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I had my first little panic with my Nikon D3400 DSLR camera since I purchased it about six months ago. I went to take photos one day, and my camera said there was no memory card. I thought I had placed it in there, so I opened the slot and yep – it was there. Except the card was slightly popped out, not locked in. I pushed it in, expecting the sd slot to lock it in. It didn’t. I tried a few times and the memory card would not stay in the camera SD slot.
The day prior, I realized that one of the prongs of my SDHC card had been bent. I was able to straighten it back out and my card reader on my laptop read the card just fine, so I didn’t think much of it. Now, I was worried that my damaged SDHC memory card had caused permanent damage to the SD slot in my DSLR.
I took the memory card out of the camera and looked inside and it looked fine at a glance, but I certainly had not looked closely at the SD slot in the past. I looked at the card. The prongs on the memory card were all straight, none had broken off.
I started looking up the warranty for my DSLR with anxiety. Meanwhile, my boyfriend took a closer look at the memory card, and noticed that a tiny piece of the side of the memory card was missing. He grabbed a flashlight to shine into the SD slot on my DSLR and sure enough, a teeny, tiny piece of black plastic was lodged in the far corner of the memory card slot. We tried gently shaking the camera but it was truly stuck. We started looking around for long, skinny objects. The slot is too skinny to fit a pencil, so I knew it had to be very thin. I remembered my seam ripper (for sewing). We very carefully took the seam ripper and nudged the tiny piece of black plastic in the SD slot and managed to knock it lose. I took an extra memory card (that was undamaged) and placed it in – and it locked right in place! That little piece of plastic was just preventing the card from getting deep enough into the SD slot to be locked in place.
I was able to carefully insert the broken memory card back into my card reader and remove the files and then I promptly through it away to risk any further issues. It was not the first time I saw a prong broken on a memory card and continued to use it, but I will not do that anymore. It’s a lot cheaper to replace a memory card ($12.99 for 32 gigs!) than it is to replace a camera. I’m going to buy an extra memory card now that I am down to just one, so I always have an extra on hand in case one breaks again.