Learn how to fix the issue of headphones not working in Windows 10 with these simple steps. From checking hardware and settings to updating drivers and resetting audio components, we’ve got you covered.
When using headphones on a Windows 10 computer, sometimes they may not work properly, causing frustration and inconvenience. This can be due to various reasons, such as hardware issues, settings problems, or outdated drivers. It’s essential to fix this problem to continue using headphones and enjoy high-quality audio without interruption. In this guide, we’ll explore the different steps you can take to fix headphones not working in Windows 10.
Before troubleshooting software-related issues, it’s crucial to check the hardware components first. Here are the steps to follow:
- Inspect the headphones for physical damage, such as broken wires or earpieces. If there is any damage, the headphones may need to be repaired or replaced.
- Check the audio jack on the computer for damage or debris. Ensure that it’s clean and not blocked by any dirt or debris.
- Try the headphones on another device to determine if the issue is with the headphones themselves or the computer’s audio settings. If the headphones work on another device, the issue is likely with the computer’s settings or drivers. If the headphones don’t work on another device, they may need to be repaired or replaced.
If the headphones are in good condition but still not working on the computer, the problem may be with the audio settings or drivers. Here are the steps to check the settings:
- Check the audio settings on the computer to ensure that the volume is turned up and not muted. To do this, right-click the speaker icon on the taskbar and select “Open Volume Mixer.”
- Verify that the headphones are set as the default audio device. To do this, right-click the speaker icon on the taskbar, select “Open Sound settings,” and click on “Sound control panel.” Under the “Playback” tab, look for your headphones and ensure that they’re set as the default device.
- Ensure that the audio drivers are up-to-date. To do this, right-click the speaker icon on the taskbar, select “Device Manager,” and expand the “Sound, video and game controllers” section. Right-click on your audio device and select “Update driver.” If an update is available, follow the prompts to install it.
Troubleshoot Audio Services
If the audio settings and drivers are up-to-date, but the headphones are still not working on the computer, the issue may be with the audio services. Here are the steps to troubleshoot audio services:
- Restart the Windows Audio Service. To do this, press the Windows key + R, type “services.msc,” and press Enter. Locate “Windows Audio” in the list, right-click it, and select “Restart.”
- Check other audio services. In the Services window, check if “Windows Audio Endpoint Builder” and “Remote Procedure Call (RPC)” services are running. If they’re not running, right-click on them and select “Start.” If the services are already running, try restarting them.
If the previous steps did not resolve the issue, you can try using the built-in audio troubleshooter on Windows 10. Here are the steps to run the troubleshooter:
- Click on the Start menu and go to Settings.
- Click on Update & Security, then Troubleshoot.
- Under “Find and fix other problems,” click on “Playing Audio” and select “Run the troubleshooter.”
- Follow the prompts and instructions provided by the troubleshooter to diagnose and fix any audio problems.
- Once the troubleshooter has completed its checks, test the headphones again to see if the issue has been resolved.
Update Audio Drivers
If the audio troubleshooter did not resolve the issue, you can try updating the audio drivers. Here are the steps to update audio drivers on Windows 10:
- Open Device Manager by pressing the Windows key + X, then select “Device Manager” from the menu.
- Expand the “Sound, video, and game controllers” section.
- Right-click on your audio device and select “Update driver.”
- Choose “Search automatically for updated driver software.”
- If Windows finds any updates, follow the prompts to install them.
- If Windows cannot find any updates, you can try downloading and installing the drivers manually from the manufacturer’s website.
- To manually install drivers, download the latest drivers from the manufacturer’s website and save them to your computer.
- Open Device Manager and right-click on your audio device.
- Select “Update driver” and choose “Browse my computer for driver software.”
- Navigate to the location where you saved the downloaded drivers and follow the prompts to install them.
- Once the drivers are installed, restart your computer and test the headphones to see if the issue has been resolved.
Reset Audio Components
If the audio drivers are up-to-date but the headphones still aren’t working on the computer, you can try resetting the audio components to their default settings. Here are the steps to reset audio components:
- Press the Windows key + X and select “Command Prompt (Admin)” from the menu.
- In the command prompt, type the following commands one by one and press Enter after each one:
net stop AudioSrv net stop SENS net stop SCardSvr net stop wuauserv
- Next, type the following commands to rename the audio folders:
ren %systemroot%\System32\Spool\Drivers\w32x86\3\audiosrv.dll audiosrv.old ren %systemroot%\System32\winevt\logs\System.evtx System.evtx.old ren %systemroot%\SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution.old
- Finally, type the following commands to restart the audio services:
net start AudioSrv net start SENS net start SCardSvr net start wuauserv
- Restart your computer and test the headphones to see if the issue has been resolved.
If resetting the audio components doesn’t work, you can also try restarting your computer to see if that fixes the problem.
If none of the previous steps have resolved the issue, here are some additional solutions you can try:
- Disable audio enhancements: Sometimes, audio enhancements can cause issues with the audio output. To disable audio enhancements, right-click on the volume icon in the taskbar and select “Sounds.” Go to the “Playback” tab, select your audio device, and click on “Properties.” Go to the “Enhancements” tab and check the box next to “Disable all enhancements.”
- Disable exclusive mode: Exclusive mode is a setting that allows applications to take exclusive control of the audio device. However, this can cause issues with the audio output. To disable exclusive mode, go to the “Advanced” tab in the “Properties” menu of your audio device, and uncheck the box next to “Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device.”
- Try using a USB audio adapter: If none of the previous steps have resolved the issue, you can try using a USB audio adapter. This is a small device that plugs into a USB port on your computer and allows you to connect your headphones to it. This bypasses the audio jack on your computer and can sometimes resolve issues with the audio output.
Try each of these solutions and test the headphones after each one to see if the issue has been resolved.
In conclusion, if you’re experiencing issues with headphones not working in Windows 10, there are several steps you can take to resolve the problem. Here’s a recap of the steps:
- Check hardware: Inspect headphones for physical damage, check audio jack on computer for damage or debris, and try headphones on another device.
- Check settings: Check audio settings on the computer, verify headphones are set as default audio device, and ensure audio drivers are up-to-date.
- Troubleshoot audio services: Restart Windows Audio Service and check other audio services.
- Use troubleshooter: Run Windows 10 built-in audio troubleshooter.
- Update audio drivers: Check for and install updated audio drivers, and manually install drivers if necessary.
- Reset audio components: Reset audio components to default settings and restart the computer.
- Additional solutions: Disable audio enhancements, disable exclusive mode, and try using a USB audio adapter.
It’s important to try each of these steps in order to determine the root cause of the issue and resolve it. With these solutions, you should be able to fix the problem of headphones not working in Windows 10.