A black screen on an Android can be frustrating. If you can tell your Android phone is on, but the screen is black and won't respond, there are a few things you can do that might get it working again.
How an Android Black Screen Appears
An Android black screen is not the same as an Android phone that won't turn on. If your phone has a black screen you may see:
The lights on the phone flash and blink appropriately, but the screen not working.
You can utilize the buttons on the phone and hear or feel the appropriate responses, but nothing is displayed on the screen.
The phone rings or makes sounds for notifications, but you cannot interact with the phone.
What Causes an Android Black Screen?
Unfortunately, there's no one single thing that can cause your Android to have a black screen. Here are a few causes, but there could be others, too:
The screen's LCD connectors may be loose.
There is a critical system error.
You may have installed incompatible apps.
The phone may have been overcharging for a long period of time.
There are app caches that need to be cleared.
The phone has been exposed to extreme heat (such as leaving it in a hot car).
How to Fix a Black Screen on an Android Phone
Regardless of the reason, there are a few things you can try to get your Android phone screen working again.
Make sure the buttons on your device are not jammed. First, inspect the buttons to be sure they're not caked with dirt, lotion, lint, or other debris. Then try freeing the buttons by pressing the button several times in quick successions. The button should free depress and release with each press.
After you've thoroughly cleaned and tested the buttons, try to restart the phone.
Inspect and clean the charging port. Dust and debris could keep your phone from charging properly. Inspect and clean the charging port. If necessary you can gently blow into the charging port, or us a wooden toothpick to try to remove anything that's stuck in the port. Once it's clean, plug your phone in and let it charge for about 10 minutes. After it's charged for a short while, try restarting the phone.
Wait until the batteries die completely and the phone shuts down and then recharge the phone, and restart it after it's fully charged. If there is a critical system error causing the black screen, this should get your phone working again.
Gently, but firmly press your phone from both sides, squeezing the front and back together. If there's a loose LCD connection, this could help reseat the connection and get the screen working again. If this works, consider taking the phone to an authorized service center to have them firmly reseat the LCD cable.
If your phone is in a case, remove it from the case before you start this process so that you can accurately gauge how much pressure to put on your phone without breaking the screen.
Force restart the phone. Many critical system errors can be cleared up with a force restart. Depending on the model Android phone you have you may need to use some combination of buttons to force restart the phone, including:
Press & hold the Home, Power, & Volume Down/Up buttons.
Press & hold the Home & Power buttons.
Press & hold the Power/Bixby button until the phone shuts down completely.
Remember to restart your phone after it has completely shut down.
Plug in phone, wait five minutes, and then try to do a Force Restart. This ensure the phone has enough power to restart, and restarting could clear any errors that might be affecting the screen.
If possible, remove the battery, wait 30 seconds or more, and then reinstall the battery and start your phone. If cannot remove the battery from your phone, you'll need to allow your phone to discharge completely. Then recharge it and try to restart the phone again.
Use caution when taking your phone apart to remove the battery. If you have a newer phone that's hard to open with the appropriate tools, take the device to a professional who can help. Otherwise, you run the risk of doing further damage to your phone.
If you have one, remove the stylus and see if it causes the screen to come on. If it does, navigate to Settings > General management > Reset and then choose Auto Restart and schedule a time for your phone to restart. You'll have to wait until this time to see if an automatic restart fixes your problem.
Alternatively, you could also choose Factory data reset from the screen to completely reset your phone back to factory specs. This can be useful if you've installed a corrupt app that is affecting your display.
A Factory data reset will delete all the data—pictures, music, etc.—from your phone, so if possible, make sure you have a backup you can restore from once the phone is working properly.
If you have a Samsung phone, use Smart Switch to connect your phone to your computer and try to access it, reboot it, or back it up from there.
Reboot your phone into Safe mode. Safe mode may allow you to navigate the phone to restart it, clear the cache (more on that below), or perform other tasks that could help fix the black screen problem.
On Samsung Galaxy S9/S10:
Press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons to restart the phone, but continue to hold for about 10 seconds.
Continue holding the Power button but switch to also holding the Volume Up and Bixby button and hold until the Android logo appears. (Alternatively, if you don't have a Bixby button, switch to holding Power & Volume Up buttons.)
When changing up which buttons you're holding, you may have to try a few times to get the timing exactly right. It should be about 10 seconds before you switch to the new buttons (but keep the power button depressed all the time), but switching too soon or too late will cause the phone not to boot into Recovery Mode.
On Samsung Galaxy S8/S7/S6/S5:
Hold the Power button then select Power Off.
After you turn the phone off, press and hold Power + Volume Up + Home keys at the same time.
On other Android Phones:
Power off the phone and then press and hold the Power + Volume down button until you see the Android logo.
On Pixel Phones:
Press and hold the Power button until the phone restarts.
Clear the cache on your Android phone. This deletes temporary files and frees resources, which could resolve whatever issue is preventing the display from turning on.
Try a factory data reset. This will restore the phone to factory settings, which deletes all your data, so be sure you have a backup of anything you don't want to lose before you start this process, if possible.