Why Do AirPods Keep Disconnecting? The Most Common Fixes

AirPods are a stylish and convenient way to listen to music or make phone calls. However, nothing is worse than the volume cutting out during a jam session or an important meeting. The reasons this is happening are quite common and easy to fix. Let’s examine why your AirPods keep disconnecting from your devices and how to fix them.

Why Do AirPods Keep Disconnecting? The Most Common Fixes

Your Firmware Is Out of Date

AirPods have an integrated programming system called firmware, which operates similarly to your computer’s OS. Most of the time, this firmware will update automatically when connected to Wi-Fi to bring the device in line with new industry and security standards. There will be times when you’re away from a Wi-Fi network and get stuck with outdated AirPods that don’t work. You can access your firmware updates from a mobile device.

On iOS Devices

When your AirPods are connected to a mobile device (iPad, iPhone), follow these steps to update their firmware:

  1. Head to Settings and tap Bluetooth.
  2. Select your AirPods from the list of devices.
  3. Tap the i icon (information icon) next to your device’s name.
  4. Here, you can see which version your AirPods have. Check to see if it is the latest version, then when using Wi-Fi (or mobile data if you have it), download and install the current version.

On MacBook and Other Devices

Unfortunately, there is no way to update the firmware of AirPods through Android, Windows, and even MacBook computers. If you need to update your firmware and don’t have an iPhone or iPad, find a friend who does to help you.

Bluetooth Interference

AirPods use Bluetooth to connect to your device. Sometimes, there is interference with other devices around you. For example, a router broadcasts a signal at 2.4 GHz, which is the same frequency as Bluetooth. Standing next to a router can create interference with your AirPods. Most wireless devices and gadgets like mice or keyboards also broadcast at 2.4 GHz.

If you work in an office or are at a coffee shop, there’s a good chance some interference is causing your AirPods to disconnect. Try to move to a more secluded area and see if that fixes the problem.

Automatic Ear Detection

All AirPod models have built-in sensors that detect whether the AirPods are in your ear. They may shut off if the sensors detect rapid movement from the AirPods.

This is irritating if you have difficulty keeping AirPods in your ears and always have to adjust them. Luckily, you can disable this function by doing the following:

  1. Head to Settings and tap Bluetooth.
  2. Select your AirPods from the list of devices.
  3. Tap the i icon (information) next to the name.
  4. Deselect the Automatic Ear Detection option.

After completing these steps, your AirPods should stay on as long as you are using them, regardless of movement.

Different Bluetooth Versions

AirPods run on Bluetooth 5.0. If you pair them with an older Windows PC, Android device, or even an old Mac, it may run an old version of Bluetooth. When this happens, the AirPods have to downgrade to connect with the device. This lowers the range and connection quality of the AirPods, which can lead to disconnects.

You can buy an external Bluetooth 5.0 drive if you have an old Bluetooth device. These handy tools emit a 5.0 Bluetooth signal.

If you already have a Bluetooth 5.0 adapter, you can use the external drive to boost your signal, giving you more space to move around if you need to be away from your device for a few minutes.

Note: These external drives are usually USB. They are best used with computers, but you can buy adapters for your mobile devices to plug them in.

Accumulated Grime and Wear

AirPods are portable, so you’re probably taking them everywhere you go. This can create a lot of wear and tear on the device, which can pose problems down the line. It’s important to take good care of your AirPods by keeping them in the case when they’re not in use.

Another good way to keep your AirPods running well is to clean them every few days. First, you will need the following materials: 70% isopropyl alcohol, a toothbrush, toothpicks, cotton swabs, and a lint-free cloth.

To clean and maintain the AirPods, follow these instructions:

  1. Put some of the alcohol on a cotton swab and the cloth.
  2. Use the cotton swab to get into all of the crevices of the devices. Take out any debris or ear wax.
  3. Use a toothpick to go around the edges and creases of the AirPods. Be gentle with this part, as the mesh part of the AirPods is very delicate and can break.
  4. Take the toothbrush and gently clean out any small or fine debris from the AirPods.
  5. Wipe down the AirPods with the cloth, and you’re done!

Keeping your AirPods in good condition is important. If you take care of them, you shouldn’t have too many issues connecting them to your devices.

Here are a couple more ways you can get your AirPods working again.

Put Your AirPods in Their Case

After your AirPods disconnect, there are times when they don’t automatically reconnect to your device.

When you put your AirPods back in their case, the charging function ends any connection the AirPods have. When you take them back out, they will try to reconnect again.

Reset Your AirPods

Like most gadgets, AirPods can usually be fixed by manually resetting them. To do this, do the following:

  1. Place your AirPods in the case. They will need at least 75% of their battery life, so if they are low, charge them now.
  2. Open the lid of the case, with your AirPods in, and hold the back button for 20 seconds.
  3. Once the light turns from white to yellowish, you’ve successfully reset your AirPods.

Your AirPods should be working normally now. Check and make sure there are no more disconnection problems, then enjoy!

No Sound From Connected AirPods

There are a few reasons you might not be receiving sound on one or both earbuds, even with proper connectivity. One common cause is that your phone audio settings are not balanced. The best way to fix that is to reset your AirPods, but you can also go into your device’s settings and rebalance your audio. Here are the instructions for all available devices.

For iOS Devices

  1. In your device’s settings, go to the Accessibility tab.
  2. Choose Audio/Visual.
  3. Set the balance bar to the middle.

For Android Devices

  1. In your device’s settings, go to the Accessibility tab.
  2. Select the Audio and On-Screen Text tab.
  3. In the Audio balance section, set the balance bar to the middle.

For Mac

  1. From the top menu bar, click the Speaker icon, then select Sound Settings.
  2. Find the Output tab and scroll down to Output & Input.
  3. Make sure the Output tab is selected, choose your AirPods from the list, and adjust the Balance bar to the middle.

For Windows

  1. In Settings, select System.
  2. Find the Sound tab, then click.
  3. In the Output section, choose your AirPods as the output device.
  4. Click on Device Properties.
  5. Set the audio balance for both AirPods to 50.


Do AirPods work the same on Android and Windows devices?

AirPods connect through Bluetooth, so any Bluetooth-enabled device will be able to connect. However, many features, including battery life check and automatic ear detection, are only enabled on iOS devices. You also cannot check for updates for your AirPods using anything other than an iOS device.

Luckily, there are a few third-party apps that add some much-needed functionality for your device with AirPods. You can find a good guide for them online.

I’ve tried all of these methods, and my AirPods are still disconnecting. What should I do?

Chances are that the problem lies with your playing device, not the AirPods. Go through your device and troubleshoot the Bluetooth settings. A good, easy way to check is to find another Bluetooth device and see if you encounter any connection issues.

Before We Disconnect

We hope that this article has helped you with those pesky AirPods disconnecting. We’ve listed the best and most convenient ways to fix this issue, but there’s always more to find out.

For our tech-savvy readers, what are some other methods you used to get your AirPods working again? Tell us all about them in the comment section!

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