Samsung Galaxy A3 showing “moisture detected” error and not charging [Troubleshooting Guide]

A charging issue might be a sign of a minor problem in your phone or it could be something more complicated than what it seems. If your device stopped charging without apparent reason, it would be difficult to determine the problem but if you’re getting something like an error, then it could somehow shed some light on the issue. Such is the case with some of our readers who own the Samsung Galaxy A3. According to them, their phones refused to charge and then they started getting the error “moisture detected.”

The error might be a sign that the phone got wet and water found its way inside it. However, we have already seen cases wherein the error occured after an update which also gave the impression that the error might have been triggered by a firmware issue. We have to troubleshoot your phone to know more about this problem and why it happens. If you’re one of the owners of this phone and are currently bugged by a similar problem, continue reading as this post may help you.

For those who are looking for a solution to a different problem, go to our troubleshooting page for we have already addressed some of the most common issues with this device. Try to find problems that are similar with yours and use our solutions. If you still need our help after that, then contact us by filling up our Android issues questionnaire.

Troubleshooting Galaxy A3 with “moisture detected” error and not charging

This error has become so common because many users have already encountered this even the owners of flagship phones like Galaxy S8 and Note 8. The latest variant of this phone also has the IP68 rating which means that it’s also dust and water resistant. You can rest assured your phone is splash-proof however, if it can detect moisture inside the charger port, you would be notified through this error and your phone will stop charging.

We have reports from some of our readers however suggesting that the error may also occur even in the absence of moisture in the USB port. It might be due to a glitch in the system or some of the components. Unless you personally know that your phone has been in contact with water or any sort of liquid prior to this problem, then we really can’t be sure at this point why the error keeps showing up. That’s why we need to troubleshoot and with all being said, here’s what I suggest you do about this problem…

Force restart your Galaxy A3

Regardless if the phone is powered on or off, you should try doing the Forced Reboot procedure to rule out the possibility that this is just a minor firmware glitch. Press and hold the Volume Down and Power keys simultaneously; if there’s still enough battery left and assuming the problem is not really serious, your device may boot up normally.

Wait for the error to pop up but if it won’t, try charging your phone to know if it would still show up. If it does, then move on to the next step, otherwise, the problem may have been fixed already.


Clean the USB / charger port

The error may pop up if the phone can detect moisture in the USB port and regardless whether you know the device got splashed with water or not, you should still need to make sure it’s not about the moist in the port.

Clean the USB port using a cotton swab or you may use a small piece of tissue paper and insert it into the port. Leave it in there for a minute or two so that all the moist will be absorbed. If you’re satisfied that the port is all dry, check the Liquid Damage Indicator to verify if it is indeed a liquid damage issue.

Remove the SIM card tray and look into the slot. Find a piece of sticker or paper in there; if it’s white, then it wasn’t tripped and your phone is free from liquid damage. However, if it turned red, pink or purple, then it’s obvious that water found its way into your phone and messed it up. In this case, there’s nothing much you can do but bring your phone to the tech.

Assuming your phone doesn’t have any signs of liquid and physical damages but it’s still won’t charge, move on to the next procedure.

Turn off your phone and charge

The ‘moisture detected’ error would only show up if your phone is powered on while charging and that’s when the charging is stopped. However, if you turn your phone off, you may still be able to fully-charge the battery. It’s very important that you have enough juice because you will have to troubleshoot your device.

At this point, you should try charging your phone while it’s still powered off. I understand the risk of bypassing the error but that’s the reason why we made sure the problem is not due to liquid damage. At this point, the most important thing is to have a fully-charged battery so we can continue with our troubleshooting.

However, if your phone is still not charging even if it’s powered off, then it’s clear that the problem is with the hardware and the best thing you can do about it is bring the phone to the tech. But try doing the next steps as they may still be able to help you.

Boot the phone in Safe mode and charge

This is only feasible if your phone still has enough battery to boot up in Safe mode. In this environment, your phone will be forced to run in its bare bones, which means only the core services and pre-installed apps will be loaded during the booting process. If the error is triggered by any third-party elements, then it shouldn’t show up while in safe mode. So, follow these steps to run your A3 in this mode:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the screen with the device name.
  3. When ‘SAMSUNG’ appears on the screen, release the Power key.
  4. Immediately after releasing the Power key, press and hold the Volume down key.
  5. Continue to hold the Volume down key until the device finishes restarting.
  6. Safe mode will display in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  7. Release the Volume down key when you see ‘Safe Mode’.

If the phone charges fine in this environment, allow it to fully-charge its battery and then find the app that might be causing the problem and then uninstall it…

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Tap the desired application in the default list or tap Menu icon > Show system apps to display preinstalled apps.
  5. Tap Uninstall.
  6. Tap Uninstall again to confirm.

Clear the cache of USB Settings service

If you’re completely sure that your phone hasn’t touched any liquid, then there’s a chance that this error is triggered by some corrupt cache and/or files used by the service that handles it. That service is USB Settings. There’s no guarantee that the problem will be fixed by this but it’s worth a try. After all, it’s safe and effective according to some of our readers…

  1. From any Home screen, tap the Apps icon.
  2. Tap Settings.
  3. Tap Applications.
  4. Find and tap USB Settings.
  5. Tap Clear cache to delete all of app’s caches.

After doing this and the problem continues, then it’s time to bring the phone to the tech. But before you do that, make sure you make a backup of your important files and data and do the Master reset to erase all your personal information…

  1. Back up data on the internal memory. If you have signed into a Google account on the device, you have activated Anti-theft and will need your Google credentials to finish the Master reset.
  2. Turn off the device.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Home key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the device logo screen displays, release only the Power key
  5. When the Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  6. Press the Volume down key several times key to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset.’
  7. Press Power button to select.
  8. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  9. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  10. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  11. Press the Power key to restart the device.

I hope that this troubleshooting guide can help you one way or another. If you still need our help after this, feel free to contact us.

Posts you might like to read: