Troubleshooting Guide for Apple Watch Charging Problems

Apple watch battery indicatorAs I mentioned in my post entitled “Taking Charge of My Life”, at any given moment in time one of my devices requires a recharge. Many people make it through an entire day with an overnight charge of their Apple Watch but I do not. Near as I’ve been able to figure, the best way to burn through your Apple Watch battery is turn on the exercise tracking app.

Since I work out twice a day, I usually run the exercise app for about two hours. It’s not uncommon for my battery to die before bedtime on my Apple Watch. The other night it died really early at around 8pm which was unusual even for me. Normally when you set it on the charger it shows you a little circle filled in with how much battery you have left, but mine was so dead all I got was the little battery indicator you see when you’re in low power mode. It shows a red lightning bolt and the time and that’s it.

When I woke up in the morning, I was dismayed to find that my Apple Watch was unresponsive. I couldn’t tell if it had charged because nothing came up on screen. I thought it would be helpful to go through the troubleshooting steps I followed to get it running again.

  1. First, tap the screen repeatedly as though hitting it again will make a difference
  2. Next try to remember which of the buttons you’re supposed to hit to shut the device down. Is it the digital crown or the side button?
  3. Search the Internets looking for guidance
  4. Eventually find your way to Apple’s support article on how to Restart Your Apple Watch
  5. Try their first step which is to hold the side button until you see the Power Off slider
  6. This will fail to have an effect, so go onto step two. Force restart your Apple Watch by holding down both the side button and the Digital crown for at least 10 seconds, and wait to see the Apple logo. This step will also fail.
  7. Schedule a Genius Bar appointment if you’re lucky enough to have an Apple Store near you
  8. Tweet out your angst
  9. Stew for a bit and then remember that you have two new kittens in the house who have, on more than one occasion, unplugged devices in your house. Discover that they have indeed unplugged your Apple Watch charger from the power strip
  10. Sigh with relief and put your Apple Watch back on the charger for a while
  11. With high anticipation pull your Apple Watch off the charger, only to discover that it’s still not charged
  12. Tweet out your angst
  13. Realize that you named your kittens after female computer programmers, so it’s your own darn fault what they do around the house. Check to see if in addition to unplugging your charger, they have also turned OFF your power strip
  14. Turn the power strip back on, and charge your Apple Watch successfully
  15. Tweet out your delight
  16. Cancel Genius Bar Appointment

Kittens cuddling & looking innocent

4 thoughts on “Troubleshooting Guide for Apple Watch Charging Problems

  1. Sandy - December 4, 2015

    They were trying to learn how to work the Apple Watch, Allison. And testing your problem-solving skills, too. 😉

  2. Pat - December 4, 2015

    My cat likes to turn on podcasts in the middle of the night. Waking up to voices downstairs scared the you know what out of me until I got into the habit of muting my Mac before going to bed!

    2 workouts a day? What kind of workouts? I feel pretty good about 2 a week. I think 2 a day would possibly kill me.

  3. Allison Sheridan - December 5, 2015

    It’s my process to compensate for how much I want to eat and drink, Pat! I alternate a beach speed walk (my PR is a 12’10” mile, which is almost 5 MPH, and 40 min on the elliptical. That’s morning exercise. My afternoon regiment is much more leisurely, it’s s 2-3 mile walk with Tesla, usually with big hills. I can eat and drink a LOT!

  4. barry - December 5, 2015

    The first troubleshooting step is always check the power all the way to the wall (and circuit breakers if needed). Solves 90% of my clients problems. Now if I could convince them that a Password manager would help them remember there passwords it would save me many hours of time.

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