Don't Let Crud, Corruption, and Communism Kill Your Smart Watch


I have a Samsung Gear Live. One day, all of sudden, it wouldn't turn on after I had it charging in it's little charging dock. I thought the problem was with the watch, and Google the symptoms led me to one of two conclusions:

  1. The watch was defective, and I should send it back under warranty.
  2. I could fix the problem by taking the watch apart, disconnecting the battery for a minute, and then reconnecting the battery. Or something like that.

I was a bit dismayed that for a device not even a year old that these were my options. I was mulling over the options, and I flipped the watch over to see what tools I would need to take the watch apart (who doesn't like disassembling electronics), when I notice that the contact points on the watch were filthy (as one the NCOs on my infantry course used to say when inspecting rifles – "crud, corruption, and communism"). You can see the contacts for the charging dock right in the picture below:

I figured cleaning these contact points was easier than taking the watch apart and quicker than sending the watch back, so I grabbed an eraser and gave the contacts a quick scrub. I plugged the watch back into the charging cradle, and all of a sudden it started charging again.

I've had to do this a couple of times now. I recently found out that some erasers may leave a thin film of residue that may attract dirt. There are a couple of options available:

  1. Rubbing alcohol and a Q-Tip. One fellow I work with will clean the back of his watch every week with this.
  2. CAIG Deoxit. Another co-worker with an electronics background suggested Deoxit by Caig. Put a bit on a Q-Tip, and then clean away. This product will not only clean the contacts and remove oxidation but will leave behind a thin layer to help prevent oxidation.

Anybody else experienced this problem with their watch? What solutions did you use?

Tom Opgenorth

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