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Autofocus not working. (18-55mm lens)

marcosochoa
New Contributor

Hello,

 

The autofocus on my Canon 18-55mm is malfunctioning and I'm afraid it may be broken.

All the internet research I've done points to issues electronic, but I believe this to be mechanical simply because of the noise it makes. With the lens set to AF, it does nothing, but makes a slight whirring sounds as if the camera is trying to, but can't focus the lens. In MF, turning the focus ring makes soft clicking sounds.

The autofocus works fine on the other lens I have.

The lens has not been dropped. I take really, REALY good care of my stuff!  Any other recommendations or bits of advice are much appreciated!

1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

Julius
Product Expert
Product Expert

Hi marcosochoa!

 

amphoto1 makes some very valid points, and it does sound like it could  be the motor in the lens. We have found that sometimes we're able to remedy this without a costly repair, but it is a multi-stepped process.

 

Try this:

  1. Take the lens off of your camera.
  2. Put the lens in MF mode.
  3. Twist the FOCUS ring (the tip of the lens) all the way to one side (extend it). You may hear a click noise or two, this is good, but don't FORCE the lens.
  4. Twist the FOCUS ring all the way to the opposite side (retract it). Again, you may hear a couple of clicking noises. What we hope is happening is the focusing motor being put back into its proper place.
  5. Put the lens back on the camera.
  6. Put the lens in AF mode.
  7. Turn the camera on.
  8. Put the camera in AUTO or P mode.
  9. Take a test photo.
  10. Profit.

Hopefully this solves your problems, and you never have to worry about it again! With my personal lenses that are not USM or STM, I always store and transport them with the AF/MF switch in the MF position. This disengages the focusing motor and prevents any accidental damage to the auto focusing motor.

 

If this didn't solve your problem, please feel free to click HERE to contact us for additional troubleshooting, and explore other options that might be available to you.

Did this answer your question? Please click the Accept as Solution button so that others may find the answer as well.

View solution in original post

88 REPLIES 88

dry
New Contributor
I experienced the same problem with the AF not working. I tried the careful fixes like cleaning and the multiple steps Julius suggested. None worked, so I decided to try Crystal's "pop" method. It worked! What did I have to lose? I did lose a day at Mackinaw, but making up for it today!

Beetlemike
New Contributor

Hi,

 

I have read through this thread and the fix worked for me. Excellent solution and a real relief.  I had a partial AF fault and was frequently switching to MF mode to try to reset the AF but getting some out of focus pics.

 

Just a thought,  I use a EW-60C lens hood which I often  move between lenses.  I suspect that if I detach the lens hood when the lens is set to AF mode it will be similar to manually focusing in AF mode. 

 

I think I'll buy a lens hood for each lens and leave it attached in future.

 

Many thanks,

 

Beetlemike


@Beetlemike wrote:

Hi,

 

I have read through this thread and the fix worked for me. Excellent solution and a real relief.  I had a partial AF fault and was frequently switching to MF mode to try to reset the AF but getting some out of focus pics.

 

Just a thought,  I use a EW-60C lens hood which I often  move between lenses.  I suspect that if I detach the lens hood when the lens is set to AF mode it will be similar to manually focusing in AF mode. 

 

I think I'll buy a lens hood for each lens and leave it attached in future.

 

Many thanks,

 

Beetlemike


No, just learn to be more careful.  Did you know that you can remove the hood, and mount it in aa reversed orientation for storage?

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."

Thank you. Will try that. Have set lenses to MF as the default now when in the camera bag.

Justina93
New Contributor
Thank you thank you!!!
I tried this and it SOLVED the problem!!!
Thank you so so much!!!!

uberthin
New Contributor

Crystal's advice (page 1 of this thread) to "just pull" worked perfectly.  Thank you!

 

I have the IS II version of this lens.

 

I didn't pull hard enough the first time.  It took a solidly "medium" amount of force.

 

In retrospect, I believe that before the lens's "chiropractic adjustment" the lens didn't track right with manual focus slew.  By that I mean that in manual focus mode, when twisting from focus extent to extent the lens simply racked in one direction.  After the adjustment I was reminded how the lens normally works - at one extent of focus ring travel the lens is out a bit, as you focus it retracts, then at about mid-focus-adjustment it starts racking out again, finishing the focus travel sticking out again.

 

So if your lens is having trouble, and doesn't do the out-in-out behavior, this "pull on the end" technique may be just the trick.

 

 

jgepson
New Contributor

Like others, my AF does not work. I tried all the fixes but nothing helps. It will AF when in the "Live View" mode but it is so slow so not really useful for my type of photography. Bummer!


@jgepson wrote:

Like others, my AF does not work. I tried all the fixes but nothing helps. It will AF when in the "Live View" mode but it is so slow so not really useful for my type of photography. Bummer!


If the lens can autofocus in LIve View, then there is nothing wrong with the lens.  The advice on this thread apply to situations where the lens does not focus, at all.  It seems dead in the water, because it is.

 

What are you trying to photograph?  What camera body are you using?  Is your lens and “STM” lens?  What position is the shooting mode dial in?

Live View mode uses an entirely separate focusing system from viewfinder focusing.  Be aware that you can encounter low light situations where the camera will not focus.  If you are too close to the subject, the camera will not focus.  If there is insufficient contrasting lines under the active AF point, then the camera will not focus.

If you using One Shot mode, then the camera must acquire a focus lock before it will take a picture.  Switch the camera to “P” mode, and then change the AF mode to “Ai Servo”.  The camera should now take a picture whenever you press the shutter, assuming the camera is operating with the factory default behaviors.  The camera can be reset to factory defaults in the menus.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Doctor told me to get out and walk, so I bought a Canon."

Demara
New Contributor
Hi! I had the same problem with my autofocus when i click it produces some noise, it seems it is trying to focus thats why it created the noise. Anyways, I followed what you said, your instructions rather. And boop! It is working again! Thanks for saving my camera and lens. Sooooo much thank you. Its back. 😆💪

mc4
New Contributor

Hi,

 

I have the same problem, a Canon EFS 18-55 IS lens and the autofocus does not work correctly, but in my case only in one way. It retracts but does not extend. If I extend manually the lens, the autofocus retracts it till in focus, but if I retract it manually it does not extend till in focus, I can ear and feel something but no movement...

 

I disassemble the lens, took out the autofocus motor and with a 1.5v battery I managed to verify that the autofocus motor and the gears work well in one direction and in the other, so it seems that it is not a problem with this autofocus motor, don't you think?

 

If it is not that the problem what could it be?

 

I tried my camera (EOS 50D) wih other Canon lenses and all work well, so it is not a camera problem..

 

Thanks for any help.

 

Mike