Apple mouse not working? 9 ways to fix it

Apple sells two pointing devices: the Apple Magic Mouse and the Magic Trackpad. There are two generations of Magic Mouse, it can be easily recognized that Magic Mouse 1 uses a removable battery and Magic Mouse 2 has a non-removable internal battery. Well, at least not if you want a working mouse.

While these mice are usually quite easy to use, they can sometimes present annoying problems. If your Apple Mouse isn’t working, here are some potential fixes.

Identify the problem

Before you start looking for a solution, first identify the problem! A “non-working” Apple mouse can do a few different things:

  • Mouse is dead and won’t power on.
  • Mouse powers on, but won’t connect.
  • Mouse connects, but pointer is unstable.
  • Mouse works for a while, but then disconnects for a few seconds.

Each of these examples is quite different and often has different causes, so keep your specific problem in mind as you read through potential solutions.

Eliminate the most likely suspects

The next most important step in fixing your Apple mouse is to remove your Mac or mouse as the source of the problem. The simplest way to do this is to test your mouse with another Mac or iOS device and see if it works properly. If it works properly with another computer, you can be pretty sure it’s a problem with the computer.

Draw a detective with a magnifying glass looking at a laptop

You can also try a different mouse (Apple brand or not) with your Mac. There’s always a chance that the problem is the result of something weird between the particular Mac and the Apple mouse, but the odds are small, so it’s a sensible diagnostic step that will save you some troubleshooting time. troubleshooting. With basic diagnostics, let’s take a look at the most common problems and fixes.

1. Double-check your mouse and touchpad settings

Before you start messing with the hardware and running around looking for problems, double check that your mouse and trackpad settings are correct. For example, are they set too sensitive or not sensitive enough?

Trackpad and Trackpad in System Preferences

You can find the settings for both in Apple menu > System Preferences.

2. Charged, On, and Battery in place?

Does your Apple mouse have a charged battery? With the Magic Mouse, you’ll have to use a new disposable battery pack, or use a rechargeable battery that’s charged in a standalone charger.

This is usually only an issue if you haven’t used the mouse for a long time, as macOS will warn you when the battery level is low. Another notorious problem with the first generation Magic Mouse concerns the battery compartment. Many batteries are not held in place. So when you do the usual pick-and-place motion with the mouse, it can cause a momentary disconnection of the battery.

One row of AA batteries

This is of course extremely annoying and there are various fixes out there. During our search for the best, it seemed that using an oversized battery could be a good solution. Other Apple Mouse users in your country will likely have a preferred brand of battery for this purpose.

Another solution is to use a folded piece of tissue paper to create a temporary shims. Although people seem to have success with this method, it carries a higher risk of battery drain. As such, you do so at your own risk if you choose to try.

3. Magic Mouse 2 doesn’t seem to charge

Magic Mouse 2 gets rid of disposable batteries, which is a good thing. However, we have seen reports that the device suddenly refuses to charge.

If you know that your charger and Lightning cable are working properly, by testing them on another device, for example, then you may want to check the charging port. Just like with USB-C, the Lightning port design allows for the gradual accumulation of dust and other debris.

Illustration of a little person sucking a lightning cable

Every time you plug in your charging cable, you’re shoving some more trash into it. The solution is to use a thin object to remove debris. A thin wooden or plastic toothpick will do the trick.

Just be gentle as you try to remove whatever is preventing your Lightning cable from making contact. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this, a local computer technician will be happy to help. It’s still less expensive than buying a brand new mouse!

4. Turn the mouse off and on again

While it’s not always clear why the Apple mouse isn’t working, simply powering on the mouse seems to resolve the issue more often than not. Both Apple Magic mice can sometimes have this weird problem which is resolved by turning it off and on again.

5. Turn Bluetooth on and off again

Here’s another simple but often effective fix. Simply turn Bluetooth off and on again on your Mac or iOS device and reconnect your Apple mouse.

6. Is the mouse paired with something else?

Illustration Mouse is paired with iPad

If you can’t see your Apple mouse in the list of Bluetooth devices, it may also have been paired with another device in the vicinity that grabbed it before your Mac had a chance. festival. Make sure that no other device, such as an iPad or another Mac, is currently connected to the mouse. Then try again.

7. Check for signal interference

Apple Mouse uses Bluetooth technology, operating on the same wireless frequency as Wi-Fi. While most of the time Bluetooth does a good job of ignoring all other radio waves that occupy the airspace, there is a limit.

Radio tower signal drawing

If you have multiple Wi-Fi or Bluetooth devices running in the same area as your mouse, try disabling some interference to see if things get better.

8. Check Sensor Window and Desktop Surface

This is possibly one of the most common things we have heard from users. Check the mouse’s optical sensor window for dirt and other debris. The main culprit is human or animal hair. Take a close look at a curled strand of hair and carefully pull it out with tweezers. The long hairs can be so thin you can’t see them right away, but they still wreak havoc on the mouse sensor.

A MacBook on a glass table

Also pay attention to the surface on which you are using the mouse. Glossy or glass surfaces can be a real challenge, so test your mouse on a different surface before you assume there’s something wrong with it.

9. Tips for Trackpad Users

Most of the tips above apply to Magic Trackpads as well as Apple Magic mice, but there are a few that are specific to the trackpad.

The main cause of the touchpad not tracking correctly has to do with how the device works. Just like with an iPhone or iPad, the Magic Trackpad uses changes in electrical conductivity when your finger touches its surface to track the movement of the pointer. Anything that messes with that conductivity can also make the tracking erratic.

Make sure the surface of the touchpad is dry and clean. Remove any jewelry that could ground you. Disconnect third-party power from the touchpad or from your Mac, if you’re using it while plugged in to the computer itself.

That should cover the most likely reasons why your Apple Mouse isn’t working. Just don’t forget that (if your mouse is still under warranty), you can also get help from Apple itself.

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