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My mouse is acting funny

Monday, November 15th, 2004 by | Filed Under: Hardware & Peripherals, Uncategorized

My mouse is acting funny. Yes, it’s one of those ancient roller-ball mouses and sometimes I have to move it a few inches before the cursor starts to move. Is it time for a new mouse?


I’m guessing the problem is that your mouse guts are dirty. Don’t worry, you don’t need to get in touch with some sort of computer vet to fix the little guy.

Gently turn the mouse over (sometimes they frighten easily; however, if you’ve had him declawed, you should be OK).

Normally, there is a removable piece that holds the mouse ball in. (Insert own joke here.) It usually comes off with a little twist. Pull the ball out and remove any excess dirt, fur, hair, gum, pop, spare change, etc. Usually just wiping off the ball with a lint free cloth will do the trick. If it’s extra grimy, rinsing it off under running water would be a good idea (the ball—NOT the mouse), just make sure that it’s 110% dry before you re-assemble things.

Next look inside the mouse where the ball was. You’ll probably need to take a pair of tweezers and (carefully!) pluck the hair / fur / lint off the rollers (they act like a magnet for this stuff). You might even try to blow it out with some of that canned air stuff (in case you’re tempted, it’s probably NOT a real good idea to wash it out with water :-)

If you really want to make it easy, you can get a mouse cleaning kit for under five bucks…

Finally, I’d make sure that your desk or mouse pad surface is clean and free of lint, hair, mouse droppings, etc. And that should do it!

~ Steve

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