Apple Watch stopped charging? You could get a free repair directly from Apple

Apple Watch
(Image credit: Anna Hoychuk / Shutterstock)
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If you've invested in an Apple Watch, it has almost certainly become an integral part of your life. For anyone tracking runs and workouts using the wearable, problems with charging can have a serious impact. 

Apple has now acknowledged a problem with some devices that fail to charge after entering Power Reserve mode, and the company is offering free repairs to some owners.

In some cases, simply updating watchOS to the latest version is enough to fix the issue, but in a "small number" of cases, Apple will need to intervene. But before you start to package up your Apple Watch and stick in the mail, you need to check whether you are eligible for the free repair.

In a support document (opens in new tab) about the newly announced repair program, Apple says that "a very small number of customers with Apple Watch Series 5 or Apple Watch SE models running watchOS 7.2 or 7.3 have experienced an issue with their watch not charging after it enters Power Reserve".

The first thing you need to do to see if you qualify for a free repair is to update your device to watchOS 7.3.1 (just head to General > Software Update to check for updates). This particular release is specific to the Apple Watch Series 5 or Apple Watch SE, and is designed solely to fix the charging issue – but it's not guaranteed to work for everyone.

Charge check

Apple says that once you have installed the watchOS update, you should leave your device on charge for at least 30 minutes. If you find that you're still experiencing problems with charging, you should qualify for the free repair.  

You'll need to get in touch with Apple (opens in new tab) and arrange to send your Apple Watch in to be fixed.

The company does warn that "your watch will be examined before service to verify that it's eligible for free repair", indicating that this is not a repair program that can be used just to get a new battery for free!

Via Engadget (opens in new tab)

Sofia is a tech journalist who's been writing about software, hardware and the web for nearly 20 years – but still looks as youthful as ever! After years writing for magazines, her life moved online and remains fueled by technology, music and nature.


Having written for websites and magazines since 2000, producing a wide range of reviews, guides, tutorials, brochures, newsletters and more, she continues to write for diverse audiences, from computing newbies to advanced users and business clients. Always willing to try something new, she loves sharing new discoveries with others.


Sofia lives and breathes Windows, Android, iOS, macOS and just about anything with a power button, but her particular areas of interest include security, tweaking and privacy. Her other loves include walking, music, her two Malamutes and, of course, her wife and daughter.


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