Scratched Apple Watch 4 Screen

image I upgraded from the Series 0 38mm watch to the new 40mm aluminum watch on day 1. It works great and looks great. Unfortunately I put two deep scratches on it on day 15 :slightly_frowning_face:

I took it to the Apple store to see if they can replace the glass under the Apple Care warranty, but I was told that superficial damage is not covered!! So what is covered, I asked. They said if it breaks they will replace it for a fee. I don’t have the heart to break it. I came home and read the warranty and not much else is covered. I am thinking of returning my Apple Care.

I was really disappointed as to how limited the warranty is - much more so than for the iPhone. If I want to use one of my two incidents that are covered by Apple Care to replace the damage I should be able to do so if the damage is sufficient to bother me. A watch is something you wear and is visible all the time and scratches are more significant in my opinion on a watch than an iPhone.

Has anyone else had this experience? Any suggestions (other than breaking it of course)?

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Did you buy it with a credit card? Most of them have a product protection plan you might be able to leverage.

Maybe try glass scratch repair kit or liquid?

Personally, I would break it.

I did use a credit card. I checked the plan that the credit card carries right after my encounter with Apple. It excluded damage to watches!!

Sorry about that scratching. You might be able to buff it out, depending on the depth of the scratches. Jewelers buff out scratches in watch crystals all the time. A fairly scratched up crystal can be made to look brand new in skilled hands. Deep scratches or gouges are a different story. But even those can be made less glaring. I’ve seen glass scratches buffed out using Brasso, though not specifically ‘X Ion’ glass.

Re Applecare+, scratches would fall under cosmetic damage and would not be fully covered; I don’t think they were ever covered for any previous models.

To me the primary benefit to AppleCare+ for the Watch is express replacement in case of covered damage, in which you get sent a replacement before losing your current watch (as opposed to sending it off and waiting watchless for several days, for possibly expensive repair).

Best of luck.

This is really disappointing. Apple replaced my Series 0 watch when I noticed much fainter scratches on it within 10 days of purchase. I didn’t even have to use one of my 2 incidents since I could have simply just returned the Watch for a refund at that point.

I’d be upset if I were told I had two choices - deal with scratches as obvious as yours or willfully break my Watch so it could be covered.

The same happened to me with my series 3. Had to live with it unfortunately.

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That’s a shame.

I wonder if some sort of screen protector would disguise the scratches?

FYI I think the people at iFixit are great and that they offer a wonderful option for people, but trying to follow the instructions in this self-service page for Apple Watch screen replacement would traumatize me if I tried it.

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The stainless steel version has Saphire glass. That won’t scratch.

I have had my new Apple watch 4 since last October and it shows early/unusual wear and tear all around the screen. Very disappointing. Will bring it to Apple store genius bar…

Good luck at the Apple Store. Let me know if you get anywhere. I’m still lamenting my scratches.

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The Apple store WILL allow you to use one of your accidental damage coverages for scratches. You will pay $69+ tax for this. The original warranty wouldn’t cover scratches but APP+ covers any damage short of abuse. The person at the store was mistaken about it having to be broken to use the coverage.

Any luck at the Apple Store?

I’ve had my Apple Watch Series 4 since April. The other day I noticed a scratch on the screen. At first, I was broken hearted. Then after stewing about it for a little while, I decided to get over it.

I wear my watch every day for three reasons. Fall detection, irregular heartbeat detection, and to track my workouts. Now, to think that I’m not going to get a few scratches on it is wishful thinking considering all that I do every day. We live on 20 acres of wooded land. We have a small farm. Every day I’m out feeding the animals, maintaining the property, cutting firewood, splitting firewood and a lot more. Yes, I’m gonna get some scratches on my watch and that’s okay with me.


I decided that my next Apple Watch will be the aluminum version and put a case on it when embarking on home and equipment maintenance. Building callus in the palms of my hands and and a smart watch takes extra protection beyond what the stainless steel version offers. I found out the hard way with 2 Stainless and one aluminum watches​:tired_face::cry:

I bought in April - I’m 63 and not super active but have managed to scratch this watch face up terribly. I too contacted apple and found out the same as everyone else not covered (299 to replace by apple) this ion glass seems to be softer than any watch i have ever had and the adds showing this as a sports watch is misleading as if you were this watch doing anything active you will scratch it. I tried to see if i could turn it in and get a discount towards the sapphire glass in the stainless steel version - but no go. I am thinking that apple is just another conglomerate looking towards the all mighty dollar and no longer cares for their customer. If your active these watches are not for you. I guess there is always samsung and microsoft…!

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G-shocks are very tough but not smart…

I scratched the screen of my series 4 and then went online for a simple tempered glass cover. That made the scratches not shine in the sun and under light.

They do scratch easy though.


I agree with Wolfie’s point about insurance, and I also agree with Loren that it’s better to accept some wear on a daily worn item and perhaps take some pride in it as a coping tactic. :wink:

I don’t know the markup on the $299, but a watch part repair always costs a lot more than the part cost the manufacturer at the factory because of the care required to disassemble and re-assemble the watch and to make sure that there no side effects of the repair, since they need to return you your watch and not any watch as is the case during original manufacturing testing.

Traditional watch repairs are similar. I paid $250 to repair a mechanism in my Accutron last year.

That said, Apple obviously does nothing to help you think of a watch purchase as a potential series of repairs so I am sympathetic; I am never happy to spend $300 or even $50 that I wasn’t planning.

I too had a scratch on my Apple Watch screen, but it was a gash that ran the entire length of the screen. It was extremely distracting and in my opinion, just as bad as a cracked screen in regards to day to day use. I brought it into the store to be repaired and was told the same thing. Eventually, I was able to get it replaced under AppleCare by calling in and escalating the issue, but it was a huge pain.

On a side note, I don’t think I’m buying AppleCare for anything anymore. They used to take care of you almost no questions asked. Now there are too many caveats and I find the genius staff at my local store to be rude and unhelpful.