Having problems with your Digital Cameras ?

My Ricoh Caplio R4 will turn on but the lens stops half way. All data comes up on screen, but you can't clear any of it. Then after about 10-30secs, the camera turns itself off and the lens is stuck half way out. Battery is fully charged, was working properly, then just stopped. What could be the problem?

Answers :

Hello Mar Liz

This is a fairly common error with most digital camera's .This either means that something is jamming the lens , or that the\015\012lens sensor is faulty. Given that the lens is stuck halfway , we can rule out a sensor problem.

The camera shuts down to prevent further damage to the lens mechanism once it detect that there is a lens malfunction. When the camera is switched on , a diagnostic is run and this is why it only happens after a few seconds.

Most of the time the problem is\015\012that sand , dirt and grit gets lodged in the camera lens barrel thus\015\012keeping it from extending properly. The alternative to that is if it gets a bump where the driving gear gets damaged.

Try switching on your camera in review mode. Turn the dial to the\015\012little green square with the play button in it. Then switch it on. If the camera starts up\015\012and you can review your pictures it is definitely a lens error.

Firstly\015\012, the odds are not with you on a DIY fix so don't be disappointed when\015\012the following steps do not work.Nevertheless , some people have fixed\015\012their camera's using the following steps.

Use these at own risk as it may further damage the camera.

Firstly try charging your batteries overnight and then try the camera again tomorrow.
Try connecting your ac adapter or usb cable.
Try holding the shutter button while switching on the camera.

These\015\0123 options provide your camera with more power available to the\015\012extension mechanism which could overcome some of the particles that are\015\012lodged in there if there are any.

Try\015\012using compressed air (in the form of a little plastic blower) and blow\015\012between the\015\012lens and the casing. This should help dislodge some of the particles.\015\012Do not use canned compressed air as the accelerate in some of these can\015\012leave a oily residue in the lens which could cause it to jam in future\015\012or smudge the lens on the inside,

Look\015\012at the lens , and if some of the lens 'circles' are misaligned or not\015\012concentric then try wiggling it (while holding camera lens down) so\015\012that some of the particles can escape. Also try moving the lens away\015\012from the side with the biggest gap (also upside down).

Try gently\015\012pushing or pulling the lens when it tries to extend but this is risky\015\012as it may cause the lens barrel to slip out of its guidance system.

Another (safer)\015\012way to do this is to place the camera lens down on a hard surface and\015\012then power it up. Be sure to use a soft cloth or something similar as\015\012to not scratch your lens or casing. Let the lens push the camera up and\015\012down a few times and sometimes the little resistance provided by the\015\012camera is enough to get things going again.

As a last resort if\015\012you decide to replace the camera try hitting the camera near the lens\015\012with increasing force with the palm of your hand. Between each hit ,\015\012try using it again.

Other than that , I would take the camera to\015\012a repair center for a evaluation to see if it would cost more to repair\015\012than to replace the camera.The running repair rate is about $80-$180 although admittedly , I'm not familiar with the repair charges of your specific camera.

If\015\012it is still under warranty I would\015\012suggest you take it in before trying any of these steps and remove any\015\012off-brand batteries or accessories as some stores are really fussy\015\012about warranty repairs on camera's with non-brand accessories.

Hope the advise works. Good luck and don't hesitate to contact me if you need further assistance or information.

Repair Help & Product Troubleshooting for Digital Cameras

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