Ask me what I did on my day off? Spent about six total hours dismantling my sister’s Canon SD400 to troubleshoot why the lens wouldn’t retract.
Apparently this is a common problem.
So after much research, I collected a bunch of illustrated guides from various places on the web and went to town.
- How to repair a Canon E18 error (lens error) (things to try before taking your camera apart)
- E18 – Repair Guide (Illustrated, Canon S100)
- Fix Canon SD600 Lens Error (Illustrated)
- Canon E18 Repair Guide for SD300 (Illustrated PDF)
- Canon PowerShot S500 E18 Repair (Illustrated)
Suggestions From My Own Experience
Clean out any dirt/debris from both the lens and gear box.
Unscrew things in sections. For each section, get a blank piece of paper and diagram where all the screws are. As you unscrew stuff, place the screw on your diagram in its approximate location.
This will make your life infinitely less complicated as you put your camera back together. Now you don’t have to worry about which screw and which size screw goes where.
Just be sure you put these diagrams away from your work area. A small bump will send your screws flying and make your diagram worthless. ;)
I was able to clean out a lot of sand from the inside of the camera (i.e. lens mechanism, gear box). The lens now retracts and extends. It used to not do that. I’m awesome!
Some of the gears controlling the movement of the lens are stripped. That prevents the lens from extending/retracting smoothly and without a lot of grinding sounds.
The camera is un-fixable. I now have a slick-looking paper weight.
Moral of the Story
My sister should give up being an agronomy major. Then she would be far less excited to take her camera into a soil pit.
8 replies on “Illustrated Guides to Fixing Canon E18 Lens Errors”
I wrote the E18 error guide 10 years ago. Went looking for it today for some reason. You’re the only one hosting it. Hope it was useful. Take care.
haha. that’s awesome. glad i could help you archive it. and yes, your guide was very helpful. i’m just bummed i couldn’t fix her camera.
funny you came looking for this post because i also came looking for it last week. my little sister finally graduated with her phd and i wanted to use the picture in this post as part of her celebration collage.
@Chris: Holy cow! I just saw your comment and approved it. Sorry for the delay!
I’m glad it was able to help you get your camera up and working. Hopefully you get many more years out of your SD300!
Thanks for posting the SD300 repair guide. I replaced the shutter button, and your guide was instrumental in getting the camera apart.
I learned from the best.
Remember that time mom announced to everyone at Wal-Mart that I was buying a cup (i.e. “athletic supporter”) for P.E. class? ;)
Yup. That pretty much confirms it. My brother is a goofball.
I had to, nobody knows what agronomy is. Is your coach going to put you in this year? ;)
That’s hilarious. I like that you linked the term “agronomy.”
Give up soil pits? Never! Nationals is in three weeks and I’ve gotta train! We’ll see if the SD770 can hold up to a week-long soils competition, and hope that I won’t be sending you a matching paperweight in April.