AirPods have quickly become one of the most popular headphones in the world thanks to their reliable, simple and convenient design. However, like any other headset, AirPods can have issues.
A common issue reported by AirPods users is that their audio only plays in one ear. This problem can of course be very annoying, especially considering the cost of these wireless headphones. Hearing sound in only one ear is perhaps worse than not hearing it at all. It sounds silly, but if you've been through it, you know what we're talking about. It can be very disorienting, especially if you like video games.
Luckily, though, there are steps you can take to fix this problem and get your AirPods back to working order. This article is here to help you fix your AirPods playing in only one ear.
How to Fix AirPods Only Playing in One Ear
There are many reasons why your AirPods may be playing in only one of your ears, and depending on the cause of the problem, the solution will be different.
This can be caused by software glitches, Bluetooth connection issues, or even a battery issue. Either way, we'll look at some of the most common causes and how you can fix them.
The solutions are coming, so follow them closely.
Notes: One of the easiest ways to narrow down the source of the problem is to connect your Airpods to another device. If both work fine, then it's probably a software glitch or something happening with the original device. If the Airpod still does not work, there is a problem with the earpiece.
Check if your AirPods are charged
The first thing you should check if your AirPods are properly charged. One of them may be low on battery, which could cause it to turn off.
To check if your AirPods are charged, simply place them in the charging case, open the case lid, and hold it close to your iPhone or iPad. This will show you the battery percentage for your AirPods. You can also go to your AirPods Bluetooth settings on any Apple device and check the battery there.
If this is your problem, the solution is incredibly simple and can be done right away. Simply place the AirPods in their case and charge them with the Lightning cable.
Once they load, try playing around with them and see if that fixed the issue. If the problem persists and you only have sound in one ear, try the next solution.
Clean your AirPods
In some cases, the problem may simply be that your AirPods are not clean. Make sure both AirPods are thoroughly cleaned. If dust and debris clog the small holes in your AirPods, the volume will be lower or they will stop working altogether.
Use a cotton swab, cotton swab, wet cleaning wipe, or clean gently with a soft-bristled toothbrush. Rub until they are shiny again. Do not use water as you may damage or damage them. If you must use liquid to clean your Airpods, use a minimal amount of alcohol as it dries quickly. Just be careful not to use too much or you risk damaging major internal components.
Finally, you also need to clean the charging case! Using a cotton swab, clean the charging case where the faulty AirPod makes its connection. If the AirPod does not receive a good charge, no sound will come out of it. Clean the port and charge it a bit.
Now put them back and test them. Is there sound in both of your ears? Otherwise, proceed to the next solution.
Reconnect your AirPods
Often AirPod problems are the result of a poor Bluetooth connection. Therefore, the solution could simply be to reconnect your AirPods to your smartphone.
This one might have crossed your mind before, but it's still worth a shot. Disconnecting your AirPods and reconnecting them is one of those simple fixes (like turning something off and on again) that works most of the time. Here's how you can do it on your iPhone:
- Open Parameters on your iPhone.
- Select Bluetooth.
- Press the " je” near your AirPods.
- Click on Log Out and confirm in the pop-up window.
Reconnect the AirPods to your phone by going back to Bluetooth settings and tapping on your Airpods. Are they both working now? If not, there are other solutions.
Turn off bluetooth
Bluetooth issues on your device can cause the AirPods to misbehave. You can disable Bluetooth from Bluetooth settings. Once you've completely turned Bluetooth off, wait about a minute and then turn Bluetooth back on. Again, check if both of your AirPods are working. Proceed to the next step otherwise.
Find your stereo scale
In your smartphone there is a setting for the stereo balance. Stereo balance is the distribution of sound between each of your headphones. The left and right earbuds need to be balanced to work, or you'll run into issues, like possibly a headset that stops working.
Here's how to check it on the iPhone:
- Open the Parameters on your phone.
- Move to the Reduced mobility tongue.
- Scroll to Audio-visual and press it.
- Look at the letters L et R. Move the slider directly to the middle, which will give you a perfect 50-50 balance.
- Turn it off Mono audio option if enabled.
Here's how to check stereo balance on Mac:
- Open System Preferences.
- To choose Ring.
- Click on To party.
- Choose your AirPods from this menu.
- Place the cursor exactly in the center between left et right if it is not done yet.
If that doesn't solve your problem, it's time to try one last step.
Check your device
Maybe your device is to blame, not the AirPods. To see if this is the case, connect to another pair of Bluetooth headphones and see if you experience the same problem. If you do, the fault lies with your device, not the AirPods.
In this scenario, you will need to reset your device settings. Here's how to do it on your iPhone:
- Go to Parameters.
- Select the General tongue.
- Scroll to reset
- Select Reset all settings.
Your device will be reset to factory defaults, but don't worry; your data will not be lost. Connect your AirPods again and see if they both work. If not, it's time to call in the professionals.
Update your operating system
If you've read one of our many articles, you've probably seen this recommendation. This is because many of our technical issues are the result of outdated software. This is also true for the Bluetooth connectivity feature that your Airpods rely on to function properly.
Although software issues usually affect both Airpods, it's worth trying an update. Here's how to update your Apple device:
Update software on iOS
- Open the settings on your iPhone and tap General.
- Press Software update.
- If one is available, press Download and install.
Update software on a Mac
- Tap the Apple icon in the upper left corner of your Mac.
- Click on System Preferences.
- Tap Software update.
- Hit Update now and follow the steps to update macOS.
After the updates are successfully completed, connect your Airpods to check if that solved your problem.
Contact Apple Support
The last resort is to contact Apple directly. Go to their official website, and look at the AirPods section. Look for the Audio Quality tab and look for solutions. From there, you can call them or contact them online.
If none of the other options worked for you, hopefully Apple can explain your issues.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some more answers to your Airpods questions.
What if one of my AirPods is missing?
If only one of the small buttons is missing, you can try using Find My iPhone to locate it. For this to work, you must be within range of the AirPods and have it connected to your iPhone. Tap your AirPods in Find My iPhone and tap "Play Sound". It will be very quiet, so you will have to listen carefully.
If your AirPod is a lost cause, you can purchase a replacement AirPod from Apple.
Will my AirPods work with only one AirPod?
Yes. If you've lost one or one just isn't working, you can still use the headphones. Unfortunately, you won't be able to pair them to a new device without both pods in the case.
But, if they're already paired, you should be fine with just one AirPod for a while.
How do I know if my Airpods are still covered by warranty?
To check warranty coverage for your Airpods, visit this Apple website. You'll need the serial number located on each Airpod, but it's incredibly small and hard to see. An easier option to find the serial number of your Airpods is to go to the Bluetooth settings on a connected device (make sure your Airpods are in your ear and connected).
Tap the "i" icon to the right of your Airpods name to view the serial number. Go back to the website we linked above and enter your serial number.
AirPods have become incredibly popular thanks to their ease of use, reliability, and simplicity. While AirPods are generally a great product, they can have issues just like any other pair of headphones. Issues like audio playing in one ear only are very common and very frustrating.
Hope one of the solutions provided in this article worked for you. Having encountered this problem before, we know how annoying it can be. Let us know what you think about this problem and solutions. Were they helpful? We look forward to reading your comments!