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First of all, my device is a Moto E. It has fallen two times, both from bed height. So after the second fall, I noticed that my screen orientation stopped changing. I checked the "rotate screen automatically" option on settings and it was correctly set. I rebooted the phone hoping it would fix it but it didn't work.

I downloaded several apps to show the accelerometer's values, and they all show the same results: x and y are okay, but z, pitch, and roll, are stuck. Pitch and roll are stuck on 0, while z is stuck on -1.998.

The camera app is the only app that changes orientation, I'm guessing it is because it only reads x and y values.

I did a factory reset, but it didn't fix anything. I've seen some people suggest on forums that I reinstall the ROM or use a different ROM but I'm sure the problem it's hardware related.

So as it was caused by falling, there's no warranty for this. Is there a way this could be fixed? From what I've read, the fall could've caused the crystals in the accelerometer to break

So is replacing it the only fix? I know there are apps to force orientation changes, but that's not the point here.

3 Answers 3

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The Z axis is pretty important to autorotation functionality, as you can see from the diagram:

Axes

Try these solutions:

  • You could always go back to who you sold it to and say it's a manufacturer's defect. Who would know that the problem was really due to the fall?

  • If you have some microtools, you might be able to patch it together. (Good luck with that.)

  • You could replace the accelerometer... If you wanna take your phone apart and mess with all the components.

Honestly, there are not too many options with broken hardware other than fix it or replace it.

Although, what I would do if I did not want to replace anything would be to install Xposed Installer and install the module Xposed Additions or similar module to set the long press of my volume button(s) to rotate the screen.

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  • Nice photo of a moto e ;)
    – saloalv
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 18:08
  • @saloalv The axes are pretty universal across most devices (including the Moto E); and I did cross-check to make sure that it uses the same variables.
    – LyricWulf
    Commented Dec 16, 2014 at 23:41
  • it's just that the image looks like an iPhone (one of those devices with the awful ios operating system)
    – saloalv
    Commented Dec 17, 2014 at 2:22
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I had the same problem. making sure my cover was secure, I dropped the phone from 3 feet onto a carpeted surface directly on the "5:00" corner (lower right side corner). It unstuck the accelerometer and it's now working normally.

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  • Yeah, my phone's accelerometer suddenly started working one day. Months later it got stuck again, and it got unstuck a month later. It has been 5 months now and the accelerometer is still okay.
    – Galarzaa90
    Commented Nov 13, 2015 at 17:31
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I've had this problem with phones, but also with my DJI Phantom drone. You're not going to believe the solution that has worked for me in both cases: you gotta bash it!!

Yep, your silicon-based accelerometers have fingers that can deflect with G forces, but when they get a big impact, they can get stuck at the extreme bent side. You probably dropped your phone recently, right?? Well, you can probably fix it by dropping it again in exactly the right way.

You need to determine which side to drop it onto, and then drop it onto that side HARD onto a hard surface. You don't need to let it go, you kind of slam it with your hand. Do it at your own risk, of course, because you might break some other component!

Here's which side to whack it. For got sakes, don't just whack it randomly. First, you'll need an accelerometer app. Install it and run it in metric mode. Set your phone on the table. Have a look at your values for X, Y, and Z. Two should be at near 0 and Z should be around 10 m/ss. The 10 reading is the table holding your phone against the force of gravity at 10 m/ss!

One or more of your numbers will NOT be as I stated, and that's the stuck accelerometer. It will be pretty much stuck and hardly changing at all, and it will be weirdly high, much greater than 10. ex: My X was at 167. (If you do not have one of your axis stuck on a very high number, you have a different problem, don't continue.)

If your X value is stuck sky high, hit the phone with the X+ (right) side onto the table If your X value is a high number, but negative, hit the phone with the X- (left) side onto the table

The same above holds for Y and Z. Use the useful diagram that Lyricwulf posted on this page.

If you hit it sharply enough, you'll notice that it's no longer stuck on the super high reading, and you're all fixed :-)

Look on the bright side, it's not a drone. Since propellers etc get in the way of a table slam, I had to hit my $1200 drone - HARD - with a rubber mallet when it had the same problem. But it worked!

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  • My phone's accelerometer has fixed and broken itself from different smalls falls. I've tried what you suggested but I've never managed to get it unstuck, I can see the values move a little when I whack it, but it doesn't get unstuck. Right now it's working properly, in a couple weeks it will get stuck again and so on. I consider it a feature now :)
    – Galarzaa90
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 14:30
  • had positive x, relatively small slam to right side as you said and it's good again!
    – Peaker
    Commented Feb 1, 2017 at 22:26

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