If you are one of them thousands of gamers were hit by Joy -Con drift – a problem where its analogue fixed on a Nintendo Switch controller registering movement even when they weren’t touched – and frustrated that Nintendo had yet to produce permanent solution, repairs that easy as a millimeter -thick piece of paper.
It’s been four years since the Switch was first launched and even units purchased over the past year are starting to develop a problem known as Joy-Con drift. It’s unclear why Nintendo didn’t identify the root cause of the problem and fix the hardware permanently (many who had sent Joy-Cons to Nintendo for repairs reported the problem drifting back a few months later) but the company is now facing various class action demands around the world as a result of ongoing problems.
There are several theories as to why Joy-Con drifts occur, but the most common is that dust and dirt can occur get it into the joystick mechanism, build rise, and prevent small metal contacts from touching the graphite pad that register the movement of the analog rod. Opening the Joy-Cons and clearing these contacts can overcome the shift, as it sometimes just blows compressed air into the controller, but the repairs are usually only temporary, and most of the Joy-Con drifts back.
That’s ‘Victorstk’ from YouTube Channel ‘VK Channel’ found, so they decided to dig deeper, watching Joy-Con’s endless repair and cleaning videos, but also joystick videos used on other devices like the mobile PSP and PS Vita being repaired. They eventually identified a second problem responsible for the Joy-Con shift: over time the metal clamps that held all the joystick components loosened, creating a gap between the metal contacts and the graphite pad, reducing contact and resulting in irregular behavior.
By simply pressing the center part of the Joy-Con, which presses and presses the joystick components ensuring a firm touch between the parts inside, the drifting problem magically disappears. As a more permanent solution, Victorstk simply inserted a thin sheet of paper—one millimeter thick—in Joy-Con. The paper compresses all the joystick components back together. Surprisingly, two months later, Joy-Con which consistently showed drift problems was working perfectly, Victorstk said.
Is this a solution that will work for everyone? It’s hard to say. If the improvement is consistent dust and dirt on the contacts inside the Joy-Con are the cause of the problem, no extra pressure will make the particles come out. But apparently Victorstk is looking for something, and if more Switch users find this an easy way to fix the floating Joy-Con problem, then eventually we might have a fixed solution that might be trivial for Nintendo to implement on future hardware.