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Headphone jack not working? Try these fixes
Do you need help with your headphone jack? Connect one-on-one with an electronics expert through JustAnswer, an Android Authority partner.
Have you found yourself in a situation where your headphone jack is not working? Problems with the headphone jack on smartphones aren’t as uncommon as you may think. It happens to many users and can be extremely frustrating, especially for those who regularly listen to music or find themselves in noisy environments.
This post will guide you through five fixes that will, hopefully, solve the problem you are experiencing. Without any further delay, let’s get started.
Make sure your headphones aren’t broken
The first step when you find your headphone jack is not working is an obvious one. It’s entirely possible that there’s nothing wrong with the headphone jack and that the headphones are the problem. You can check this out quickly just by plugging them into another device. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a smartphone. A laptop, TV, or any other device that has the 3.5 mm jack onboard will do.
If you can’t hear any audio when using your headphones with a different device, you’ve found the source of the problem. Some headphones come with removable cables, so try replacing those and see if the issue is the cable or ports. If that doesn’t help, replace your headphones. If they’re working fine with a different device, something else is to blame. It’s time to try out one of the other fixes listed below.
We also recommend plugging a different pair of headphones into your smartphone before moving forward. Although it’s rare, there’s still a chance that your original pair isn’t compatible with your smartphone, even if they work with other devices.
Check to see if the smartphone is connected to a different device via Bluetooth
If you’ve paired the smartphone with wireless headphones, a speaker, or any other device via Bluetooth, the headphone jack could be disabled. Usually, when you plug in your headphones, the smartphone should recognize them, and everything should work as intended regardless of the Bluetooth settings. However, this isn’t always the case.
All you have to do is open up the settings menu on your device, find the Bluetooth option, and check to see if it’s on. You can also dig deeper into the settings and see which Bluetooth devices the smartphone is connected to.
Related: The best Bluetooth speakers
If the phone is connected to an audio device via Bluetooth, you can try a couple of things. You can disconnect audio devices or forget them, but the easiest solution is to turn Bluetooth off and plug in your headphones. If they still don’t work, you should move on to the next solution on this list.
Clean the headphone jack
As you can imagine, a lot of dust, as well as lint and other debris, can make its way into the headphone jack over time. This might cause the problem, as dirt can block the connection between the headphones and the port.
The first thing you should do if your headphone jack is not working is to look into the jack to see just how dirty it is. A flashlight might come in handy for this. The next step is to try and clean it and hope that solves the issue. There are a lot of different ways to do this, some of which work better than others. One option is to blow into the headphone jack, which should take care of at least some of the dust and lint found inside. You can also use a can of compressed air if you have one nearby.
Also read: How to clean your headphones and earbuds
Another great option is to use a cotton swab. Push it into the jack and swirl it around a little bit to get the dust and lint out. Be very careful when you do this, as the last thing you want to do is cause any more damage to the device. You can also damp the cotton swab with rubbing alcohol but make sure you don’t use too much of it.
Look into the headphone jack again to see how much dust and lint you cleaned up. If things look better, plug in your headphones to check if everything works as it should now.
Check audio settings and restart the device
There’s also a chance the problem isn’t with the jack or the headphones you’re using but has to do with the device’s audio settings. If this is the case, you’ll be able to sort it out in no time. The most obvious fix is to check if you muted your phone or put the volume down. Most phones have physical buttons for this, but you can also access all the audio options within the phone’s settings.
Typically, there aren’t many settings like these on a smartphone, so you should find the problem more or less right away. If there is one, that is.
If everything seems to be in order, but your headphone jack is not working, there’s another simple fix you can try, which is restarting your device. This can sometimes solve loads of different smartphone-related problems and takes less than a minute to do. Just press and hold the power button, select the restart option, wait for the device to turn back on again, and then check to see if the problem persists.
Time to call the repairman
If none of the fixes listed above work, it means the problem isn’t quite as minor as hoped. If your device is still under warranty, the best thing to do is contact the retailer or manufacturer. Explain the problem to the company, and send it in for repair or replacement. This can take quite some time in some cases, but at least it’s free.
If the warranty has expired, you may have phone insurance. Just make a claim with your provider.
The third solution is definitely the worst one. You may have to get the device repaired by the manufacturer or someone who knows what they are doing. You’ll have to open up your wallet and pay up, but at least you’ll be able to use the headphone jack again. Otherwise, you could opt for a pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones. That isn’t truly a solution, but at least you will be able to use headphones.
Read next: The best phones with a headphone jack
Do you still need help with your headphone jack? Connect one-on-one with an electronics expert through JustAnswer, an Android Authority partner.