Do optical mice wear out?

I’ve got a Logitech bluetooth optical mouse that no longer is tracking very well. Do these things wear out after time (I’ve been using this one heavily for probably 2-3 years), or should I be looking for a source of bluetooth interference?


Did you clean the “eye” before asking?

They last a pretty long time, but they do wear out eventually.

I blew it out with compressed air to make sure there was no fuzz or dust in there. I’m sorry if reading the question inconvenienced you.

It didn’t.
But that’s just the most common mistake ever.
Sorry if you felt that from your short description of your problem that I should allready know what level of computer user you are and what steps you had taken. So I’m not going to suggest any solutions, since you probably allready know them.

The answer to your question is ‘yes’ and ‘probably’.

Thank you.

In my experience, the buttons wear out before the optics, but eventually I find after several years of hard use they don’t track as well, and the little low-friction pads get roughed up and they kinda stick sometimes.

Yes, they do. I love Logitech products, but not since the MX300 have I had one of their mice last longer than a couple of years of trouble-free operation. I replaced my G7 with a G9 just over a year ago, when the G7 started tracking in a jumpy manner. Lately, I’ve been having problems with the G9 changing sensitivity randomly (no, I’m not pressing the dpi buttons), but this might be a software problem. What I am certain about is that the handgrip creaks.

With Microsoft mice, I seemed to have more problems with the mousewheel than any other part.

I usually either lose or accidentally smash them, so I have no idea.

Also, this question inconvenienced me greatly. The fee is $250,000 or the equivalent value in alcohol.

I’ve had the same one for like 6 or 7 years.

MX500 and also about 7 years… (and wired)

I recently had to replace mine after about 6-7 years, the buttons just wore out.

I use Microsoft optical mice, not Logitech, but I’ve never had the optics on any of them wear out, even after years and years of daily usage. I do use corded mice though so maybe the radios are what gives out to mess up the tracking in some people’s mice and not the optics.

I’ve never had the optics go out, either. Buttons, yes, optics, no.

I would say something is up with Bluetooth. Maybe the battery is no longer holding its charge.

I seriously doubt the optics per se wear out, but I do notice tracking issues over time (and by time I usually mean 3-5 years of constant use). I use wired mice, so maybe it’s stubborn dirt or misalignment or something. But overall, a mouse is a darn good investment, given the amount of use you get for what you pay.

Every time I’ve encountered a tracking issue, it was due to some kind of obstruction such as a piece of hair or a crumb or something that got into the ‘eye.’

I don’t even see how a laser would burn out like that. CD players from two decades ago can still work fine. The problem is usually with the flimsy mechanical system of moving the lasers (think PSOne’s problem).

So yeah, I think any mechanical issues with a mouse would crop up long before the optics, mainly the buttons or scrollwheel which will just get grimier and more worn out as time goes on. Regular cleaning maintenance helps with the scrollwheel.

I’m surprised n one mentioned this, but most of my tracking issues are with my high performance mouse-pad becoming dusty and smudgy. Mine is plastic so I can scrub it with soap and water and my mousing is back to normal.

I haven’t even used a mousepad for a couple of years. I guess it depends on your setup, but optical mice don’t really seem to need them.

I must say that my optical mouse is the most reliable piece of hardware I ever bought. I bought it in 2000 and it still works wonderfully. I’ve never had to clean it or blow on it, or pop out the ball and clean the little ball (god, how I hated having to do that regularly). It just works. Always. I have to admit, just out of habit, I’ve always used it on a mouse-pad. The free Mouse-pad that came with Max Payne.

They wear out, but I’d be surprised if the laser tracking wore out before your buttons.