My EarPods (wired EarPods) broke recently.

Now if I put them in normally I can barely hear them, even at max volume.

If I cup my ears with my hands (with the EarPods in my ears in a normal position) then it's very loud again.

If I put the backs of the EarPods into my ears then it's loud, or upside down is also louder than the normal orientation.

Every other pair of EarPods I've tested work fine, it seems to be a problem with this specific pair.

How can I fix this problem?

I assume the speakers have twisted inside of them (maybe not), is there a way I can safely and reversibly open the EarPods to put it back the right way round?

  • I apologize for any offense. I deleted the comment - I have seen cases where wax buildup in the ear canal can affect sound like but I shouldn’t have joked about body modification. – bmike Aug 27 '18 at 1:39
  • No need to edit - you used the correct names. I have just heard of AirPods working louder for some ear canal upside down. You surely can edit to avoid anyone else making that jump to hardware you’re not asking about. The speaker and vents are different in each. – bmike Aug 27 '18 at 1:44

Referring to the iFixit's Apple EarPods Teardown, it appears that it would be pretty hard to open up the ear drums, put the speakers right way round and assemble them back correctly.

With such a tight fit between the two halves of the EarPods, simply pulling them apart wasn't an option. We knew what we needed to do.

This isn't something you'd want to try at home. Once these Pods are open, they're not closing back up unless you want to involve glue.

Additionally, they are not rated well on serviceability or reparability front.

But unfortunately, these products are still of the throw-away kind. Sourcing parts is next to impossible, and it would be a tough sell to convince someone to take apart their earbuds instead of buying a new pair. They will never be the same once taken apart.

If you still have the original warranty for the iPhone with which the EarPods were bundled, you can try getting a replacement.

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