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How to fix Galaxy S9 screen issue: white vertical line showing on the far right

Today’s troubleshooting episode addresses a common issue — screen malfunction. Together with Power issues, screen problems are some of the usual topics that we receive from a lot of people. In today’s #GalaxyS9 troubleshooting article, we’ll show the things that you can do to troubleshooting the problem. When it comes to hardware-related problems, there’s usually very little an end-user can do. In most likely scenarios, devices have to be sent in for repair. There are some not-so-obvious cases though that may be difficult to diagnose right away, just like in the first case below. In this post, we’ll show you how and when to know if there’s a physical trouble or not.

Before we proceed, we want to remind you that 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. 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: How to fix Galaxy S9 screen issue: white vertical line showing on the far right

Hello. I recently purchased a Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus. After three days, I noticed there is a white vertical line of about 1.25″ on the far right edge of display. It was not there when I first got the phone. The line is narrow, but I worry about it growing.  I turned the phone off and restarted it, but the line is still there. Any ideas what this is, and what can be done to remedy it?

Solution: Although majority of screen problems are caused by bad hardware, poorly coded apps or software bugs may cause the screen to malfunction as well. Since hardware-related problems are not fixable on your level, there’s fair chance that you’ll most likely send the phone in for repair. To see whether or not you have a physically damaged screen, you can try to do the troubleshooting steps below.

Check for bad third party app

As mentioned above, third party apps can sometimes cause problems with the screen like discoloration, unresponsiveness, temporary presence of vertical or horizontal lines. To see if one of your third party apps is to blame, try to restart the phone to safe mode. Safe Mode is another software environment that helps technicians isolate app problems. This is often used if a suspected third party app interferes with Android. While on safe mode, all apps you’ve added will be suspended. If the screen won’t show the vertical line when on safe mode, that’s a sign of a bad third party app in the system.

If you haven’t tried booting your S9 to safe mode yet, follow these steps:

  1. Turn the device off.
  2. Press and hold the Power key past the model name screen.
  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.
  8. Check for the problem.

If the screen works normally and won’t show any vertical line, you can bet one of your apps is to blame. To determine which of your third party apps is causing the trouble, you must use the process of elimination. These are the steps that you want to do to achieve that:

  1. Boot to safe mode.
  2. Check for the problem.
  3. Once you’ve confirmed that a third party app is to blame, you can start uninstalling apps individually. We suggest that you begin with the most recent ones you added.
  4. After you uninstall an app, restart the phone to normal mode and check for the problem.
  5. If your S9 is still problematic, repeat steps 1-4.

Boot to alternate modes

If nothing changes when the phone is on safe mode, that means that the problem is not caused by a bad app. The next troubleshooting step to do then is to check for the possibility that this may be caused by an Android bug. To do that, you want to restart the phone to either Recovery Mode or Download/Odin Mode. Either of these two are independent of Android, which means that if the issue is due to an Android OS glitch, the screen should work normally, that is, no vertical lines will be there, if you boot your S9 to any of them. Like Safe Mode, these two modes are usually for Samsung technician’s use only but over the years, enterprising Android users have been using them to troubleshoot and improve Samsung device performance. Recovery Mode is where you can perform a few important system troubleshooting like cache partition wipe, master reset, among others. Download Mode is where you flash or manually install Android stock firmware or custom ROM.

Booting to any of these two modes in your case is meant to check for a difference in screen performance only. If the vertical lines still show up, that means the problem is hardware in nature.

How to boot a Galaxy S9 to Recovery Mode

  1. Turn off the device. This is important. If you can’t turn it off, you’ll never be able to boot to Recovery Mode. If you are not able to shut the device off regularly via the Power button, wait until the phone’s battery is drained. Then, charge the phone for 30 minutes before booting to Recovery Mode.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).

How to boot a Galaxy S9 to Download Mode

  1. Turn off the device. This is important. If you can’t turn it off, you’ll never be able to boot to Recovery Mode. If you are not able to shut the device off regularly via the Power button, wait until the phone’s battery is drained. Then, charge the phone for 30 minutes before booting to Recovery Mode.
  2. Press and hold the Volume Down key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  3. You’ll know if you’re on Download Mode when you see a screen that says “Downloading….”

Get professional help

If vertical lines persists and continue to show when the phone is restarted to Recovery or Download Mode, you can assume hardware malfunction is behind it. Perhaps you dropped the phone and that damaged the screen assembly. We don’t know the full history of your device to be 100% sure what may have caused the screen to behave this way but if the lines annoy you and you want a permanent fix, you should contact Samsung repair or replace the device for you.

Problem #2: What to do if there’s dead spots on your Galaxy S9 screen

Hi there! The problem I’m having is dead spots on the touchscreen. One day it was working perfectly and out of nowhere it started acting up and not detecting the touches. It happens at the very top of the screen where the notification bar is located and more or less in the middle of the screen, it is like a line from left to right that doesn’t work. The thing is that it happens after you unlock the phone, on the lockscreen it works perfectly. What can I do? I don’t have many apps and I don’t want to backup all my phone and do a factory reset and still have the problem when I restart my phone. I think the problem is the latest update, is there any way I can downgrade to a previous version or something like that?

Solution: If the portions of the screen only behave properly in certain conditions and the issue does not occur on the lockscreen, that means it’s not a hardware issue. It’s probably due to an app or operating system bug. Try booting the phone to safe mode first to see if there’s a bad third party app involved. If that doesn’t fix the issue, do a factory reset.

For reference, these are the steps on how to factory reset your S9:

  1. Create a backup of your data.
  2. Turn off the device.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times 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.

Problem #3: What to do if Galaxy S9 screen is broken

Hi. I dropped my Galaxy S9 a few months ago and the screen broke, damaging the pixels. There are a few lines running horizontally along the screen now. It was working fine but now the screen flickers a lot and turns dim and then grey and then turns off. If I keep the screen turned on like this the phone will restart after a few seconds. A new screen is quite expensive and I’d rather just get a new phone but I need to make do with this until I do get a new phone. Is there any way I could make my phone work properly for another month or two without replacing it’s lcd? any help would be much appreciated.

Solution: You can’t fix a physically mangled component by doing some software tweaks. Screen problems are some of the most common hardware issues for smartphones and unfortunately, there’s no software solutions for them. You either have to wait until you have the resources to have the screen assembly repaired, or continue using the phone in its current state.

 


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