If you’re a headphone user, you’ve probably experienced the problem of one side being quieter than the other. This can be an annoying and frustrating experience when trying to listen to music or podcasts.
There are a few simple reasons why this problem occurs, and while there isn’t always a solution to the problem, there is usually something that can be done. In some cases it’s because of the loudness difference between the left and right earphones.
In others, it could be due to a build up of dirt or wax in one speaker itself. Another common cause is from leaving your earphones plugged into your device for long periods of time without using them. All these things could lead to one side being louder than the other which will need to be fixed before listening music again normally.
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How to Fix Earphones One Side is Quieter
There are some simple solutions that will get you back up and running in no time! In this post we’ll go over 5 easy ways for fixing earphones that have one side that is louder than the other.
1. Is It Just Dirty?
The first thing you should consider is that it may just need to be cleaned. Over time earphones accumulate dirt, wax, and other grime which can reduce the earphone’s ability to create accurate sound. A simple way to check if this is the case is conduct a little experiment to test if your one side has reduced volume because of dirt or poor manufacturing.
First plug in your headphones so both sides are running equally and play some music on your device (make sure the equalizer setting are off). Next hold each headphone up to your ear with one hand while blocking all outside sounds with your free hand. You’ll be able to hear if there is no difference between the two sides at all or if there is an obvious change in sound quality. If the volume on your one ear is lower than the other, cleaning should fix your problem.
2. The Problem Is Not Dirt
If you tried unplugging and plugging your headphones a few times to see if it was just dirt causing the issue and there was no difference in earphone volume, then there are a couple more things you can do before opening up the earphones themselves. First plug in headphones as normal, next put pressure on each side of the headphone with your index finger as if you were pushing down towards the table.
This simple trick can re-seat any loose connections that could be affecting how well they play back sounds from whatever device they’re plugged into. Next try to bend the headphones a bit to see if there is any difference in volume from one side of the earphones. If you do hear a difference, it’s most likely due to a broken connection from constantly bending them back and forth. In this case your best option would be to open up the headphone and reconnect whatever wire might be loose or making contact with another wire that shouldn’t be touching.
3. Potentially Broken Earphones
The last thing you should check for comes down to manufacturing quality control. Headphones are made all over the world, but sometimes one batch can have faulty wiring that causes them not to play sound as well as they should or even completely stop playing sounds on one side depending on how it manufactured. In this case opening up the earphones is your best bet for fixing them.
4. Disassemble and Reassemble Your Headphones
If the problem isn’t dirt or faulty manufacturing, your best bet is to take apart your earphones and reattach any loose wiring you find inside. This is fairly simple to do on in-ear headphones with rubberized “stethoscope” earpieces since all you have to do is remove the rubber tips using a small screwdriver or pick then use tweezers when pulling out any inner wiring that might be shielding sounds from getting through certain channels. For over-the-ear style earphones it’s much more complicated since there are usually multiple parts you’ll need to open up, but if done correctly will give you good results in terms of fixing one side being quieter than the other.
5. Earphone Replacement Parts
If you tried all of the previous steps but are still having one ear with less sound, another possible solution is getting replacement parts for your headphones. If the problem is in the wiring itself, broken wires can be replaced if you’re handy with a soldering iron. This may not be an option for most people, but for those who do have experience using soldering irons it’s probably your best bet at reviving dead earphones.
You can also replace faulty or even completely missing cushions that sit over your ear when wearing these types of headphones. While highly unlikely to happen, if they don’t play any sounds at all from one side you’ll need to disassemble them and replace whatever piece is causing the problem. There are few tools you’ll need to have on hand for this project like soldering irons, tweezers, screwdrivers, and small picks that will help you get into tight spaces inside your earphones.
Have you ever had this problem with your headphones? What did you do to fix them? Please share below. Thanks for reading!