The million dollar question is…

What to do when your Apple Watch refuses to turn on or doesn’t respond?

If you rely on this “fantastic” piece of gadget on a daily basis for productive tasks and business related, having it always turned off or partially working is unacceptable.

Not a single technology is perfect. If your watch sometimes would not turn on or just show a static black screen, don’t worry.

Not kidding! There are ways to bring it back to live.

Just follow our methods below and you will get a fully-working Apple Watch back. We spent a good amount of time inspecting the wires, cables, to finding other causes.

Check the Battery & Charging Cable

apple-watch-cables

This should be the first thing that you do. It will let you know whether the battery that is dying or something else inside is not working properly.

Get started by plugging your Apple Watch in a charging stand and wait for it to charge. If hours have passed by, and nothing is showing up, then observe the charging cable.

Some helpful tips:

  1. Is the charging cable in good condition?
  2. Make sure the back and head of it are dry and clean
  3. See whether each end of the USB connector is fully pushed in

A lot of people manufactured their charging stand where the charging head has to align accordingly with the back of the watch.

Charging on a Computer

If you want to charge your Apple Watch via a computer, be sure to use a USB 2.0 or 3.0 port or else it won’t work. Also, the desktop or laptop has to be on and awake while the charging process is in session.

Note: Don’t connect the USB to an external computer part such as a keyboard. Some keyboards have an additional port but don’t use that. The cable has to be plugged in directly to the computer. Otherwise, it will not transfer power to the watch.

Showing a Black Screen

apple-watch-black-screen

Sometimes this happens to my watch as well, where the device just shows a black screen and nothing else. If this happen while the watch still has some battery left, then follow the steps below.

Try pressing and holding both Digital Crown and side button for about 10 seconds until the Apple logo shows up. This is force restart, and it help fixing the black screen error on Apple Watch.

Power Reserve

Users are often mistaken their watch for a dead device when it’s just in Power Reserve mode. That’s entirely understandable because this feature will disable everything. It will even stop all exchanges with your iPhone as well.

power-reserve-apple-watch

All you see is a red bolt icon next to the 24-hour format time. Power Reserve allows you to continue checking the time while saving battery. As a result, forcing all other functionality to shut down.

To get out, all you have to do is press and hold the side button till the Apple logo display on the screen.

Over to you

Hopefully, all the solutions we provided above will get your Apple Watch back up and running again. If not, continue reading this post and contact Apple for further support.

  • Blanca

    Thank you. I was starting to freak out, I have only had my watch for 35 days and it went black on me and didn’t want to work. I tried the To turn off Power Reserve, all you have to do is press and hold the side button till the Apple logo display on the screen.” and it WORKED!!!!! Thank you!!!!

    • John

      Hey Blanca,

      Thank you for stopping by. I’m glad that you for the issue resolved.

  • Angie Lininger

    This still did NOT fix my problem. It still won’t go from the black screen. Tried everything so I’m not real happy seeing how I’ve had it for less then a month….

    • Susan Robinson

      this still wont work. My apple watch screen is black

  • Erika

    Same thing just happened to me. Was working fine a minute ago and it was fully charged. Now I have a black screen and the reboot option did not work for me. Very disappointed.

  • John

    My is not turning on too.It shows the battery sign and a sinosoidal wave.Iv only had it for 2months

  • Shawn

    Mine is not working either. I put it on the charger and the apple logo goes on and off as if it turning on and off itself. It doesnt even go to the clock face. None of the solutions work for me.

    • John

      Hello Shawn,

      Sorry to hear that. Can you describe to me what went wrong with your device. Did you do anything technical with the Watch before this happen?

    • Aubry

      What did you have to do to solve it I’m having the same problem

    • Nicole

      Me too! Had it a month.

  • Bob Keenan

    Just had the same thing happen to me. The hard reset work. But then I was thinking…. WHY? There are lots of posts on how to fix it but not many on why this happens or that Apple recognizes it as a problem and is working on a solution

    • Chevy

      I agree, I had to bring my watch back to the Apple Store because nothing I tried fixed the issue, they “sent” the watch out for repair and then a week later same thing again, but no clear explanation on why this is happening. So once again I have go to the store again. VERY frustrating

  • Enwongo

    I want to thank you for your post. The tip on holding both Digital Crown and side button for about 10 seconds until the Apple logo shows up – worked for me.

    Thank you again

    • John

      No problem at all. Thanks for letting us know.

  • Veronica

    Yeey !!! Thank you so much for these tips !! I had that problem with the black screen and for a moment I clearly thought it will be dead for forever.

  • Michelle

    Thank You!
    My watch was only 5 days old and was having the black screen issue. Your post helped better than Apple Support!

    • John

      Awesome!

  • Ann

    My Apple Watch died after 2 months. I put on charger with no results. On 2nd day, I again put on charger and screen appeared with what looks like diagram of charging cord displayed with green lightning bolt. I had never seen this displayed before. It is now working, but I will keep my appointment with Genius Bar just in case

    • Parianne Tilley

      So did yours just start working again?! Mine is currently doing this same thing?! I am flipping out haven’t had this thing about a couple months!!

  • Jamie

    Has anyone had any luck with the total black screen and the resets not working. I really need my watch for work!

  • Nutty

    Thnx a ton.My screen went blank.FORCE RESTART helped.

  • Joy

    My watch went black and wouldn’t charge. I tried all of Apple’s instructions to no avail. My friend had the same happen to hers. She told me to impair my watch and start over. It’s working fine now.

  • Deborah Ingram

    Thanks this helped!!! Went blank and the force reset did the trick. Thank you – this is the first time this has happened and I have had this since 12/2015.

  • Kate Bates

    Thank you for this fix! When my Apple Watch went black, I went to the Apple site for guidance. They said hold the side button until the Apple appeared. No luck. Found your site and you recommended holding both buttons. Voila! It worked.

  • Foxliam

    THANK YOU! Holding both the digital crown and side button at the same time for about 10 seconds until the Apple logo shows up worked for me. It has over 49% battery left so I don’t know why it went black but I’m glad it’s back. THANKS!

    • John

      Hey, glad to help.

  • Paul Rodriguez

    It seems this is a common problem. I’ve had my watch for about a month and now it’s the SECOND time this happens and NOW I CANNOT get it to turn back on!!! this is annoying. For what I invested in this watch?? For a little more I, could’ve gotten a Movado or Bulova. Watches Ive had over 20 years with no problem.

  • John

    OMG. Thank you so much. I had my watch for around a month now and it went black in the middle of the day. Thought that i broke it and was flipping out. Thanks so much.

  • Derek

    Very scary when it happens… just don’t panic. And make sure you press both buttons and firmly hold them both down for a minimum of ten seconds.

    • John

      Thank you for sharing.

  • Elena Lane

    My watch seas working fine this morining then all of a sudden stopped. I thought maybe didn’t charge all the way so put it on charger still nothing bought new charger tried the hard reboot nothing. Don’t know what to do

  • Liz E

    Thank you!! I have had my watch for almost a year and was in a panic when the screen went black! Holding both buttons down worked great! Hopefully it won’t happen again

  • Jan

    Thank you SO much, John! OMG I spent an hour on the Apple site and got nowhere. I tried all the steps the suggested, but my watch was still black. The site said i needed to send it to them but first I needed to type in the serial number. I tried 5 times to put the number in, which was correct all long, but each time I was informed that it was incorrect! Total frustration!!! I went searching for help & miraculously, you were there! The site was not clear that both buttons needed to be depressed simultaneously! You made it clear & it worked! You saved me from being w/o my watch for weeks!!! Thanks!

    • John

      Awesome. Thanks for the kind comment.

  • Missey Collins

    I’ve tried all of the above steps with no luck. Is there something else I can do to get my apple watch back up and running. I tried holding both buttons for 10 plus seconds with no luck. Any other suggestions?
    Thanks

  • Caroline

    Yay it worked!!!!

  • Adam

    Thanks for the help! It worked for me. Sorry if it didn’t help you, good luck and hope you find a fix!

  • George

    Thank you. The two button rule worked. Thought I wasted $800 with taxes and extended care. 4 watches in two months later, I found your post.

  • Sorin

    Hi, my Iwatch get black display. I restart with two buttons ,apear the logo apple but the display still black. The voice over talking,but without display. How i can fix to see all icons again,to have back in normal operation?

    • michael

      i bhave the same thing , i hope some one can help

    • Mel

      Did you get it to work? Having same problem with black screen and voice over talking.

  • J

    I just bought mine, sealed and still in the box brand new ( but bought second hand) I cannot turn it on, but it appears to be charging. Is this normal and how long should it take to be able to power on?

    • John

      It should take a few hours.

  • Carrie

    Problem is the Black Screen. Hard reset won’t work for me. Any other suggestions? If I missed them on this forum I’m sorry.
    thank you

  • Jim Gossett

    Reset worked to fix my black screen. Thanks!

  • skram

    I misplaced mine, and found it in the car about 4-5 days later in 90+ weather. I plugged it in to charge, and it’s been doing so for the past 3 days. Still hasn’t turned on. All I get is the image of a charger and green lightning symbol when I plug it in, if I press the crown and or the other button I get the same thing, but the Lightning symbol is red..nothing seems to work and I’m beginning to think that my watch is fried.

  • Jake Yeager

    when your screen blacks out its called screen curtain press the digitsal crown multiple times repeatedly until your watch displays the apple logo and thensays “screen curtain off” and voila your watch will have its normal display back up and running !

    • teeayeand

      Thank you for the tip 🙂

  • Paula

    Hi,
    Your information was very helpful and much appreciated!!!!

  • Ayman

    Thanks man i was freaking out
    This really helped
    Thanks

  • Lucila

    Hi!! I’ve only got my Apple Watch Series 2 for les than a month and it went black with more than 60% charge. I tried all of the tips and solutions listed above but it still won’t work! I’M DESPERATE!!! PLEASE HELP!!!

  • Olga

    Please help!
    I have mine almost a year, last night it fell on the floor, I charged as always during the but on the morning only black face
    Won’t restart ???

  • Bill

    I placed mine on charge, then shut it completely off when it was done. The next day I go to turn it on, no apple logo, no power on, but it was warm when I placed it on the charger. I have tried all listed above, nothing. My watch is totally dead. My watch is over a year old and has worked great until this weekend. My phone also does not see my watch so it is something more serious I am thinking than a simple reboot. Bummer

  • Bill

    Mine died over the weekend, nothing listed above has brought it back to life. I’ve had it for over a year and it has worked great until this weekend. It gets warm when on the charger, but my iPhone does see it and the screen is totally blank.