Apple pencil won’t be able to indicate that it’s charging if the battery is drained out. If that’s the case, you should keep charging it for a prolonged period of time. If you have tried charging with your iPad already and your Apple pencil is still unresponsive then you can try charging it from a wall outlet.
iPad uses wireless module to charge Apple pencil and if there is any interference between these two modules then your Apple pencil won’t charge through iPad. Charing it through wall outlet will confirm if there is something wrong with Apple pencil or not.
We have seen the issue occur with different generations of Apple Pencils and iPads. In some cases, the pencil widget shows full charge but as soon as the pencil is removed from the iPad, the charge disappears.
Before starting out, remove any stickers or cases from the Apple Pencil. These interfere with the magnetic charging capability of the pencil. Make sure your iPad is compatible with the Apple Pencil. Not every Apple Pencil can be charged with every iPad.
Before Troubleshooting Check Compatibility & Charging methods
Check which Apple Pencil is compatible with which iPad
Apple Pencil 1st Generation
The 1st generation is compatible with the following:
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (1st and 2nd generation)
- iPad Air (3rd generation)
- iPad (6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th generation)
It can be charged:
- Via your iPad’s lightening connector directly
- Via USB-C to Apple Pencil connected to a device or wall outlet
Apple Pencil 2nd Generation
The 2nd generation is compatible with:
- iPad Pro 12.9-inch (3rd generation and later)
- iPad Pro 11-inch (1st generation and later)
- iPad Air (4th generation and later)
It can only be charged via the magnetic strip at the side of your iPad
1. Force Restart the iPad
Your iPad can fail to charge the Apple Pencil due to a communication problem in the charging modules. Force restarting the iPad can solve this issue.
- Disconnect the Pencil from the iPad and restart the iPad to check if the problem is solved.
- If not, connect the pencil to the iPad and quickly tap on the iPad’s volume-up button.
- Now press the iPad’s volume-down button and then press & hold the power button.
- Keep holding the power button until you see the Apple logo.
- Now, wait for the boot-up to complete and check if the Apple pencil is being charged.
If the issue persists, check if the Apple Pencil can be charged by using another charging device or another method, such as a wall charger or a power bank.
2. Remove the Apple Pencil from Bluetooth Devices
Each Apple pencil has a data profile that stores connectivity information. This can become invalid if there is a problem when the two devices are connecting. In this case, removing the Apple Pencil from the iPad’s Bluetooth settings and then re-adding it can resolve the issue.
A point to remember is that you will not be able to re-add the pencil if its battery is completely drained. You would have to wait till it charges a little bit before you are prompted to add the pencil.
- Disconnect the Apple Pencil from the iPad. Navigate to Settings > Bluetooth.
- Remove Apple Pencil from Bluetooth devices.
- Then force restart the iPad as discussed earlier.
- Now unlock the iPad and plug the Apple Pencil back into the iPad.
- Wait for the message prompting you to connect both devices.
- After pairing, wait for 15 minutes and then check if the pencil is charging properly.
- If pairing fails, leave the pencil charging for a couple of hours and then retry the above steps.
3. Charge the Apple Pencil while Charging the iPad
A bug in the power modules of the iPad may prevent it from charging the pencil. Here, charging the pencil while charging the iPad simultaneously will do the trick.
- Disconnect the Apple Pencil from the iPad and charge the iPad completely.
- Connect the Apple Pencil and check if it can be charged.
- If not, remove the Apple Pencil from the paired list of Bluetooth devices and disconnect the Apple Pencil from the iPad.
- Now insert the charger’s power cable into the iPad and immediately remove the power cable.
- Then quickly connect the Pencil to the iPad and if pairing dialogue is shown, pair the devices.
4. Update the OS of the iPad (Especially for Beta users)
If you are using a Beta software version, we recommend installing the newer update as soon as it is available. Beta versions are known for their bugs and glitches since the operating system is in a testing phase. It’s likely that the issue you are facing was fixed in the latest release.
- Launch the iPad Settings.
- Navigate to General > Software Update > Install the update if it is available.
- Restart your iPad once the update process is complete.
- Upon restart, check if your iPad is charging the pencil.
- If that didn’t work, you can opt to leave the beta program and revert to the stable builds available.
5. Enable USB Accessories in the iPad Settings
Apple pencil will not charge if the “USB Accessories” option is disabled in the iPad settings. This generally happens with older generations of Apple Pencils since they can only be charged with the iPad’s port. If this option is disabled, your pencil will not charge until you unlock the device.
- Open iPad Settings.
- Navigate to Touch ID & Passcode > Allow Access when Locked tab > USB Accessories.
- Enable the option and restart the iPad. Connect your Apple Pencil and check if it is charging as expected.
6. Warm and Clean the Apple Pencil
Charging issues with Apple pencils can also occur if the charging pins are dirty or the pencil is too cold. Here, warming and cleaning the Apple Pencil can solve the problem. If the pencil’s battery is too low, warming it may kick start the cells and the battery will start charging.
- Grab a lint-free cloth and check if cleaning the pins of the Apple Pencil solves the problem. Be mindful to get rid of the dirt particles.
- If that doesn’t work, get a large zip-lock bag and fill 30% of its capacity with hot water.
The water’s temperature should be around 85°C. Make sure the water is not leaking from the bag. You can double the zip-lock bag to be on the safe side.
- After sealing the bag, put the Apple Pencil beneath the bag for 30 seconds. Do not put the pencil inside the bag.
- Then charge the pencil through a pencil adapter for a minute.
- Now check if the iPad is charging the pencil.
If that didn’t work, repeat the above steps but keep the pencil under the hot bag for about a minute so the pencil gets warmer.
7. Reset the iPad to the Factory Defaults
An incomplete installation of the iPad’s OS can cause invalid system entries, leading it not to charge the pencil properly. Here, you can reset the device to its factory defaults.
Before going ahead, make sure to back up and fully charge the iPad. A way to check if your OS is having problems is to charge the pencil with another iPad or through the wall adapter. If it is charging properly there, it means that your OS is having problems.
- Launch iPad’s Settings.
- Navigate to General > Reset > Erase all content & Settings.
- If asked, enter your passcode and then confirm to reset the iPad.
- After the process completes, set up the iPad as a new device and try charging the pencil.
- If everything is working fine, you can restore from your existing backup.
If the issue persists, then you may need to get a new pencil or get the faulty one repaired through the Apple Store.
It is recommended to keep the pencil charged to some extent even if it is not being used to prevent it from being powerless. This is recommended by Apple Support Specialists as well.