How to fix an AirPod not working

Apple’s AirPods changed the headphone industry when they first launched a few years ago. There are now a number of options, including the impeccable second-generation AirPods Pro, which are still hugely successful for a number of reasons. But what do you do when one of your AirPods doesn’t work?

Since there is no single cause behind AirPods issues, there is no single solution either. The reasons could range from basic issues like low battery or dirty AirPods to more complex issues like network or audio setup issues. Therefore, if one of your AirPods is not working, it is recommended that you follow the troubleshooting steps until your AirPod starts working properly.


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Apple’s headphones are popular, but unfortunately, so are counterfeit products.

Check out some of the steps below to hopefully resolve the issue. Possible solutions are listed from simplest to most complex, so try them in order and check that your AirPod is working properly after each step.

The advice provided in this guide applies to all AirPods versions, including AirPods 1 and 2, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max.

1 Perform a quick case reset

Refresh bluetooth connection

AirPods Pro 2

This is the simplest fix, so a good starting point:

  1. Place the two AirPods back into the charging case.
  2. let them charge 30 seconds or longer.
  3. Open the cover near the connected device.
  4. Click your AirPods when they appear on the screen.

2 Check battery

An AirPod may not be working due to a drained battery

Airpods - close to iPhone

AirPods can discharge at different rates, so even if they are charging at the same time, they may lose power first. Monitor battery life and recharge when necessary. To charge AirPods:

  1. Place the AirPods into the charging case and close the lid.
  2. Connect the charging case to the charging cable.
  3. Connect the cable to the power adapter and plug it in.

3 Turn Bluetooth on and off

Bluetooth adapter may need to be reset

AirPods in front of Chromebook and the Bluetooth settings page of AirPods.

If audio isn’t streaming properly from your device to the earbuds, reset Bluetooth. Take iPhone as an example:

  1. Open set up app
  2. choose Bluetooth
  3. Click Bluetooth slider to turn it off
  4. Click Bluetooth slider to turn it back on

4 Adjust audio balance

The balance may tip in favor of one AirPod

Adjust audio balance on iPhone

Check to make sure the balance is not tipped so that all sound is sent to only one AirPod. If you are using an Apple device:

  1. Open set up app.
  2. choose Accessibility.
  3. choose Audio/video options,
  4. turn up balance slider and center it.


How to change the volume on AirPods Pro 2 without touching your phone

This subtle feature on AirPods Pro 2 helps you adjust the volume without touching your phone.

5 Restart your device

Restarting can resolve technical issues

iPhone 14 Pro Max Lightning port

Restarting clears active memory and can correct temporary problems, so restarting your device quickly may help. To restart your iPhone:

  1. according to right button as well as Increase the volume or Volume down Press the buttons simultaneously.
  2. Press and hold both buttons until you see “Slide to power off“.
  3. Slide it open to close it.
  4. Press and hold right button Turn it back on until the Apple logo appears.


3 tips to make your AirPods louder

These are my go-to when my AirPods aren’t playing music or podcasts at the volume I want.

6 Clean AirPods

they may be clogged

Clean AirPods Pro

Sometimes, dust and other accumulated debris can hinder the sound output in your AirPods. Check for buildup and if the speakers appear clogged, clean your AirPods accordingly. Just make sure you don’t push dirt further into the speaker. Here are basic instructions for cleaning AirPods:

  1. Use a dry cotton swab and alcohol to clean the speaker.
  2. Dry your AirPods with a paper towel or microfiber cloth.
  3. Use a dry brush to remove debris.
  4. Do not use any sharp objects to clean AirPods.


How to clean and disinfect AirPods and AirPods Max

Based on our own experience and Apple’s official steps, here’s how to properly clean your in-ear or over-ear Apple headphones.

7 Reset AirPods connection

Forget and re-pair your AirPods

AirPods Pro serial number

If the previous steps failed, reset your AirPods. Please follow the steps to unpair and re-pair:

  1. Open the AirPods case near your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Open set up app.
  3. Tap the AirPods name near the top of the screen.
  4. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click Forgot this deviceand then confirm the decision.
  5. Make sure your AirPods and their charging case are charged.
  6. With the AirPods charging case open, press and hold the small button on the back of the charging case for at least 15 seconds. The light on the outside of the charging case (or the light inside if you have non-wireless charging AirPods) will flash white, then amber, and then you can let it go.
  7. Close the AirPods case and open it again.
  8. Place the case near your iPhone or iPad and connect it after recognition.

This should completely reset and refresh the AirPods connection to your iPhone or iPad. In many cases, this will completely resolve the connection issue.

8 Reset network settings

Network settings affecting Bluetooth connectivity may be causing the issue

iPhone network settings

Resetting network settings can help, but you’ll need to re-pair your Bluetooth device and re-enter your Wi-Fi password. Try resetting network settings on your iPhone or any device your AirPods are connected to. On iPhone:

  1. Open set up app.
  2. tap General.
  3. choose Transfer or reset iPhone.
  4. tap reset.
  5. tap Reset network settings (Second option from the top).
  6. Enter your password.
  7. Click on red Reset network settings button.

9 Update operating system

Your device may need a software upgrade

iOS 17.2 update on iPhone 15 Pro

Updating your iPhone or whatever device you’re using may resolve the issue, as updates often include bug fixes. Download and install updates as they are free and relatively quick. Your iPhone should update automatically, but you can update manually by following these steps:

  1. Open set up Apps on iPhone.
  2. tap General.
  3. tap Software update.
  4. Wait for it to check for available updates.
  5. If available, tap Install or Download and install Install it.

10 Ask Apple for help

A professional will know what to do

apple store

Amir Hosseini on Unsplash

If you’ve tried all of the above and the issue persists, contact Apple Support for expert help.

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