How to Fix Problems with a Digital Camera Lens

digital camera lens

Do you have problems with the lens of your digital camera? Here are a few fixes.

Call the manufacturer and/or visit their website.

If you’re still under warranty, contact the manufacturer and try to have the camera repaired or replaced. If you do this, do not attempt to repair the lens yourself – it will void the warranty. If the manufacturer decides the damage is due to misuse on your part, they may not repair it – even if the camera is still under warranty.

Contact a professional repair shop.

Contact a repair shop if the camera is out of warranty but you don’t feel comfortable fixing it yourself. If you don’t know any, go to a camera store or printer and ask who they recommend. Make sure your camera brand accredits the workshop.

Battery method

Make sure the camera has fresh batteries. Switch the camera to capture mode. Remove the batteries from the camera.

Wait a few minutes and reinsert the batteries.

Turn on the camera. If your lens still doesn’t work, try a different method.

Air method

Find a compressed air syringe.

A grain of sand in the mechanism can prevent the lens from extending and retracting. This can be removed with compressed air.

If you can’t find a compressed air gun, use a compressed air gun.

You can buy compressed air (or a can of compressed air) at a hardware store.

Blow the air into the lens.

Try using them all around the lens.

Turn on the camera.

Try extending or retracting the lens. If it still doesn’t work, read on. largeimage|Repair Lens Problems on Your Digital Camera Step 11.jpg}}

Last resort

You should only use these suggestions if there is no other alternative.

You should try these steps if you can’t replace the camera or have it professionally repaired and you’ve tried the other two methods.

Check if the lens is warped.

Lay the camera on its back and look at the lens from the side. If it looks a bit warped, turn on the camera and gently press the side of the lens to center it. Then it can be fully extended.

Try to force the lens to move.

Turn off the camera. Lay it on its back, lens up, and look at the distance between the lens and the lens body. The problem should be easy to fix if the gap isn’t even around the lens. This problem often occurs when the camera has been dropped with the lens extended. Very gently press on the lens on the side where the gap is largest. You should hear a click as it springs back. Another version of this method is if the lens is shifted to one side, push it back to the other side. When you hear a click, the lens is in its normal position. If the lens is stuck at an angle, place the edge of the lens, not the flat front, on the edge of a table and push the lens back toward the center. It either clicks back, or it breaks off on one of the three pins that guide the lens in the groove of the guide. Turn the camera back on.

Realign the lens.

If the lens does not extend at all, or extends and then retracts, do the following. Turn off the camera. Hold the camera in one hand and gently move the lens in a circle with the other hand. Do this with the two parts of the lens. You’ll hear a click as it springs back into position. Turn on the camera. Another version of this fix is ​​to pull and rotate the lens’s largest ring while turning the camera on. Listen for a click. If the focus seems off at first, turn the camera on and off and take lots of pictures, macros, and distant shots. The focus should slowly improve again.


This is referred to as an E18 error (the error message that appears on the screen) on some Canon digital cameras. Always try to have the camera professionally repaired first. Remember that repair costs are likely to be less than buying a new camera. If you break the camera or the lens is beyond repair, try selling the camera on eBay. Many photographers buy broken cameras as a source of spare parts.


Do not pull the lens while turning on the camera; this is a surefire way to break them. Don’t take the camera to a store for repairs – take it to a workshop. Only attempt the above methods if the camera is out of warranty. If it’s still under warranty, contact the manufacturer directly. Be extremely careful when disassembling the camera to avoid electric shock.


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