Applies to

Surface RT, Surface 2, Surface 3, Surface Pro, Surface Pro 2, Surface Pro 3, Windows 8.1, Windows RT 8.1.

Troubleshoot your Surface Cover

If your Surface Cover isn’t detected when you connect it, if it stops working, or if the keys or touchpad don’t work consistently, try these solutions to fix the problem.

  • If your Surface Cover is torn or is otherwise physically in need of repair or replacement, go to Get my Surface fixed.
  • If your Surface Power Cover isn’t taking a charge, or if it isn’t charging your Surface, see Troubleshoot Power Cover.
  • If your Type Cover has backlighting, you can adjust it with the backlighting brightness keys in the top row of keys on your Cover. Press the Decrease backlighting key to decrease backlighting or the Increase backlighting key to increase it.

Solution 1: Check connectors

Step 1:  Disconnect any video adapters and USB devices (such as printers, keyboards or mice) from your Surface.
Step 2:  Detach the Cover from your Surface.
Step 3:  Make sure the magnetic connectors on your Surface and on the Cover are clean and free of damage. With the power supply unplugged from the electrical outlet, clean the connectors with a soft cloth and a small amount of rubbing alcohol. For more info, see Clean and care for Surface.
Step 4:  Reattach the Cover, making sure that all of the magnetic connectors are making contact with the bottom edge of your Surface.
Attach Cover to Surface
Step 5:  Plug the power cord into a working outlet, and connect the power supply to your Surface.
Step 6:  Put your Surface on a firm, flat surface, such as a table, with the kickstand out and the Cover attached to your Surface in typing position.
Surface in typing position with kickstand out
Step 7:  Try using the touchpad, or try typing at the Start screen.

If you’re still having a problem, try Solution 2.

Solution 2: Install Surface and Windows updates

Make sure you have the latest Surface and Windows updates. Here's how:

Step 1:  Attach the Cover to your Surface.
Step 2:  Swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the bottom-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer up and click Settings.)
Step 3:  Tap or click Change PC settings, then tap or click Update and recovery.
Step 4:  Tap or click Check now.
Step 5:  If updates are available, tap or click View details.
Step 6:  Tap or click to select the updates you want to install, then tap or click Install.
You may need to restart your Surface after the updates have installed.
Try using the Cover again. If it still isn’t working right, try Solution 3.

Solution 3: Run the Surface troubleshooter

Try running the Surface troubleshooter. The troubleshooter can find and fix problems with the Surface Cover.

Try using the Cover again. If it still isn’t working right, try Solution 4.

Solution 4: Check your settings

If the keys on the Cover aren’t working, but the touchpad is

Make sure filter keys are turned off in your Ease of Access settings:

Step 1:  Swipe in from the right edge of the screen and tap Search.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the top-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down and click Search.)
Step 2:  Tap or click the arrow above the search box, and tap or click Settings.
Step 3:  In the search box, enter filter keys, and in the search results, tap or click Turn filter keys on or off.
Step 4:  Under Filter Keys, make sure that Filter Keys is set to Off.

If the touchpad isn’t working, but the keys on the Cover are

Make sure that the touchpad hasn’t been turned off. The way to turn the touchpad on, and change other touchpad settings, depends on which Cover and which Surface you have. For more info, see Touchpad use and settings.

If you have one of these Covers
And one of these Surface models
Change settings in
Touch Cover 2
Type Cover 2
Power Cover
Type Cover for Surface Pro 3
Surface 3 Type Cover
Surface Pro
Surface 2
Surface Pro 2
Surface Pro 3
Surface 3
PC Settings
Touch Cover
Type Cover (early model)
Surface Pro
Surface RT
Trackpad Settings app (available in the Windows Store)
Touch Cover 2
Type Cover 2
Surface RT
Touchpad settings aren’t available
Touch Cover
Type Cover (early model)
Surface 2
Surface Pro 2
Touchpad settings aren’t available

Solution 5: Two-button shutdown (Surface Pro models and Surface 3 only)

Don’t use this process on Surface RT or Surface 2.

Use this two-button shutdown process to ensure that your Surface is turned off completely. Here’s how:

Step 1:  Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and tap or click Settings, tap or click Power, then tap or click Shut down. If you can’t shut down your Surface normally, press and hold the power button for 30 seconds.
Step 2:  After your Surface turns off, press and hold the volume-up button and the power button at the same time for at least 15 seconds, then release both. The screen may flash the Surface logo, but continue holding the buttons down for at least 15 seconds.
Step 3:  After you release the buttons, wait 10 seconds.
Step 4:  Press and release the power button to turn your Surface back on.

If you still have a problem with your Surface Cover, try Solution 6.

Solution 6: Refresh Surface

Refreshing your Surface reinstalls Windows and keeps your personal files, settings, apps that came installed on your Surface and those you've installed from the Windows Store. Desktop apps you installed on Surface Pro will be deleted, but you can reinstall them after refreshing your Surface.

Refresh will reinstall the version of Windows and the apps that came installed on your Surface. Windows updates, app updates, and other apps you’ve installed will be gone, as will your customized settings. Reinstall your updates and apps after the refresh is complete.

For detailed how-to info, see:

If you still have a problem with your Surface Cover, contact us.

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