How To's

How to reset your Apple Watch and unpair it from an iPhone

  • You can reset your Apple Watch and unpair it from your iPhone through either the Watch app, or from the Watch’s settings menu.
  • You should unpair your Apple Watch from your iPhone if you’ve sold or lost your Watch, or if you’ve encountered an issue that requires a full reset.
  • If you reset your Apple Watch without your iPhone, you’ll still need to disable the “Activation Lock” feature before you can sell or give it away.

Whether you’ve sold or are giving away your old Apple Watch , hit an issue that requires a full reset, or just want to wipe your watch and start again, you’ll need to reset and unpair your watch.

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You can do so from your iPhone’sWatch app or from the Apple Watch itself in a few simple steps.

Below are instructions on how to do both, along with a quick breakdown on how to disable your watch’s Activation Lock for use on another iCloud account.

The easiest and fastest way to unpair and reset your Apple Watch is by using the Watch app on its paired iPhone.

1. Open the Watch app on your iPhone. If you don’t know where it is, you can swipe right on your Home screen and Search for “Watch.”

2. Select the Apple Watch you’re unpairing. The Apple Watches paired with your iPhone will be displayed on the watch app home screen at the top. Select the one you want to unpair and reset.

Select the watch you're looking to unpair

Select the watch you’re looking to unpair

3. Press the orange “i” button on the right. This will open the menu for the Apple Watch.

Tap the i next to your watch.

Tap the “i” next to your watch.

4. Tap “Unpair Apple Watch.” A warning will pop up at the bottom of the screen to double check that you want to unpair this Apple Watch. Select “Unpair X’s Apple Watch.”

Tap Unpair Apple Watch and confirm it when prompted.

Tap “Unpair Apple Watch” and confirm it when prompted.

5. Wait for the Apple Watch to unpair and reset. Your iPhone will display the following message.

Wait for your watch to unpair.

Wait for your watch to unpair.

6. The Apple Watch will show the two screens below, as it deletes all the old data and resets, ready to be paired with a new iPhone.

Your Apple Watch is unpairing.

Your Apple Watch is unpairing.

If for some reason you have no access to the paired iPhone, you can reset the Apple Watch from the device itself.

1. Swipe through the apps on your Apple Watch to find the Settings app. It looks like a gear, just like the app on your iPhone.

Tap the Settings app icon.

Tap the Settings app icon.

2. Open the Settings app and scroll down to “General.” It also has a gear icon, how convenient!

Tap General.

Tap “General.”

3. Scroll down and select “Reset.” You can find it at the bottom of the list.

Tap Reset.

Tap “Reset.”

4. Tap on the “Erase All Content and Settings” button. The warning on this page explains that resetting from the Apple Watch will not remove Activation Lock, linking the watch to your iCloud Account. Don’t worry, you can read on to address this issue too.

Tap Erase All Content and Settings.

Tap “Erase All Content and Settings.”

5. Scroll down and tap “Erase All.” The warning on this page explains that you are erasing all data, but that Activation Lock will not be removed.

Tap Erase All.

Tap “Erase All.”

6. The Apple Watch will now erase all data and reset itself, and it’s ready to be paired.

If you reset your Apple Watch from the watch itself and not from your iPhone, then you may still have Activation Lock set up. Activation Lock is used to link your Apple Watch to your iCloud account for security. Before the Apple Watch can be used by a new iCloud account you must remove Activation Lock. To do this, follow these steps:

1. Go to iCloud.com on your computer and sign in with your iCloud information.

Sign into iCloud.

Sign into iCloud.

2. Go to “Find iPhone.”

3. Select “All Devices” at the top of the map and then choose your Apple Watch.

4. Click “Remove from Account.”

Click Remove from Account and then confirm on the next page.

Click “Remove from Account” and then confirm on the next page.

Your Apple Watch should now be unpaired, reset, and ready to for use with a different iCloud account.

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