Troubleshooting Apple Watch Not Charging

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Your virtually brand new Apple Watch is not charging and the surmounting frustration is telling you that the only way to fix it is with a foreceful throw against the wall. Okay, put the Apple Watch down gently. Your watch may not be the problem here. When it comes to charging problems, there are a few easy steps you can take before you have to invest in potential repairs or replacements to your watch.

The Parts of Your Apple Watch

Before we start, let’s go over the Apple Watch features you need to better troubleshoot your charging problem.

  • Locate the digital crown and side button on your Apple Watch. These buttons will be on the right hand side. The digital crown is the larger button of the two and will be on top of the side button.
  • Turn over your Apple Watch. The back of the Apple Watch 3 will have one disc with several magnetic circles. The 4 and 5 versions one round disc. The Apple Watch charger that came with the product attaches to the back of the watch in the same manner regardless of the version you’re using: magnet flat against magnet.

What to Check When Your Apple Watch Stops Working

Troubleshooting an Apple Watch that is not charging starts with checking. This will help rule out basic charger and outlet problems.

1. Check Your Outlet

You may be using a power source that has shorted or isn’t working. Try plugging a different device into the same outlet to see if that works. If the device turns on, then you can assume that the outlet is fine. If not, try a different outlet.

2. Check the Charger

If you are using a third party Apple Watch charger, like the UGreen or Choetech Portable charger, switch to the cable that came with your Apple Watch. If you are using the original cable, test against another Apple Watch brand charger. If one charger works while the other does not, then you need a new charger.

3. Charger Compatibility

Not every third party charger will be compatible with the Apple Watch. Double check the packaging of the charger or look online to see if there may be a potential compatibility issue. Usually an alert will appear on the display screen informing you that the charger is not compatible.

4. Magnet Interruption

When you are connecting your charger to the watch, check that both magnetic surfaces are clear from debris, plastic coverings, and are meeting each other fully. If the magnets are dirty, use an anti-static cloth to wipe them off.

If Your Apple Watch is Still Not Charging

Once you’ve gone through your basic checklist and your watch is still not charging, there are a few things you can do assuming your battery still has a charge.

1. Check Charging Status

If this is your first time using an Apple Watch, you may not be familiar with the charging indicator on the device. A small green lightning bolt will appear on the the display screen once the charger is connected. You’ll also hear a chime, unless your watch is set to “Silent Mode.” Swipe from the bottom up on the screen and tap the battery percentage icon. You’ll see battery life details. If the watch is charging, it will say “Charging.”

2. Force Restart

If the watch is still not charging, conduct a force restart. Hold down the digital crown and side button at the same time until you see the Apple logo. If it turns back on and you see that it is charging, your watch was probably charging all along. You just needed to reset the software.

3. Update Your Software

Occasionally, not updating the software on your Apple Watch can compromise how the watch itself will function.

  1. To install the latest software, press the digital crown.
  2. Find and tap Settings > General > Software Update.
  3. If an update is available, scroll down and tap “Install.”

4. Wait

If your battery is already dead, plug in your Apple Watch and wait a few minutes. It may take a bit for your watch to regain enough battery power for the charging display to appear.

Follow-Up With Your Findings

If you’ve decided that none of your chargers work with your watch, all outlets are fine, and there isn’t a software issue, you may want to go ahead and make an appointment with your local Apple technician.

They could determine that the magnetic stripe on the back of the watch needs to be replaced or that there is a deeper problem in the logic board itself. If you use non-MFi chargers, you could have damaged your watch. Chargers that are not MFi-certified can actually do a great deal of damage to your battery. MFi stands for Made For iPhone, iPod, or iPad. By overheating the watch battery, the charger can burn out the chip responsible for charging the battery.

Good luck and remember: don’t throw your watch against the wall in frustration! There is always another solution.

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