Stereo touchscreens are becoming the norm of the day. Having a touchscreen in the dash allows the driver to access vital information at a glance, which lets you keep your eyes on the road. Besides, it offers several convenient features including, smartphone integration, GPS navigation, a rear camera that lets you stay safe while reversing, and more.
Ideally, a car touch screen is a valuable tool when it works. However, frustrations kick in when the car touch screen stops working after cleaning. The situation can even get worse if the touch screen is the only way you have access to your infotainment system.
While there are many reasons that can make the touch screen stop working or become unresponsive, cleaning it can interfere with its function. This often happens when you don’t follow the right procedure while cleaning the touchscreen.
The good news is that it can be fixed and become fully operational. However, this may call for professional help depending on the nature of the damage.
Reasons why your car touch screen may stop working after cleaning
As we have mentioned, failing to follow the correct procedure while cleaning the touch screen is the main reason why it may start malfunctioning. These include;
- Being excessively aggressive with the process. This can accidentally crack the screen and cause problems later
- Using rough materials such as old rags or paper towels to clean the screen
- Cleaning the screen while it is still running
- Leaving the cleaning solution on the screen for too long
Tips for fixing car touch screen that’s not working after cleaning
Tip1# Use the recommended cleaning cloth
Touchscreens are extremely delicate, so you’ll need to take extra care while cleaning them. As such, avoid cleaning the screen using scrubbing sponges, paper, or facial towels, as these can leave scratches on the surface.
The recommended material is a microfiber cloth. You can use this cloth to clean your screen without scratching or leaving marks on the surface. The best part about this is that it soaks up dirt and debris instead of spreading them on the surface.
Tip 2 # Do not spray or pour liquids directly on the surface
Typically, most touchscreens require that you use a clean and dry cloth to get rid of loose dirt or oil smudges. However, if your touchscreen is stained or has lots of dirt, then you may need to use a cleaning liquid.
If you need to use a cleaning agent, avoid pouring or spraying the liquid directly onto the surface of the screen. Instead, you can soak the cleaning cloth in the liquid, squeeze it out then proceed to wipe the surface. Ensure to drain excess liquid from the cloth before using it on your touchscreen.
Tip 3 # Avoid alcohol-based cleaning solutions
When choosing a cleaning agent, avoid alcohol-based or ammonia solutions, as these can damage the protective layer of the screen. They might also lead to discoloration or affect its visibility. You may also want to say away from any cleaning agent labeled as abrasive or corrosive.
Tip 4 # Be extra careful
Touchscreens tend to break so easily, so you may need to be a little careful when cleaning them. You can achieve this by wiping the screen gently in a circular motion. You should also avoid pressing too hard on the screen as this can damage it and cause problems when you try to use it later on. As such, it is important to be extra careful when cleaning it if you want it to remain functional for a long time.
Tip 5 # Ensure that the head unit is turned off
Ensure that everything is turned off before doing any cleaning. Besides, this is a general safety precaution when dealing with electrical components. In addition, when the screen is turned off, you’ll be in a better position to spot areas that need a thorough cleaning or to be repaired.
Tip 6 # Check for any wiring problem
Although this is rare, it is not uncommon to interfere with internal wiring while cleaning your touchscreen. When this happens, your unit won’t turn on and, that’s why it is important to check for any loose wire after cleaning your touchscreen.
Tip 7 # Reboot your car stereo
Rebooting the infotainment system is not recommended, and that’s we have it as our last resort. However, it has proved to be effective in solving touchscreen-related problems including, screen unresponsiveness and calibration. To reboot your device, press and hold the power switch for up to 10 seconds or depending on the instruction in the manual.
Most car touch screen problems are related to faulty connections, but some can be traced to improper cleaning. With the above tips, we believe that you now have the technical know-how on how to fix a car stereo touchscreen that’s not working after cleaning. However, if your car’s touch screen is completely non-functional, you have no other choice than to replace it. If the problem is beyond your knowledge, we recommend you seek professional help for a proper diagnosis.
Michael Evanchuk is a San Francisco-based sound engineer with 20 years’ experience installing, troubleshooting, and repairing commercial, automotive, and household sound equipment. Evanchuk owns an auto stereo center, where he offers highly competitive car audio installation and repair services. He has written dozens of articles on different sound engineering topics, all of which have been published in leading journals, blogs, and websites.