Vertical Screen Tearing

Vertical Screen Tearing

Vertical screen tearing – a kind of distortion is a technical problem experienced by many users in their digital monitor screens. Screen tearing is not only highly distracting and frustrating but, is not very simple to fix. 

Most of us utilize only one image buffer rather than multiple buffers in our windows hence, each frame renders individually. Multiple buffers are usually used in full-screen games that can help more than one frame to render, therefore, reduces screen tearing significantly. 

Even though it is a pretty infuriating issue, the good part is that it CAN be fixed. Apart from this, there are several ways that can help in preventing vertical screen tearing. So, without any further ado, let’s get straight to the point.

What Is Screen Tearing And What Causes It?

Let’s start with the basics first. 

To figure out the root cause of screen tearing and ways to prevent it, you must know what it actually is and what are the factors that cause screen tearing. 

In the simplest words, screen tearing is a graphics distortion that commonly happens when the GPU and the display are out of sync. As a result, vertical lines appear hence, called Vertical Screen Tearing.

This disturbs video playback and gameplay since one section is out of sync with another. In case of a very heavy load, the GPU can’t keep pace with the refresh rate of the monitor which is why the screen is redrawn. Due to this, one frame is redrawn in one part of the screen whereas, the remaining frames are redrawn in another. 

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When this process continues for multiple frames, a noticeable vertical line appears. 

What are the possible causes?

We know that vertical screen tearing is basically experiencing multiple frames within a single frame. What about the factors that cause it? 

Unfortunately, there isn’t a way to find the exact cause. But, the primary cause due to which screen tearing may occur is also the case majority of the time i.e., the video isn’t in synchronization with the monitor’s refresh rate.

Note: Screen tearing occurs mostly with NVIDIA users.

What Are The Major Solutions For Vertical Screen Tearing?

The following major and effective solutions can help you get rid of the frustrating screen tearing and enjoy your games, movies or work with sheer smoothness.

1.) Restart The PC:

Sometimes, the PC system gets minor bugs or issues that can trigger further technical problems like screen tearing. So, if you experience screen tearing in the middle of your game or work, it is recommended to close down the game/application and restart your PC.

This is one of the most efficient ways to fixing vertical screen tearing on your monitor. Once, your PC has been restarted, you can re-run the game/application and enjoy it free of tears. 

2.) Change The Game’s FPS:

Another great way to resolve the problem of screen tearing is changing the game’s FPS. Frame rate or frames per second is the frequency at which images are displayed or captured consecutively. Frame rates play an integral role in games, movies, and other motion-relation tasks.

Adjustments with the FPS result in prominent improvement in the overall visual quality. To adjust it, look under video/graphics settings, if your monitor has higher FPS settings than the graphics card of your monitor, lowering it down a bit could make a significant impact.

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3.) Change Refresh Rate And Resolution:

This might be to your surprise that lowering the native refresh rate your monitor offers could minimize screen tearing. So, if your graphics are not up to the mark and you face screen tearing, try reducing the refresh rate a bit and check the results. 

As far as resolution is concerned, inappropriate resolution settings can decrease the overall performance of games and videos. 

To fix this, follow these steps:

  • Search for the resolution setting
  • Change the display’s resolution according to the monitor’s graphics card 
  • Or go for advanced display settings and click the “List All Modes”  
  • Select a resolution and FPS mode

Note: Select one setting and check screen tearing every time, this will help you figure out which settings work best to resolve the screen tearing problem in your monitor. 

4.) Enable Or Disable NVIDIA Vsync:

Vsync is one of the best graphic technologies that handles rate stuttering and screen tearing by synchronizing the frame rates of a game with the refresh rate of the monitor.

If turning vertical sync on causes the screen to tear, turn it off. Disable Nvidia VSync from the NVidia Control Panel. You can also click “Manage 3D Panel” to get a variety of control options.

5.) Enable “Wait For Vertical Refresh:

To do so, you need to open the AMD control panel, select Global Setting Menu, and finally set “Wait for Vertical Refresh” at always on.

6.) Turn Off Game Mode:

Microsoft’s feature-rich game mode’s one-touch screenshot or gameplay recording may cause tearing. So, disable full-screen optimization or Game Mode and enjoy a better gaming experience.

7.) Set Launch Option in Steam:

Use steam to launch games, this might help in not only overcoming but also preventing the screen tearing issues. Click “Set launch options” in the Steam settings and there the launch starts. 

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8.) Update Or Reinstall Graphic Driver:

Outdated or faulty graphics card drivers can be a major cause of screen tearing. So, update the driver and play your games. If this doesn’t work, uninstall or reinstall the driver and then try.

9.) Disable Frame Light:

In some cases, frame light is the one causing screen tearing issues by limiting the number of frames that a game can output. Disable the frame light option in the game or check some frame limit options. 

If the issue isn’t resolved with either of the frame light options, revert to the changes.

10.) Turn Off Smooth Scrolling:

It is an inbuilt feature in a majority of browsers that can be responsible for this annoying technical trouble. You can turn off the smooth scrolling option in the browser or try another browser to overcome the screen tearing issue. 

What Are The Most Feasible Ways To Prevent Screen Tearing?

It is always better to follow precautionary measures to prevent a certain issue. In case of screen tearing, the following preventive measures can help:

  • Lower the resolution 
  • Enable the “hardware acceleration” option
  • Enable the “vertical sync” option
  • Enable “triple buffering” if possible
  • Upgrade to a powerful video card
  • Choose displays that include G-Sync technology
  • Replace the cable,
  • Update BIOS and GFX Driver


Every gamer once in their life experiences screen tearing however some have to face it pretty often because of any of the aforementioned causes. But, thanks to the amazing solutions that are pretty simple to follow and can prevent you from the annoying vertical screen tears.


vertical sync turned on, PCs display hardware installed

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