Applies to

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


Surface touchscreen: problems with touch

If the touchscreen doesn’t respond correctly to touch-if some gestures don’t work, the charms don’t appear when you swipe in from the right, or if the touchscreen responds slowly or not at all-try these solutions.


Before you begin

To follow these troubleshooting steps, you'll need to have a keyboard or mouse connected to Surface. You can use a Surface Cover or you can use a USB or Bluetooth® keyboard or mouse. For more info see Connect a USB mouse, printer, and more or Add a Bluetooth device.

Solution 1: Clean the screen

Use a soft, lint-free cloth dampened with water or eyeglass cleaner, but don’t apply liquids directly to the screen. For more info, see Clean and care for your Surface.

If the touchscreen still isn’t working correctly, go to Solution 2.

Solution 2: Reset touchscreen calibration

The touchscreen shouldn’t need recalibration, but if you or another user has recalibrated it, it may affect the performance of the touchscreen.

Here’s how to check or restore the factory default calibration using a keyboard or mouse:

Step 1: Press the Windows logo key Windows logo key + S to open Search.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and then click Search Search charm.)
Step 2: Type Control Panel, then use the arrow keys to highlight Control Panel, and press Enter.
(Or, click Control Panel.)
Step 3: In Control Panel, use the arrow keys to highlight Hardware and Sound and press Enter.
(Or, click Hardware and Sound.)
Step 4: Under Tablet PC Settings use the arrow keys to highlight Calibrate the screen for pen or touch input, and press Enter.
(Or, click Calibrate the screen for pen or touch input.)
Step 5: Use the Tab key to select the Reset button, and press Enter.
(Or, click Reset.)
If the Reset button is grayed out, your Surface touch calibration is still at factory settings and you can move to Solution 3.
Step 6: Use the Tab key to select Yes, press Enter, and then follow the instructions on the screen.
(Or, click Yes, and then follow the instructions on the screen.)
Step 7: After Surface removes recalibration data, test touch input again.

If the touchscreen still isn’t working, continue to Solution 3.

Solution 3: Install the latest updates

Installing the latest updates for your Microsoft Surface, including updates to Windows, may help fix an issue with the touchscreen. Here's how, using a keyboard or mouse:

Step 1: Press the Windows logo key Windows logo key + I to open Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and then click Settings.)
Step 2: Use the arrow keys to highlight Change PC Settings, and press Enter.
(Or, click Change PC Setting.)
Step 3: Use the arrow keys to highlight Update and recovery, and press Enter.
(Or, click Update and recovery.)
Step 4: Use the Tab key to highlight Check now, and press Enter.
(Or, click Check now.)
Step 5: If there are updates available, use the Tab key to highlight View details, and press Enter.
(Or, click View Details.)
Step 6: Use the Tab key to highlight the checkboxes for the updates you want to install, and the Spacebar to mark or clear the checkboxes.
(Or, click the checkboxes to mark or clear them.)
Step 7: Use the Tab key to highlight Install, and press Enter.
(Or, click Install.)
You may need to restart Surface after the updates have been installed.
Step 8:Test touch input again.

If the touchscreen still isn’t working after installing the latest updates, continue to Solution 4.

Solution 4: Two button shutdown (Surface Pro or Pro 2 only)

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

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

Step 1: Press the Windows logo key Windows logo key + I to open Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and then click Settings.)
Step 2: Use the arrow keys to highlight Power, and press Enter.
(Or, click Power.)
Step 3: Use the arrow keys to highlight Shut down, and press Enter.
(Or, click Shut down.)
Step 4: After Surface turns off, press and hold Volume Up (located on the left side) and the Power button at the same time for at least 15 seconds, and then release both.
The screen may flash the Surface logo, but continue holding the buttons down for at least 15 seconds.
Step 5:After you release the buttons, wait 10 seconds.
Step 6:Press and release the Power button to turn your Surface back on.

If the touchscreen still isn’t working right, try Solution 5.

Solution 5: Restore, refresh, or reset Surface

If you're still having problems with the touchscreen, try in the following order: restore, refresh, or reset your Surface.

Restore Surface

Restoring your Surface is a way to undo recent system changes that may be causing problems. Restoring Surface doesn’t change your personal files, but it might remove recently installed apps and drivers.

Note
Restore is not available for Surface RT or Surface 2.

If restoring Surface doesn't resolve the problem, refresh Surface.

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 or Surface Pro 2 will be deleted, but you can reinstall them after refreshing Surface.

Note
If you updated Surface Pro from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, refresh will reinstall Windows 8 (not Windows 8.1) and apps that came with your Surface Pro. Other apps and your settings will be gone. You can reinstall them after the refresh is complete.

If refreshing Surface doesn't resolve the problem, reset Surface.

Reset Surface

Resetting your Surface reinstalls Windows, but removes your personal files, settings, and apps that did not come installed on your Surface. Reset keeps the apps that came installed on your Surface.

Note
If you updated Surface Pro from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1, a reset will reinstall Windows 8 (not Windows 8.1). You’ll need to reinstall the Windows 8.1 update.

For detailed how-to info, see:

If the touchscreen still isn’t working after following these steps, your Surface needs service. Request service at the Surface Online Service Center.



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Saturday and Sunday
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6am - 3pm (Pacfic Time)

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