When Your Vortex Scope Won’t Focus, Having Blurry Image, Try This First


Vortex Optics is a reputable sports optics company that is known for its unparalleled customer service and a wide selection of scopes and red dots. But often enough people find their vortex rifle scopes won’t focus on the target or loses focus.

The cause of the out of focus problem can be multifold, but the most common one is due to incorrect eye focus and/or parallax settings. You can easily fix the issue by resetting both the eye focus and parallax on your scope.

Considering all scopes of all the brands functions mostly the same, yes, I will say this article will apply to Bushnell, Leupold, SigSauer, PrimaryArms, NightForce, Swarovski and 100s of other brands out there.

Try Resetting Scope Eye Focus and Parallax

A reticle is the line patterns you see in the middle of your scope. Sight picture is the sight you can see through your scope. If either of these is blurry, you will need to set the scope to your eyesight.

  • Step 1: Turn Scope Magnification to Highest Power
  • Step 2: Adjust scope parallax to infinity. Note, a scope can have a side parallax or ocular lens parallax adjustment knob. If your scope has fixed parallax, skip this step.
  • Step 3: Use a blank wall if indoor ( or the sky if outdoors ) as background, look through the scope as you normally will, focus on the sight picture instead of the reticle, adjust the front eyepiece back and forth until the reticle lines are sharp and clear. Make sure your eyes are relaxed during this process.
  • Step 4: Pick an object that you can estimate the distance from you, then look at the object through your scope, adjust the parallax knob according to your estimated yardage, until the sight picture is clear

When this is done, your vortex rifle scope should be in focus. If the problem persists, proceed to read on and find out if the cause of the blurriness is one of the following reasons.

Other Common Causes For Scopes to Appear – “Out of Focus”

  1. Overheated Barrel
    An overheated barrel can cause the air to have a “Mirage Effect” that may make your sight picture blurry. When this happens let your barrel cool off a bit, it’s good for both your scope and your gun
  2. Target Too Close
    Some riflescopes have a limited range of how close the parallax can be set to. If your target is closer than the lower limit of your scope parallax range, the target will appear to be out of focus
  3. Mirage
    Nature has it, the mirage will happen at times of the day and your sight picture will appear to be blurry. If you understand how mirage work it will actually help you. We will write an article to cover this topic at a later date.
  4. Dirty Glass – Duh?
    Surprisingly this is one of the more common issues, make sure you check your scope’s lens on both ends before deciding to send them in for warranty claim.

What to do When The Parallax Adjusting Knob Stops Working

Some times you will notice no matter how much you adjust the parallax knob, the blurriness of your sight picture just doesn’t change. This may indicate that your parallax adjusts knob has stopped working.

Make sure your scope is not clamped too tight by your scope mount, a general rule of thumb is that apply only 15-18 lb of torque when tightening.

When you have tried everything else and it still doesn’t work, hey, this is why we buy vortex, they have one of the best customer service and if you contact them they will send you a replacement unit

Get Vortex’s VIP Warranty Claim

It sucks when you have to send in your scope and wait for a replacement unit to come in and at the same time having nothing on your scope. The good news is that Vortex Optics’ customer service is top notch. Their customer staff members are just happy to help you in anyway they can.

If you are in a hurry or on a tight timeline to go for a hunt or something, simply let them know when you are claiming your warranty. Nine out of ten times their super friendly staff members will accommodate your needs and figure out a way to make your life easier.

For the quickest possible turn around and the easiest way to initiate a warranty claim. Please visit https://vortexoptics.com/service-request for more information.

Not a Vortex Scope? Not A Problem, here is a list of all the major brand’s warrant claim links

BrandWarranty TypePhoneLink
Vortex OpticsVIP Warranty1-800-426-0048Click
LeupoldLifetime Guarantee1-800-538-7653Click
BushnellIRONCLAD Warranty
30/20/10 Year Lifetime Warranty Depending on product production date
 1-800-423-3537Request

Satoshi Kimura

I am Satoshi Kimura. I enjoy shooting and hunting. I learned from the ground up and spent many hours and dollars on products and parts that don't work. I am writing down my experience and journey so you can enjoy the game faster.

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