The PlayStation 5’s DualSense controller is an impressive piece of hardware, featuring advanced haptic feedback and adaptive triggers that provide immersive gameplay. However, some PS5 users have experienced issues with their controller buttons not working properly. This can be incredibly frustrating when trying to play PS5 games. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through all the steps to troubleshoot and fix PS5 DualSense controller buttons that are not working or responding.
Understanding the Problem
When the buttons on your PS5 DualSense controller aren’t working correctly, it can manifest in several ways. Some of the common symptoms include:
- Certain buttons like X, Square or R2 don’t respond when pressed
- Button presses aren’t registering in-game
- Inputs are delayed when pressing buttons
- Buttons feel “sticky” and don’t click down properly
- The controller becomes completely unresponsive
The specific button that’s not working can provide clues as to the underlying cause. For example, if the PlayStation or PS button isn’t working properly, it likely indicates an issue with connecting the controller to the PS5 console itself.
On the other hand, if certain gameplay buttons like X or R2 aren’t responding, the problem may be isolated to the buttons themselves. Understanding the exact behavior can help troubleshoot the root cause.
Step 1: Check Controller Connection and Charge
The first thing to check with any controller issue is whether the PS5 DualSense controller is properly connected and charged. Here are a few things to verify:
- Check controller charge: Make sure the DualSense controller is sufficiently charged by connecting it via the USB-C cable to the PS5 console or another power source. The lightbar on the controller will pulse orange if the battery is low. Fully charge it before troubleshooting further.
- Try resetting the controller: Press and hold the PlayStation button and Create button together for at least 5 seconds to reset the controller. This resets the connection which can resolve button issues.
- Check wireless connection: Make sure the controller is connected properly to the PS5 wirelessly. You can press the PS button to check for the solid white lightbar which indicates an active connection.
- Connect via USB-C cable: Try connecting the DualSense controller directly to the PS5 console using the USB cable. This establishes a wired connection to isolate any wireless interference problems.
- Try another controller: Connect a different PS5 DualSense controller if available to see if buttons work properly. This verifies whether the issue is with the controller specifically or the console.
These basic steps rule out any simple connection or charging related problems that may affect DualSense button responsiveness.
Step 2: Inspect the Controller for Damage
If controller buttons are malfunctioning, physically inspect the DualSense for any damage or issues. Look for:
–Sticky buttons: Check if any buttons appear physically stuck in place and aren’t clicking properly. This can prevent button presses from registering.
–Foreign debris: Look for any debris, dirt or small objects that may have gotten lodged within the controller buttons or under the analog sticks.
–Water damage: Check for any signs of water damage or corrosion around the buttons and seams. Liquid getting inside can short circuit internals.
–Physical damage: Examine if the controller casing, buttons or analog sticks are cracked or structurally damaged from being dropped or impacted.
–Joystick drift: Move the analog sticks around and see if they register unwanted drifting inputs without being touched. This can improperly register button presses.
Carefully inspecting for damage provides visual clues if the hardware itself is the root cause of buttons not working properly in the DualSense controller.
Step 3: Update PS5 and Controller Firmware
Outdated firmware for the PS5 console and DualSense controller can also introduce button responsiveness issues. Always ensure you are running the latest firmware.
- Update PS5 firmware: Check Settings > System > System Software > System Software Update and Settings. Install any available PS5 firmware updates.
- Update DualSense firmware: With the controller connected, go to Settings > Accessories > Controllers > Wireless Controller Device Software. Download any controller firmware updates.
- Manually trigger updates: If no new updates are showing, try manually triggering a check by power cycling the PS5 console and reconnecting the controller after booting back up.
Keep both the console and controller firmware fully up-to-date. Sony periodically releases updates to improve performance, which can resolve DualSense button problems.
Step 4: Reset PS5 Console and Controller
If you are still experiencing button issues after following the steps above, try resetting the PS5 console and controller.
Reset PS5 Console
Resetting the console clears out any corrupted data or settings that could be interfering with the controller connection.
- Turn off the PS5 console completely.
- Press and hold the power button, releasing only after you hear a second beep. This initiates Safe Mode.
- Connect the DualSense controller with the USB cable and press the PS button.
- Select Option 5 – Reset PS5. This will reset the console to default settings.
Resetting the PS5 console resets the pairing connection with the DualSense controller which can fix unresponsive buttons.
Reset DualSense Controller
You can also reset the controller itself to clear out any corruption.
- Locate the small reset hole on the back of the controller near the L2 button.
- Using a paper clip, press and hold the reset button for at least 5 seconds.
- This will reset the controller to factory settings.
After resetting both the console and controller, reconnect the controller and test if buttons are working properly in gameplay.
Step 5: Contact PlayStation Support
If you still can’t get your PS5 controller buttons to work correctly after trying all troubleshooting steps, you may need to contact PlayStation Support for further assistance.
Call the PlayStation Support number or reach out via live chat online to get direct troubleshooting help. Provide details on the specific issue you are experiencing.
Depending on the nature of the problem, the support team may suggest additional advanced troubleshooting steps not covered above.
For recurring hardware issues within the warranty period, you may need to initiate a warranty service request to repair or replace the defective controller. The support team can advise you on the best approach.
Thoroughly walking through all the troubleshooting before contacting PlayStation Support provides the necessary details for them to efficiently resolve the problem and get your DualSense controller buttons working again.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to some commonly asked questions related to fixing PS5 DualSense controller buttons that are not working.
If a specific button like X isn’t responding, it’s likely due to a faulty button mechanism. Try cleaning around the button for any debris. If the issue persists, the internal components may need to be repaired or replaced.
For sticky buttons, use compressed air to blow out any dust or particles that may be obstructing the button motion. You can also use rubbing alcohol on a cotton swab to gently clean around sticky buttons. If neither method works, the internal button mechanisms may need servicing.
Button input lag usually indicates wireless interference. Make sure there are no objects obstructing the wireless signal between the controller and console. Connect the controller directly via USB cable to rule out wireless issues. Also update both the controller and PS5 firmware.
If the button mappings appear incorrectly or keep reverting, it’s likely a firmware issue. Update both the PS5 system software and DualSense controller firmware. Reset both devices to factory defaults if necessary.
There is no manual button calibration option on PS5 currently. However, you can reset the controller which usually recalibrates all button responsiveness back to normal levels. If issues persist, contact Sony support for advanced troubleshooting.
How do I fix analog stick drift on my PS5 controller?
Stick drift can improperly register unwanted button presses. Try using compressed air around the base of the analog sticks to dislodge any debris causing the drift. Reset the controller and increase the deadzone settings. If drift continues, the analog modules likely need replacing.
The controller may need calibration if buttons are not registering presses or feeling too sensitive. Reset the controller and check for updated firmware. If available, connect to a PC to adjust button sensitivity values using software like DualSenseX.
How can I fix not being able to turn on my PS5 controller?
If the controller won’t turn on, first make sure it is sufficiently charged. Try different USB cables and power sources. Reset the controller using the pinhole button on the back. If the issue persists, there may be a problem with the power delivery components requiring service.
Why does my PS5 controller disconnect randomly?
Frequent random disconnections point to wireless interference or a faulty antenna. Make sure the console location has no objects obstructing wireless signals. Connect via USB cable to isolate the problem. If issues continue, contact Sony support to troubleshoot further.
It can be incredibly inconvenient when buttons on your PS5 DualSense controller start acting up and become unresponsive. Thankfully, there are a number of troubleshooting steps you can take to get the buttons working properly again. Start by checking connections, charging, physical damage and firmware updates. Resetting the controller and console can clear up software issues. For persistent hardware button problems, specialized repair may be necessary. With some diligent testing and troubleshooting, you’ll be back gaming on your PS5 in no time.