How to Get a MicroSD Card Unstuck From a Laptop

by Dan Stone

MicroSD cards can get stuck in a laptop if they go off the rail and miss the connection port or if the connection port's eject mechanism fails. Removing a stuck or jammed microSD card from a laptop poses some unique challenges when compared to desktop computers. MicroSD cards are among the smallest memory cards, and laptops aren't designed to be easily taken apart, so removing a stuck card usually means forcing it out.

Shake the Laptop

If the microSD card is stuck because it wasn't inserted correctly or the slot is damaged, you may be able to use gravity to remove the card. Lift the laptop, position the microSD card slot downward, and then gently shake out the stuck card. Make sure to shut down the computer first, but do not put it to sleep. Also remove any optical discs from the drive, disconnect the AC adapter, remove the battery and close the screen lid before shaking the device. Note that shaking a laptop too hard can damage the device.

Trigger the Spring

The microSD card may be stuck because the spring eject mechanism is jammed or the card is positioned incorrectly to line up with the eject mechanism. In such cases, you may be able to remove the card by gently wiggling and pushing it further into the mechanism to launch the spring. The card should pop out if it's lined up correctly with the eject mechanism and the eject mechanism is free from obstructions.

Pull With Tweezers

If the microSD card is visible and the eject mechanism does not work, you may be able to remove the card with a small pair of tweezers. Shut down the computer and remove all power sources, and then pinch the tweezers small enough to get into the card slot, but leaving enough room to fit around the card. Grab on to the card and pull to force the card out. Alternatively, if the card is jammed in such a way that the tweezers can't grab onto it, insert a thin object like a straightened paperclip, nail file or flathead screwdriver into the slot, apply pressure to the microSD card with the object, and then slide the card out of the slot.

Remove the Case

If all else fails, remove the microSD card by opening the laptop case and manually forcing it from the memory card reading device. This can also work if, when inserting the card, it missed the slot entirely and slid into the laptop itself -- if, that is, your laptop's case has an opening around the reader. Note that opening the case may void your warranty, and may also cause damage to the laptop if you're not sure about what you're doing. You can remove the case on most laptops by removing all the screws and lifting the shell off, though first make sure the device is shut down and is not connected to any power sources. Some screws may be hidden under the keyboard or optical drive. Check with your laptop manufacturer for instructions specific to your laptop's make and model.

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About the Author

Dan Stone started writing professionally in 2006, specializing in education, technology and music. He is a web developer for a communications company and previously worked in television. Stone received a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and a Master of Arts in communication studies from Northern Illinois University.

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