PS4 stuck in Safe Mode? 4 Easy Fixes

Every PS4 comes with an inbuilt safe mode option, which is fantastic for those who want to run a hard reset or rebuild the database occasionally. When your PS4 gets stuck in safe mode, that’s when an issue arrives. 

Is your PS 4 stuck in Safe Mode? Must Read our guide

It can become a pain to deal with since it keeps booting into safe mode. This, in turn, only gives the user access to the most basic functions. It’s an obstacle for your gaming experience, for sure. Mainly because when it gets stuck, it goes into a safe mode loop where it’s in an infinite cycle.

So let’s look at the safe mode, why your PS4 gets stuck in it, and ways to prevent it from happening in the future. Read on to know more! 


Table of Contents

What is the safe mode in PS4?

Safe mode on the PS4 is a diagnostic tool that allows you to change various settings on your PS4 console. It also helps you troubleshoot and resolve various issues that may arise from time to time. There are many options within the tool, and you can do the following by booting your PS4 into safe mode:

  1. To exit safe mode, restart your computer.
  2. To help with troubleshooting, reduce the display resolution to 480p.
  3. You can update system software via USB, disc, or direct download.
  4. Reset the PS4 to its factory settings.
  5. Rebuild the storage database on the PS4.
  6. Restore the PS4 to its original state. This deletes all user content.
  7. Reinstall the operating system software. This removes all user data & PS4 firmware.

For PS4 Pro consoles, there’s an additional option to set HDCP mode for 4k televisions–an added perk! 


How to boot your PS4 into safe mode 

Let’s talk about the point where it all starts. Bear in mind you have to be very precise with this process. If your timing is off by a second or two, it might not work. 

  1. Hold down the power button for three seconds to turn off the console. The power button is on the console’s left side, beneath the Sony logo. The power indicator will blink for a bit before your PS4 turns off. 
  2. Hold down the power button after the console has been turned off. 
  3. You will hear two beeps: the first when you press and hold the button and the second after about 7 seconds.
  4. After you hear the second beep, let the power button go. 
  5. Finally, connect your controller via its USB cable.
  6. Press the PS button on the controller to finish the safe mode boot.


9 Reasons your PS4 is stuck in safe mode 

This happens for many reasons, but a failed or interrupted console update is the most common. Another one is a loose cord, we’ve all been there. Here’s a full list of what causes your PS4 to get stuck in safe mode:

  1. A PS4 cable has been damaged, broken, or come loose.
  2. The PS4 storage database has become severely corrupted, preventing the PS4’s operating system from booting.
  3. The PS4 operating system is corrupted, so it no longer works.
  4. Your internal hard drive disk is no longer working properly.
  5. The PS4 isn’t getting enough power to function properly.
  6. A firmware update for the PlayStation 4 did not install correctly.
  7. You’ve got a faulty motherboard.
  8. The CMOS memory chip contains corrupted data.
  9. An electrical short within the PS4 hardware prevents the operating system from loading.


4 Methods to get your PS4 out of safe mode 

Now that we’ve explained the safe mode and why your console gets stuck, let’s look at some solutions to the problem. 


Method #1. Shut your PS4 off and check the cables 

When your console is in safe mode, the first option you see on the screen is to restart it. This one’s the usual option you see that works. In this case, where it’s stuck, it won’t work. When it boots back into safe mode, it’s best to try checking your cables. A common cause of the problem is a faulty wire.

  1. Use the physical power button to force it to shut down. Press and hold down for at least seven seconds. 
  2. Now, inspect all your cables. Check the power cable that runs from your wall outlet to your console.
  3. Check the HDMI cable as well. 
  4. If damaged, replace immediately.

You will need to see if any of these cables are exposed, frayed, or pinched. It’s easy to overlook this, but issues with them cause an inconsistent power flow to your console, which is part of the problem. It’s also worth noting that power spikes can cause the cables to heat up. This, of course, will also damage your console and its internal components. 


Method #2. Update your PS4’s software system 

There is no need to worry if your cables are fine and your console’s still in safe mode. An outdated software system can cause instability within your PS4. This, in turn, can land you where you are right now. There are two ways you can update your software system.


Automatic update 

This is the simplest way to update. You need to make sure your PS4’s connected to the Internet.

  1. Select System Software Update from the safe mode menu.
  2. Follow the on-screen prompts and wait for the update to complete.
  3. If the update is successful, restart the PS4 to exit safe mode.
  4. The PS4 should restart normally during the reboot.

If your WiFi is faulty, or you’re not sure your PS4 is connected, you will need to update the software manually. 


Manual update with a USB flash drive

  1. Insert an empty USB flash drive into your PC or Mac.
  2. Locate the USB drive using File Explorer or Finder.
  3. Make a new folder called PS4 on the USB drive.
  4. Create a folder called UPDATE within the newly created PS4 folder.
  5. Go to the PlayStation website and download the updated file, which you can find here.
  6. Make sure to save the file to the update folder you made earlier and label it PS4UPDATE.PUP.
  7. If the file saves to your downloads folder, move it to the UPDATE folder.
  8. Now, insert your USB flash drive into your PS4 console.
  9. Start the PlayStation 4 console in safe mode. It will automatically boot.
  10. Pick the third option from the menu to update the software.
  11. Tell your PS4 to update from the USB. 


Method #3) Rebuild your database 

Over time, if your database becomes corrupted, that can cause your PS4 to get stuck in a safe mode loop. By rebuilding it, any corrupted entry gets cleared up. Every file and folder gets reorganized to work optimally, too. An added plus is that any unwanted data gets cleared up, which is always good for your console. 

  1. Select the rebuild database option from the menu while in safe mode.
  2. Accept the warning that the rebuild will take some time.
  3. Click Okay to start the process.
  4. After the database has been rebuilt, you have to restart the console. To do so, select the restart option from the safe mode menu.


Method #4) Restore the PS4 to default settings 

If the previous methods didn’t work, then you can try this. You won’t have to worry about losing your data, games, or apps. 

  1. From the safe mode menu, select Restore to Default Settings.
  2. Follow the instructions on the screen.
  3. You will be asked to reset several console settings, including the time zone.


Final Thoughts 

Having your PS4 stuck in safe mode can definitely be annoying. But it isn’t an unsolvable problem, and you can usually solve it with just a few steps. It’s easy to forget about your PS4’s hygiene, and that’s where this issue can come from. 

A simple rebuild of your database can do wonders, not just fix the problem. If your cables are damaged, this is as good a chance as any to replace them!