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Do AirPods lose sound quality over time?

This post will show you if AirPods and AirPods Pro lose sound quality over time and what you can do about it.

AirPods and AirPods Pro should not lose significant sound quality over time. However, if you listen to them at a loud volume, allow them to get wet or be dropped often, they will likely lose sound quality over time.

When used correctly and not allowed to get damaged, AirPods should not lose sound quality over time for most people. If you have been noticing your AirPods losing sound quality, it would likely be due to something you can fix or because the AirPods are actually damaged as explained below.

Do AirPods lose sound quality over time?

AirPods should not lose significant sound quality over time when they are used properly.

However, some users have reported that their AirPods Pro have reduced their max volume over time.

However, this should not be such an issue, since AirPods Pro can output a high volume when new. If the max volume deteriorates slightly, it should still be loud enough for your use case.

Also, it is not recommended to listen to them at max volume anyway since it can damage your hearing and cause tinnitus.

If you consistently listen to them at a high volume, allow them to get wet or you drop them, they will likely lose sound quality.

If you notice that your AirPods have been losing sound quality, it would be likely that it is actually due to something that you can fix or because the AirPods are broken.

Possible causes can include needing to clean them because they have earwax in them, they need to be reconnected to your device, they need to be updated, you need to turn the mic off, or because they are broken. More is explained on this below.

Read more: Do AirPods use data?

How long do AirPods sound quality last?

For normally functioning AirPods, the sound quality should stay high throughout the lifetime of the AirPods. The sound quality may deteriorate quickly if the AirPods are allowed to get wet or are dropped.

Also, it may seem like the sound quality is getting worse when it is actually the case that the AirPods are dirty, need to be reconnected to the device, need to be updated or the mic needs to be turned off.

For most people, the battery will die, the AirPods will be lost or damaged before the sound quality starts to deteriorate. Therefore, deteriorating sound quality should not be a significant concern for you.

Read more: Do AirPods need to be near the case to work?

Do AirPods get quieter as they get older?

There are some users who have reported that their AirPods have gotten quieter as they have gotten older.

However, this could also be due to the AirPods being dirty, the AirPods have gotten damaged, they have been dropped or allowed to get wet.

Unless the max volume reduces significantly, it should not be such an issue since the AirPods can be pretty loud by default. If they do become quieter, it should not be an issue for most people.

Why are my AirPods sounding worse?

If your AirPods sound quality has gotten worse, here are some likely causes and solutions:

Dirty AirPods

It could be the case that your AirPods speaker grill is dirty. It would help to try cleaning it as explained by Apple here.

Poor connection

The problem could be that your AirPods have a poor connection with the device you are using. It would help to see if your AirPods sound better when you connect them with a different device.

It could also be the case that you need to reconnect your AirPods and it would help to try reconnecting them to your device.

To reset and reconnect your AirPods, do the following:

  1. Forget the AirPods on the device you are using
  2. Put your AirPods in the case
  3. Press the button on the case for 15 seconds until the light flashes orange on the case
  4. Wait 30 seconds
  5. Open the lid and hold the button on the case
  6. Reconnect your AirPods to your device

They need updating

It might also be the case that your AirPods need updating. To update AirPods, you need to put them in the case while it is being charged then put a connected iPad or iPhone near the case.

You need to switch the mic to the internal mic

If the problem is only happening with FaceTime or on Mac, Some users have found that for some reason when the AirPod’s mic is enabled on FaceTime or Mac, it results in the sound quality being bad.

To fix this, you need to switch to the internal mic on your iPhone, iPad, or Mac.

The reason for this is that when you are using the AirPod’s mic on FaceTime, the audio codec changes in both directions which is why you need to switch to the internal mic.

Water damage

It could also be the case that the issue is due to water damage. This would be more likely if your AirPods did get wet recently.

Broken

If your AirPods sound bad regardless of the device you are connected to and all of the above has not helped, the best option would be to go to an Apple store and see if they can fix or replace your AirPods.

How to make AirPods sound better

To make your AirPods sound better, it would help to clean them, reset and reconnect them to your devices, update them (as mentioned above), and to switch the mic on your device to the internal mic.