Clean a Wacom Intuos Mouse

Introduction: Clean a Wacom Intuos Mouse

The problems: your hand is an oily filth-generator and the bottom of an Intuos mouse is a black hole for dust and gunk. After a while, build-up on the bottom makes the mouse harder to maneuver.

The solution: an old shaving razor and some rubbing alcohol.

Read on for more hand-holding.

Step 1: Marvel at How Dirty Your Mouse Is and Gather Some Sharps

Locate the bottom of your mouse and be amazed at all the dust it has somehow found.
Then check your inventory of sharp objects: an old multi-blade disposable razor is perfect for the job, but any relatively sharp knife works too (e.g. X-acto knife, Swiss army blade).

And just in case you were wondering, the mouse works through electromagnetic induction.

Step 2: A Shave...

Using a disposable razor:
Preferably one with more than one blade (this leaves a nice, clean surface on the felt). Shave the bottom like you would normally shave, well, yourself. Don't push down hard and don't angle the razor too low or it will take off chunks of the felt and cut into the plastic along the edges of the mouse. Go slower along the edges to avoid nicking the plastic. Also go a little slower over the sticker in the center to avoid cutting the edges of the felt.

Any other type of blade:
Hold it perpendicular to the surface of the felt and scrape LIGHTLY. If the blunt side of the blade is about the same thickness as the cutting edge and you can use that to scrape without cutting yourself, do so (the non-cutting edge of an X-acto knife works very well). You don't want to scrape too hard or at an angle because it'll take off bits of the felt.

Step 3: ...and a Haircut.

Now the mouse should be a LOT more sightly. You can use an X-acto knife or something pointy and sharp to carefully clean out the junk along the edges of the felt. Once again, don't push down too hard or you'll cut the plastic.

Then, depending on how obsessive-compulsive you are, you should be done with the bottom of your mouse.

Step 4: Finally: Clean Off Your Hand-filth.

Now grab some sort of cleaning solution and some sort of cleaning material and wipe genlty. I had some isopropyl alcohol (generally recommended over ethyl alcohol for electronics) and Q-tips.

Your mouse might not look that dirty, but trust me, it is (see picture). Another way to disgust yourself is to try this with your game controllers.

Well, this is as clean as I care to get my mouse... if you're extraordinarily obsessive, you can clean the cracks with a toothbrush or something.

Have fun re-dirtying your now-clean mouse!



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    20 Discussions

    If you have an intuos4 mouse that isn't clicking properly, take a can of air and blow into the mouse under the keys. You don't have to take it apart, just be careful poking the tube under the keys.

    2 replies

    I don't know how you know this, but it worked on my Intuos 4 mouse.

    touch screen protectors for blackberrys, iphones, and cameras work well and some are just the right size to begin with.  they are designed to allow your finger to glide on them, and allow the mouse to glide well also.  they're made of tough material, some kinda polyethylene i'm guessing, and hold up well on the mouse.  just peel one and stick it.  :)

    i like the teflon idea, but no place around here sells rigid teflon sheets or sticky teflon tape, and the adhesive on the removable screen protectors doesn't seem to damage the felt.  the screen on a blackberry touch is very close to the size of the felt pad btw, with just a tiny bit of overlap to trim.

    2 replies

    --- warning --- it will NOT stick very well to the felt btw, don't try to glue it.  it doesnt need to be stuck on for life, the pressure on the mouse and the differential between the friction forces on the mouse side and tablet side will keep it in place, even if you think it will fall off.  try it.  even the cheap ... targus brand protectors you find at walmart's camera section will stay on.  granted, you have to flip your mouse onto the tablet like an egg with those ones, but once its there under your mouse, it will stay til you remove it, unless you switch mouse-pen-mouse-pen a lot, then you might want a light spray adhesive sold in craft stores.  me, id rather not gunk up the felt with crappy adhesives in case another idea comes along or eventually there is a problem with this method.

    Great idea - I have one of these felt mouses and have used a cheap sticky-tape type lint roller to keep it clean - works great!

    All of the mice that come with the Wacom Inutos3 line of tablets have a felt pad that covers the botom, instead of the normal slippery plastic feet. The plastic feet would in most cases be better...

    To solve the problem of the Wacom mouse becoming dirty, I applied a layer of self-stick vinyl to the bottom of the mouse. I cut the vinyl to the rough size of the felt pad and then once I had stuck it to the bottom, I used a sharp exact knife to fit the plastic to the pad perfectly. The plastic I used has properties very similar to standard mouse feet, so it is nice and slick. Every once in a while I wipe the bottom of the mouse down with a clost (or on the the leg of my blue jeans) because like a regular mouse foot, stuff still sticks to it after a while. I have used aluminum foil tape for other mice as well, and this works too. The width of the tape I have is just about the same as the width of the pad, and I cut a small section (about the size of the mouse), stick it to the bottom of the mouse and trim to fit. Its pretty slick, just be sure not to wrinkle it before sticking it to your mouse. You could also buy teflon tape. If you google search it, you can find teflon tape sold specifically for use on mice, andif you search even more you can sometimes find it sold by the sheet. In any case the benefits of using some kind of covering for the felt are that it is: A. Easy to clean off when crud sticks to it. B. Easy to replace if for some reason you can clean it, or something worse than normal crud get stuck to it. I don't understand the "felt pad" thing Wacom deviced for their mouse. for a $70 mouse you would think they could have come up with something easier. I have used normal mice with my tablet as a mouse pad and it hasn't marked up the tablet at all, so it probably would have been beter for them to go the normal mouse-foot path.

    2 replies

    Nice solution! I've also seen this on another website somewhere and will probably go through with it if I REALLY need to peel off the felt back of my mouse one day (like to fix its slowly degrading click).

    Its better to leave the felt pad on the bottom, and apply the tape or plastic over it. The reason being that the felt pad is in a slight depression, so if you removed it the taped bottom wouldn't contact you surface. You _could_ apply tape right to the edges of the bottom of the mouse, but then it has a greater chance of getting rubbed off against something, or the endges in some other manner coming into contact with the contents of your desk and becoming fouled. Putting the tape on the pad keeps the tape inset slightly from the edges of the mouse, which helps it stay cleaner and keep the edge from collecing dirt and dust from you desk.

    Nice. If worse comes to worse, you can buy replacement felt pads from WACOM. They don't list them in their store, but if you email them for one, they'll send it. I think they're about $8 a piece, though-a little pricey, but they do tend to wear out and need replaced after a few years of use. I'm not sure about the newer mice, but a common problem I've noticed with the Intous2 mice is that the scroll wheel tends to stick after a while. I've been able to remedy this (for a time) by pushing the wheel all the way to the up position and scraping a small bit of the rubber coating off with the edge of an x-acto knife. Then push the wheel all the way into the down position and repeat. You don't want to take off all the coating, just make it a bit thinner. This is only a temporary solution, but it will let you get several more months out of the mouse before needing to replace it.... a very good thing when they're $70 a pop.

    2 replies

    Wow, you're pretty brave to cut into a $70 mouse like that. I don't know if this will help your problem, but there's a tutorial elsewhere for disassembling and fixing the scroll wheel on an Intuos2.

    Thanks for the link. I didn't really cut into it. I just kind of scraped along the edge of it and I figured it was either that or replace it anyway, so I didn't have a lto to lose. I obviously hadn't seen this, though. Nice find.

    I used one, but i came back to my logitech mx3200 mouse. It owuld be a awesome mouse for gaming, if it had more button.. there is only 4