Much hoopla was made this week about one tech writer’s frustration with the BlackBerry trackball, as we mentioned in this week’s News From The Wire. So I figured today was as good as any to throw up a quick tip on how to clean your BlackBerry trackball. Yes, it’s a quick tip because it’s rather simple. After the jump, we’ll guide you through with some pictures. For now, get yourself a dry rag and a small screwdriver.
First, you’ll have to use the screwdriver to remove the ring from the outside of the trackball. I’d recommend doing this from the top, since it’s the only part of the wheel that doesn’t have a prong (you’ll see what I mean when you pull it out). Once that is loose, you’ll be able to take the trackball unit out as well. The set should look like this:
Now we want to concern ourselves with the trackball unit. First, wet your finger and run it across the trackball to pick up any residue which might be sticking to it. Next, you’ll notice there are four black wheels on each corner of the unit. Remove them one by one, removing any dust or buildup with your fingertips. I’d recommend not using water here. Just something about water and BlackBerry that makes me uneasy.
Finally, we’ll look back to the unit, where you’ll see a copper sensor where the trackball used to be. Wipe this gently with the rag. This is a very fragile and very sensitive part. If you treat it roughly, it will break and you’ll have a worse problem than a dirty and clogged trackball.
Finally, drop the trackball unit back into the crevice, and pop the ring back on, prongs facing left, right, and down. Voila! Should be good as new. And now you don’t have to send your BlackBerry to IT, or out for repair. Imagine that.