Home 9 Apps & Devices 9 Apple Watch Swipe Up Not Working? Here’s How to Fix It!

Apple Watch Swipe Up Not Working? Here’s How to Fix It!

by | Feb 8, 2024

The Apple Watch has become an indispensable companion for many, offering a wide range of features and functionalities right at our wrists. However, like any electronic device, it can experience occasional issues. One common problem that Apple Watch users may encounter is the swipe up gesture not working as expected. This can be quite frustrating, as swiping up is essential for accessing Control Center and various other features. If you’re facing this issue, fear not! In this article, we will explore several troubleshooting steps to help you fix the problem and regain full functionality on your Apple Watch.

Apple Watch Swipe Up Not Working? Here’s How to Fix It!

1. Check for Water Lock Mode

Check for Water Lock Mode

The Water Lock mode is designed to prevent accidental touches and interactions with the Apple Watch’s screen when it’s exposed to water. However, if you’ve enabled Water Lock mode and forgotten to disable it, it can interfere with the swipe up gesture. 

To check if Water Lock mode is enabled, look for a water droplet icon at the top of your Apple Watch screen. If you see it, it means Water Lock mode is activated. To disable it, turn the Digital Crown clockwise until you see the water droplet icon and then swipe up on the screen.

2. Give your Apple Watch a fresh start

Restarting is like a magical trick we use when our gadgets get stuck or don’t work the way they should. If your Apple Watch is not allowing you to swipe, the easiest thing to do is restart it. But if that doesn’t solve the problem or if your Apple Watch is not responding at all, the next best thing is to give it a restart.

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To restart your Apple Watch, follow these simple steps:

restart your Apple Watch
  1. Press and hold the side button on your Apple Watch. It’s the button on the side of the watch.
  2. Keep holding the side button until you see three options on the screen:
  • Power Off: This option allows you to turn off your watch completely.
  • Medical ID: You can view your medical information by selecting this option.
  • Emergency SOS: If there’s an emergency, you can quickly dial for help with this option.
  1. To restart your watch, drag the power off slider towards the right. This will turn off your watch.
  2. To turn on your Apple Watch again, simply hold down the side button until you see the Apple logo appear on the screen.

Note: You won’t be able to restart your Apple Watch while it’s charging.

3. Give slow swipes a try

If you’re having trouble swiping on your Apple Watch as you normally would, I suggest attempting the same gesture but at a slower pace. Sometimes, a software issue might be causing the watchOS to not recognize your regular swipes. Until a fix is released, you can experiment with slower swipes to see if it helps.

However, if this doesn’t solve the problem, let’s move on to the next set of solutions.

4. Unpair and re-pair Apple Watch

Another good solution is to unpair your Apple Watch and then pair it again. But before you do that, I strongly recommend making a backup of your Apple Watch so that you can restore it later.

5. Try a different watch face

Try a different watch face

Sometimes, it’s not a problem with the software or hardware, but rather the watch face itself that’s causing issues with swiping on your Apple Watch. To see if it makes a difference, change the watch face by following these steps:

  1. Lift your wrist or tap the screen to wake it up.
  2. Swipe left or right from the edge of the screen to switch to a different watch face.
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6. Check the screen for any cracks

Because we wear the Apple Watch on our wrists, it’s common for the screen to get scratches or tiny cracks on the edges and corners. These can interfere with swiping on the screen. Take a close look at your watch’s screen and see if you notice any scratches or cracks. If you do, it’s a good idea to reach out to Apple Support for assistance.

7. Update your Apple Watch software

Update your Apple Watch software

Software updates often include bug fixes and improvements that can address various issues, including problems with gestures like swipe up. To check for and install any available updates, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure that your Apple Watch is connected to Wi-Fi and has at least 50% battery life.
  2. On your iPhone, open the Watch app and go to the My Watch tab.
  3. Tap on General, then Software Update.

If an update is available, tap Download and Install. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the update.

8. Adjust Screen Sensitivity

Sometimes, the swipe up gesture may not work properly if the screen sensitivity is not set correctly. You can adjust the screen sensitivity to make the swipe gesture more responsive. Here’s how:

  1. On your Apple Watch, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap on Display & Brightness.
  3. Scroll down and select the Wake Screen option.
  4. Increase or decrease the sensitivity by choosing either the “Firm” or “Gentle” option.

9. Reset all settings

If the above steps haven’t resolved the issue, you can try resetting all settings on your Apple Watch. Keep in mind that this will reset all your personalized settings to their default values, but it won’t delete your data or media. To reset all settings, follow these steps:

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Reset all settings
  1. On your Apple Watch, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap on General.
  3. Scroll down and select Reset
  4. Choose the Reset All Settings option and confirm your selection.

11. Contact Apple Support

If the swipe up gesture on your Apple Watch is still not working after trying all the troubleshooting steps, it’s advisable to reach out to Apple Support for further assistance. They have dedicated technical experts who can provide guidance and help resolve the issue. 

You can visit the Apple Support website or contact them directly for personalized support.


In conclusion, experiencing difficulties with the swipe-up gesture on your Apple Watch can be quite frustrating. However, there are several troubleshooting methods you can try to resolve the issue and restore full functionality to your device. Restarting your watch, attempting slower swipes, unpairing and re-pairing, changing the watch face, and checking for screen cracks are all potential solutions. Give them a try and see if they work for you.

Have you encountered problems with the swipe-up gesture on your Apple Watch? Which troubleshooting method worked best for you? We would love to hear about your experiences and any additional tips you may have. Please share your comments below and let’s help each other overcome these challenges!

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