How To Clean Your Earbuds

Aadhya Khatri - Dec 03, 2019


How To Clean Your Earbuds

Cleaning your earbuds are necessary to keep the sound quality and protect your health. Here is how you can do so.

Cleaning your earbuds are necessary to keep the sound quality and protect your health. Here is how you can do so to make sure that your earbuds are in pristine conditions.

Before You Clean

Disconnect The Earbuds

Wired earbuds draw power from the device they are connected to, so always disconnect before you try to clean them. The chances of getting electrocuted are slim, but you do not want to take that risk.

earbuds-clean-disconnect
Wired earbuds draw power from the device they are connected to, so always disconnect before you try to clean them

See Where The Buildups Are

Now, see where most buildups are to know how to clean the earbuds. Earwax usually resides on the grilles, but sometimes it can make its way to the mesh grille, which you will have to be extra careful.

Cleaning

Here are some different methods to clean your earbuds. Most of them will cost you nothing. However, if you worry that you may do damage to these earphones, buy some specialized tools for the job.

Submerging earbuds in liquid is a bad idea to clean them, even if they are water-resistant. They may survive, but sometimes they do not.

Soft Cloth

Earbuds that do not go with ear tips should not be cleaned with detergents like shampoo or soaps as they are very sensitive. The best way is to dampen a piece of cloth and wipe them. Do not let any liquid makes its way through the openings to the inside of the pair. When dealing with these parts, use a dry swab instead. When you are done cleaning, let the pair dry completely before using them or putting them back to the charging case.

A Solution Of Soap And Water

earbuds-clean-soap-and-water
A solution of warm water and soap is highly versatile and it can be used for earbuds too

A solution of warm water and soap is highly versatile and it can be used here also. In a bowl, mix water with a few drops of detergent and damp a piece of cloth with this solution. This method is excellent for the wires and the outer castings.

However, as no liquid is allowed to come in contact with the grilles, you might want to read on to find another way to clean this particular part. Do the same for the input jack as this part cannot be wet either.

When you are done, choose a cool and dry place to put the earbuds there for one to two hours. Make sure that no water can drip on them.

Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is another ideal solution to clean the outer casting and the wire.

You do not want to let it comes in contact with the grilles and other sensitive parts either because despite being more potent, rubbing alcohol is still liquid and can damage the earbuds.

earbuds-Rubbing-Alcohol
Rubbing alcohol is another ideal solution to clean the outer casting and the wire

And as with other methods involving liquid, set the pair on one side to dry before you use them.

Using A Toothbrush

You might want to use a separate toothbrush for this job. Just a regular one with nylon briskets will do as nylon does not create electricity.

This is an ideal way to clean the mesh as it involves no liquid. Use a circular motion to clean and do it gently; otherwise, the gunk and dirt you are trying so hard to remove will be forced back into the inside of the earbuds.

earbuds-mesh-toothbrush
Using a toothbrush is an ideal way to clean the mesh as it involves no liquid

When you are done, clean the toothbrush to reuse it, but do not brush your teeth with it.

Using Adhesive

A combination of toothbrush and liquid will be enough to clean any type of earbuds, but there is another alternative to try, which requires only a piece of adhesive. And it can clean even the most fragile part of an earbud.

Shape the putty so that it can reach all the corners of the earbuds. Once you are done, try different angles to make sure all the nooks and crannies are covered.

Combo Methods

These methods can be used with each other for the best results. The adhesive can be used on the sensitive parts while the soapy water can do a great job cleaning the outside of the earbuds.

For hard-to-reach corners, pushpins and needles can be employed but go easy when you use these pointy objects as they can cause damages like scratches.

Cleaning Eartips

Many earbuds come with their own ear tips. More expensive models even have tips made out of memory foam for a better fit. Since the silicon ear tips have no electronic part or electricity going into them, cleaning them is easy as all you have to do is to wipe them with a piece of a damp cloth.

earbuds-eartips-clean
Since the silicon ear tips have no electronic part or electricity going into them, cleaning them is easy as all you have to do is to wipe them with a piece of a damp cloth

Since ear tips can stick to the earbuds, removing them might be a problem, but it will be the only problem here. Do not lose them, though. They are small, with nor wire attached to them, and easy to get lost.

If you have memory foam tips, you need to be more careful. Most manufacturers will tell you that these ear tips were not meant to be cleaned, and when they got dirty, the best thing you could do was to buy a new pair. The buildup and earwax you see have already made their way into the foam, and if you try to remove them, the foam might be torn.

Cleaning True Wireless Earbuds

Wireless earbuds are becoming more common and cleaning them regularly will make sure that they are in the pristine state for the best sound quality possible. Please bear in mind that submerging them in water or any kind of liquid will not wash away the gunk or earwax. Your best bets are adhesive putty or toothbrush.

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