Ultrasonic Cleaning = No more Activate on Wrist Raise?

Discussion in 'Apple Watch' started by mbezzo, May 3, 2015.

  1. mbezzo macrumors member

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    Sep 14, 2000
    #1
    Anybody try this? I did today (took the bands off) and it seems to have worked great! Super clean, it's only submerged in a couple of inches of water for a couple minutes, so absolutely no water damage. But... now the wrist detection does not work AT ALL!? Coincidence? I'm not sure exactly how cleaning could damage that component but maybe it did? I shut the watch down prior to the cleaning of course. Anybody else tried this and had a different result? I'm gonna have to get it replaced I guess. Any ideas on how to reset/fix the motion sensor? What a bummer!
     
  2. xraydoc macrumors demi-god

    xraydoc

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    #2
    Since the gyroscope does have a moving part (however microscopic it may be), it's possible there's enough energy in the vibrations to damage it.
     
  3. imaginex20 macrumors 65816

    imaginex20

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    Jun 17, 2009
    #3
    Why the heck would you do an ultrasonic cleaning on an electronic watch to begin with? At most the watch is 2 weeks old and its unnecessary.
     
  4. diablo2112 macrumors 6502

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    Apr 16, 2010
    #5
    Um, ok. This isn't a mechanical watch. It has micro fabricated moving parts which resonate in the ultrasonic frequency range, like the gyroscope. Thanks for being the guinea pig, but bummer for you. Oops.
     
  5. mbezzo thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 14, 2000
    #6
    want to keep it clean, of course! And it's not uncommon to use these for watches - heck mine even came with a holder specifically for watches! Just shocked it broke it. It's sad as they're such a great way to keep things clean. No scratches or scrubbing - works super well. BUT guess not for this watch! :(
     
  6. modernaccord macrumors 6502a

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    #7
    I seriously doubt the engineers at Apple were sitting there figuring out how people were cleaning their watches...especially some as far-fetched as ultrasonic cleaning. The Watch is shy of 2 weeks old, it's purely electronics, and contains some sensitive components (like a gyro). Take it back to apple and see what they say, but I hate to say that this one's on you.
     
  7. Givmeabrek macrumors 68030

    Givmeabrek

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    #8
    Wow I've heard of ultrasonic cleaning of rings and bracelets but never on a watch! Especially an electronic watch. Yikes. By the way motion sensors don't have any moving parts. It's all solid state.
     
  8. mbezzo thread starter macrumors member

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    #9
    This is a bit old, but interesting:

    "In addition, to assure maximum reliability, the new 2-axis (L2G3IS) and 3-axis (L3G3IS) gyroscopes operate with a resonant frequency of the sensing mass at around 20kHz. As a result of this high resonant frequency in combination with the mechanical structure, the devices are immune to the damage that could be caused by ultrasonic cleaning equipment (typically operating at around 30kHz) that many customers use to clean devices before equipment assembly."

    http://www.st.com/web/en/press/p3462

    Obviously the watch uses a different gyro...
     
  9. jot macrumors newbie

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    Toronto, ON
    #10
    Can't even do an ultrasonic cleaning on a mechanical watch... really any watch will get messed up this way.
     
  10. diablo2112 macrumors 6502

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    Apr 16, 2010
    #11
    MEMS gyros most certainly do have a moving part, a piezoelectric coupled mass that vibrates in the tens of kHz range.
     
  11. Phil Holland macrumors regular

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    Jun 7, 2011
    #12
    In other news...I shattered my windshield getting dead bugs off with a hammer.
     
  12. mr.anthonyramos macrumors regular

    mr.anthonyramos

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    #13
    You definitely killed the watch. Bring it into Apple.
     
  13. Phone Junky macrumors 6502

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    #14
    Electronic device in an ultrasonic cleaner, too funny. You can't make this stuff up.
     
  14. foxkoneko macrumors 6502

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  15. lagwagon Suspended

    lagwagon

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    #16
    Next we'll hear someone attempting to clean their watch in the dishwasher trying to multitask cleaning the dishes + watch. And then of course probably blame it on a defect in the watch.
     
  16. zacheryjensen macrumors 6502a

    zacheryjensen

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    #17
    It's quite typical to clean regular watches in ultrasonic cleaners. It shows how few people interested in Apple Watch around here have even the slightest clue about regular watches. What an interesting crowd, then, that Apple has as its early adopters.

    Anyway, you take your regular old $500 Citizen to a watch shop and ask for a cleaning, and guess what they'll do? Yes, they will shove it in an ultra sonic cleaner and basically do nothing else (well, the every day mall watch shops anyway.)

    Sample: http://www.amazon.com/Magnasonic-Pr...5325&sr=8-3&keywords=ultrasonic+watch+cleaner

    Now that doesn't mean it's okay for Apple Watch, but, still. It's not strange to clean a watch this way.
     
  17. lagwagon Suspended

    lagwagon

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    #18
    While it might be typical for a normal watch it's more the fact it should be common sense to not do that to a electronic device full of sensors and all that jazz.
     
  18. Marshall73 macrumors 6502a

    Marshall73

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    Apr 20, 2015
    #19
    just because it tells time and sits on your wrist it does not make it a traditional watch. The ultrasonic cleaning probably damaged the sensor and let liquid enter the watch as the ipx rating is based on the watch being static not moving or being agitated.
     
  19. chrise2 macrumors 6502

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    Sep 17, 2012
    #20
    Just to confirm, can you put your iPhone in there too and see if it does the same thing? :)

    Sorry dude, that sucks. Apple will probably replace it because it will be nearly impossible for them to tell what happened. Unless you tell them. But that's dishonest.
     
  20. Cloudsurfer macrumors 65816

    Cloudsurfer

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    #21
    Why is everyone giving this guy such a hard time? I work in aviation as an avionics engineer and we use ultrasonic cleaning baths to clean circuit boards all the time.

    There's nothing wrong with cleaning electronics this way, as long as you use demineralized water and allow the electronics to dry for some time.
     
  21. mpike78 macrumors regular

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    Virginia
    #22
    Unless I work at your local Genius Bar and in that case I'm going to laugh when I see you lol
     
  22. zacheryjensen macrumors 6502a

    zacheryjensen

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    #23
    No, you can't possibly make a legitimate argument about common sense for a product type that almost nobody has ever even touched, let alone used and developed best practice knowledge for over years and years.

    Frankly, it seems unlikely to me that ultrasonic cleaning should kill the watch anyway. It doesn't add up. The frequency would have to resonate with the parts that were damaged which is really unlikely. People want to make the argument about the gyro or accelerometer having small parts, but, so what? My quartz movement watch has small moving parts (quartz crystals vibrate) but it has survived through multiple ultrasonic cleanings.

    The assumptions in this thread are embarrassing to everyone making them.

    At any rate, OP should just report it as a failed hardware component and get a replacement. Let someone else do further experiments with ultrasonic cleaners to determine if it is, indeed, an Apple Watch killer.
     
  23. wit4breakfast macrumors member

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    Apr 18, 2015
    #24
    No, your quartz crystal watch doesn't have similar parts to the accelerometer.

    This idea that the accelerometer couldn't break without resonance is also not true.
     
  24. Cabby macrumors regular

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    Jun 28, 2010
    #25
    He likely didn't do either of these things, and are you bathing your circuit boards after 2 weeks?? You gotta have a really dirty arm to need that already.
     

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