How to Fix Problems With Your iPhone Headphone Jack

There’s no doubt that the greatest accessory for an iPhone, or any phone for that matter, is headphones. Providing you with a semblance of privacy and peace amongst large crowds, or even when you’re by yourself, headphones are a must have. Whether you’re on your way to work, working out at the gym, or enjoying a peaceful night at home, headphones surely give a sense of relaxation that is unmatched.

That’s why it’s especially frustrating when for some reason your iPhone stops playing audio, despite the fact that you’ve connected headphones to the device. While, you may right away associate this problem with defected headphones, sometimes the problem actually lies with the headphone jack on the iPhone. For those of you who don’t know, the headphone jack is the socket on your iPhone, or any device with headphone capabilities, used to plug in your headphones.

If you find that you’re unable to listen to audio during phone calls and while browsing the web, you may have a hardware problem occurring. Luckily, you won’t have to plan a trip to the Apple Store. At least, not right away. There are a few quick fixes you can try at home to fix the problem. To get started and fix any problems that may be occurring with your headphone jack, follow the instructions below.

Use Other Headphones

First things first, confirm that the reason you can’t hear audio is indeed due to the headphone jack, and not the specific headphones you’re currently using. A full proof method to figuring this out is using different headphones on your iPhone.

If those headphones work normally, this means that your old headphones were, in fact, defected. However, if you find that the problem persists despite using different headphones (which you should ensure are working), then move on to the methods below to try fixing your headphone jack.

Clean the Headphone Jack

As we all know, the headphone jack is a fairly small socket. There is always the chance that within this small socket, dirt and debris will build up. Most people keep their iPhone’s in their pockets, where there is much potential for lint to fill within the headphone jack.

Even if you don’t keep your phone in your pocket, small sockets, unfortunately, act like magnets for dirt. If a large amount of dirt builds up in your headphone jack, this can cause an interruption between the connection with your headphones. In order to clean out dirt and debris from your headphone jack, follow the instructions below,

1. Using a flashlight or some other device that is able to emit light, look into your headphone jack in order to confirm whether it’s filled with dirt or debris.

2. If you notice a fair amount of dirt or debris, blow into the headphone jack or use compressed air to shoot into the slot. This should be able to remove any lint or dirt that built up in the headphone jack.

3. If you find that the dirt wasn’t removed despite your best efforts, find a cotton swab.

4. Using a very small amount of rubbing alcohol, dampen the cotton swab lightly.

5. Insert the cotton swab into the headphone jack and gently move it around.

After you’ve cleaned out the headphone jack, check to see if the problem has resolved. If it hasn’t move on to the next method.

Restart Your iPhone

While this may sound strange, it’s true that the issue with your headphone jack may actually be a software problem. For this reason, it’s best to try and see if restarting your device will solve the problem. This will refresh your iPhone’s memory, without deleting any of your data. To restart your iPhone, follow the instructions below,

1. Press and hold the Top or Side button until the slide to power off slider appears. Note: If you’ve an iPhone X, instead press and hold the Side and either Volume button until the slide to power off slider appears.

2. Slide the slider to the right.

3. Give your iPhone a few seconds to completely shut down.

4. Now power on your device by pressing and holding the Top or Side button until the Apple logo appears. Note: If you’ve an iPhone X, then press and hold the Side button until the Apple logo appears.

After your device has restarted, insert your headphones into the headphone jack and check to see if the problem has resolved. Keep this method in mind for future references whenever your iPhone, or any device for that matter, experiences any sort of problem.

Contrary to popular belief, turning a device off and then on again works in the majority of cases. However, if this didn’t solve your problem, continue reading this article and try the method below.

Double Check Your AirPlay Output

It’s possible that the reason you can’t hear audio in your headphones is because the audio is being transmitted elsewhere. Your iPhone can usually automatically recognize when your headphones are plugged in, and can thereby, transmit the audio to the headphones.

However, there have been reported cases where, despite having headphones plugged in, the iPhone transmits audio to an AirPlay compatible speaker or AirPods or some other place. In order to ensure that this isn’t happening with you, follow the instructions below,

1. Swipe up from the bottom of your iPhone screen in order to open the Control Center. Note: If you own a newer iPhone model, you may instead, have to swipe down from the upper right part of your screen.

2. Hard press on the music playback controls towards the top right of Control Center.

3. Tap the AirPlay icon on the top right in order to see all available output sources.

4. Tap Headphones.

5. Close Control Center.

You’ve now changed the settings on your iPhone to output all audio to your headphones. Play something in order to see if this solved your problem.

Double Check Bluetooth Output

If you recently connected your iPhone to a Bluetooth enabled device, such as a speaker, it’s possible that your audio is still being transmitted to that device. This is similar to the dilemma in the previous method. In order to ensure that your audio output isn’t being sent to a Bluetooth device, follow the instructions below,

1. Swipe up from the bottom of your iPhone screen in order to open the Control Center. Note: If you own a newer iPhone model, you may instead, have to swipe down from the upper right part of your screen.

2. Tap on the Bluetooth icon in order to disable Bluetooth. The icon will likely be next to the Wi-Fi icon. The icon should no longer be lit up when disabled.

Now that you’ve disabled Bluetooth, plug in your headphones, play any audio file, and check to see if the problem has resolved.

Last Resort

If you’ve tried each and every method above, and find that you still can’t hear audio through your headphones, despite the fact that the headphones are indeed working, this is a sign that your headphone jack is in need of professional repair.

This isn’t a task you should handle yourself as you may further damage your iPhone. If your warranty for your iPhone hasn’t yet expired, you should definitely leave the device alone and not spend time tinkering with it.

If you do so, your warranty will be annulled. Take your device to the nearest Apple Store, where upon inspection, you’ll be informed of what repairs are necessary. If your warranty is still in place, your repair costs will likely be covered by Apple and you’ll soon have a working headphone jack, which will once again allow you to rock that gym workout or morning commute.