If you’ve got AirPods connected but no sound coming out, don’t worry. You’re in the right place. These are some of the most popular true wireless earbuds out there, which means many people are using them and, of course, encountering difficulties as well.
The good news is that there are a lot of different reasons why you might not be getting enough or any sound out of your AirPods. Actually, that’s not good news. The good news is that there are a lot of things you can do to help you solve this problem.
Hopefully, you’ll find the solution to your listening woes quickly and easily by looking at my list of quick fixes for AirPods with no sound.
A Quick Note on AirPods
Apple dropped its first AirPods in 2016 in conjunction with the iPhone 7. Since then, they’ve expanded this brand to a few different product lines.
The good news is that no matter which version or generation you’re using, most of the solutions to not getting any sound from your AirPods are the same.
AirPods Connected, But No Sound Is Coming Out
There are a whole lot of reasons why this might be happening. They can range from physical problems to settings to software issues.
The best thing I can suggest is to scan through this list and look for a solution that you suspect might solve your problem. Try that first and if it doesn’t work, keep trying other suggestions.
It’s possible that dirt, grime, and wax can block out sound entirely. But, it’s more likely that you’ll still hear some sound, however faint, if dirt is your problem. So, if you still hear some sound and your AirPods look dirty, give this a shot. At worst, you’ve cleaned your earbuds, and that can’t hurt.
Don’t wash them under water!
Yes, they’re water-resistant, but that means they’re not 100% waterproof. Seriously, this could just make things worse. Instead, use a clean cloth or paper towel to wipe the dirt and grime away. You can also get detailed cleaning suggestions from Apple here.
Turn on Bluetooth
Yes, the old On/Off problem. It would be embarrassing if anyone was watching, but don’t worry. It’s just me and you, and you know I’ve done this dozens of times.
If the Bluetooth on your device is on and says you’re connected to your AirPods, try turning it off and then on again. Yep, that old gem. It could just be that your device is having a brain fart.
Charge Your AirPods
Your device will likely remember and automatically form a connection with your AirPods. However, if they don’t have enough juice, they won’t be able to produce any sound.
If they’ve gone flat, pop them in their charging case (or connect the charging wire in the case of AirPods Max) for a quick 10-15 minute charge. Try again and see if a dead battery was why your AirPods don’t have any sound.
Forget Your AirPods
No, I don’t mean you should leave them at the bus stop. We’re not there yet. In the Settings on your device, select your Bluetooth controls. If you see the AirPods in the list of devices, select them, and this will bring you to an option to “Forget this device.”
Do it. This will just forget them on that device, and then you’ll have to put them back into Bluetooth connection mode and re-connect. This might very well be the solution to AirPods with no sound.
Check Your Volume Limit
iPhones and many other brands have all sorts of clever functionalities built-in. And, some of it can be a little too clever.
To protect sensitive ears from long-term damage, manufacturers have, quite conscientiously, included a maximum volume limit. This comes preset from the factory at an appropriate level. But it’s possible someone fiddled with your controls and set that maximum level so low that you can’t hear a thing.
To fix this on an iOS device, go to Settings > Music > Volume Limit and adjust the slider. If you’ve found it all the way down, that was probably your culprit right there.
Disable Automatic Detection
Another clever bit of code running your AirPods is Automatic Detection. This setting is designed to detect when your earbuds are in your ears and turn them on automatically, and then turn them off when you take them out.
But, if there’s some issue with the detection, they may refuse to turn on because they don’t think they’re in your ears.
No problem. Go into your Settings > Bluetooth > AirPods > Disable Automatic Ear Detection. OK, try it now.
Update Your Software
If you’ve got this far and nothing has helped, it’s time to call in the big guns. Let’s start with updating your device. If you’re running an old operating system that hasn’t been updated in a while, this can keep all sorts of apps and hardware from working properly.
On an iOS device, go to Settings > General > Software Updates. Once there, update any software that relates to your AirPods (firmware) or perhaps the whole operating system on your device.
Reset Your Network Settings
If nothing has worked so far and you still have no sound coming out of your AirPods, it’s time to drop the bomb. It could be that you have a serious connectivity issue with your device (phone, tablet, whatever you’re trying to connect through).
Well, there’s a way to fix this. But, before you try it, see if you’re having other connectivity issues. Try other Bluetooth headphones or speakers. If nothing is connecting, this might be necessary.
You can reset the network settings on your device but be warned. This will delete all of your stored Bluetooth devices and WiFi networks, so you’ll have to re-build these connections later.
Here’s how you do it…
Go to Settings > General > Reset Network Only. Once that has been performed, first, re-connect to your WiFi to make sure your device is internet-ready. Then, try to pair the AirPods once again.
What if Nothing Works?
Pray. Shake a rattle at the sky. Do a Bluetooth Dance.
Seriously, if none of my solutions worked out for you, the problem is either a complicated software issue or malfunctioning hardware. Either way, it’s time to contact Apple Support or bring your AirPods to an Apple Store. Don’t junk them yet – there’s still hope!
Have More AirPods Questions?
We can help with that. Take a look at our detailed articles on Can Reset AirPods Be Tracked, AirPods Blinking Orange? How to Fix It, Do AirPods Work Well on Android Devices, Simple Tips to Keep AirPods From Falling Out, and How to Clean Your AirPods Pro for more useful information.
Also, check out our in-depth reviews of the Best iPhone Earbuds, the Best Apple AirPods Pro Alternatives, the Best AirPods Alternative, the Best True Wireless Earbuds, the Best Wireless Earbuds For Small Ears, and the Most Comfortable Earbuds you can buy in 2023.
AirPods Connected But No Sound – Final Thoughts
I hope that one of my solutions was the right one for you and that things are back and in happy working order. There are all sorts of reasons why your AirPods have no sound. Don’t worry. They might not be blasting your tunes, but the solutions are usually super simple.
If the solutions that I’ve suggested don’t work, it’s time for professional help, so back to Apple they go. I hope it doesn’t have to go that far, but if it does, you’re in good hands. At least you’ll be in the right place to get new ones if your old AirPods are actually dead.
Until next time, happy listening.