The Top Reasons Why Your Fitbit Screen Is Black

Did you ever find that you were using your Fitbit normally, and then it started showing errors or the screen turned black? This is an issue that be quite frustrating, especially if you’re right in the middle of a workout. So, what are the possible causes behind the black screen, and how can you fix it?

The Fitbit screen may become unresponsive if you turn on Water Lock — a feature that locks the screen and buttons for water sports. It could also be because the Fitbit isn’t charged, or because the brightness is turned way down. If necessary, try resetting your device to restore default settings. 

Let’s take a closer look at why your Fitbit may be showing a black screen and what you can do to solve this annoying problem.

Why Is My Fitbit Screen Black?

Beautiful sports woman

Before you try to fix your Fitbit (on Amazon), it’s important to first understand the underlying issues. One of the reasons the screen goes black may be because the tracker is running low on battery. If it’s not fully charged, it may have problems maintaining the usual full brightness. 

Some Fitbit devices also come with a Water Lock mode, which prevents the buttons and screen from responding to swipes or touches. This could also be the reason why your screen is black and unresponsive.

The Water Lock can be activated unexpectedly if you’ve got automatic Water Lock on, since it’ll turn on when the device detects that you’re swimming or engaging in other water sports. In some cases, it’ll come on erroneously when you don’t need it and turn the screen black and unresponsive. 

It’s also possible that the brightness level on your Fitbit is simply too low to see anything, especially if you’re outside during a sunny day. To determine if the brightness level is the problem, you can move into a dark space and look at the Fitbit.

Sometimes, the problem causing the black screen is in the software, so restarting the device is an easy way to restore its functionality in some cases. 

Try Cleaning Your Fitbit Device

Because the Fitbit is a device you mostly use when doing physical activity, it’s easy for it to accumulate salt from sweat, grease, lint, and other grime. This could interfere with the device’s charging contacts or clog buttons. For this reason, it’s a good idea to clean your Fitbit device from time to time. 

Start by cleaning the charging contacts and also clean the pins on the charging cable. In order to do this properly, you’ll need a soft microfiber cloth (on Amazon) and some rubbing alcohol. Add the alcohol to the cloth and gently scrub away any accumulated dirt.

Also clean the screen and buttons. For this task, you can also use eyeglass cleaners, screen wipes, or disinfectant wipes, but ensure it does not include hydrogen peroxide or bleach.

The last part to clean is the band, which you can remove to access all surfaces for cleaning. A soft toothbrush or a microfiber cloth with water, a soap-free cleanser, or rubbing alcohol will do a good job cleaning the band. 

Check if Your Device Is in Sleep Mode

When sleep mode is turned on, it automatically dims the Fitbit’s screen. The problem is that sleep mode won’t turn off unless you add a sleep mode schedule, so if you must use this function, be sure to set the sleep mode schedule.

To adjust the sleep mode feature, navigate to Settings > Quiet Modes > Sleep Mode. Turn the feature off. You can also use the Quick Settings and find the half-moon icon, which turns off sleep mode. 

Another feature that functions like sleep mode that could disable the screen and buttons is the Water Lock that we mentioned earlier. When it’s turned on, it prevents buttons or the screen from responding to swipes and touches. Turn it off by long pressing the side button. 

How to Adjust Your Brightness Settings

Sometimes, your Fitbit doesn’t have any underlying issues causing the screen to turn black, and the brightness settings could be the culprit causing you these problems. If you want to confirm if it’s an issue coming from brightness settings, head into a dark room and look at your Fitbit.

If the issue is because of low brightness settings, you can follow these steps to fix the device: 

  1. On your Fitbit device, open the Settings app.
  2. Go to Screen Brightness, then adjust the settings to maximum or normal brightness, depending on the option available. Check off the dim screen option to ensure the screen offers full brightness. 
  3. Also, check in the settings to ensure Sleep Mode isn’t turned on, because it will automatically dim the screen. 

Restarting and Resetting Your Fitbit

If the above solutions don’t fix the issue of the screen turning black, you should try resetting or restarting. Restarting the Fitbit will force the device to reboot and often fixes underlying issues like a blank or black screen.

To restart, press and hold the bottom and back buttons for 10 seconds. When the logo appears, release the button. 

Resetting is different from restarting, and it will solve many of the problems you have with the software. A hard reset will restore the software like it worked when the device was new.

This is the best option when everything else fails to give you results. Note the reset process is not the same on all Fitbit trackers, so read the manual to know how to reset your specific Fitbit.  

What to Do if Your Screen Still Isn’t Brightening

Activity fitness tracker

If you’ve tried everything and the screen is still too dark, you should try reaching out to Fitbit. If the device is still under warranty, Fitbit can help you fix it or give you a replacement. Ensure you have your purchase receipt, as Fitbit needs the information to verify your claim. 


While Fitbit trackers offer some very useful features, you still might encounter issues like the screen turning black and unresponsive. If this is your situation, begin with restarting the device. Also, check if you’ve switched on sleep mode, as this will automatically dim the screen.

If all the solutions above fail and your device is still under warranty, contact Fitbit support for assistance. 

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