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10 tips to prevent your drone from crashing

21 January 2021 by Adrienn Kerekes 0 Comments

The last thing you want is for your brand new drone – the one you worked so hard for – to crash because of something you could have easily avoided. While some factors are inevitably out of your control, you should be aware of the things you can control and the mistakes you can avoid.

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), i.e. drones, can crash for a number of reasons:

1. Malfunction of rotors
Your drone's rotors/propellers are made to be strong, yet soft, so they won't injure people or damage other objects. As a result, their shape tends to warp after a few collisions. Always check each rotor before flying to make sure they are in perfect shape.

2. Lack of GPS signal
If you fly your drone indoors, you can almost always be sure that there is no GPS signal. Therefore, whenever possible, it is always recommended to fly in an open area, away from tall buildings.

3. Compass error
An improperly adjusted compass is one of the main causes of drone crashes. Drone compasses can be jammed by any magnetic or radio frequency (RF) source. Do not keep the UAV too close to magnets, such as car speakers during transport, and do not fly in environments with high electromagnetic interference, such as near high-voltage transmission lines or cell phone towers.

4. Interruption of video transmission
This is another common reason drones crash and can happen at any time, whether it's during the first flight or months later. The cause is usually a loose cable or a damaged connector. Always make sure the cables are properly connected before flying and carefully pull them apart afterwards to keep the connectors in good condition.

5. Pressing "Return" too early
When you lose control of your drone, one of the quickest natural reactions as a pilot is to press the Return to Home (RTH) button, but you should keep in mind that most commercial drones cannot avoid obstacles. This means that the UAV will simply follow the arrow-straight path to the homing point, even if there are trees, buildings or electric poles in its path; this could easily lead to a serious collision. Don't panic, don't press the RTH button every time you lose control of the UAV, stay calm and find the right solution.

6. Incorrect return point
This usually happens when the GPS lock is lost during flight, and then it can be reset again, thereby recalibrating the drone to an incorrect home point. Remember that the home point can be the place where your UAV took off or where your remote control is located, so check that it is set correctly. Finally, make sure you set your return altitude to be higher than any objects in the area, 100 meters should be a good altitude unless you are flying in a city or near particularly tall structures such as cell phone towers.

7. Power failure
It is crucial to always fly with a fully charged battery and never give in to the temptation to start a new flight with a low or partially charged battery. While you'll most likely get away with using a half-charged battery, there's always the risk of a random power outage mid-flight when you least expect it.

8. Insufficiently charged battery for safe return home
It is important to land your drone with a 30% charge reserve, so that if you have to delay the landing in the event of an emergency, you have enough time to find a new landing spot or deal with the problem. Furthermore, some UAVs have a fail-safe function where when the battery reaches 10%, the drone will automatically start to return to the home point, and even this can be a useful feature if there are trees or other obstacles in the way of the drone and return home. point, it will fly straight into them.

9. Collision with another drone
When there are other UAVs in the sky, there is always a chance of a collision, especially if the pilots are unaware of each other's presence in the area, perform complex flight maneuvers or compete.

10. Mistake regarding the direction of the flying vehicle
When the drone is flying very high in the sky, it is difficult to tell, especially for novice pilots, which side is which, and thus it is easy to mistake the front for the back, leading the UAV in the wrong direction. Before continuing the flight, make sure which side is which.


No matter how experienced a pilot you are, if you own a drone, you have to face the fact that it will crash. Sometimes it's your fault, sometimes it's due to conditions beyond your control. Either way, your beloved drone is bound to crash. So what do you do when this happens?

First, try to retrieve the drone. After you retrieve it, inspect it for damage. Make a note of any visible damage so you can refer to it if you need to contact the drone manufacturer. Here are some useful things you can do after recovering your drone from the crash site:

1. Turn off the UAV/controller and remove the batteries and propellers

2. Use an alcohol pad to remove all dirt/sand/debris from the drone

3. Spin the rotors by hand while the drone is upside down to get rid of any sand/dirt, then blow on each one (or use compressed air) to remove any remaining dirt

4. Check the gimbal for backlash, bent parts or cracks

5. Check the camera for cracks or loose wires

6. Check the battery for structural damage

7. Remove all propellers and check for cracks or deformation. Replace damaged propellers

8. Check all gimbal mounts and anti-drops to ensure they are securely in place and intact

9. Check the entire frame for cracks, including the chassis

10. Check the motor assembly to make sure it is securely in place and not loose (including all screws)

11. Blow sand/debris/dust out of all moving parts (again)


12. When you are done with the thorough inspection/cleaning, put the battery back into the drone

13. Relaunch the drone on a flat surface and let it go through the launch procedure again

14. Calibrate the compass and then the IMU

15. Check the complete movement of the gimbal using the gimbal controller and then by moving the UAV around

16. Start the engines without the propellers and check for wobble

17. Stop the engines again, connect the propellers, restart the engines, and check the wobble again

18. Raise the UAV to a low hover, just above eye level, and check for any strange movement/shaking

19. When recording a video, perform basic maneuvers (forward, backward, left, right, dodge left, dodge right, up, down)

20. Watch the video again to make sure there is no more shaking

21. Do an extended flight low and slow (not over water) to make sure everything is working fine

In some cases, you may need a low-cost or free warranty repair from your manufacturer. When you contact them, mention every detail of the flight that you can remember. If your aircraft is out of warranty, you don't have to worry if you have DJI Care Refresh . Don't forget that DJI Service can also cover any permanent damage caused by a fall. If you fly as a hobby, DJI Care Refresh can come in handy if you crash your drone several times during the first year.

Drones are quite complex devices that rely on different systems working properly, and while there's no way to guarantee that you'll avoid a hardware or software problem, being aware of the things you can control and the mistakes you can avoid, based on the above, will help. minimize the chance of your drone crashing or even being lost. Most accidents can be prevented by being attentive and careful in your preparation and execution, so you can be a happy, productive drone pilot.


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