Why are my Headphones Not Working On Windows 10


There are different reasons why your headphones are not working on windows 10 and for these reasons, you will learn how to fix your speakers, microphones, and headphones in no time.

Either your device is using a Bluetooth or a wired cable which will need a headphone jack, this article will cover everything.

The problem might not be coming from your device, it could just be a common windows 10 problem.

If you own a Dell, HP, Lenovo or any laptop / desktop brand, this tutorial will work for you.

Before we jump into the solutions, let’s observe the causes.

You can navigate through the table of content to jump to your particular interest or you can just read this whole article to have a full understanding.

Why Headphones isn’t Working on Windows 10

These are the reasons why you having sound issues on windows 10.

1. Audio Driver Issue

Audio driver is responsible for the sound that your computer renders out either through your computer speaker or through your headphone or external speaker connected to your computer.

Sometimes, driver issues can occur when your computer runs into a problem and a simple reinstallation can fix this.

Troubleshooting method will be shown below.

2. Muted Audio

It’s very easy to overlook the fact that your audio could have been muted unknowingly.

Sometimes when you are trying to increase sound volume with your keyboard, you can accidentally click on the mute key without knowing and this can lead you to think you have issues with your computer or headphones not producing sounds.

Troubleshooting method will be shown below.

3. Low Volume

This is another possible problem computer user overlook.

When you are trying to increase the volume on your computer, you could accidentally be decreasing the volume instead.

I want you to check right now and try to increase your audio volume on your computer.

If your headphones and speaker have volume control, also increase it.

4. Bad Headphone / Speaker

In most cases, the problem isn’t with your computer, it’s with your device itself.

When I mean device, I mean your headphones or speaker connected to your computer.

You should check your devices properly to make sure they aren’t the one with the problem.

There’s a way you can test your headphones on windows 10 and I will show you how in a minute.

5. Bad Audio Jack

This is referring to your computer audio port or jack and your wired headphones or speaker audio jack.

Now, this isn’t so common but when it happens, it’s hard to detect because your mind wouldn’t go there.

You need to make sure you have checked your computer port and headphone jack properly just to make sure you know where the problem is coming from.

6. Improper Connection

This will be referring to both Bluetooth connection and wired connection when you are trying to connect your device to your computer.

If your headphones or speaker is using Bluetooth, you must make sure you are pairing correctly with a computer that also has Bluetooth.

If your headphones or speaker is using a wired connection, you need to make sure you are connecting a non-faulty cable into non faulty computer audio jack.

Now that we have an idea of where the audio problem is coming from, let me show you how to test your device.

Test Your Device

Before we jump into how to resolve your headphones issues on windows 10, let’s test your devices to see if they are working fine.

Here’s how to test your audio devices.

Test Your Computer Speaker

Here’s how to test your computer inbuilt speaker.

1. Increase your audio volume to the highest (100%).

2. Make sure your sound volume isn’t muted 🔇.

3. Unplug any external audio device from your computer.

4. move your mouse towards your taskbar and right click on the volume icon.

audio in windows

5. Click on open volume mixer among the options.

right click on taskbar audio

6. Now click on the speaker icon just as shown in the image to open speakers / headphones property.

volume mixer

7. Navigate to the advanced tab.

8. Click on test.

speaker and headphones property

9. You should hear a sound to confirm your computer speakers are working fine.

Tip – If your icons are missing from your desktop or taskbar, you will have to find and restore those missing icons.

Test Your Headphones or Speaker

Here’s how to test your headphones or speaker.

Increase your sound volume to 100% and make sure your sound isn’t muted.

Connect your device to your computer.

Note – Some headphones or speaker connect automatically while some will have to be selected manually.

Here’s how to select your headphones or speaker manually.

1. Navigate to your taskbar by your bottom right hand corner and left click on the volume icon.

audio in windows

2. Click on speakers / headphones (Realtek Audio).

speakers / headphones

3. Select your device among the options. In my own case, my device is Speakers (3-USB Pnp Sound Device).

select playback device

4. Now it should look like this after you have selected your audio device.

headphone selected

Since you have selected your audio device, you should go back and test it.

Tip – learn how to find mac addresses on windows 10.

How To Fix Headphones Not Working On Windows 10

Here’s how.

Follow the instructions carefully.

Complete ShutDown

First thing first, you have to completely shut down your computer with youe headphones plugged in to automatically resolve unknown issues.

1. Plug in your headphones or speaker.

2. Hold shift and click on shutdown to completely turn off your computer.

shut down
shift + shutdown

3. When your computer goes off, turn it back on.

4. Try your headphones to see if it’s working perfectly. If it’s not working, continue with the solutions below.

Troubleshoot Sound Problems

Here’s how,

1. Connect your audio device to your computer.

2. Right click on the sound icon 🔊 located at the bottom right hand side in the taskbar.

audio in windows

3. Choose troubleshoot sound problems among the list.

troubleshoot sound problems

4. A pop up will be revealed to you showing you two options after detecting your audio driver.

5. Choose No, Do not open Audio Enhancements.

turn off sound effects and enhancements

6. Click on play test sounds.

we're going to try something

7. You should hear a sound before you get this following image.

how did that sound

8. Now, If you heard a sound, click on good and proceed with the instructions.

9. Click on Bad if the sound you heard is strange and proceed with the instructions.

10. Click on I didn’t hear anything if you didn’t hear any sound and proceed with the instructions.

Tip – How to keep your computer up to date regularly.

Set Your Headphone / Speaker as Default

There are two ways to set your headphone or speaker as default on windows 10.

These ways are:

  • From system settings
  • From sound control panel

From System Settings

1. Make sure your device is connected.

2. Press and hold the following to open system settings.

Windows key + I

hold without +

3. Click on System.

windows 10 system settings

4. Select sound by your right hand side.

sound in system settings

5. Under master volume, click on manage sound device.

manage sound devices

6. Under output devices, click on speakers or depending on how updated your windows 10 is, it could be speakers / headphones.

output devices

7. Make sure it is enabled.

Note – You are going to see a disabled button when it is enabled.

8. Now go back to sound by clicking on the back arrow above.

manage sound settings

9. Under output, click on the arrow as shown in the image above to choose your output device.

choose your output device

10. Make sure you select your headphones or speaker among the list.

11. If you can’t find your device there, it means your device isn’t properly connected.

If this method didn’t work for you, try this other method.

Tip – Learn different ways to improve your mouse sensitivity to enhance your productivity.

From Sound Control Panel

Follow the instructions carefully.

1. Move your mouse to the bottom right of your taskbar and right click on the sound icon 🔊.

audio in windows

2. Click on system sounds.

volume mixer

3. Navigate to the playback tab.

playback
show disabled devices

4. Right click in an empty area and select both options just as shown in the image above.

recording in sound settings

5. Navigate to the recording tab..

6. You should see your headphones.

7. Once you see it, right click on it and set as default device.

set Headphones as default

8. Click on ok then apply.

Tip – Learn how to change the sizes of your icons on windows 10.

Update Audio Drivers

There are three ways to update your audio drivers.

These ways are:

  • Automatically from device manager
  • Manually from device manager
  • From your computer manufacturer

The first and last method will require you to connect to the internet.

Automatically From Device Manager

1. Search for device manager in windows search.

search for device manager in windows search

2. Click on device manager shown among the result.

device manager result

3. Click on the drop down arrow beside audio inputs and outputs inside device manager.

audio drivers in device manager

4. You have to update everything under audio inputs and outputs.

With the image above, there are only two audio drivers under audio inputs and outputs.

Depending on how many is listed on your computer, you have to update everything.

Let’s start with the first audio driver.

1. Right click on the first audio driver listed under audio inputs and outputs.

2. Click on update driver

update driver

3. Choose search automatically for updated driver software among the two options.

search automatically for update driver software

4. Now, hold on for windows to automatically update your audio drivers.

5. Remember you are to carry out this method for the rest of the drivers under audio inputs and outputs.

Tips – Learn how to change windows 10 font size.

Manually From Device Manager

1. Search for device manager in windows search.

search for device manager in windows search

2. Click on device manager shown among the result.

device manager result

3. Click on the drop down arrow beside audio inputs and outputs inside device manager.

audio drivers in device manager

4. You have to update everything under audio inputs and outputs.

With the image above, there are only two audio drivers under audio inputs and outputs.

Depending on how many is listed on your computer, you have to update everything.

Let’s start with the first audio driver.

1. Right click on the first audio driver listed under audio inputs and outputs.

2. Click on update driver.

update driver

3. Click on browse my computer for driver software.

browse my computer for driver software

4. Click on let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer.

let me pick from a list of available drivers on my computer

5. Depending on how many drivers is listed under model, you have to update everything.

6. Now click on the first driver under model and click on next to install the driver.

browse my computer for driver

7. Perform this action on the rest of the drivers under model.

Remember you are to carry out this method for the rest of the drivers under audio inputs and outputs.

From Your Computer manufacturer Website

1. Connect to the internet.

2. With your browser, open Google.

3. Search for this phrase in google.

[Brand name of your laptop] [Model of your laptop] driver download

Here’s an example,

Dell Inspiron 7567 driver download

4. Click on the result that is posted from your computer brand.

Here’s an example,

download driver from brand website in google search

Notice I only choose the result that is coming from my computer manufacturer.

If you are using an Hp laptop, choose a result from Hp website.

5. Once you are in the website, go ahead to download your audio drivers and then install it on your computer.

Sometimes, you might be required to enter your serial number or service tag for the website to provide the right driver for your computer.

Change Default Format of Your Headphones / Speaker

1. Navigate to the bottom of your taskbar and right click on the sound icon 🔊.

audio in windows

2. Click on speakers / headphones.

volume mixer

3. Navigate to the advanced tab.

advanced tab in speakers and headphones property

4. Now click on one of the sample rate and click on test.

change sample rate

5. Keep on testing till you hear a sound from one of the sample rate.

6. Once you found any sample rate that plays a sound, click on save then apply.

Disable Front Panel Jack Detection

This is for only computers that have the Realtek software.

disable front panel jack detection

1. Start by opening Realtek HD Audio Manager.

2. Under connector settings by your right hand side.

3. Make sure disable front panel jack detection is ticked ✔.

Tip – Learn how to repair a program on windows 10.

Disable Audio Enhancements

1. Navigate to the bottom of your taskbar and right click on the sound icon 🔊.

audio in windows

2. Click on system sounds.

volume mixer

3. Navigate playback tab.

sound playback

4. Select speakers / headphones.

playback tab in sound settings

5. Now click on properties.

properties

6. Navigate to the enhancement tab.

enhancements in speaker properties

7. Make sure disable all enhancements is checked ✔.

disable all enhancements

Choose HD Audio Over AC97

1. Open Realtek HD Audio Manger from control panel or from windows search.

Note – Not every computer has Realtek installed.

2. Click on Settings cog by your top right hand corner.

HD audio front panel

3. Make sure HD Audio Front Panel is checked ✔ under connector settings.

realtek software

4. While in settings, you can also use headphones as a second audio device instead of replacing your speakers by ticking or checking ✔ the box we highlighted in red below.

Leave a Comment