Why Won’t My SD Card Format? Fix SD Card Won’t Format Easily!

Why won’t my SD card format? How to fix the ‘SD card won’t format’ error? If you’re struggling with these questions right now, you’re not alone. SD cards are widely used for storing photos, videos, and other important data, but they can occasionally present issues when it comes to formatting. In this article, we’ll explore the common reasons behind this problem and provide you with practical solutions to get your SD card back in working order. Whether you’re new to technology or an experienced user, there’s something here for everyone.

Part 1: Why Can’t I Format My SD Card?

There could be several reasons why your SD card won’t format. Here are some common ones:

  • Write Protection: Many SD cards have a physical write-protection switch on the side. If this switch is in the “Lock” position, you won’t be able to format or write data to the card.
  • File System Errors: the file system on the SD card may be corrupted or damaged.
  • Virus or Malware: The SD card may be accidentally infected with a virus or malware.
  • Driver Issues: Your drivers is outdated or incompatible with the SD card.
  • Incompatible Format: Your SD card may be using the wrong file system format. For instance, if you’re attempting to use the SD card on a Windows computer, it should be formatted in NTFS format, not the exFAT format primarily used for Mac.
  • Physical Damage: If the SD card has physical damage like a cracked casing or bent pins, it may not function correctly.

Part 2: Preparation Before Fixing SD Card Won’t Format

Before delving into solutions to fix the ‘micro SD card won’t format’ error, make sure to back up all the data on your SD card. This is a critical step to prevent data loss, and you can simplify the process by using 4DDiG Partition Manager, a user-friendly tool equipped with various features to safeguard your data.

  • Effortless Disk Cloning: Create a reliable backup of your storage devices with just a few clicks.
  • Flexible Partition Management: Optimize your disk space by extending, splitting, creating, deleting, and formatting partitions as needed.
  • Seamless Data Transfer: Upgrade to a larger drive effortlessly while keeping your data intact.
  • Easy to Use: User-friendly interface.No technical knowledge required.

To back up your data using 4DDiG Partition Manager, follow these steps:

Step 1: First, download and install 4DDiG Partition Manager on your PC. Then, connect your external disk and the problematic SD card. Open the program, go to the main menu, and select “Clone Disk.”

Select the Clone Disk

Step 2: Select your SD card as the source disk and your external hard drive as the target disk for cloning. Then, click ‘Continue’.

Hard disk full

Step 3: Be aware that cloning erases everything on the target disk. Confirm that everything is set correctly, then click “OK.”

option to deleted the clone

Step 4: You’ll see a preview of the process. Double-check, then click “Start” to begin.

Start the clone disk option

Step 5: Cloning takes time, so be patient. Once it’s done, click “Finish.”

Cloned Successful

Part 3: How to Fix SD Card Won’t Format?

Method 1: Formatting SD card with DiskPart

If you are unable to format SD card, the Windows built-in tool called DiskPart can be a lifesaver. This powerful utility enables users to manage disks, partitions, and volumes on their Windows computer. Here’s how you can use it:

Step 1: Press Win+S to search for ‘CMD. ‘ Then, right-click on ‘Command Prompt’ in the search results and select ‘Run as administrator.’

Run as Administrator

Step 2: Type ‘diskpart‘ and hit Enter.


Step 3: Next, enter the following commands, and after entering each command, execute it by pressing the Enter key.

  • List disk
  • Select disk 2 (Replace 2 with the number of your SD card)
  • Clean
  • Create partition primary
  • Format fs=fat32 quick
  • Assign letter=2 (Replace 2 with the drive letter you want to assign to the SD card)
  • Exit
Diskpart format

Method 2: Formatting SD card from Disk Management     

If you are still pondering questions like ‘why can’t I format my SD card,’ Disk Management is definitely worth a try. Compared with DiskPart, this tool is more suitable for Windows users with limited technical knowledge. Here is how to fix the ‘SD card won’t format’ using it:

Step 1: Press Win + X and pick ‘Disk Management’ from the menu.

Disk Management

Step 2: Right-click on your problematic SD card and select the ‘Format…’ option.


Step 3: A format dialog box will appear. Here, you can select the file system (typically NTFS) and assign a label to the volume. Then. choose perform a quick format and click “OK.”

Software window

Method 3: Formatting SD card by Professional Tool

Another solution for addressing the ‘micro SD card won’t format’ error is to employ a third-party SD card formatter. As mentioned above, 4DDiG Partition Manager not only allows you to quickly back up important files from the SD card but also provides effective space management features. Follow these steps:

Step 1: Connect the SD card to your computer and launch the software. Next, navigate to the “Partition Management” section, and select the partition of your SD card that requires formatting. From the right panel, click on the “Format” option.

Portition Management

Step 2: Now, choose the preferred file system for your SD card. Additionally, provide a specific volume label if needed.

Format Window

Step 3: Carefully review the formatting settings to confirm your selections. Once you are satisfied, click the “OK” button to initiate the formatting process.

Pending option

Step 4: Your SD card has now been successfully formatted.

Partition Manager

Method 4: Removing Write Protection on SD Card

Sometimes, the ‘SD card won’t format’ error may occur due to write protection. Write protection is a security feature that prevents data on an SD card from being modified or deleted. You are unable to format the SD card until the write protection is disabled or removed. To resolve this issue, you can try the following steps:

Step 1: Check the physical write protection switch on your SD card and ensure it is in the correct position (usually down or towards the contacts) to allow writing and formatting.

Step 2: If the physical switch is in the correct position and you still can’t format the SD card, you may need to use DiskPart to remove the write protection. Open DiskPart using the previously mentioned method.

Step 3: Input the following commands and hit the Enter key after each command:

  • List disk
  • Select disk 0 (0 represents the disk with write protection)
  • Attributes disk clear read-only

Method 5: Repairing Bad Sectors on Your SD card

Over time, SD cards can develop bad sectors due to various factors. If the card has too many bad sectors, it’s not surprising to encounter the ‘SD card won’t format’ issue. Here is how to fix it:

Step 1: Press the Windows + X keys, and select “Command Prompt (Admin)” from the menu.

Step 2: Input the following command and press the Enter key.

chkdsk [drive letter]: /f

Replace [drive letter] with the SD card you want to check and repair.

Step 3: After the disk check is complete, restart your computer. Now, check if the ‘Windows unable to format SD card’ error persists.

Method 6: Changing the Drive Letter

If your SD card won’t format and isn’t detected by the computer, it may be due to a conflict between the SD card’s drive letter and other drive letters. In such cases, you may need to altering the drive letter assigned to your storage device.

Step 1: Right-click on the ‘Start’ button and choose ‘Disk Management.’

Step 2: Locate the problematic SD card and right-click on it. Then, click ‘Change Drive Letter and Paths.’

Step 3: click the ‘Change’ button.

Step 4: Choose an available letter that’s not already in use by another drive on your system. Finally, click ‘OK’ to confirm the new drive letter.

Part 4: How to Avoid the ‘SD Card Won’t Format’ Error?

To prevent encountering the ‘Windows unable to format SD card’ error in the future, here are some useful tips for you:

  • Handle Your SD Card with Care:

Treat your SD card gently and avoid physical damage. You can store it in a protective case when not in use.

  • Eject SD Card Safely:

Always use the operating system’s eject or safely remove function to prevent data corruption during removal.

  • Scan for Malware:

Run antivirus and anti-malware scans on your computer regularly to ensure that your SD card doesn’t get infected with malicious software that could corrupt data.

  • Avoid Overfilling the Card:

Don’t fill your SD card to its maximum capacity. Leaving some free space can help prevent file system errors.

Bottom Line

With the right steps and tools, you no longer need to worry about the ‘SD card won’t format’ error. There are many reliable SD card formatters available on the market, but we strongly recommend you try 4DDiG Partition Manager. Its multifunctionality provides a comprehensive and straightforward solution to SD card formatting issues.

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