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Why is One AirPod Louder than the Other

Why is One AirPod Louder than the Other

Apple’s AirPods are a pair of Bluetooth-enabled wireless earbuds that have made listening to audio very convenient. They offer great sound quality, improved noise cancellation, long-lasting charge, and pressure-sensitive touch controls.

Unfortunately, many AirPod users often complain that sometimes it can be one AirPod sounds louder than the other.

Both software and hardware issues could cause one of your AirPod to be louder than the other. These reasons include, but are not limited to, faulty AirPods, dirt, outdated firmware, audio volume balance slider, and clogged ears. You’ll have to perform several troubleshooting steps to fix this issue.

This article will show precisely how to fix an AirPod playing louder than the other and how to avoid this problem in the future.

Why is one AirPod louder than the other?

There are several reasons why one AirPod is louder than the other such as:

  • Connectivity issues, such as standing too far from the device.
  • Incorrectly adjusted audio volume balance causes uneven sound distribution between the AirPods.
  • Software bugs and glitches within the AirPods can affect sound quality and volume.
  • Dirt, oils, and ear wax stuck in the speaker mesh of the AirPods reduce audio frequency.
  • Physical damage to the AirPods from a fall could affect the AirPod’s audio quality.
  • Insufficient battery charge level on the AirPod transmitting low volume.
  • The settings on your device could be configured incorrectly, thus affecting the performance of the Airpods negatively.
  • Finally, your device could be lagging, thus affecting sound transmission to the Airpods.

How to fix one AirPod louder than the other?

Below are the best troubleshooting tips you should try to fix the issue:

Clean the charging case and AirPods

One of the main reasons why one AirPod sounds louder than the other is an accumulation of dirt and earwax in the mesh on the AirPods, degrading the audio quality. Here’s how to properly clean your AirPods and their case.

  • Take a soft, lint-free cloth, wet it in 70% isopropyl alcohol, and clean the outer surface of the AirPods.
  • Take another dry, soft, and lint-free cloth and dry the AirPods. Again, do not allow any moisture to seep into the speaker mesh.
  • If the dirt or earwax is stuck, use a soft-bristled toothbrush or anti-static brush and gently scrub it off.
  • Use cotton swabs to clean the inner part of the case and the charging ports.

Adjust the audio balance

Most people use one AirPod at a time to ensure they can hear ambient noises. But you can control the audio volume output on either the left or right AirPod.

So if you changed your audio balance settings, one AirPod could be louder than the other. Here’s how to change the audio balance on your AirPods:

  • Go to Settings on your iPhone
  • Click on Accessibility > Audio//Visual
  • Check if the Balance Slider is in the exact middle. If not, drag it to the center to balance the audio volume manually.

Changing the audio balance settings can also fix the Airpod volume mismatch on your Android phone.

Restart your device

Minor glitches in your phone can affect the AirPod’s performance. Fortunately, restarting your device should clear those temporary bugs and glitches, enabling your AirPods to have acceptable sound output. To restart your iPhone:

  • Press and hold the power button until the Power menu appears on the screen.
  • Push the Power Slider to the right to shut off the iPhone.
  • Your iPhone will shut down.
  • Wait about 30 seconds to a minute, then press and hold the power button to restart the iPhone.
  • If your iPhone has a faulty power button, go to Settings.
  • Press General Settings
  • Scroll down to Shut Down and tap on it.
  • The Power Slide will appear on the screen. Drag it to the right to power down your iPhone
  • Wait about 30 seconds, plug in your charger to restart your phone, and your phone will boot up.

Reset your Bluetooth

If connectivity issues are the reason causing one AirPod to sound louder than the other, then you can try resetting your phone’s Bluetooth. To do this:

  • Go to Settings > Bluetooth
  • Toggle Off and wait for about 20-30 seconds
  • Then toggle it back on
  • Re-select your AirPods and wait for reconnection

Alternatively, you can go to your home screen and swipe down. Then, click on the Bluetooth icon to turn it off, wait for 20 seconds and tap the Bluetooth icon again to activate it.

Recharge your AirPods

Lower battery levels(10% or less) can cause a sound issue on your AirPods. You can even permanently shorten your AirPods battery life if you keep it with a low charge. In this case, recharge your AirPods to see if the issue resolves.

  • Put your AirPods in a fully charged case
  • Wait about one minute.
  • Open the case and confirm the charge status of your AirPods on your device.
  • Place the AirPods in your ears and check the sound on both AirPods by playing audio.

Reset your AirPods

Sometimes your AirPods can have a temporary software glitch causing the performance issue. If recharging your AirPods doesn’t work, try resetting them. This will return all its settings to default and clear any misconfigured settings. To reset your AirPods:

  • Place your AirPods back into the case.
  • Wait about 30 seconds and take them out of the case.
  • Then, on your device, go to Settings > Bluetooth.
  • Find your AirPods, then click “Forget this device,” “Unpair,” and “Remove device,” depending on whether your device is a PC, iPad, iPhone, Android, Macbook, etc.
  • Tap and hold the setup button at the back of the case for 15 seconds.
  • After a short while, the AirPods will flash amber and white to indicate a reset.
  • Re-pair your AirPods with your device and check the issue.

Reset all the settings

Another reason one AirPod could be louder than other is incorrect settings or corrupted files in your device’s settings app. Returning the settings to default may fix the issue. This process will also disconnect your device from any active networks you’re on that could be causing connectivity issues. To reset the network settings in your phone:

  • Go to Settings > General
  • Scroll down to Reset.
  • Tap “Reset Network Settings”
  • Your phone will shut down, reset and turn itself on once the reset is complete.

Update your device’s software

Sometimes if one AirPod plays louder than the other, it could be an issue with your device. In addition, outdated software could cause several issues, affecting your AirPod’s Bluetooth connection.

Always keep your device up-to-date to avoid these issues later. We recommend turning on automatic updates on your phone so that it schedules these updates when you’re not using it. To update the software on your iPhone or Mac manually:

  • Go to Settings > General > Software Update
  • Choose Automatic Updates
  • Toggle on Download iOS updates and Install iOS updates
  • Select Back and check for any available updates
  • If there is one available, tap Install Now

Contact Apple customer support.

If trying all the above methods doesn’t fix an AirPod that is louder than the other, Apple customer support may help. If you’re on warranty and with no previous issues, you may qualify for a free repair or replacement.

AirPods aren’t cheap, and like other electrical devices, they are susceptible to physical and moisture damage and wear and tear. This means they need care to preserve their longevity.  


Having only one AirPod playing louder than the other can be quite frustrating. Fortunately, we have provided a range of solutions to fix this problem. The issues could be software or hardware related. You can try cleaning your AirPod and case, resetting the AirPod, restarting your device, adjusting the audio balance, or restarting the connecting to see if the issue resolves.