How To Fix A Scope That Won’t Adjust?

Nothing is more annoying than finding out the scope you just installed isn’t tuned in properly. It just refuses to comply with your gun and no matter the input you tend to put in, it just doesn’t adjust.

What do you do when you don’t know how to fix a scope that just won’t adjust? Well, you search for a solution online. And that leads you here. Welcome, you are not the first one who faced this problem and won’t be the last. Let’s find out some solution that might work in your favor.

How To Adjust A Scope The Easy Way

Now that we found out our scope is too damn arrogant to fix on its own, let’s find out some methods that should work.

Pick The Correct Scope Mounts

Let’s start with the simple things. Revisit your setup and see if you have the correct mounting system or not. It’s not unheard of where you get a 34mm scope ring for a 30mm scope or the other way around. Things like that happen and it’s normal to be confused as a newbie.

That’s why you should make sure you have the right size of scope rings. If you did, then make sure they have the right mounting legs as the rail of your guns. If your gun has a dovetail and you get weaver, they won’t work.

Torque The Scope Rings Correctly

Each ring has a different level of torque value. The companies have tested the right value to match zero after a thousand shots or more and then they put up that value as the torque value of their pair of rings.

If you over-torque them or under-torque them, both will cause significant issues. It might seem “tight enough” but if it’s not at the right value, it will not hold zero and will reset the calibration within 5 to 10 shots. The right number of torque is more important than most shooters think.

Level Your Scope

Bubble levels are cheap and they are available in almost every hardware store. Buy one of the small ones and put that on top of your scope. See if the bubble level states it’s leveled or it’s slanted.

If it’s slanted, then you will need to go back to the drawing board and re-install the mounting base and then the scope. Without proper leveling, you will always have an incorrect shooting result.

Slanted Base Mounts

If you realize that you cannot make any elevation adjustments and you need their scope dialed in, then you can opt for buying a slant base mount. This will make up for the lack of adjustments in your scope and will cover for the lack of adjustability as well.

Keep A Track Of Your Turret Adjustment

If you keep track of your previous adjustments and note them down, you can now make new adjustments and compare them with your old ones. And when you face the adjustment issues again, the notes will come out in handy.

Don’t give up on the scope instantly. Very often, it’s just a user error and can be fixed through the turrets. If you are a new shooter and don’t know what to adjust, it’s recommended to keep track of your windage and elevation. This way, you can always go back to the point where you had no issues.

Get A Different Scope

If you are at this step, that means none of the solutions I mentioned above worked. This means the scope is either suffering from a reticle misalignment issue or it’s just defected from the factory. If that’s your case, then I would recommend filing for a warranty and getting it fixed or replaced.

If that’s not possible, then I recommend you buy a better optic for your gun from a good manufacturer. A manufacturer that won’t shy down to treat your scope in years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will My Scope Run Out Of Adjustment?

Yes, it might happen. It happens most of the time due to misalignment of the knobs. And are you sure you are rotating the adjustment knob in the right direction? If the rings are rotating the right way but it still won’t get zero, that means you ran out of adjustments. When that happens, you will need to reset the scope or use an inclined base to get more adjustment.

Do All Rifle Scopes Have Parallax Adjustment?

No, they don’t. Most modern rifle scopes have parallax features. While the old-school one tends to come with fixed parallax and no adjustment knobs. Some come with side parallax adjustments. In short, not all scope has parallax adjustment features.

What’s The Difference Between SFP And FFP?

SFP stands for second focal plane and FFP stands for first focal plane. If your gun has an FFP reticle, that means the reticle will magnify along the scope if you increase the magnification. This happens to help you reach closer to your target and have a better understanding of bullet drops.

But if your gun is in SFP, that means the reticle won’t magnify and stay at the same place at all magnifications. While it’s not bad per se, it’s not effective in super long-range.


In short, just because you are stuck at adjustments, that doesn’t mean the scope is a lost cause. Ever so often it just happens that the scope isn’t properly installed. If you ensure it’s installed the correct way and adjustments are correct on your accords, the scope should zero out and let you shoot with 100% accuracy.

If it doesn’t happen, then I presume you have a broken scope on your hand. In that case, a warranty is the only salvation.

With that said, thanks a lot for spending some time with me. I hope you had a fun time reading it and found something useful to take back. For now, I will say bye but I will make sure to return with more guides for you. Till then, take care and have fun.

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