Apple Watch Touch Screen Not Working? Try This

by | Feb 9, 2023

Source: Unsplash

Frustrated with a unresponsive touch screen on your Apple Watch? Don’t let it ruin your day.

The issue of your Apple Watch touch screen not working is usually not a big deal. In most cases, it is a simple fix and you’ll be using your watch again within minutes.

So, Why is My Apple Touch Screen not Working?

Your touch screen being unresponsive is typically due to a cleanliness issue, or a software complication.
Luckily, your Apple Watch will likely have no permanent damage and it will be fully functional soon enough.
Let’s take a closer look at each one of these potential problems and how they can be solved.

Apple Watch Screen is Wet or Dirty

While Apple Watch touch screens are incredibly durable, they must be clean in order for the screen to register that a user is interacting with it.
This means that any interference, whether it be water, dirt, or grime, will surely result in the watch not properly responding.


To solve this problem all you need to do it dry and clean the screen.

It is best to use a microfiber cloth to do this, but all series of Apple Watch screens are scratch resistant, so don’t worry if all you have is a piece of clothing or a towel.

Your Fingers are Dirty or you Have Gloves on

Similar to above, your fingers must be clean in order for the watch to work as it should. It is important to keep them dry and clean.
Some examples of this could be if your hands are wet from showering, you have dirt on them from gardening, or you have grease on them from food.
It is also important to note that touch screens aren’t designed to be able to use with gloves on.
Apple Watch screens rely on heat from the user’s fingers to register input, so you will be unable to use your watch with most gloves.


All you have to do is ensure your hands are dry and at least remotely clean. you don’t want any significant build-up on them.
If you’re wearing gloves, you’ll need to take them off in order to use your Apple Watch. However, there are some thinner gloves that work with Apple Watches.

The Watch Software isn’t up to Date

Another reason for your Apple Watch touch screen not working is if your watch’s software is not up to date.
Watches tend to freeze when there is a compatibility issue with software. There are a lot of processes constantly running on your watch, so it is essential to keep your operating system up to date to prevent any issues.


This is an easy fix. All you need to do is update the software on your Apple Watch
    1. Open the My Watch app on the paired iPhone
    2. Select General
    3. Select Software Update
    4. If there is an update, select Download and Install

It is a Software Bug

Similar to the previous step, a software bug is sometimes responsible for a frozen touch screen.
The issue can sometimes be an out of date operating system, so make sure you updated it in the previous step.


“Have you tried turning it off and back on again?”
All you have to do is a soft reset of your Apple Watch. This is a fast and easy trick to get most electronics working again when they freeze.
To reset your watch, just hold down the Digital Crown and the Right Side Button until your watch turns off. It will come back on within seconds.

Your Screen Protector isn’t Compatible

Apple watch screens are scratch resistant and durable. Touch screen protectors aren’t necessary, although some people like to use them.

The issue with screen protectors is that they are an added layer between your fingers and the screen. This can cause the watch to have difficulties reading your input.


Your best bet is to remove the screen protector all together.

If you insist on having a protector on the screen, make sure to do your research and find one that is fully compatible with the specific model of your Apple Watch.

Your Watch is in Water Lock mode

Water lock mode is a helpful feature that, when activated, prevents unintentional taps on your watch touch screen.

This feature is designed to stop any input at all. If your watch screen isn’t working, you should check to see if water lock mode is activated.


To deactivate water lock mode, hold down on the Digital Crown until the watch makes a sound and says Unlocked and Ejecting Water.

It’s a Hardware Issue

If you’re still having the complications with your apple watch touch screen not working, then this is the last line of defense.

This is the last thing that anyone wants to hear, but it is a possibility as to why your screen isn’t working if all the other steps did not work.

Apple Watches are robust, but there is always the chance that the screen becomes broken.


If you think your Apple Watch may be broken, it is time to reach out to customer support, or someone local who is licensed to repair Apple products.

Ken Lynch

by Ken Lynch

Ken is a Healthcare Data Analyst, owner, sole contributor to The Wearable Guy, and overall tech nerd.

Subscribe To Our Newsetter

You'll get our AI Tech Support for FREE, as well as bi-monthly wearable tech news, deals, and more.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This