A mouse wheel is responsible for providing users with an excellent experience by scrolling easily through a page. However, at times dirt and debris get collected in the scroll wheel, making it hard to move the mouse.
It is possible to clean the mouse wheel by either using a Q-tip or toothpick, taking out the debris by using a can of compressed air, or cleaning the mouse without disassembling it.
We took the time to write an easy guide on why it is necessary to clean your mouse wheel and how you can do it with quick step-by-step methods.
- Why Clean a Mouse Wheel?
Cleaning a Mouse Wheel
- Method #1: Using a Q-Tip or Tooth-Pick
- Method #2: Using a Can of Compressed Air
- Method #3: Cleaning Without Taking the Mouse Apart
- Frequently Asked Questions
Why Clean a Mouse Wheel?
There can be multiple reasons that compel you to clean a mouse wheel. Some of them are as follows:
- To make the mouse work properly.
- To prevent the mouse from sticking to the bottom.
- Avoid mouse bacteria from getting into the scroll wheel.
Cleaning a Mouse Wheel
Cleaning a scroll wheel might seem a complex task, but it’s not as complicated as it looks. This step-to-step troubleshooting guide will save you a lot of time and effort and allow you to get all the dirt and debris out of the wheel.
Now that you are aware of the reasons to clean the scroll wheel, it is time to reveal the three methods to clean the mouse wheel.
Method #1: Using a Q-Tip or Tooth-Pick
Contrary to what people usually believe, it’s not hard to sweep the scroll wheel. However, you need to be a bit cautious while doing it. Here are the steps to follow to clean the mouse wheel using a Q-tip or toothpick:
- First, keep the mouse under a direct light source and gently spin the wheel to spot any dirt or grime.
- Bring out a Q-tip and dip it in alcohol; rub it all over the wheel to remove grime.
- Next, take out a toothpick and slide it along the ridges of the mouse wheel.
Slide the toothpick gently to ensure that it doesn’t break. Wipe away any fall on the outside of the mouse.
Method #2: Using a Can of Compressed Air
Another method of sweeping the scroll wheel is using a can of compressed air. This is done to thoroughly clean the wheel from all the corners so that no dirt is left. Follow the steps below for this:
Step #1: Unplug the Mouse
First, remove the mouse from the computer. Take out the batteries if you use a wireless mouse that runs on battery power.
Step #2: Flip the Mouse and Loose Screws
Flip the mouse over and locate small screws holding the panels together. Some models feature only one screw, while others have multiple screws. Use a jeweler’s screwdriver to loosen and remove the screws. Keep them aside in a safe place and flip the device back over.
Step #3: Pull the Panels Apart
To pull the panels apart, lift the top panel upward to remove it gently. You will now be able to spot the scroll wheel and the internal circuit. Notice how the scroll wheel is present on the plastic panel as you have to assemble the panels as is lately.
Step #4: Remove the Wheel and Springs
Next, get hold of the plastic assembly. You will now be able to spot two springs arising from either side of the scroll wheel. Pull the assembly upward to remove the wheel and both attached springs.
Step #5: Clean the Wheel Using a Can of Compressed Air
Hold the can of compressed air around four inches above the wheel and panel. Fire short bursts of air on each side of the wheel and blow away all the dust and debris particles. Repeat the procedure till the mouse looks completely clean.
Step #6: Reassemble the Mouse
Now, place the wheel back and replace the assembly in the center. You will hear a small click once the wheel is placed correctly. Fit the top panel back to its place, flip over the mouse to replace the screw, and tighten them.
Plug the mouse back into the computer and test to ensure it’s working properly now.
Method #3: Cleaning Without Taking the Mouse Apart
If you are not a big fan of disassembling and reassembling the mouse, this method will work best. This is what you need to do to clean the mouse wheel without taking the mouse apart:
- Unplug the mouse from your PC or computer or take the battery out if you use a wireless mouse.
- Next, hold a compressed air can around four inches above the wheel and spray short bursts of air through it.
- Clean off the mouse using a soft microfiber cloth.
Once you are done cleaning, plug the mouse back into the computer. Surprisingly this method doesn’t require much effort. You can use this method to clean the scroll now and then.
In this write-up on cleaning the mouse wheel, we have explored multiple reasons that compel you to clean the scroll wheel and discussed three methods to get rid of any dirt or debris trapped in your mouse.
Hopefully, one of these methods has worked for you, and now you can enjoy a seamless scrolling experience due to the clean mouse wheel. Keep using these methods now and then to save your scroll wheel from getting greasy.
Frequently Asked Questions
The easiest way to fix a sticky mouse wheel is by prying it with a flat screwdriver or a butter knife. Make sure to do this gently, so it doesn’t damage. Also, you may need to take off the battery sticker to see the screw behind it. If you manage to remove the battery sticker and surface pads carefully, you might be able to use them later on.
Yes, you can open your mouse and apply grease or oil to its wheel. However, if you hate opening the device, you can just put some WD-40 on the wheel’s sides. Use an extremely small amount of oil if you are dripping it outside.