How to Fix Corrupted SD/miniSD/microSD Card in 3 Steps-SD Card Recovery

Last Updated on December 8, 2020 by Ian McEwan

“Is my SD Card corrupted?” “How to fix Corrupted SD card and get it back to working condition? Can I get those lost data back?”

In this article, you will learn how to fix and recover a corrupted SD Card. But first, you should figure out what happens to your memory chip before we get to the solutions.

how to fix corrupted sd card

Is My SD Card Corrupted? What Are The Symptoms?

If you run into any of these error messages or signs while using your SD card, it may be corrupt.

Error On Phone On Computer On Camera /Other Devices
No Responding/Not Recognized ●No prompt and no folder appears after inserting the memory card
File Missing ●“Blank SD card. SD card blank or has unsupported file system” ●“This folder is empty.” ●Some photos and video clips are nowhere to be found
Not Accessible ●“Media Card Storage can not be accessed due to fatal errors” ●“I:\ is not accessible. The request could not be performed because of an I/O device error”

●“SD card is not accessible. The file or directory is corrupted and unreadable.”

●“Card cannot be accessed. Reinsert/ change the card or format card with camera.”

●”Unable to read memory card. Reinsert memory card.” appears With A black screen

Need Format ●“Damaged SD Card – SD card is damaged. Try formatting it.” ●“You need to format the disk in drive X: before you can use it.”
Read/Write Error ●Can’t read, store, delete, copy file in the card.

●“SD CARD FULL” which is not (Camera)

●“This memory card does not support recording of XAVC S movies. Change the file format or change the memory card. Refer to the instruction manual for details.”(Sony Camera)



Methods to Fix Corrupted SD Card and SD Card Recovery with/without formatting

Apply to: SD, miniSD and microSD cards (SDHC/SDXC/SDUC)


Step 1. Fix SD Card Error without Formatting

Your card might be corrupted if you open your card and see most of the files are not accessible, or unable to operate the device with SD card in it, and you get a message that needs you to format the SD card.

However, if you thought that formatting is the only way to fix a suspected damaged SD card, you are wrong.

Here are 4 methods to fix SD card error without formatting.


#Device Check (USB reader/ USB slot/ USB port)

If you attach your SD card with the computer/phone and you find there are some problem like the data is not shown in the card.

The first thing to do is to reinsert the card or attach it to another computer. Use another card reader or card slot.

There are chances that hardware failure rather than SD card error.


#Rename the SD card by assigning a new drive letter

Sometimes, your SD card is not showing up or working just because Windows can assign a drive letter (such as C, D, E, F) to the memory chip.

To assign a new drive letter:

  1. After inserting SD card to Pc, go to Disk Management with the help of the search box on the taskbar, or type Computer Management then go to Storage > Disk Management.
  2. Right-click the SD card for which you want to add a new drive letter, and select Change Drive Letter and Paths…(if the “Change Drive Letter and Paths…” option is missing or grayed out, you may need to Initialize new disks)
  3. Click the Change button and select a new drive letter and click OK.

Then mount and reinsert the SD card to see whether the corrupted SD card works fine again.


#Running Window Drive Check

After confirming that the SD card is corrupted, you can also go for the built-in drive scan in the windows. It is designed in such a way that it can fix most of the SD card problems.

You will have to go to My Computer and right click on the SD card icon.

Select the properties option from the dropdown menu.

After that go to the tool section and select the error checking.

If there is a minor error, it will be repaired.

There is one more scan called the chkdsk/f in DOS. You need to restart the computer and go inside DOS and scan the SD card.


#Reinstall Drivers

If the problem is still not fixed, you can try reinstalling the SD card driver in the computer system.

You will need to right click on My Computer tab and select the properties and from there you need to select the device manager. You can alternatively go to computer control panel and go to the device manager from there. You will see the name of the SD card there. Delete the driver and install again.


Step 2. Format to fix Corrupted SD card

If you can’t fix the SD card with the aforementioned methods, then it is time to format your card. This will remove all the factors which are causing the card to get corrupt and the card can be reused again.


#Format SD card on Win

  1. Press Win+E to open up the ‘This PC’ windows
  2. Right-click on the SD card, select Format from the menu options.
  3. Set the File System to “FAT32” for 32GB SD card or “EXFAT” for 64GB SD card.
  4. Select Quick Format and click Start.


#Format SD card on Mac

Go to Spotlight> type ‘Disk Utility’> Select the SD card you want to format and click ‘Erase’ on the menu bar from the top> name the SD card and select ‘ExFAT’(64GB card)or  ‘MS-DOS(FAT)’(32GB or smaller) from the Format dropdown menu.> Click ‘Erase’ and ‘Done


#Format SD card on Android Phone/Tablet

Go to Setting > General > Storage > tap the SD card and hit the three dot on the top-right corner >Storage Setting > Format.


#Format SD card on GoPro

Swipe down from the top of the GoPro screen and go to PREFERENCES, Scroll down to the bottom and tap Format SD Card, and then tap DELETE.

This is really important to recover the data from the corrupted SD card first because your data get lost forever by formatting.


Step 3. This is important – Don’t forget to Recover Data from the Corrupted/formatted SD Card

Apply to FAT16/ FAT32/exFAT

SD cards are mostly inexpensive but as they contain memories of people in the form of pictures, videos and sometimes in the form of important documents. Once the personal data is inside the card, it will become really precious for that person.

The SD cards are really secure but sometimes these cards can face some problems which can result in corrupted SD card and loss of data.

The data can be lost forever if you do not know how to deal with the Corrupted SD card in a proper way.

If all the above steps do not work, you may have to recover your data from the SD card. This can be done by DataKit Data Recovery  tool or there are some other data recovery tools which will help you get back your data.

You will need to install the software and let it detect your SD card and then select the data you want to recover and press the recover button. Once the data is inside your computer, check for any corrupted files and try to recover them again.


Here are Top 5 SD Card Data Recovery Tools of 2020 for Corrupted SD Card Recovery(Win and Mac)

#1. DataKit Data Recovery
Win Download  Mac Download Win Download Mac Download

  • Repairs Multiple Corrupt Videos
  • Repairs Corrupt Photos
  • Repairs and Extracts Corrupt JPEG/JPG Thumbnails
  • 30-Day Money-Back
  • 24*5 Free Technical Support

#2. Wondershare RecoveritWondershare Recoverit

  • Free lifetime update.
  • Lost Partition Recovery
  • Raw Recovery
  • Able to recover data even though the pc crashes or unable to boot
  • Free Technical Support

#3. EaseUs Data Recovery WizardEaseUs Data Recovery Wizard

  • Free Technical Support from IT Experts
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • Offer 2GB free Recovery
  • Preview before recovery

#4. Stellar Data RecoveryStellar Data Recovery

  • Support Almost All Kinds of Storage Devices On the Market
  • Recover lost data from corrupted/ Formatted SD Card
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • Free Technical Support from IT Experts


Why My SD Card Corrupted? 3 Mistakes to Avoid.

There are certain factors which can contribute to the data loss in SD cards. Some of them are given here.

#Physical Damage

SD card will damage if something fell on the card or the card is placed in extreme temperatures. This can lead the card to get damaged permanently or data in the card can get corrupted.

#Virus Infected

If SD card is attached with any device which has a virus inside in it, the virus can infect the SD card and delete the important files. This can cause the loss of data or it can corrupt the SD card.

#Removing Card Improperly

One must remove the card from the computer or mobile in a proper way. There is an option to eject the card from the device inside the mobile or the computer. If proper steps are not followed, the card can get corrupted.


SD Card 101

A secure digital card often called the SD card is a chip like a card used to store data. There are different types of SD cards. They are classified according to the speed and the number of gigabyte memory card has.

SD cards can range from a few megabytes to hundreds of gigabytes and speed can range from a few kilobytes per second to hundreds of megabytes per second.


*Get a new SD card from Amazon and enjoy up to 50% discount.

Top 10 SD card of 2020

#1. SanDisk Extreme PRO SD UHS-I

#2. Lexar Professional Class 10 UHS-II 2000X Speed

#3. SanDisk Extreme PRO SD UHS-II

#4. Transcend SDXC UHS-II U3

#5. Lexar Professional 633x SDHC / SDXC UHS-I

#6. PNY Elite Performance SDHC

#7. SanDisk Extreme PRO CompactFlash

#8. Transcend CompactFlash 800

#9. Samsung PRO Endurance

#10. Samsung EVO Plus


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