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How to fix Canon error 99?

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Canon cameras are reliable most of the time, but that doesn’t make them immune to mechanical damage or failure. Usually, most of Canon’s error codes point to a specific fault or failure in the camera. However, error 99 is more of a general failure error.

It can be caused by lens failure (which is also the most likely cause)/ It could be a memory card failure, your lens contacts might be dirty, or a malfunctioning shutter and sometimes even a simple power cycle can fix the issue.

However, if nothing else works, you must return your Camera to Canon and hope the repair isn’t too expensive.

In this article, we’re looking at the infamous Error 99 and a few of its solutions.

Also read: How to make a time-lapse in Canon cameras?

How to fix Canon Error 99?

Here are a few solutions you can try out to see if your camera comes back to life.

Reboot the camera

The first thing you should do is restart the camera. This method can fix almost anything from a broken toy to an expensive computer or, in this case, your dear camera.

Check your lens

The most likely cause of this error is a mechanical issue in your lens. Check to ensure your lens is fine, has no damage, and the autofocus motors are working fine. Another thing to check is your aperture ring. You may even have to send back your lens for repairs.

Ensure your lens is in working condition.

Also read: How to fix Canon error 20?

Clean camera and lens contacts

Every photographer has seen the camera and lens contacts while swapping lenses. If these contacts get dirty, your camera might not be able to detect the lens correctly and hence throw this error. In such cases, try wiping off the contacts on the back of the lens and in front of the camera with a dry cloth (preferably microfiber) and see if that resolves your issue.

Do a power cycle

Your camera has two batteries inside. One of the main batteries we’ve all seen, and the second is inside the camera, powers low-power internals such as the clock inside the camera. 

To do a complete power cycle, you must remove your battery and memory card, disassemble the camera, remove this battery, wait for five minutes and put everything back together again. Now, all that’s left to do is restart the camera and pray. 

Since this method requires disassembling your camera, we don’t suggest you follow it unless you’re comfortable tearing down electronics. A lot can go wrong, which can up your repair bill into a new camera bill.

Check the memory card

It’s a long shot, but memory card issues can trigger this error. Try inserting your SD card into a computer to check if it’s working properly and if the system can read and write files off the card. You can also try another card in your camera and check if the error reappears.

Send it to Canon

If all else fails, the best thing to do is send your camera back for repairs to Canon. It might be expensive and take some time, but that’s the best thing you can do for your camera and ensure its longevity.

Also read: How to change the shutter speed on a Canon DSLR?

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah Abidi

Yadullah is a Computer Science graduate who writes/edits/shoots/codes all things cybersecurity, gaming, and tech hardware. When he's not, he streams himself racing virtual cars. He's been writing and reporting on tech and cybersecurity with websites like Candid.Technology and MakeUseOf since 2018. You can contact him here: