How to fix a debit card blocked after wrong pin

How do you fix a debit card that gets blocked after entering the wrong PIN?

To unblock your debit card after entering the wrong PIN, call your bank to confirm that you are the cardholder trying to make a purchase. They will be able to help you correct the situation so that you can access your debit card’s funds. 

Forgetting your debit card PIN can be annoying, but if you type it into the machine wrong too many times, you’ll have to deal with a blocked debit card.

This article will give you advice on what to do to unblock your debit card after you’ve typed in the wrong PIN. Additionally, we will help you determine what to do if you don’t remember your PIN and how to avoid blocking your debit card by mistyping your PIN too many times.

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How Can I Use My Blocked Debit Card After I Type in the Wrong PIN?

You normally get three tries to input your debit card PIN correctly. However, if you get it wrong all three times, your debit card will most likely become blocked so that you can’t use it to complete your purchases.

If your debit card becomes blocked after typing in the wrong PIN, call your bank to explain the situation. They will need to verify your identity, so they will ask for information such as:

  • Your date of birth
  • The last four digits of your social security number
  • Answers to personal security questions you previously set in place.

If your bank can do an identity verification over the phone, then they will either tell you your PIN or issue you a temporary one and then ask you to change it later online or in person at the bank.

Some banks do not allow debit cards to be unblocked over the phone. In that case, you may have to visit a branch of your bank in person to unblock your debit card. 

Will My Debit Card Get Blocked If I Don’t Remember My PIN?

Your debit card can get blocked if you enter the wrong PIN too many times when trying to purchase at a store. You will typically get three tries to enter your PIN before the debit card becomes blocked. Your bank’s customer assistance line can help you unblock your debit card if you do this.

Try making your PIN a number that is easy to remember to avoid forgetting. It is not recommended to use birthdates of yourself or those close to you as those can be easily discovered by someone trying to steal your card. Additionally, you should not write down your PIN because it can be easily found and used by someone other than you.

If you make your PIN a unique number that is not difficult to recall or easy to mistype, you shouldn’t have to worry about blocking your debit card due to typing in the wrong PIN.

What Should I Do to Avoid Blocking My Debit Card by Typing the Wrong PIN?

A few things can help you avoid blocking your debit card due to a mistyped PIN. Use a number that is easy to remember. If you are dyslexic, avoid numbers that you can easily confuse one for the other such as 6 and 9.

If all else fails and you cannot remember what you set your debit card PIN, don’t use it all. Instead of risking the chance of blocking your debit card by taking three stabs in the dark, run your debit card as credit.

Most card readers will allow you to bypass the PIN function and run the card without inputting it. Be aware that running your debit card as credit will most likely require your signature and possibly proof of identification.

Another method is to use a different form of payment or bring a paper check for that account. Blocking your debit card can be a hassle, so try to avoid it whenever you can.

Final Thoughts

Mistyping your debit card PIN can not only be embarrassing but it can also cause your debit card to become blocked so that you can’t use it to make purchases. Most store card readers will give you three tries to type in the correct PIN.

If you block your debit card, give your bank a call to figure out if it is possible to change your PIN and unblock your card over the phone or if you will have to visit a branch to do it in person. To avoid the hassle of mistyping your PIN, set the number as something you’ll remember easily.

If all else fails, you can ring your debit card through as credit, avoiding the PIN altogether.


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John is the founder of TightFist Finance and an expert in the field of personal finance. John has studied personal finance for over 10 years and has used his knowledge to pay down debt, grow his investment portfolio, and launch a financial based business. He is committed to sharing content related to personal finance based on his experience in his career, investing, and path towards reaching financial independence.