I've been tinkering with my new Arduino a bit and I was adding an LCD from the starter kit, using information from the eleventh project in the project book, "Crystal Ball." When I connect the Arduino to my computer, the LCD lights up, but no text is displayed on the screen.

Here are some screenshots of my connections:

Breadboard Connections

Pin Connection Numbers

Finally, here's the code that I uploaded to the Arduino:

#include <LiquidCrystal.h>

// Create this display with the pins that I wired
LiquidCrystal lcd(12, 11, 2, 3, 4, 5);

void setup()
    // This is a 16x2 display
    lcd.begin(16, 2); 


void loop()

edit: Additionally, I tried adding a potentiometer to control the display, but to no avail. Below is the wiring for this (back pin goes to the third to last pin for the LCD).

Potentiometer Powering

Potentiometer Connection to LCD

  • Those photos don't show the circuit adequately. Please edit your question and add a schematic diagram of the circuit. If you don't have a schematic diagram drawing program or some other drawing program click the icon (in the edit tool bar) that looks like a pencil pointed at a circuit diagram. Dec 27, 2016 at 6:34

2 Answers 2


Looking at your first picture it looks like you are wired on 12 and 13 not to 11 and 12 like your sketch specifies.

Double check your wiring against this : https://www.arduino.cc/en/Tutorial/HelloWorld

Also take your multi-meter out and buzz your connections.


In the end, it turned out being a combination of what Andre's Answer suggested, as well as the "brightness" of the LCD. My potentiometer seems to have kind of a "stick" to it, meaning that to get the LCD to move to the value necessary, I had to crank the thing harder than normal, then it started displaying my text.

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