EASY Fix: One Earbud Not Working [Left Or Right] – SOLVED!!

As a regular earbuds user, you can experience a few issues – out of which one side of earbud not working is the most common one.

It is common for most of us to instantly rush to a store and replace earphones. However, there is always a chance that the problem can be fixed!

So, How can you fix One Earbud Not Working Issue?

Here are some potential solutions to your One Earbud Not Working problem:

one earbud not working solved

Let’s take a look at each solution in detail.

Check Mono/stereo Audio settings

If you are plugging the earbud into an old device, the sound setting needs to be checked. In many cases, they could fall under the category of mono.

In that case, you should turn that off so the stereo mode is on and both earbuds can listen to music in a balanced manner.  Also, you must make sure that the volume balance slider is in the middle.

Here is How you can Adjust volume Balance slider to fix one side of earbud not working issue:

  • Go to Control Panel and select Sounds.
  • In the Sound dialog box, right-click on the device name and select Properties.
  • Choose the Levels tab in the Microphone Properties dialog box and then adjust the slider.

balance slider volume

This will let your earbuds work normally and also enable you to enjoy music with both earbuds working simultaneously. In case you have powerbeats pro, here is how to connect powerbeats pro to windows 10!

Clean headphone jacks

It is habitual for us to carry our headphones wherever we go. While the portability is a boon, we should also know about the maintenance.

As headphones travel with us, they can get stuck with dirt and dust that can cause one of the earbuds to malfunction.

  • Take out the headphone and then use only one side.
  • Check the earbud that is not working and then clean that bud.

You can use a dry cloth or a pointed toothpick to clear the dust. If you are new to using your headphones, you should be cautious about your earbud maintenance routine as not doing it could also lead to left earbud not charging!

For cleaning earbuds properly, dip a cotton swab slightly into a bowl of lukewarm water and then clean the outer region.

Note. Never let the pointed tip reach the inner region. Never let water get into inner parts as well. This can result in short-circuit and hamper the earbud on the whole.

After you clear the dust, your earbud is going to work just fine. In case headphones sound echoey, try our guide!

Straighten up the earphone cord

Using an earphone that has long cords? Perhaps, not many have switched from wired to wireless headphones. If you are that person using wired headphones, this solution is for you.

The way you wrap the cord can break a portion of the wire or also result in audio loss. You may have to troubleshoot the cord to find out the portion causing the problem.

Wound the region with an insulating tape and straighten up the earphone cord.

This is also a reminder to switch to earless headphones if you are not comfortable with straightening up each time. This can save your time and also the risk of getting exposed to a likely-to-be-damaged lengthy wire.

Also, remember to always listen to music with wires that are in a straight position. Curvy or tangled positions can result in audio loss and sometimes you may also wonder why does one earbud sound louder than the other.

Restart Your Device

A quick fix to the problem is to try restarting the device. Whether you use a phone or a PC to listen to music, the approach to restart the device could typically be easier.

When you restart the device, the software can get updated resulting in the proper functioning of both earbuds.

Using Bluetooth wireless headphones? This section is for you. As you restart the device, you may have to try repairing wireless headphones. Restarting the device is not just essential since software updates are mandatory for headphones as well.

Long press the power button on your headphone and it will flash a light indicating the readiness to pair. Let your device connect with the headphone. This approach is probably the first thing you should try when your earbud is posing a problem, a step we recommend in our guide to connect aftershokz to iphone.

Fix Half point problem

The most underestimated problem affecting earbuds is the half-point issue. What does this issue exactly mean?

Let’s say you have plugged in a wired headphone to your device and the sound is normal on both earbuds. However, as you transition to the wireless mode, it might not work completely. This halfway point issue happens as a result of a mechanical issue in the port and it happens even with the best earbuds for calling.

Here is how you can resolve the earbuds half-point issue in a few steps.

  • Insert the jack and confirm that it is working normally.
  • Plug it out and then replug the jack with a slight force in all directions.
  • Now that the mechanical issue gets resolved, you can switch from wired to wireless without stopping the sound.

This is an easy way to activate the earbud’s functionality without having to spend anything towards it. Now, the device also gets ready to work with wired and wireless headphones.

Note. This is a condition when there is a transmission problem while playing the audio and it can be adjusted with the port.

Fix Wiring Issues of Earbuds

As soon as one of the earbuds stops working, it is important to check if wires and sockets are working normally. It is common for tiny cables to have a break in the middle. If the earphone wire poses a problem, you can fix it in two ways – buy a new one or troubleshoot the damaged wire.

If you have made up your mind to fix the damaged cable, here are the steps to follow.

  • With a knife, gently slice the plastic region surrounding the jack and remove it.
  • Make use of a lighter to insulate the region.
  • If you have access to a soldering tool, you can directly solder the region so they get together due to the heat-shrinking event.

Your damaged cable will now look new and complete to insert into your device. What happens when the wire is shorted? This is a condition if you have a wired headphone that has tangled upon usage.

Perhaps, you may have to insulate the shorted region. Here are the steps.

  • Insert the headphone into your device.
  • Find out the bent region and remove the tangle to find if you could hear on both earbuds.
  • As soon as you spot the damage, remove that section with a cutter.
  • As soon as you remove the plastic cord, you should spot copper wire, colored wire, and insulated region.
  • Tangle/twist copper wires and join colored wires with the headphone. This joining can be carried out with the help of insulated tape.

Note. You can cut insulation wires in this process since you are going to freshly insulate the region.

Caution. If you are new to this process of fixing wires, you should take it to a technician since they can handle it with utmost safety and apply the expertise.

Some of you might find this process to be exhaustive. In that case, all you can do is purchase a new cable. Alternatively, the socket issue can be fixed with a mobile technician.

Re-insert the jack rightly

The quick fix for an earbud not working is to unplug and replug the earphone into the jack. Often, the earbud does not get seated properly if you are using wired headphones.

In the case of wireless headphones, you should check if the charging case pairing is appropriately done. Let the earbud seat inside your ears properly.

If not, it can hamper the audio flow and let you spend extra towards fixing the earphone on the whole.

Try a new set of earbuds

The last fix that you can adopt if none of the approaches mentioned above works is to check with another pair of earphones.

If you have a spare earphone, you should try connecting that to your device to check if both earbuds work on that aspect. If so, you can confirm that the problem is with your earphone and it is time to replace them.

If another earphone poses the same issue too, then the problem is with the device that you are using. You may have to change the charging case/device and find the source causing this problem.

Your existing earbuds might require replacement if they have been in use for long.

Frequently asked questions – Right / Left Earbud Not Working

1) Why is my One JBL not working?

The common reason for a JBL earbud to malfunction is improper pairing. It so happens with recent Bluetooth headphones that an earbud might not pair properly and all that you might need to do is to reset the device.

Turning it off and then turning it on after 30 seconds can make significant changes. Alternatively, you can also check if the problem lies with the device you are connecting it to. You can also try steps mentioned in our guide to fix Powerbeats Pro Keep Turning Off!

2) How to fix Skullcandy one side of earbuds not working

With Skullcandy earbuds, the common issue for them to stop working is because of excessive ear wax. An uncleaned earphone is a reason for earbuds to get completely damaged.

If you are using your earphones regularly, you should also make it a habit to clean them weekly once. This will avoid entry of your earwax into the earbud and let it function normally.

3) Beats earbuds one side not working

Are you using Beats earbuds that suddenly began malfunctioning? The problem could be with the cable that is either damaged or shorted or not plugged in properly.

In the case of a damaged or shorted wire, you may have to remove the damaged space and then connect the cut region with insulation tape.

If you have not plugged in properly, unplug and then plug it again.

4) Galaxy buds one side not working Fix

With Galaxy buds plus one being used commonly, all that you might need to do is when an earbud fails to function is to try another set of earphones. In order to determine the source causing the problem, you may have to double-check with a pair of earphones.

If you can hear from those earbuds properly, the problem is with your actual earbud. Otherwise, you may have to troubleshoot your device.

5) How to fix One Raycon earbud is not functioning

For a Raycon earbud to stop functioning normally, a dead battery could be the reason. If it runs out of charge, it can interrupt the sound setting. Charge it immediately and use the earbud after an hour.

The problem should most likely get fixed as soon as you charge the earbud/headphones.

6) Fix AirPods one side not working

If one of the earbuds in Airpods is posing a problem, it could be due to low volume or sound setting. Adjust the volume of Airpods on your device.

Here are the steps to follow to fix one AirPod not working:

  • Pair Airpods with the device and then tap Settings on your phone.
  • Select Sound and then choose the device name.
  • Select Properties and you can see an option to use the slider to adjust the volume.
  • Slide to your right and the balancing should happen.

This will fix one airpod not working issue.

7) Bose earbuds one side not working

With Bose earbuds, problems like malfunctioning can happen due to the broken socket or half-point issues. You should cross-check if the device works normally with wired headphones. If so, the half-point issue can be fixed with mechanical triggers.

If the headphone does not work, either way, you should replace it with a new set of earphones.

8) How to fix earphones one side is silent?

When one of the earbuds is silent on your earphone, you should check the sound balance on your device. Alternatively, you should also check if water has entered one of the earbuds stopping it from working properly.

There are ways to fix earphones when one side is silent.

  • The earbud is dirty or your earwax has damaged the bud.
  • The earbud has a software issue and you may have to update it immediately.
  • Adjust the sound setting of each earbud on your device.

Whether you use a phone or a PC to sort the earbud issue, you can easily adjust the system audio setting.

Note. Do not purchase another pair of earbuds until you confirm the source of the issue. This can save you money and effort.

9) What happens when one earbud stops working?

When one earbud stops working, it can often be a problem related to damaged or shorted wire. A simple twist of the cord is going to fix the problem. It is the tension that you have caused to one section that is posing a problem and a twist will instantly straighten up the cord.

In some cases, you may have to check the sound balance and if nothing works, the only solution is to purchase a new pair of earbuds.

10) How long should earbuds last?

Earbuds need to last for 8 months – 2 years depending on the brand, usage, and maintenance.

If it is a wireless headphone, the maintenance is going to be easier but the usage can invariably increase. On the other hand, if it is a wired headphone, you should be cautious about the usage and brand. Sometimes, they may wear out or become outdated. In this case, the earbud needs a replacement.

If your earbuds are posing issues even before the aforementioned duration, you can use one of the solutions mentioned in this article to fix the same. Alternatively, you may also have to keep a check on other indicators like lights, sound quality, and cable faults.


Buying an earbud is not a great thing but maintaining it matters the most. A common issue with earbuds is one of them not working. This can happen due to several reasons like shorted wire, dirty earbuds, sound settings imbalance, curvy cable, and half-point problems.

For every reason mentioned here, the article presents a handy solution that you can instantly try at home. However, you may have to stay cautious if you are going to work with a damaged or shorted wire since you need experience to solder joints and give them a fresh look.

We have tried every solution listed here and they are going to fix a majority of the problems. What if none of them works? Purchase a new pair of earphones and it is going to work fine. Apparently, you should keep this as a last option and troubleshoot the earbud as much as possible since this can save your effort, money, and time. Before you here is how to use apple earbuds as mic on pc!

John Gurley

John Gurley

John Gurley is the Founder, CEO, and Editor At Muse Mini. He has a passion for music and headphones and loves to cover all things music!