Buttons Got Jammed On The Xbox controller? Here’s how To Clean It!

When you have an Xbox, you will have many friends come over. There will be many gaming sessions with them. However, when you play continuously, dust particles tend to get in the buttons and these buttons start acting up more often.

There will also be a time when these controllers will just stop working and this article will answer the question of how to clean the Xbox One controller? It can be very much embarrassing calling all the friends over and then your gaming console starts having issues. You must keep these controllers clean from time to time so that you can play whenever you want. 

Keep the Controllers Always Clean!

There are many other reasons why keeping the controllers clean is important. Yes, you may argue that when the consoles have the Kinect integration, we don’t need the controllers. You must know that there are various users who still prefer gaming with the controllers, especially for games like Madden or the latest versions of Call of Duty. It’s obvious and natural that when you use a device for a long period, it will start showing up some wear and tear. 


From dust particles to sweat, everything gets in touch with these controllers and this article will focus on cleaning the Xbox One controller as well as how to clean the Xbox 360 controller. We will dive into the cleaning aspect but before that, there are some things you need to know. The controllers of both the consoles are assembled using multiple parts and hence, it contains multiple cracks and fissures.

These rifts make it even harder to properly clean and so you will need some tools. The big parts of dust will be removed with something flat, you can make use of any visiting card or credit card. You must note that this should be flexible, collect around 4-5 of them. You will also need paper towels to clean off the dust that came out. 

If you have the console that you bought around a decade ago in white color, you must already know how filthy they can get. You must have to make it your habit to clean them on a regular basis. You might find it time-consuming but if you are not cleaning them regularly, your console will be of no use. 

Follow the points below to easily go through the cleaning process.
  1. On the backside, you will find a button to remove the batteries. Remove the battery and set it aside. 
  2. Then, you will need to take the card and run it through all the cracks and openings of the controller. This will also be needed on the Xbox One controller cleaning
  3. As there are many cracks and a lot of dirt must have piled up, you will need to have multiple cards right with you. You can also make use of hard paper if you have any. 
  4. The next step will be moving the joystick to all sides and check if there is any pile of dirt. It tends to pile up underneath on the sides of the joystick. You can get rid of the dirt from this part very easily with the help of the paper towel or wet tissue.
  5. Then come the D-pad and buttons. Insert the card deep in and run in through the outer circle. The card or paper must be flexible so that it can easily go through all the curves. 
  6. Then take a wet tissue or a moist towel to cleanse the whole controller. 
  7. You can put the battery in after the controller gets totally dry.

The process of how to clean Xbox One controller joystick and the buttons carry almost the same process but a bit differently. The Xbox One controller carries more modern design but the dirt gets piled up in them as well. Here are the steps you will need to follow to clean it thoroughly. 

  1. Removing the battery pack is a bit different on this controller. You will have to push the battery cover upwards to remove. Then take out the battery and set it aside. 
  2. Start with the d-pad by inserting the card and getting rid of dirt from the outer and inner edges of the pad. Don’t use the same card for any other button as it may leave the residue from the cleaning of other parts. 
  3. Then clean the inside edge of the joysticks. This is the most common place where dirt is formed in the form of a layer. 
  4. Also, don’t forget to run the card on the whole outer side of the controller. This is the crack that separates the front and rear of the controller. 
  5. Don’t insert your card in the port that is placed on the bottom of the controller. 
  6. Insert the card as deep as possible and also clean the Xbox One logo. 
  7. Use the wet tissue to clean the overall controller and then put in the batteries after it gets dried up. We hope that this article must have cleared up all your confusion to the question of how to clean Xbox One controller buttons, joysticks, and d-pad. 

Now after you understand the cleaning process, one thing you must note that having any gadget for a longer period is the maintenance. It is one of the most important factors. The dirt not only affects the looks but the button response time also gets a huge impact. It’s better to clean your own controller than getting a new one every 6 months. 

What to Do When The Buttons Get Sticky?

Every gamer must have faced this problem. The buttons get stuck and it impacts hugely on the gaming performance. While playing games, the lag of even a microsecond can do a lot of damage. Cleaning the controllers is a very easy task and you will do it with a little patience. It will be a much wiser decision than every time getting a new controller. 

Why Buttons Get Sticky?

The very reason for the Xbox One controller button sticking is that the dirt gets mixed up with the hand oils. Also, the buttons will also get sticky by the crumbs of the game-time snacks. Most of the gamers have the habit of having some snacks and beverages while gaming. Over time, this gets mixed with the dirt and creates a sticky layer. This article will help you in cleaning the controllers thoroughly without taking it all apart. 

How To Clean The Stickiness?

There are multiple ways that are tried and tested when it comes to cleaning the controllers. The ways may depend on the amount of stickiness and how much are you trying to get rid of it. You will need to give proper time and do it very carefully once you get the answer to the question of how to fix jammed game controller buttons on Xbox? You will need a lot of q-tips and a glass of alcohol to give the controllers a thorough cleansing. 

You must know that rubbing alcohol will not damage any circuit of the controller as it evaporates very quickly. Never ever try cleaning the controller or any gadget with water as it will take a lot of time in drying. If you powered it on and it’s not dried, it will create a short-circuit. 

Follow these steps to get rid of all the dampness.

  1. The first and foremost step is to unplug the controller. Also, remove the battery and set it aside until the cleaning gets completed. 
  2. Get a q-tip and dip in the alcohol. Wipe away the excess, make sure there is no dropping of the alcohol from the q-tip.
  3. Rub this q-tip on the buttons and try to get in the fissures as much as possible. Keep rubbing the q-tip several times until you see the layer getting come off.
  4. Then, keep pressing the button so that the alcohol that you rubbed on the fissures gets rubbed along the inside edge of the buttons. Doing this will also eject most of the debris or the residue.
  5. If the buttons still stick, you can try other methods discussed in the latter part of this article. 

Taking Apart The Controller For Cleaning

If the above method hasn’t worked, you will need to take apart the controller to get it cleaned. This process must be done after a lot of research on the question of how to fix sticky buttons on the Xbox One controller? You must also not compare this ripping as any of the other electronics. You will need to take out the motherboard of the controller.

Being said, you must research thoroughly on the topic before starting the process. A small mistake can cause some serious damage and you will have to get a new one. If you are not sure and don’t know much about the technicalities, go for some professional help.

There are multiple ways you can learn the process. You will be able to find a whole range of tutorials online that will guide you through each and every step. 

Opting For a Professional Repair Service

When you face the problem of the Xbox One controller button not working, and any of the above methods aren’t working, it’s time you seek some professional help. These repair services will first give you a free diagnostics report and then you can decide if it’s worth it or not. 

Some Do\’s and Don’ts On The Cleaning

Whether you end up repairing your sticky controller or not, there are some things you must know. These are some dos and don’ts you need to go through. First, let’s go through the things you should do:

  • Always use cotton scrubs and rubbing alcohol to provide the moisture. 
  • Never try force on any device. The assembly of these premium products is done very simply and you must not apply force on it in any case. 
  • Always use the right set of tools. Never try to find the makeshift tools and get the work done.
  • If you don’t know what to do, always reach for professional repair service to get answers for how to fix sticky Xbox One buttons.

Now let’s go through some things that you must never do:

  • Never even think of using the sponges that are dipped in water or even water directly. 
  • Don’t use the screwdriver or any other tool you normally use for any other task. 
  • If you are not familiar with the circuitry and electronics, never try any DIY methods. 

We are hoping that you are able to solve the problem of stickiness and start your gaming sessions again. However, you must be concerned about how to keep these controllers as new from now on. We are providing you with a few steps you can follow to keep the controllers clean and pristine. You can also go for the Xbox One controller drift stick fix to keep them working. 

Don’t Eat While Playing

The most common reason for the stickiness is the crumbs and oil from the snacks. Try to keep the food and beverages away as much as possible. This is also not good for your health. When you don’t eat while playing, chances of crumbs getting anywhere near the console and controllers will be much lesser.

Sanitize Your Hands

You should also keep your hands clean as much as possible. If you have oily skin, you should take extra care and sanitize your hands regularly. 

Keep The Drawers Clean

This is also a very important aspect. Most of the dirt and dust get settled on the controller when they are not in use. If the storage area where you keep the controllers isn’t clean then you will get rid of the problem of the Xbox One controller button jammed

Some Final Thoughts…

You should keep the controllers clean not only because they start acting up but you must also take care of your hygiene. The tips provided in this article are not any new or unique ones. The only thing that you should take care of is not applying any extra force on these devices as they are not built of any heavy material.


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