Apple users, as a whole, love their AirPods. With these earbuds, you can listen to music at a high quality, switch playing between devices, and even enjoy a complete transparency mode. However, when your left or right-sided AirPods stop working, there is a cause for concern. What causes this issue to happen, and how can it be fixed?
To fix the issue of AirPods only playing in one ear, try out the following troubleshooting checks:
- Check that the AirPods are fully charged and clean.
- Reconnect Bluetooth and your AirPods.
- Restart your iPhone and check for updates.
- Apply a complete reset on your AirPods.
- Have a look at your Stereo Balance Settings
- Contact Apple Support.
To fully understand how to carry out each step in this process, you need to read through the entire article. While there are different generations of the Apple AirPods, these settings will apply to most of them.
How Do I Fix My AirPods When Only One Works?
When you realize one of your AirPods isn’t playing music as it should, it will undoubtedly cause concern. After all, your AirPods aren’t cheap, and you don’t want to have to repair them or replace them if they are permanently damaged. However, there are troubleshooting steps that can help resolve the issue. If there is a minor glitch, it can be resolved by looking out for these minor fixes.
Check AirPods Battery
One of the most common issues you will encounter is that you might have just drained the battery with use. AirPods charge separately, and one can die faster than the other depending on which one you are using more. You can check the battery status of the AirPods by checking the battery in your Settings App.
Keep AirPods Clean
The buildup of wax and debris from your ear or its surroundings can affect how the AirPods function. It may not occur to you to clean your AirPods regularly, but just like any other device, they are prone to damage from dirt. You can opt for a professional cleaning or do it yourself with just some 70% isopropyl alcohol.
Your AirPods rely on a Bluetooth connection with your phone to play media and music. If there is instability within the link, the AirPods simply can’t play the same way, or they might sputter. Sometimes, glitches in Bluetooth tools can also cause AirPods to switch off. Here’s how to disconnect and reconnect Bluetooth on your iPhone:
- Open up the Settings App on your phone.
- Tap on Bluetooth to view your settings.
- Switch off the Bluetooth slider.
- After some time, switch the slider back to turn it on again.
Reconnect Your AirPods
After carrying out all of this, if there is still an issue with one of your AirPods, you need to try this step. You will need to reconnect your AirPods by making your iPhone forget the device completely. Sometimes, glitches can affect your existing Bluetooth connections, but luckily, there is a simple way to turn all of this around.
In your Settings, move over to Bluetooth, and in the listed devices, find your AirPods. Click the ‘i’ next to the name and select ‘Forget This Device.’ When you press ‘Forget Device, the iPhone will remove all information about it from its data. You can now pair it like you did the first time you set up your AirPods.
Try An iPhone Restart
One of the ways to rule out any short-term problems is to attempt an iPhone restart. This move doesn’t eradicate deeper issues with the AirPods or the Apple iPhone. It just helps to erase the short-term problems, especially if your iPhone is overloading with information.
Just hold down the volume and power button, and slide the Power Slider to turn the phone off. You can then restart the iPhone by pressing down the power button.
Check Stereo Balance
A fair bit of customization is allowed within the iPhone operating system if you know where to look. In the Accessibility section of the Settings App, you can find a Stereo Balance option. This helps you control where the iPhone plays the audio between the two ears. By mistake, you may have shifted this out of balance, but there’s a way to fix it:
- Open up the Settings App on your iPhone.
- Navigate over to the Accessibility feature in the App.
- Now, tap on Audio/Visual to open up the settings.
- Here, you will see the Stereo Balance slider.
- Move it towards the center if it is off so that you can hear from both ears.
With every iteration of the iPhone operating system, a lot of things happen. Apple introduces new features and fixes bugs in older system versions. This benefit is why it is always essential to have your phone up-to-date with the latest software versions. Updates happen for free and can happen automatically as well. All you need is a WiFi connection and for you to plug in your phone for charging.
Contact Apple Support
If your left AirPod is simply not working after all of this troubleshooting, you might have to contact Apple Support. They can give you a better idea of the issue at hand and may ask you to visit the nearest service center to have the AirPods looked at by an expert.
What Happens When the Left AirPod Mic Isn’t Working?
In contrast with what we have discussed above, one of your AirPods may be playing music but cannot be used as a microphone. If that is case, you have a quick fix available to solve your problem. In your Microphone settings for the AirPods, you can choose between three options:
- Automatic (it will switch between)
- Always Left AirPod
- Always Right AirPod
If you accidentally switched on the last option, the mic on your left AirPod has been switched off. By choosing ‘Automatic’ or ‘Always Left AirPod,’ you can restore this capability.
Having one of your AirPods stop playing music completely can be devastating and worrying. However, with all of these troubleshooting tricks, you might identify the issue at resolve it fast. If that is not happening, we suggest that you contact Apple for help.