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Why is my Polaroid flashing red?

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  • 4 min read

Polaroids are instant analog cameras that help you capture and hold instant memories in your hands. If you have recently bought one, then you might still be discovering its various functions. With limited film, you cannot click as many photographs as you’d like, however that may not be the only hassle that you’re facing. If your Polaroid camera is blinking red, that might leave you confused over why this is happening.

In this article, we will cover why your Polaroid camera is flashing red and what you can do to fix this issue.

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Flashing red: Reasons and fixes

Your Polaroid camera has a light at the back, next to the viewfinder. There are many reasons why this light in your camera might be flashing red. Some of the reasons are covered in this table. If you are not able to figure out why your a light in your camera is flashing red, you can try most of these fixes or get in touch with Polaroid’s support.

The same red light may have different meanings in Polaroid’s different gadgets including their cameras like Polaroid 300, Go, Now, Now+ and their printers. Polaroid has various camera models and printers in which a red flashing light will have different meanings. Some of these issues are:

Low/dead batteryYou should check whether your Polaroid is on low battery or if the batteries are dead. If the batteries are rechargeable, consider charging them before using your polaroid.
Close subjectYour subject might be standing ahead of the camera’s lens focus. For Polaroid 300, the lens focal length lies at and beyond 60 mm. Subjects closer to the camera will appear out of focus.
Film damagePolaroid provides specific types of films for their cameras and if you are using a damaged film, your photo will not develop.
Incorrectly placed filmCheck that you have correctly placed your film in the Polaroid camera or printer. If you are not sure how to load a film, check the user manual or watch some YouTube videos.
Unclean cameraClean your camera and its lens with a soft, clean cloth. Avoid using water to clean. Check that the batteries are installed properly before use.
Expired filmEvery film has an expiry date, if you cross this threshold, the camera might flash red to alert you. For example, Polaroid Now and Now+ work best with i-Type film which expire after 12 months.
Charging in progessSolid red light: Camera in charge
Blinking red light: Camera almost full-charged
No red light: Camera is fully charged and is ready to take a photo
Camera/Printer damageIf your Polaroid camera fell accidentally or has been damaged, the lens or the flash capacitor might be dislodged. A flash capacitor is located near the battery and powers the flash. The lens and this capacitor can be reattached by opening the camera. You can also take it to a camera or printer repair shop.
Shutter damageThe shutter in your camera might be damaged or not working efficiently. Take your polaroid camera or printer to a repair shop. If the shutter release button is loose in a polaroid camera, you can open up the camera to reattach it.
Cancelled printA Polaroid camera light may flash red if a print is cancelled by you or due to an error that occurs due to low battery, wrong or upside-down paper, or if the film is deeply lodged.
No memory leftIf your Polaroid camera uses a micro SD card, then the camera will flash red when this memory card is full. You may have to replace it with a new card or empty the present card.
Ink cartridge If your Polaroid camera comes with an ink cartridge, it might flash red to let you know that this ink cartridge is full.
Jammed photosIf you have placed too many papers in the Polaroid model, or if any of them are bent, this may cause a jam in the camera or printer.

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Sania Usmani

Sania Usmani

Always curious, calm, and a little crazy, you can find me daydreaming or studying. An avid reader, traveler, and graduate of Aviation Science, I love gaining new experiences in life and star gazing. You can contact her here: