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Methods to Format a Damaged USB

Methods to Format a Damaged USB

USB is a very useful small memory storage device, but if used so much it can fail. We may want to use it and that is USB written protected or our computer does not detect it because it is damaged.

But don’t be put off, we may be able to restore our USB and it will work again. In the next post we will give you the instructions needed to format a damaged USB and you can use it again without problems.

Does our PC detect the USB?

The first thing to remember is to see if our PC detects the USB drive. If not, we may not be able to repair or format the damaged device. To check it out, we will follow these simple steps:

  • We deliver the unit in a USB port from our computer. If it doesn’t work, we insert it into another port or clean the USB and port slots by blowing a bit (there may be dust or dirt that prevents accurate reading).
  • If the USB doesn’t read us, we try to insert it into a different computer. Maybe it’s a problem with our PC and not with the USB.
  • We access «Tools» and see if the USB has detected us.

If our operating system still detects a USB drive, your saved data may be corrupted but we can format it.

In case our PC finds the USB, the first thing we have to do for it is check if the unit is working properly. For this we will approach:

  • “Tools” and “Devices and Units”, we will right-click on the USB drive and access “properties on the unit”.
  • Next, we will go to the “Hardware” tab to see the device status: Here it will appear if the device is working properly.

If we get the message that it is working correctly, we may be able to format the USB for future use. Namely, we’ll have to delete everything in USB memory. For this, we will use DiskPart.

Methods to repair and format your damaged USB

The foolproof method: DiskPart

DiskPart is a tool integrated into Windows operating systems that allows us to configure storage units. To access the tool, we click on a search in the lower left part of our PC and write Diskpart for it to run the command (as always an administrator).

Once you are inside Diskpart, we will execute the “Disk disk” command written to the console. We press ENTER and receive a list of all storage devices connected to our PC. Here we find our USB (Look at the size in Great Britain).

Next, we will execute the “Select X disk” command, change the X by the number that in your case corresponds to the USB. That is, if you get a list of 4 devices and yours in the third line, then we’ll give you “disk selection 3”.

Now comes the most important step, because we’re going to move on deleting all the data from our chosen unit. We write the “Clean” command and press ENTER. Et Voilà, erased driving memory.

Here we follow these simple commands to create a primary partition on the USB and format the drive so that it can be used again:

  • “create a primary partition”: We create a primary partition.
  • “select partition 1”: We select the partition we have created.
  • “active”: We identify the primary partition as active.
  • “fs = FAT32 format”: We are formatting the USB drive.

The process will take a few minutes. When I finish, our USB drive will be formatted, readable and ready to use again without problems. What we’ve done is clean up the USB and we’ve given it a new format.

If the USB is still damaged and unusable, we have bad news. It probably can’t be repaired and you’ll need to buy a new one.

CHKDSK, the command that will repair your USB memory before formatting.

If we are not convinced by the DiskPart tool or do not want to format the USB without trying to fix it first, we offer the following option. To access the CHKDSK Command, we should run as the administrator the command «cmd» from Cortana (lower left corner of our computer »).

Once inside cmd (the black console), we execute the command: «chkdsk / x / f F:«. Always without quotes, and the letter F equals the drive letter assigned to the USB, that is, it can be G, H, N …

What this command does is check USB memory for errors, and if it finds some, it will try to fix it. If it is still damaged, we will have to select DiskPart.

USB format with no commands or consoles

If we don’t want to access the console or use commands, we can also format our USB in a simpler way. To do this we will go to “Computer” or “File Explorer” and select the USB drive and with the right click we will get the option to “Format”.

We will uncheck the «Quick Format» option and click on «Start«. This way, we get the USB to be formatted. Otherwise, we must follow the steps of the first option (DiskPart).

Have you been able to format your corrupted USB drive? Have these steps helped you be able to format the USB? Do you know of any other methods? Tell us in the comments and we will try to help you.