- Check for debris that might hinder gameplay. Examine the buttons of your controller for any visible debris, dust, or residue. Sticking buttons can often be caused by foreign materials that can hinder movement.
- Clean the controller. Use a can of compressed air to remove loose debris from the controller. You can also use 90% Isopropyl Alcohol and a microfiber cloth to wipe down the controller's exterior to ensure cleanliness.
- Restart your Console. If you find that your controller is completely unresponsive, try to power cycle your console and see if that restores functionality to your controller.
If you find that cleaning the controller's exterior is ineffective, there might be a chance that dirt or debris has worked its way into the inside of the controller. If you've spilled a sugary drink onto the DualShock 4, dried sugar may cause your buttons to stick.
- Use the button replacement repair guide to clean your controller from the inside.
- You can deep clean your buttons by removing the affected buttons and washing them with soap and water. If this doesn't work, you may need to replace the buttons.
If your controller's buttons are sticking, then there is the possibility that your controller may have been physically damaged. Physical damage could affect the functionality of the buttons. If any of your buttons are damaged, you will need to replace them.
- Inspect Each Button: Carefully check each button for physical damage or signs of wear, cracks, or warping. Press each button to see if there's any unusual resistance or crunching.
- Check Both Thumbsticks: Ensure that the thumbsticks move smoothly without any obstruction. Look for any visible damage or debris around the thumbsticks.
If you find that your controller's buttons are not responding after the cleaning, then there is a possibility that your controller needs a firmware update.
- Connect the controller to the PlayStation 4 using a USB cable.
- From the PlayStation 4 home screen, go to "Settings" > "Devices" > "Controllers."
- If there's a firmware update available, follow the on-screen instructions to update the controller.
Major Software Issue
If updating the firmware could not resolve the issue with your controller, you might be encountering an issue with firmware corruption. You can attempt to factory reset your controller.
- Press and hold the Share and PS buttons on the controller to put it into pairing mode.
- Connect the controller to your PS4 using a USB cable.
- Press the PS button on the controller to log in to the PS4.
- Go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth Devices from the PS4 home screen.
- Select the PS4 controller from the list of devices and press the X button.
- Select Forget Device from the menu.
- Press the PS button on the controller to log out of the PS4.
- Press and hold the Share and PS buttons on the controller for about 3 seconds to turn off the controller.
You can also hard reset the controller by using the following instructions.
- Turn off your PS4 console.
- Locate the small hole on the back of your PS4 controller.
- Use a small, unfolded paperclip or something similar to push the button inside the hole.
- Hold the button down for a few seconds, and then release it.
- Your PS4 controller should now be reset and working correctly.