Repair a Double-Clicking Mouse

Gateway optical mouse

My computer has a mouse that is probably at least 10 years old. It’s an optical mouse (no ball), so still tracks fine after all these years. But lately, the left button has been double-clicking sometimes when I only click once. This had annoying effects, like opening a document when all I wanted to do was drag it to the trash, or making a drop-down menu appear and disappear instantly. Only the left button had the problem, and it was slowly growing worse over time. Conclusion: it’s the physical mouse wearing out.

Any normal person would have simply replaced the mouse at this point. A new one would only be a few dollars, and a solid used one might be a dollar at a garage sale or flea market. But I enjoy fixing things.

single screw to open
Other manufacturers used multiple screws, and perhaps even hid the screws under labels. This mature design has just one screw to remove, and no cover to hide the screw. After all, it’s on the bottom of the mouse, where nobody looks, anyway.
First, lift the back of the cover up a little.
Then slide the cover back.
inside of mouse
The mouse has 3 microswitches for the Left, Right, and Middle (Wheel) button.
ready to desolder
It’s single-sided board, so it should be easy to unsolder the bad left button switch, and swap it with the rarely-used middle button switch. I’m putting a sticker on the bad switch, so I don’t get confused later.
switches off
That was easy. The flaky switch is the one on the round sticker.

I suppose I could show the resoldering and reassembly steps, but the pictures would just look the same as the ones above.

Anyway, the fix worked.

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