Imagine placing the aim on the head of an opponent and planning for a headshot, but the pointer just moves away. If you are having a hard time locking your aim, and your pointer or camera keeps moving without even touching it, your PS4 controller probably has an analog stick drift. So, how to fix drift on the PS4 controller?
There are several ways to do that. In this guide, we’ll look at the causes of PS4 controller drift, along with effective techniques to fix it.
Table of Contents
What Is PS4 Controller Drift?
PS4 controller drift or analog stick drift is a condition when the analog stick of your PS4 isn’t stable and moves randomly. The issue can be annoying, and it could deteriorate your entire gaming experience. Here are some causes for controller drift.
- Wear and tear, as a result of excessive use
- Lack of maintenance
- Lousy joystick design
- External agents, like dirt, dust, water, food particles, etc.
In most cases, PS4 controller drift occurs due to poor maintenance. If you use the controller a lot or don’t protect it from dust and dirt, it may result in drift.
How to Fix Drift on PS4 Controller?
Having discussed what PS4 controller drift is and what causes it, let’s look at some steps you can perform to fix it. Follow these steps in the same order as mentioned, and stop if the issue is resolved.
Clean Your Controller
Dust in your controller is one of the most common reasons for drift. Ideally, you should keep your controllers in a covered environment so dirt doesn’t accumulate on them. However, dust particles can seep in and start collecting on the controller even if you keep your controller in a protected environment.
Therefore, it’s essential to clean your controller once in a while. Now, cleaning a PS4 controller is surely different from cleaning the TV screen. You can’t just take a clean cloth and wipe it, as it won’t get rid of the dirt accumulated under the buttons.
A blow dryer can come in handy here. Power off the controller and use compressed air to flush out all the dust particles stuck under and around the analog stick and buttons. If you see stubborn dust stuck around the joystick, use something pointy, like a needle, to remove it.
Now, check if the issue is resolved.
Deep Cleanse Your Controller: How to Fix Drift on PS4 Controller?
If you have experience handling electrical appliances and components like circuit boards, you can perform a deep cleansing of your PS4 controller. To do it, open up your PS4 controller and clean everything using a cotton swab or a soft brush. Make sure you don’t break or open any circuits. If that happens, you’ll need to get your controller replaced unless you know how to work with circuit boards and electronics.
Reset Your Controller
If cleansing the controller doesn’t help, resetting your controller may resolve the hurdle. The best thing about resetting your controller is that it can fix a lot of issues with your controller and not just drift.
If you’re not sure how to reset your controller, follow these steps. Open PS4 and go to Settings. Select Devices and then Bluetooth Devices. Select the inactive controller, and in its Options, click on Forget Device.
Now, Turn Off your PS4, connect your controller, and set it up again. See if the issue is solved. If the issue persists, performing a hard reset of your PS4 controller could help. Refer to this video to hard reset your controller.
Replace the Analog Sticks: How to Fix Drift on PS4 Controller?
Again, if you have knowledge of electronics, you can even replace your analog sticks. The step would require soldering, and you will need tools like soldering iron and other tools. Moreover, if you break a wire and can’t fix it, your controller will be (literally) dead. So, you should try replacing the analog sticks only if you know what you’re doing.
Get Help from Sony
Sony PS4 controllers come with a one-year warranty. If your controller is still in warranty, contact Sony to get your controller repaired or replaced. You may have to leave your controller with Sony for a few days, but an expert will look at it and fix it. If the issue can’t be fixed, they’ll give you a new controller as a replacement.
Buy a New Controller
If your controller is out of warranty and all the steps discussed above don’t work, you can also buy a new controller. Sure, a PS4 controller costs $45, but buying it is the easiest fix to your problem. You don’t need to spend time cleaning, resetting, or opening up your controller. You can just get a new one and start using it.
How to Prevent PS4 Controller Drift in the Future?
Now that you have resolved the drift issue let’s look at a few steps you can take to ensure you don’t face the drift issue again. Here are some proven ways to prevent PS4 controller drift.
- Keep your controller in great condition. Use it delicately and avoid overusing it.
- Calibrate your controller regularly. This way, you’ll be able to identify drift issues in their initial stages, and you’ll be able to fix them before they fester.
- Clean your controller regularly. Avoid keeping it in the open, as it will cause the dirt to accumulate on it. The more dust and dirt your controller gets, the more chances it has of suffering from drift.
- Learn the technical side of a PS4 controller. By learning how to open up a controller and fixing the joysticks, you will save yourself a lot of time and money.
Wrap Up: How to Fix Drift on PS4 Controller?
PS4 controller drift is the last thing you want to see. It completely deteriorates your gaming experience, and it may seem impossible to fix. The good news is that you can easily fix this issue by following the steps discussed above. However, please note that the issue may persist even after performing all the steps. In that case, buying a new controller will be the best pick.