Applies to

Surface Book, Surface Book with Performance Base, Surface Pro 4, Surface Pro 3, Surface 3 .


Troubleshoot Surface Pen with single button on flat edge

If your Surface Pen with single button on flat edge won’t write, open OneNote, or connect to Bluetooth, this article can help you resolve your issue.

Note
This article tells how to troubleshoot Surface Pen with single button on flat edge.

Before you begin

For more information about how to open the pen, replace the battery, and then close the pen, watch this video .
An illustration shows the components of the Surface Pen with single button on flat edge.
1 Top button
2 LED
3 Cap
4 Clip
5 Magnet
6 Right-click button
7 Tip

Pen will not ink, write, or erase

If your Pen will not ink, write, or erase, use the steps below to try to resolve your issue.

Step

Details

Next Steps

  1. Press and hold the top button for 5 – 7 seconds.
  • This will initiate Bluetooth pairing, and will turn your pen “on.”

If the pen LED comes on: Continue to Step 2.

If the pen LED does not come on: Go to the “LED light does not come on” section on this page.

  1. Test single-touch functionality.
  • Use one finger to open applications or interact with your Surface.
  • Pen inking and touch functionality are tied to one another.

If single-touch works: Continue to Step 3.

If single-touch does not work: Your issue is likely not pen-related. Please go to Surface touchscreen: Problems with touch to help resolve your issue.

  1. Test multi-touch functionality.

If multi-touch works: Continue to Step 4.

If multi-touch does not work: Continue to Step 5.

  1. Run Windows Update.
  • Surface and Windows frequently release updates that resolve customer issues.
  • For more information on the most recently available updates for your Surface, go to Surface update history.

Continue to Step 5.

  1. Restart your Surface
  • Restarting the device will also restart touch functionality.

Continue to Step 6.

  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 10.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 7.

  1. Test if there is a cursor when the pen tip (if having an inking or writing issue) or eraser (if having an eraser issue) is held near the screen.
  • Hover the pen tip just above the screen.
  • A small cursor or eraser should appear.

If there is a cursor or eraser: Continue to Step 9.

If there is no cursor or eraser: Continue to Step 8.

  1. Reseat the pen tip.
  • Reseating the pen tip may resolve the pen’s ability to ink.

Continue to Step 9.

  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 14.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 10.

  1. Open the pen, and reseat the AAAA battery.
  • To see how to open the pen, go here.
  • To reseat the battery, open the pen, remove the battery, and replace it as is.

Continue to Step 11.

  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

Verify that your pen is fully functional. For more information on using your Surface Pen, go here.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 14.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 12.

  1. Open the pen and replace the AAAA battery.
  • To see how to open the pen, go here.
  • Use a new, unused AAAA battery.

Continue to Step 13.

  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 14.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 15.

  1. Finalize resolution.

Run and install Windows Update. For more information on the most recent available updates for your Surface, go to Surface update history.

  1. Your Surface Pen needs to be replaced.

Contact us to set up an order for your replacement pen.

LED light does not come on

If your LED light does not come on when the top button is pressed for 5 – 7 seconds, it’s possible that the pen is not receiving power, and your Surface Pen may not work.

Step

Details

Next Steps

  1. Press and hold the top button for 5 – 7 seconds.
  • This will initiate Bluetooth pairing, and will turn your pen “on.”

If the pen LED comes on: Continue to Step 2.

If the pen LED does not come on: Contact us.

  1. Open the pen, and reseat the AAAA battery.
  • To see how to open the pen, go here.
  • To reseat the battery, open the pen, remove the battery, and replace it as is.
Continue to Step 3.
  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 6.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 4.

  1. Open the pen and replace the AAAA battery.
  • To see how to open the pen, go here.
  • Use a new, unused AAAA battery.
Continue to Step 5.
  1. Test inking, writing, or erasing in an application that supports Surface Pen.
  • Use OneNote, Microsoft Edge, or Fresh Paint.
  • You can use your finger to ink or write in OneNote if you need to test erasing.

If inking, writing, or erasing works: Continue to Step 6.

If inking, writing, or erasing does not work: Continue to Step 7.

  1. Finalize resolution.

Run and install Windows Update. For more information on the most recent available updates for your Surface, go to Surface update history.

Verify that your pen is fully functional. For more information on using your Surface Pen, go here.

  1. Your Surface Pen needs to be replaced.

Contact us to set up an order for your replacement pen.

Pen will not pair in Windows or launch applications

If your pen will not pair in Windows, take screenshots, or launch applications such as OneNote and Cortana, follow the steps below to solve the issue.

Before you begin

Press and hold the top button for 5 – 7 seconds. The LED light will tell you the state of your Surface Pen. Choose the symptom below that matches the behavior of your pen's LED.
An illustration showing the location of the top button and LED on Surface Pen.
1 Top button
2 LED

LED blinks continuously

Step

Details

Next Steps

  1. Go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth.
  • Swipe in from the right side of the screen to bring up Action Center.
  • In Action Center, look for the tile All Settings.
  • After selecting All Settings, select Devices, then Bluetooth.
Continue to Step 2.
  1. Locate Surface Pen in the list of Bluetooth devices connected.
  • There will be a list of connected Bluetooth devices associated with your Surface.
  • Each device will also have a state associated with it, such as: Connected, Paired, or Ready to Pair.

If Surface Pen is listed: Continue to Step 3.

If Surface Pen is not listed: Continue to Step 4.

  1. Select Surface Pen, and then select Pair.
  • If the LED is blinking continuously, the pen is receiving power and attempting to pair with a host device.

If the pen pairs: Continue to Step 5.

If the pen does not pair: Continue to Step 4.

  1. Restart your Surface, and attempt to pair again.
  • Restarting the device will allow your Surface to attempt to do a clean pairing.
  • You can pair the pen by following steps 1 – 3.

If the pen pairs: Continue to Step 5.

If the pen does not pair: Continue to Step 6.

  1. Finalize resolution.
  • Run and install Windows Update. For more information on the most recent available updates for your Surface, go to Surface update history.

Verify that your pen is fully functional. For more information on using your Surface Pen, go here.

  1. Your Surface Pen needs to be replaced.

Contact us to set up an order for your replacement pen.

LED blinks for 2 – 3 seconds

Step

Details

Next Steps

  1. Go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth.
  • Swipe in from the right side of the screen to bring up Action Center.
  • In Action Center, look for the tile All Settings.
  • After selecting All Settings, select Devices, then Bluetooth.
Continue to Step 2.
  1. Locate Surface Pen in the list of Bluetooth devices connected.
  • There will be a list of connected Bluetooth devices associated with your Surface.
  • Each device will also have a state associated with it, such as: Connected, Paired, or Ready to Pair.

If Surface Pen is listed: Continue to Step 5.

If Surface Pen is not listed: Continue to Step 3.

  1. Un-pair the pen from another Surface or Bluetooth device.
  • Because your pen’s LED is blinking for only 2 – 3 seconds, this means that your pen is paired to another host device.
  • Locate the device and un-pair the Surface Pen.
Continue to Step 4.
  1. Attempt to pair the pen to your Surface.
  • To pair the pen, go to Settings > Devices > Bluetooth.
  • Press and hold the top button for 5 – 7 seconds.
  • In the list of devices, select Surface Pen.
  • Select Pair to pair the pen with your Surface.

If the pen pairs: Continue to Step 9.

If the pen does not pair: Continue to Step 5.

  1. Identify the state of the Surface Pen.
  • The pen will have a state indicator next to it when selected in the list of Bluetooth devices.
  • These states will be one of the following: Connected, Paired, or Ready to Pair.
  • If the pen attempted to pair with your Surface and failed, it may have Driver Error associated with it as well.

If the pen is listed as Connected, Paired, or Driver Error: Continue to Step 6.

If the pen has no listed state: Continue to Step 8.

  1. Un-pair the pen.
  • In Settings > Devices > Bluetooth, select Surface Pen.
  • Once Surface Pen is highlighted, select Remove Device.
Continue to Step 7.
  1. Press and hold the top button for 5 - 7 seconds.
  • This will initiate pen pairing.
  • Surface Pen should appear in the list of Bluetooth devices as Ready to Pair.
  • Select Surface Pen, and then select Pair. The pen should begin pairing and installing the pen’s driver.

If the pen pairs: Continue to Step 9.

If the pen does not pair: Continue to Step 8.

  1. Restart your Surface and attempt to pair again.
  • Restarting the device will allow your Surface to attempt to do a clean pairing.
  • To pair the pen, repeat Step 7.

If the pen pairs: Continue to Step 9.

If the pen does not pair: Continue to Step 10.

  1. Finalize resolution.
  • Run and install Windows Update. For more information on the most recent available updates for your Surface, go to Surface update history.

Verify that your pen is fully functional. For more information on using your Surface Pen, go here.

  1. Your Surface Pen needs to be replaced.

Contact us to set up an order for your replacement pen.

LED does not come on

If your LED light does not come on, try the troubleshooting steps in the “LED light does not come on” section of this page.

Configuring the buttons on Surface Pen

For information about how to use the Surface app to configure or change the button functionality on Surface Pen, see Install and use the Surface app.

Pressure sensitivity is not accurate

For information about how to use the Surface app to adjust Surface Pen’s pressure sensitivity, see Install and use the Surface app.

Replacement pen tips

To order replacement Surface Pen Tips for your Surface Pen with single button on flat edge, visit the Microsoft Store Online to order a Pen Tip Kit.

Note

Pen Tips are not covered under the standard warranty. To review your Surface warranty, please visit the Surface warranty documents page.

Other problems?

If these solutions didn’t solve the problem you’re having with Surface Pen with single button on flat edge, contact us.


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