As more people discover the ease of using wireless earbuds and manufacturers make them accessible by coming out with affordable options, wired earbuds have almost become a thing of the past.
However, the rise of this new generation of earbuds has also brought up a new problem: having to charge them. Wireless earbuds rely on Bluetooth technology which runs on battery and needs to be constantly charged.
Earbuds come with a case that also acts as a charger, but how do you charge them without the case? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll answer all your questions related to charging your earbuds.
Different Types of Earbuds
There are many different earbuds, but for this guide, we’ll discuss two broad categories, wired and wireless.
1. Wired Earbuds
Wired earbuds do not need to be charged. And why is that? Wired audio devices usually get power from the devices they are plugged into.
All headphones and earbuds are essentially small speakers and function similarly. Speakers get powered through the amplifiers that are put inside the audio jacks of the device you’re connecting them to.
Speakers require much more power and can’t run just by plugging them in the jack. However, headphones and earphones are different and only require some power.
They draw little current from their audio source, which is usually around 10-20mV. Bigger headphones draw more power, but all audio devices can still support them.
They drain some battery from the device they are connected to when in use.
2. Wireless / Bluetooth Earbuds
Wireless or Bluetooth earbuds receive audio signals wirelessly or through Bluetooth rather than via wires, like with wired earphones.
The audio signals from the source device are encoded into a wireless format. Wireless earbuds are built to receive and accept these signals and use them to play audio.
In order for Bluetooth earbuds to run, they have internal batteries to give them power. These are inserted into them by manufacturers. These batteries are rechargeable, so they need to be charged when they run out of power.
Bluetooth earbuds come with their own charging case. This charging case has a built-in battery. When you connect the case to a charger, it automatically charges both the case and the earbuds.
The built-in battery in the case keeps charging the case even when it’s not connected to a charger. The earbuds keep charging until they are not fully charged.
Some people worry about putting their earbuds in the case even when they are not charging. This could be because we’re often told that overcharging is bad for our devices. However, most earbuds cases will detect when your earbuds are fully charged and won’t charge them any further. So, there is no reason not to keep them in the case.
You’re also less likely to lose them that way.
Things to Check Before Charging Your Earbuds
Here are some things to remember before you start charging your earbuds:
1. Assess The Charging Port
Assess the charging port on your earbuds case. The standard port for charging used to be Micro USB. Some older earbud cases still come with a micro USB, so be mindful to keep a micro USB cable around.
Most manufacturers are coming up with a USB Type – C cable, which is much more common. Most manufacturers provide a cable or a charger inside the box in which your earbuds come in. If your Bluetooth earbuds didn’t come with a charger, fret not. There are many other ways to charge them.
Using a charging interface that is somewhat similar to other earbud chargers is recommended. This is because a bigger or fast charger can spoil the internal circuitry of your wireless earbuds, and the current and voltage levels would be too much for them.
2. Update Firmware
Updating all the firmware and software on your earbuds is a great way to ensure everything runs optimally.
Updating the software will vary depending on your earbuds manufacturer. Look up the name of your earbuds manufacturer and product name if needed to find out the best way to do it.
For example:- To update the software on the Samsung galaxy buds, you can download the Galaxy wearable app. Connect your earbuds to the app, and from Earbuds settings, go to Earbuds Software Update.
Before clicking, ensure your earbuds are charged at least 60 % before installation to avoid errors. Also, have your earbuds placed in the case with the lid open.
Different Ways to Charge Your Earbuds
Here are all the different charging methods you can use to charge your earbuds:
1. Charging Case
Charging with the charging case is the most straightforward option. Simply put your earbuds in the case, and they will start charging once you close the lid.
Many cases have an LED light indicator in case their battery is low.
2. Wireless Charging
Using a wireless charger is the easiest way to charge your earbuds. Wireless chargers are not just limited to earbuds but can be used to charge any of your devices, like your phones or smartwatches.
While the traditional way is to connect a cable to the charging port of your earbuds, this hassle-free way of simply placing your earbuds on a wireless charger for them to begin charging will ensure that your earbuds never run out of battery again.
You’ll have to first make sure that your earbuds support wireless charging in the first place before you go ahead and invest in a wireless charger.
How to Charge Your Earbuds Without a Charging Case?
Wireless earbuds are designed to only charge in their specific case. Some earbuds might have a charging port on them, but those are rare.
It is difficult to charge your earbuds without the case. You’ll find many different ways to do so on the internet, but they usually involve uninsulated wires, and you’ll end up damaging your earbuds and causing harm to yourself. The safest way is to charge your earbuds via the case.
If you’ve misplaced your earbud case, then there is no safe way to charge them. If you want to hold on to your earbuds, the only way is to get hold of the case from someone whose earbuds might have stopped working.
Other than that, we suggest investing in a new pair of earbuds and letting go of your old ones.
How Long Does it Take For Wireless Buds to Charge?
The time it takes to charge your earbuds depends entirely on the manufacturer and the particular earbuds they have. Most earbuds take about 1 – 2 hours to charge fully. Your earbuds might take a longer or shorter time. Some earbuds even have fast charging and usually get charged within an hour.
If you’re a hardcore user and use your earbuds all day, then charging time is also something you should take into consideration.
Reducing Damage While Charging
The best way to ensure zero damage to your earbuds or charging case is to ensure they are clean and dry.
- If dust or debris accumulates into your earbuds case, then clean them out properly to avoid any further damage.
- Make sure there is no water or dirt on the earbuds, their charging case, and their port.
Most earbuds come with a water-resistant, but that is usually for the earbuds themselves. The rating will only apply for a short period, after which you should clean out your earbuds if they have any water.
The water rating doesn’t apply to your earbud case or their charging port, as any amount of water exposure can seriously damage them. If you do find any water on them, wipe them down with a dry cloth and wait to use them until completely dry.
- Making sure your USB cable is in optimal condition is also important. It should not be damaged or wet as it will, in turn, end up damaging your earbuds. USB cables are usually more accessible than chargers. If your USB cable is damaged, then it would be best to replace them with a new cable.
Tips For Optimizing Earbud Battery Life
Here are some tips to get the most out of your earbuds and enjoy a prolonged battery life:
1. Turn Off Extra Features
A lot of good earbuds come with high-end features such as Active Noise Cancellation, the latest Bluetooth codecs, spatial audio, and sound equalizers. While all these features add to the experience of using earbuds, they’re not the best if you want to preserve your battery life.
ANC takes up most of the battery and has to work even harder in noisier environments, which means your battery will drain even faster. As for other settings, such as codecs and equalizers, they are great to use when you have a charger handy. However, if you’re outside where every percentage counts, it’s best to turn them off (or select the lowest version in the case of codecs) to ensure better battery life.
2. Listen at a Lower Volume
You’d have noticed that when manufacturers make claims about their battery life lasting a certain number of hours, it is usually followed by clauses such as Only if you listen at 60% volume.
This is because the higher the volume of your earbuds, the more battery they need to consume.
Experts already recommend listening to audio devices at lower volumes to preserve your hearing. The optimal volume would be staying between 50% to 70%. Exceeding the 70% volume is not recommended unless your earbuds have really low volume.
3. Connect to One Device
Most earbuds have a dual pairing or a multipoint connectivity feature where you can even connect them to up to 3 devices at the same time. This is a handy feature that makes switching between different devices a breeze. However, this also puts pressure on your earbuds as it requires more power to stay connected to multiple devices.
So, in this case, the best practice would be to disconnect your earbuds from devices that are not being used. This will help you enjoy listening to music on your earbuds for longer.
4. Use Earbuds on Mono Mode
Using the mono mode is one of the best ways to preserve battery life on your earbuds. Doing this ensures you get double the listening time that you would just by normal usage.
This would be useful when you don’t have access to charging and must make the most of the battery. Some earbuds even disable extra features such as ANC that help save the battery life further.
We hope this article helped explain all things related to charging your earbuds.
Charging your earbuds might seem like a simple task at first, but many factors go into ensuring the earbuds’ prolonged health and battery life. It is better to take precautions first than take your earbuds for repair when it’s too late.
Although many wireless earbuds have a relatively shorter battery life, we’ve mentioned the many ways to prolong it, like turning off extra features or listening on mono mode.
If any problems arise, it is best to take it up with a professional rather than attempting something yourself at home.
Samreen Parvez found her love for tech by messing around with the settings on her family’s old digital cameras. This led to a passion for different gadgets and a fascination with all the things they can do. Her interest in all things tech related, combined with a love for writing and research, led her to craft content at Tech Wizard.