How to fix 'Press Shutter Release Button Again' error on a Nikon DSLR.

Picture of How to fix 'Press Shutter Release Button Again' error on a Nikon DSLR.
If you own a Nikon DSLR and suddently an error of 'Press Shutter Release Again' pops up and it wont take any pictures although you press the Shutter repeately,what would you do?
I had this problem a week ago on a vacation using my 1st beginner's DSLR ,a Nikon D40.
If its under Nikon Warantee,you can turn in to the dealer & wait for the repair but what if its beyond warantee period, or you bought it used with expired Warantee?
Here's my solution to fix it to save some repair charges and guess it might bless someone with the same problem there.
There is a gear motor that controls the tripping of the Shutter Release mechanism and over time,it either gets a bit tight to turn over or just contaminated with dust & needed soe light lubrication to get it back to normal( provided the motor is still ok).
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Step 1: Tools & Stuffs You need

Picture of Tools & Stuffs You need
You will need:
Small Watch Maker's Phillips Screw Driver
Can of Spray Grease (or any General Purpose Light duty Grease)
Tissue Paper
A Clean Dust free Environment 

Step 2: First, remove its Battery.

Picture of First, remove its Battery.
Turn the DSLR over,unlatch the battery cover & remove its battery from the Camera.
You can recharge it if its is low for testing later.

Step 3: Remove the bottom base Cover Plate

Picture of Remove the bottom base Cover Plate
Remove the bottom Cover plate held by 9 screws (5 long & 4 short ) .Start by unsrewing the long screw inside the battery compartment and work clockwise to remove the other 8 screws.
This will expose the Gear motor operating the shutter which neede to be serviced .

Step 4: Removed all screw holding the Base Cover

Picture of Removed all screw holding the Base Cover

Step 5: Proceed removing all screws in a sysmetic clockwise order

Picture of Proceed removing all screws in a sysmetic clockwise order
There are 2 long screws here holding the cover around the lens mount.

Step 6: Remove all Screws and aside it on a piece of Tissue Paper

Picture of Remove all Screws and aside it on a piece of Tissue Paper
Remove all Screws(total 9) and the bottom cover and place them on either a Clean Tissue Paper.This is a very straight forward task using only a Watch Makers Philips Screw Driver as your prime Tool.

Step 7: View of the D40 DSLR base with Cover removed.

Picture of View of the D40 DSLR base with Cover removed.
This is the base of the D40 with cover removed exposing the Shutter Motor Mechanism.

Step 8: The Gear operating the Shutter

Picture of The Gear operating the Shutter
This is the Gear operated by a motor that is responsible for operating the Shutter Mechanism.
jacko02 years ago
Hi Timothy,
I'm glad you like my fix for the D40x shutter problem that I found back in 2009. Could you be so kind as to credit me with this fix. You also have the Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike (by-nc-sa) for your site.



thanks jacko

You're welcome Simone
The fix worked perfectly. Thank you VERY much.
erik.puskar2 months ago

Here was my solution to this problem via somebody else's post on YouTube Try this first!

Thanks SOOOOOOO MUCH! It Worked:)

Don't spray lube in your camera! Ever! Use a toothpick to deposit the lube on the gear. Secondly, the screw heads look like Phillips but are actually JIS crosspoint, use too much force on a tight screw and you can mangle the head using a Phillips point screwdriver. And regarding a comment further down, WD-40 is not a lubricant it is a penetrating and water displacing concoction that will migrate all over the inside of your camera.

I'm having the same problem with shutter release for my camera. I'm having problems getting the base off the camera. Can you tell me what size JIS crosspoint screwdriver I need?

I bought a set of JIS cross points, the trick is the find one that fully engages the slot, I don't recall the actual size. You will use the set for other things, almost nothing coming out of Asia uses Phillips cross heads. (The Phillips screwdriver was designed to cam-out of the slot if over torqued, not so with the JIS.)

darkroommike is correct! WD-40 stands for "Water Displacement" (disperses moisture to prevent rust/oxidation and penetrates into mechanisms and tight spaces. Spray nothing into a dense, congested camera assembly. Small amounts only and only in specific areas. When in doubt- don't do it.

Wildman148 months ago

Didn't work for me. Guess I'll have to go deeper into the camera.

I was going to take my trusty D40 to the camera shop today .. until I saw this !
I have followed the instructions and 'touch wood' it seems to have worked :D
I didn't use any spray/grease as it wasn't stuck but I was suprised that there was quite a bit of dirt on it, having cleaned it and re-assembled it seems to be working fine ! :) Thanks for the advice - really helpful and has probably saved me a small fortune :)

tnge1 year ago


tnge1 year ago


mselva12 years ago
Are all of the screws the same size? I got al of the short ones off no problem but now the longs ones are not cooperating and want to strip
iamamoose2 years ago
Had a problem taking photos with fast shutter speeds, got the error above. Slow shutter speeds were fine. ₤1.98 on a tube of grease and 15 minutes later and it's working like new. Thanks!
Eskayz2 years ago
Thank for the information, I already try the step and it's sucsessfull. Thanks ya. I try to download the PDF but can't. Please advise me. Thanks.
jbeattie212 years ago
Genius. I was quite concerned when my camera had this error while my family was at the fair.

Took off the bottom plate, exercised the red wheel and found dirt in it. Removed dirt meticulously with a toothpick, then used a lightweight grease (WD-40) and dropped a doplet onto the gear and exercised it. Seems to work great now.

Thank you for taking the time to post this instructional.

oleolegua2 years ago
I am not sure if grease is the clue. The problem seems to be inside the motor and it is (temporarily) solved by moving the motor. Please be exremely careful with spraying anything inside the camera. Wolf from Germany
plreming3 years ago
I have a Nikon D40x that I use infrequently. I brought it in from the cold (Wisconsin winter) in to a swimming pool, and water condensed all over it. I slowly warmed it and started taking pictures. After a few shots I got the error "Press Shutter Release Again" and nothing would work.

I came to this site, and followed the steps that you described above. I used "Phil Wood" bike grease. After adding a little bit of grease, it worked, then then error came back. I added a bit more grease, and spun the red gear some more. Then it worked fine.

It's been a day and the camera is working fine. Thanks so much for your incredibly detailed and helpful guide. What an amazing resource!
Timothy Wooi (author)  plreming3 years ago
You are most welcome buddy! visit my facebook, https://'s Photo Gear from Japan to see more photography stuff! You can also see me at facebook,Timothy Wooi
jeoncs3 years ago
:) D40's are getting pretty cheap nowadays anyway if you had to replace it. My heart beats 10x faster every time I open a camera I bet someone out there has this problem and its a huge help
Are you sure that "Spray Grease" is harmless to plastic gears?

I would also be concerned with high pressure release of the grease, which may find its way to shutter curtains or the sensor. If your spray grease is compatible with plastic gears I would suggest spraying in a small container (i.e., a bottle cap) and applying from there using a toothpick.

Otherwise, if it really works, great instructable.

My two cents,

Timothy Wooi (author)  thearchitect3 years ago
So far I've been using Spray grease on 'Plastic Gears' on Remote control Cars without problems as Plastic Gears are injected from Poly Propylene(PP) a smooth type of 'plastic) that is resistant to chemicals & solvents used in Canned grease. Do not use if your are doubtful and get some Silicon grease sold in tube if you can have access to.

Timothy Wooi (author) 3 years ago
Yes,as Ive mention practice on other area first if you are a beginner using this if not spray on a tootk pick & transfer over.Ive no problem on dispensing right amount of spray using this method.If you can have access to silicon grease,so much so the better.