If you are one of them Thousands of gamers plagued by Joy-Con drift – a problem where the analog sticks on the Nintendo Switch controllers sense movement even when not touched – are frustrated that Nintendo still hasn’t found a solution permanent solution, The repair could be so easy as a tiny, millimeter-thick sheet of paper.
It’s been four years since the Switch was first released, and even units purchased last year have started to develop the problem known as Joy-Con drift. It’s uncertain why Nintendo failed to identify the root cause of the problem and permanently fix the hardware (many who have sent Joy-Cons to Nintendo for repairs report the drifting problem returning months later), but the company is now faced multiple class action lawsuits around the world as a result of the ongoing problem.
There are several theories as to why Joy-Con drift occurs, but the most common is that dust and dirt receive in the joystick mechanism, build on and prevent small metal contacts of touching graphite pads that register the movements of the analog stick. Opening the Joy-Cons and cleaning these contacts fixes the drift, as does just blowing compressed air into the controller occasionally, but the fixes are usually temporary, and the Joy-Con drift mostly returns.
That’s what ‘Victorstk’ gets from the YouTube channel ‘VK’s Channel’ found, so they decided to dig deeper and watch endless videos of Joy-Con repairs and cleanings, but also videos of joysticks being repaired on other devices like the portable PSP and PS Vita. They eventually discovered a second problem that was responsible for the Joy-Con drift: over time, the metal brackets that hold all the components of the joystick together loosen, creating a gap between the aforementioned metal contacts and graphite pads, which is the contact reduced and leads to irregular behavior.
By simply squeezing the center of the Joy-Con, which put pressure on the joystick components and squeezed them together to re-establish firm contact between the parts inside, the drift problem miraculously disappeared. As a more permanent solution, Victorstk simply added a thin sheet of paper –about a millimeter thickin the Joy-Con. The paper compresses all the components of the joystick back together. Surprisingly, two months later, a Joy-Con that had constant drift problems worked perfectly. Victorstk says.
Is that a solution that works for everyone? It’s difficult to say. If a consistent build Dust and dirt on the contacts in the Joy-Con are the cause of the problem; no additional pressure keeps particles away. But it seems like Victorstk is into something, and if more Switch users find it simple trick fixes Joy-Con drifting problems, then maybe we finally have a permanent solution that may be trivial for Nintendo to implement on future hardware.