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How to fix PS5 DualSense controller drift

Person holding up PS5 DualSense controller experiencing drift

Have you ever been on your last lap in Gran Turismo® 7 only to have your car veer off the track for no reason? Or had your Sifu™ fighter inexplicably slide to the side of the screen at the worst time possible? If so, you’ve likely experienced a frustrating, game-ending malfunction called PS5® stick drift.

Don’t worry, we can help get your PlayStation® 5 controller back up and running.

Asurion is your one-stop shop for troubleshooting, fixing, and maximizing your tech. From fixing lag when playing online multiplayer games to finding the best gaming monitor or TV, our experts offer 24/7 tech care to millions. Here’s how to fix PS5 controller drift.

How to tell if your DualSense controller has stick drift

The PS5 DualSense® controller comes with buttons and two analog sticks that help you play your favorite games. But if you’re playing and the movement of your characters doesn’t match what you’re doing on the joystick, you may have controller drift.

How to fix PS5 controller stick drift

Like all joysticks, PS5 DualSense controllers work less efficiently over time. The most common PS5 controller drifting issues are caused by physical damage, simple wear and tear due to regular use, debris build up, and out-of-date software.

Either way, we’ll show you how to get your controller working like new.

1. Try adjusting the input threshold

Your input threshold is the area in which your controller doesn't register any movement. If you have a lot of drift on your joystick, decreasing the input threshold on the game you're playing can help. To do so, go to the settings in the game you’re playing. You can’t adjust the input threshold on your PS5 console.

2. Reset your PS5 DualSense controller

The first step is going to be the simplest one—resetting the controller. This disconnects the device from the console, forcing it to re-establish connection, which can eliminate controller drift. Here’s how:

  1. Turn off the PS5 console.
  2. Using a straightened paperclip, press and hold the Reset button inside the small hole on the back of the PS5 controller for 5 seconds.
  3. Turn the console back on after the DualSense controller fully disconnects.

3. Clean the analog stick on the PS5 DualSense controller

Giving the analog stick a good wipe-down can also do the trick. Using a soft, dry cloth, clean the joint connected to the controller as well as the pad itself. Avoid using cleaning liquid or alcohol as they can damage the inside of the controller.

4. Make sure your software is up-to-date

The state of your controller’s software isn’t the first thing you probably think about when you’re a few rounds into Call of Duty®. But it’s something to consider when experiencing PS5 DualSense drift.

To check your controller’s software, connect the controller to the console with a USB cable, press the PS button (the PlayStation logo), and open Accessories. In the Wireless Controller Device Software tab, it should say “Up to date.” When connected to the internet, your console should update that software automatically. If there is an update available, you can manually start it from this screen.

Outdated PS5 console software can lead to drift as well. To check and update it, go to the Home screen, select Settings > System > System Software > System Software Update and Settings. In the Update System Software tab, you have the option to update using Wi-Fi or using a USB.

5. Turn off your controller’s Bluetooth, then turn it back on

Disconnecting your controller from your console’s Bluetooth® devices forces the controller to forget it and then recognize it upon syncing again. Sometimes, this can eliminate controller drift.

To disconnect your controller:

Press PS button > Accessories. Under General, select Bluetooth Accessories, choose the controller, and select Delete > Ok.

To reconnect your controller:

On the disconnected controller, press the PS button and the Share button at the same time to put the controller into Sync Mode. Select Yes and log in.

If you've tried these steps and still need a little help, we're right around the corner. Schedule a repair at the nearest uBreakiFix® by Asurion store and our certified experts can get your device back up and running as soon as the same day.

Don't let a glitched controller mean game over

The Asurion Home+® protection plan offers peace of mind for all of your eligible home tech, including your favorite gaming systems, for less than $1 per day. From graphical glitches to faulty drives, we cover your video game console and original controller from the unexpected breakdown—old, new and even future purchases. Learn more about an Asurion Home+ gaming console warranty and how you can get peace-of-mind electronics protection.

*The Asurion® trademarks and logos are the property of Asurion, LLC. All rights reserved. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Asurion is not affiliated with, sponsored by, or endorsed by any of the respective owners of the other trademarks appearing herein.*

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