If you have accidentally dropped your Nintendo Switch and notice lines on the screen after that, it is most likely due to physical screen damage. The only solution in this case is to repair or replace your Switch screen.
If lines appear suddenly with no physical damage, it may be due to a software glitch. In that case, follow these troubleshooting steps:
1. Restart Nintendo Switch
I always recommend restarting the console as the first step of troubleshooting. If you are not sure how to restart your Switch, follow these steps:
- Press and hold the Power button on your Nintendo Switch for 5 seconds until a menu appears.
- Select Power Options and then choose Restart.
If you can’t see the Power Options menu, press and hold the Power button for 15 seconds to force shutdown your console and then turn it On again.
If this solves the issue, congratulations. Else continue reading.
2. Update Software
Outdated software can cause random bugs and glitches, such as lines on the screen. Therefore I always recommend installing essential software updates to get rid of bugs.
So, if you haven’t updated your Nintendo Switch for a quite long time, there is a possibility that this screen issue is due to software.
To update your Nintendo Switch, open System Settings. Select System Update in the right sidebar.
If any new update is available, you will be notified.
3. Check for Corrupt Data
Did these lines on your Nintendo Switch appear after you installed a new game? If this is the case, it may be due to that game.
Fortunately, Nintendo has a built-in function in its software that allows you to check any game data for corrupt files.
Here’s how to check if your Nintendo Switch has any corrupt files:
- Open System Settings.
- Scroll down and select Data Management.
- Next, select Manage Software in the right sidebar.
- Select the game you suspect and choose Check for Corrupt Data option.
4. Restore to Factory Settings (Hard Reset)
If none of the above methods have worked, you may have to hard reset your device.
Remember that hard resetting your Nintendo Switch will restore it to factory settings. All your data, including games, screenshots and videos will be deleted.
So, if you have made up your mind, here’s how to factory reset your Nintendo Switch:
- Force shutdown your Nintendo switch by pressing the Power button for 12 to 15 seconds.
- Once it is shut down, press and hold the Volume Up and Volume Down keys simultaneously and then press the Power button. This will boot your Nintendo Switch to recovery mode.
- Select the Restore Factory Settings option.
5. Replace the Screen
Finally, if you have tried all the above fixes, but unable to get rid of horizontal or vertical lines on your Nintendo Switch screen, it’s likely that the screen is damaged and requires replacement.
The Nintendo Switch screen has various sensitive parts, such as a backlight, filter, cable flex, etc. So if it was recently dropped, one of these parts might have been damaged, thus causing lines.
If you are confident of your DIY skill and have prior electronics gadgets repairing experience, you can follow the visual step by step guide by iFixit to replace your Switch screen.
However, I recommend you seek professional help to avoid any further damage.