A few words of thanks would be greatly appreciated.

Clean out the USB slot on a smartphone

Is your charger cable struggling to connect? This could be down to an accumulation of lint in the USB slot. This little guide should help you get back to 100% !

Is your smartphone not charging properly? Do you think the USB could be the issue? Don’t panic ! Before you take your precious mobile to a repair shop, or get out the soldering iron yourself, or think about changing models, you can try cleaning the USB slot.

It may be that like most people, you keep your smartphone in your pocket and that the problem stems from the dust, or, more accurately, the lint buildup in your pockets. This micro-fluff can prevent your USB charger cable from making good electrical contact. You can quickly check this out by looking to see whether there is tissue residue on your male charger, or the female slot.

The solution to this very common problem is extremely simple. It requires neither technical knowledge nor any special equipment. All you need is a wooden or plastic toothpick (don’t use any needle-like metal objects as this can damage the slot).

Remove the lint from the USB slot

It is recommended, although not necessary to turn off your phone. Insert the toothpick into the slot and gently scrape. In a few seconds you will have removed the
hidden lint. Repeat the process until you have completely cleared the slot.

An alternative solution would be to use a compressed air kit to blow the lint out. Either way that you chose, check that the contact patches are clean before connecting your USB charger to your phone.

Part of a regular check up

This is a good habit to get into as ultimately it can avoid bigger problems down the line if you leave this issue unresolved. Another good thing is that these steps can be used on all types of smartphone charger (micro-USB, USB-C, etc.), whatever the brand. And also tablets: although they rarely fit in a pocket, they can gather dust and lint in other ways.

<signature> Photo: © Unsplash <signature>


A few words of thanks would be greatly appreciated.

Ask a question
CCM is a leading international tech website. Our content is written in collaboration with IT experts, under the direction of Jean-François Pillou, founder of CCM.net. CCM reaches more than 50 million unique visitors per month and is available in 11 languages.
This document, titled « Clean out the USB slot on a smartphone », is available under the Creative Commons license. Any copy, reuse, or modification of the content should be sufficiently credited to CCM (ccm.net).