Sep 07

I’ve given up on the Apple Mighty Mouse, having gone through two of them since 2005. I finally got fed up with having to completely dissasemble it to properly clean the ball rollers every couple of months, and then either glue or tape the “retaining ring” back onto the bottom of the mouse.

In my opinion, Apple really should have made the scroll ball optical instead of mechanical rollers and Hall-effect sensors, and they should have designed it to be easily cleanable. Apple’s suggestion to “Roll the ball vigorously while cleaning with water” while holding the mouse upside down” is NOT an acceptable solution. More than once, I had to completely take apart the Mighty Mouse, unscrew the “ball module” from the top shell, and then take THAT module apart to be able to clean the gunk from the tiny rollers with magnetic ends.

I tried every solution in the book to avoid dissasembly, but none of them worked for long. Saliva, Windex, tiny adhesive tape strips wrapped around the ball, etc. I had moderate success with Hoppe’s #9 gun-cleaning solvent, but even that only worked for a week or two before the rollers started gunking up again.

If the Mighty Mouse wasn’t $49, it might be a different story – I’d just go buy a new one every six months. For now, I’ve replaced it with a $25 Logitech LX3 optical mouse. The only problems I’ve ever had with Logitech mice were their microswitches wearing out after four or five years of heavy use.

As a final note, I’ll say that the Mighty Mouse is only the second piece of Apple hardware that I’ve “given up” on – the first was the original FireWire iSight camera. I bought one in 2004, and returned it for a refund the next day – for $150, I expected much better audio and video quality than I got from the camera.

3 Responses to “Giving Up on the Mighty Mouse”

  1. Lucas Reilly Says:

    I can relate to your frustration as I believed so firmly in Apple products that I purchased a Mighty Mouse online without testing one whatsoever. My problem (so far) is not the scroll bar but the right click. It responded well for the first week or two but now my costly wireless wonder is little more than a one click disappointment. I loaded “Steermouse” which actually did up the percentage of right-click success. But, alas, the condition has returned.
    Has Apple come to any conclusion on what the problem is? Is there a recall inbound or anything of that sort? I feel a little irritated to think that I would have to mothball a product made by Apple or any company willing to charge as much money for as little performance.

  2. Peter Smithy Says:

    I completely agree with you. I was searching your forum on a way to clean the roller ball, even though I have already once before. Unfortunately, it looks like I’ll have to clean it again. I wish Apple has made the roller ball with a little more thorough testing – this is pretty unacceptable

  3. Ron Reynolds Says:

    I have been using the wireless mighty mouse for over a year. Recently my right click function tends to stop working after I use the mouse for 30 minutes of so. If I leave it along for awhile it will work OK for a short period and then the problem appears again. I have disassebled the mouse and cleaned it. I am not sure what parts (contacts) really make the right button operate. so I am stuck.