Skip to main content

How to unpair an Apple Watch

How to unpair an Apple Watch
(Image credit: Pexels)

Knowing how to unpair an Apple Watch is very useful, whether you're an active Apple Watch user, you've just acquired your wearable, or you've decided to upgrade to a new iPhone. 

Pairing a straight-out-of-the-box Apple Watch is fairly easy as the device is set to factory settings and ready to pair as soon as you press the Digital Crown. However, unpairing is when things get a little more complicated.

Unfortunately, Apple Watch is not your average Bluetooth speaker, so unpairing and connecting to a new device can't be done with just one touch of a button. Don't be alarmed though, because it's still very much doable through a few workarounds in the Settings menu.

So if you're planning on buying a new iPhone or if you've lost yours and are wondering how to unpair your Apple Watch, there's no need to worry: we've got you covered. Below, we've included a step-by-step guide on the whole process from start to finish, including how to unpair an Apple Watch using your current iPhone or erasing your Apple Watch altogether in case you no longer have access to your phone. 

However, there's one catch - unpairing an Apple Watch means that it will ultimately reset your wearable device to factory settings. This means that when you pair it again, all the data will have to be synced again unless you've backed it up previously. Apple also warns users who are using a transit card in the Wallet app that they should remove it before unpairing.

How to unpair an Apple Watch: From your iPhone

1. Make sure that your iPhone and your Apple Watch are in close proximity to each other.

How to unpair Apple Watch - close proximity

(Image credit: Future)

2. Next, launch the Watch app on your iPhone.

How to unpair Apple Watch - launch the Watch app

(Image credit: Apple)

3. Now tap the "My Watch" tab, which should be located in the bottom left corner of your screen.

How to unpair Apple Watch - tap my watch

(Image credit: Apple)

4. Go ahead and tap the "All Watches" option, which should appear in the top left corner of the screen.

How to unpair Apple Watch - all watches

(Image credit: Apple)

5. Next, tap the "i" information icon, which should be located next to the watch that you want to unpair.

How to unpair Apple Watch - tap the information icon

(Image credit: Apple)

6. Now, select "Unpair Apple Watch" and confirm your choice by tapping the same on the pop-up window again.

And if you're an owner of the GPS + Cellular model, at this stage you can choose whether to keep or remove your current plan. 

How to unpair Apple Watch - unpair watch

(Image credit: Apple)

7. If the app requires you to do so, type in your Apple ID password, then tap "Unpair" to proceed.

How to unpair Apple Watch - tap unpair

(Image credit: Apple)

8. Unpairing takes a bit of time, so just sit tight as it might take more than a few minutes. Otherwise, congratulations, you're all done!

How to unpair Apple Watch - unpairing complete

(Image credit: Apple)

How to unpair an Apple Watch: Erase all data

1. First, unlock your Apple Watch and launch the main menu through the Digital Crown.

How to erase all data on Apple Watch

(Image credit: Apple)

2. Next, locate the Settings icon and tap on it to reveal a new menu.

How to erase all data on Apple Watch - settings menu

(Image credit: Apple)

3. Next, tap the "General" option as shown below.

How to erase all data on Apple Watch - tap General

(Image credit: Apple)

4. Scroll down and tap the "Reset" option to proceed.

How to erase all data on Apple Watch - tap reset

(Image credit: Apple)

5. Go ahead and select "Erase All Content and Settings." At this stage, your Apple Watch may ask you to enter your password. 

If you own a GPS + Cellular model, you can choose whether to keep or remove your current plan.

How to erase all data on Apple Watch - erase all content

(Image credit: Apple)

6. Finally, confirm your choice by tapping "Erase All." 

How to erase all data on Apple Watch - erase all

(Image credit: Apple)

All data will now be wiped from your unpaired Apple Watch, so you can use the device afresh.

More Apple Watch tips

Denise Primbet

Denise is a news writer at Tom’s Guide covering consumer tech, gaming software/hardware, streaming, and more. When she’s not playing horror games, she’s a part-time piano enthusiast and experimenting in the kitchen. You can reach her at denise.primbet@futurenet.com.