offer advanced file recovery techniques. Keep in mind though that file recovery is a tricky business and does not guarantee a positive result. If you want to risks a lot of money to recover your files, search for a reputable file recovery company in your area via Google.

Problem #8: Galaxy Note 4 won’t start in normal, recovery mode, only boots to download mode

A few weeks ago my phone started slowing down. It takes a while for the lockscreen to show when you wake it up from standby. Interface seems very unresponsive sometimes. I’ve rebooted several times but this didn’t seem to help. Before this I’ve never had any problems, other than just before this the phone started giving error reports. At the start of this week my phone started rebooting periodically. It happens even when I put it on my desk without touching it. With or without charger connected. Battery time has always been great. A few days later it doesn’t turn on anymore. Removing the battery and holding the power button for one minute seems to work sometimes, but often it doesn’t turn on. I’ve tried restoring to factory settings using the settings menu. But every time I click it it just shuts down without restoring. Pressing volume up, home and power doesn’t get me into recovery booting. It goes to a screen with DOWNLOADING-DO-NOT-TURN-OFF-TARGET. I’ve taken out the SIM and the SD card and uninstalled Whatsapp. But this didn’t help. I don’t know my android version.         — Chris

Solution: Hi Chris. If your Note 4 no longer boots to normal or recovery mode, the only available troubleshooting step for you may be to reflash a stock firmware to it.

Flashing requires a computer to do so make sure you have one. We don’t provide a guide on how to flash a device in our blog but you can find one online by searching for it. Flashing is basically modifying core system files so you should be careful when doing it. Be sure to use the right firmware for your phone model. If you aren’t confident in doing it, let someone who has done it before do it for you. We also recommend that you do some research to familiarize yourself with the steps ahead of time so you have an idea how to do the actual process.

Flashing is a risky step that’s why it’s not recommended by Samsung for its end users. Do it at your own risk.


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