black iphone 5 on orange surface

Dropping a phone and finding the screen black but the device still working can be frustrating. You can quickly try a force restart, which often solves many issues. Next, check for any loose internal connections by opening your phone if you feel comfortable doing so.

Look for visible damage like cracked screens or displaced components, which may need professional repair. In some cases, connecting your phone to an external display can verify that the phone itself is functioning correctly.

When these steps don’t work, consider seeking help from a professional technician. Addressing potential software glitches, examining internal connections, and checking for physical damage can help restore your phone’s functionality.

Screen Woes: Dealing with a Dark Display

Assess the Damage

Take a deep breath. Gently check your phone for any obvious cracks, dents, or damage to the frame. This helps gauge the extent of the problem.

Test for Signs of Life

Listen for notification sounds or incoming calls. Try calling your phone from another device. A black screen doesn’t always mean a dead phone. If your phone responds to these tests, the issue might be with the display itself.

Force Restart

A force restart can sometimes revive a seemingly unresponsive screen. The exact steps vary depending on your phone model:

  • For iPhones with Face ID: Press and quickly release the Volume Up button, then the Volume Down button. Hold the Side button until the Apple logo appears.
  • For iPhones with a Home button: Press and hold both the Home and Top (or Side) buttons until the Apple logo appears.
  • For Android phones: Press and hold the Power button for 10-20 seconds.

Connect to an External Display (If Possible)

If you have a compatible cable or adapter, try connecting your phone to an external monitor or TV. This helps determine if the issue is with the screen itself or with other internal components.

Backup Your Data (If Possible)

If your phone is still responsive, back up your important data immediately. You can do this using cloud services like iCloud or Google Drive, or by connecting your phone to a computer.

Seek Professional Repair

If your phone remains unresponsive or you notice significant damage, it’s time to consult a professional. They can diagnose the problem accurately and offer repair options. If your phone is under warranty, contact the manufacturer for potential repair coverage.

Preventive Measures for the Future

  • Invest in a sturdy case and screen protector: This simple step can protect your phone from future drops and bumps.
  • Handle your phone with care: Be mindful of where you place your phone and avoid risky situations.
  • Regularly back up your data: This ensures your important information is safe even if your phone gets damaged.

Key Takeaways

  • Try a force restart to fix a black screen.
  • Check for loose internal connections and visible damage.
  • Use an external display to see if the phone still functions.

Understanding the Black Screen Issue

When you drop your phone and the screen turns black but still works, the problem might be either hardware or software related. Knowing the cause helps in figuring out the right fix.

Identifying the Problem

First, determine if the phone is on. Check if it vibrates, rings, or makes any usual sounds. If the phone is responsive, it’s likely just the display that has issues. Try connecting it to an external display using a compatible adapter. This can help you see if the phone itself works fine, even if the screen is blank.

If the touch functionality still works, you might feel vibrations when you touch the screen, indicating it’s only the display that’s not working. Look for signs like the charging indicator light to confirm the phone is functioning. These steps help identify whether the issue is in the screen or the entire device.

Common Causes

Several factors can lead to a black screen. Physical damage from dropping the phone is a primary cause. This can crack the screen or dislodge internal components like display connectors. Loose connections inside might need checking if you’re comfortable opening your phone.

A dead battery can sometimes make the screen go black. Try plugging the phone into a charger to see if it powers up. Software glitches are another common cause. Restarting the phone can resolve these issues. Persistent software problems might need more steps, like booting into Safe Mode or performing a factory reset.

For OLED or LCD screens, physical damage can cause pixels to fail, showing as a black display even when the rest of the phone works. Understanding these causes helps in applying the right fix.


This section can guide you to identifying the problem and understanding common causes when your phone screen goes black but still works.

Troubleshooting and Solutions

If your phone’s screen is black but the device is still functional, there are several effective steps to diagnose and potentially resolve the issue. These range from basic troubleshooting to more advanced solutions and preventive advice.

Immediate Steps

Start with simple troubleshooting. Perform a force restart. On an iPhone, press Volume Up, Volume Down, and then the Side Button until you see the Apple logo. For Android, press and hold the Power and Volume Down buttons for 7-10 seconds.

If the screen is still black, try connecting your phone to an external display using a compatible adapter. This verifies if the display or logic board is the issue.

Check if there are any sound or vibration hints. If the phone rings or vibrates, it indicates the phone is working despite the screen issue.

Advanced Solutions

Inspect and resolve hardware issues. If comfortable, open the phone and check if the display connectors are securely attached. Loose connectors can cause a black screen.

Consider a screen replacement if there’s visible damage. For a more intricate problem, consult a professional repair service. They can diagnose and repair issues related to the phone’s logic board or other internal components.

Boot your Android phone into Safe Mode to check for faulty apps causing the problem. On an iPhone, attempt a factory reset or restore via iTunes or Finder to solve possible software issues.

Preventive Measures and Tips

Prevent future screen issues by using a sturdy phone case and screen protector. Regularly back up your data to avoid loss during repairs.

Avoid dropping your phone or exposing it to harsh environments. Utilize phone features like auto-brightness that ensure proper brightness levels without manual adjustments.

Keep the operating system and apps updated to prevent software glitches. Invest in a good quality charger to protect the battery and overall phone health.

In case of recurring issues, check if your phone is still under warranty for possible free service or repair.

Frequently Asked Questions

When a phone screen turns black after being dropped, it can still work. Here are some steps to handle and troubleshoot this issue, potential causes, repair possibilities, costs, and the best course of action.

What steps should be taken when your phone screen goes black after a fall but remains operational?

First, try a force restart. This action depends on your phone model. Connect the phone to an external display using a suitable adapter to check if the phone is still working. Plug the phone into a charger and wait a few minutes.

How can one troubleshoot a black, yet seemingly functioning, phone screen on their own?

Check for any visible damage or cracks. Open the phone cautiously to ensure display connectors are secure if comfortable doing so. Inspect for any screen damage. Try booting the phone into Safe Mode if it’s an Android device to rule out faulty apps.

What are the potential causes for a phone screen to become unresponsive and black after being dropped?

Possible causes include software glitches, faulty apps, and internal hardware damage. Mechanical issues such as loose display connectors might also be responsible. In some cases, screen damage from the impact could cause the screen to black out.

Is it possible to repair a black screen on a smartphone at home, and if so, how?

Yes, you can attempt to repair it at home. Start with a force restart. Check and secure any loose connectors. If it’s a software issue, resetting the device might help. For cracked screens, professional help is often required.

What are the average repair costs for a phone that has been dropped resulting in a black screen?

The cost varies based on the phone model and the extent of the damage. Basic screen replacements can range from $100 to $300. More extensive damage, such as internal repairs, can cost significantly more.

Should one attempt to use their phone if the screen is black after a drop or seek professional repair immediately?

It is best to get the phone checked as soon as possible. Using a phone with a damaged screen can cause further issues. If the internal components are affected, immediate professional repair might prevent more severe problems.