An external SD card is a great place to store your photos and videos. When you insert a new SD card in your phone, you will have to format it. You will need to do this manually through your phone’s setting app.

This is recommended so that your file system doesn’t glitch. This will also delete any malware and erase unnecessary information stored by any previous device.

If you just insert it, it will work but it will still have folders that were created by the operating system or apps that were installed there. Below, you will find the steps needed to format your SD card.

1. Insert your SD card or make sure that it is properly entered. The process for this different for each device. The port may be on the back cover of your Android device. On some devices you may need to remove the battery.

You may have a little tray that pops out when you insert a tool that should have came with your device. You have to do this while the phone is powered off.

2. Turn on your Android device. If you just inserted the card, you will need to hold down the power button until it’s powered on.

3. Open your Settings application. The icon will usually be a small gear. If it is not on your home screen, you can swipe your finger up the screen and search for in the search bar at the top of the screen.

device maintenance

4. Scroll through the menu until you see Device and Maintenance or on some devices it is under Device Care. Tap this option. You will see a screen where you can optimize your device with three small icons at the bottom of the screen.

5. Select the icon at the bottom of the screen that says Storage underneath it. The symbol is usually a circle in the center of a square icon.


6. Here you will see all the apps that are in your storage. You can even clean your device and free up storage space here. If you have an SD Card, it will appear at the bottom of the user data section towards the bottom of your screen.

Storage Settings

7. After you tap on your SD card, you will need to go to Storage settings. This may be located in the upper right corner of your screen. If you do not see it, you will need to press the three vertical dots in the right corner of your screen. You will see the Storage Settings option after tapping those dots.

Select SD card

8. Here you will also need to select SD Card. It should be under the Portable Storage section if you have one in.

9. This will take you to a new screen. At the new screen, you will be able to press the “Format” button. It will begin to format the SD card and you should wait until it is 100% complete.

10. You should receive a message on your screen that says that your SD card is ready to be used. If you do not see that message, go back and click the Format button again.