How to Format an SD Card

If you are experiencing issues with your trail camera or other devices that use an SD card sometimes formatting the SD card in your computer can help fix the issue.  We are often asked how to format SD cards using a PC.  Here are the steps to format an SD card for use in your trail camera using a PC. This process is using Windows 10 so if you have a different operating system these instructions may not work.

  • At the bottom of your desktop screen click the file explorer icon
    file exlporer formatting sd card width="1024" height="853"
  • After clicking the file explorer icon the SD card should show up on the left side of the screen as pictured below.  The SD card may show up as the cameras name, sdhc, removable disc, or a few other names.  Just be sure you are selecting the correct one.
  • sd card location width="1024" height="671"
  • Once you have found the correct drive you need to format you will right click on your mouse while hovering over it. This will bring up a dropdown box and you need to select format from the list.
  • format sd card width="1024" height="669"
  • Now the format application will open. Everything should be good by default.  The file system for cards below 32GB should be FAT32 and anything above should be exFAT.  However, Windows does a good job of automatically selecting the right file system for you.  You can leave quick format selected.  This process will not take long.  However, if you still experience issues go back through these steps and uncheck the quick format box.  This will do a deep format on the SD card clearing all the sectors.  Doing a deep format can sometimes take hours.  Click the Start button when ready to begin.  
  • format sd card button width="1024" height="669"
  • After you press start a warning will pop up.  Just make sure you are formatting the correct card or drive.  We are not liable for any damages to your computer following these steps.  Press okay on the warning after you have confirmed the correct drive is being formatted.
  • warning format sd card width="1024" height="674"
  • After clicking the OK button on the warning you should receive the message below.  
  • format complete width="1024" height="673"
  • That's all you need to do.  You can go ahead and use the SD card in your Trail Camera again.  
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