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How to fix Nintendo Switch OLED crashes, freezes and lock ups

When using your Nintendo Switch OLED, the system may crash, freeze and lock up. If you are experiencing any of these issues, then you can check out this troubleshooting guide at Seeking Tech.

1. The first step you should be taking is to turn off your console.

In order to turn off a crashed, frozen and locked up Switch OLED, you need to do the following:

  • If your system is connected to the dock, make sure you remove it.
  • If the Joy-Cons are detached from the Switch OLED, make sure you reattach both the left and right Joy-Cons back onto the system.
  • You then need to press and hold the power button on your Switch OLED for at least 12 seconds to forcibly turn off the system.

2. Next, you need to remove the game card and/or microSD card you have inserted into your system.

3. After removing all the cards from inside the Switch OLED, you can try to perform a system update. To do so, you need to take the following actions:

  • Press the power button on the Switch system to turn it on.
  • In the Home menu, go to System Settings.
  • Once you are inside the System Settings menu, you need to select System on the left side and then System Update on the right side.

If a new firmware is detected, then the file should automatically be updated and installed.

4. With your Switch OLED up to date, you can test to see if the crashes, freezes or lock ups are still occurring.

To do so, re-insert game card game card and/or microSD card that you previously removed from the system.

Press the power button to turn on the system.

5. If your Switch OLED is only crashing when you are playing a certain game, then you can try performing a software update.

In order to do so, you need to do the following:

  • From the Home menu, hover over to the problematic game.
  • With the game highlighted, press the + button.
  • In the next menu, select Software Update on the left side and then the Via the Internet option on the right side.
  • With the game updated to its latest software version, you can try to play it again to see if the crashes, freezes or lock ups go away.

6. If updating the firmware of your Switch OLED and/or the software version of a game does not resolve the crashing issues, the one last step you can take is to initialize your system.

The Initialize Console Without Deleting Save Data option will delete everything from your system with the exception of your save data, captured screenshots and user information. To use this feature, you need to do the following:

  • Turn off your Switch OLED.
  • Press and hold the volume + and volume – button on your system.
  • With the two volume buttons held down, press and then quickly release the power button.
  • Keep holding the two volume buttons down until you see the menu for the Maintenace Mode.
  • Inside Maintenace Mode, select Initialize Console Without Deleting Save Data.
  • If you have Parental Control PIN set up for the Switch OLED, then you need to enter the PIN to continue.
  • In the next screen, select Next.
  • Finally, select Initialize Console Without Deleting Save Data.
  • Afterwards, test out your system to see if it still crashes.

If your Switch OLED is still crashing, freezing or locking up, then you should contact Nintendo to get your system repaired.