DIY Tips to Repair Your Headphones

No one likes dealing with broken headphones. That’s why we’ve put together a list of DIY tips to get your headset back in top shape!

If your headphones are not producing sound, check the connections on both ends of the headphones. Check for any loose or damaged wire and make sure that the correct input is selected on your device – whether it’s a laptop, phone, or tablet.

How many times you do you buy headphones in a year? The answer will make you realize that headphones get damaged a lot. And many a times they stop working because of small faults that can be repaired easily. There are ways to repair your headphones by yourself provided they are repairable (No one can fix a headphone crushed into a hundred pieces) and you have the right tools. Let us look at some faults that can be repaired in a headset.

Broken Jack Plug- You can add a new jack plug making your headphones good as new.

Sound in One Side- Sometimes the sound stops in one earbud mostly because of weakening of wires due to constant movement. This can be solved by fixing the wires.

How to add a new jack?

  1. Cut the old jack using a pair of scissors and get rid of it.
  2. Buy a new jack plug from an electronics store or online. These are easily available at all stores and for standard earphones, get 3.5 mm stereo jack plug. Make sure to get stereo plug as mono plugs are very similar to these. If your headphones jack size is bigger, get that particular size.
  3. Now you need to prepare the cable. It generally has two sets of wires, green/black and red. Strip these to about an inch and keep them separate. There are two other copper wires that should be twisted.
  4. Now burn the ends of the wires with a matchstick. This is for getting rid of the plastic insulating cover.
  5. Unscrew the plug and you will find three wires. Before soldering, thread through the top plastic part of the jack plug. This step can be easily forgotten so make sure you remember to do this.
  6. Remember that soldering requires clean and reliable electrical connections so it is imperative that the mechanical joint is good enough to ensure smooth flow of electricity.
  7. Now put the wires in touch with the contacts and check if you can hear the sound. It might jitter a bit on moving but this will be fixed once the jack is fixed.
  8. If you hear the sound fine, then you can start soldering the three wires to the three terminals in the jack. The copper wire for grounding purposes will be attached to the outer terminal. The green or black wire connects with the central whereas the red one goes to the remaining terminal.
  9. Do not touch the bottom of the jack when you are soldering it as the heat might burn your finger.
  10. Once soldering is done carefully put the three wires inside the clamp at top and press it with pliers. This will stop them from breaking even on pulling.
  11. Finally push the soldered connections towards the center inside the case and screw it up. The wires should not touch otherwise the sound will be affected. Now screw on the top of the jack.
  12. Now your headphones are repaired and ready to get you in the groove!
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Fixing Headphones with Sound in One Side Only

Sometimes over long use, constant bending of the cord makes the wire short in some places which results in sound coming in one ear of the headphone. This problem can be fixed with some effort. You will need a wire cutter, solder, wire strippers and electrical tape.

Word of Advice: Most high end headphones come with warranty, so if your headset stops working and the warranty are still valid then it is better to get them exchanged or fixed at the retailer rather than trying to fix it yourself.

Instead of getting a new headset right away, you can follow the following steps to fix the headset yourself.

  1. Start from the plug and bend the wire every inch to locate the position where wire has shorting. You will need your headphones plugged in with audio on to detect this.
  2. When you hear sound in both sides, this is the spot that needs fixing.
  3. Put masking tape an inch from the shorting position on either side
  4. Now take wire cutters and cut the wire from the masked tape. You will be getting rid of this damaged part of the wire.
  5. Now using wire strippers, strip both ends of the wire. You will see the three wires mentioned earlier: red, black and one copper (ground).
  6. Now you need to strip these wires, red and black ones. If they are too thin, you might need to use sandpaper.
  7. Once exposed, reconnect corresponding wires together by splicing or soldering, whatever you want.
  8. Now check if the sound is reaching both years.
  9. If you are successful cover this area of wire, using shrink tube or electrical tape.
  10. In case you are still not able to hear sound in both ear buds, check if you have soldered wires correctly and they are separated. It is also possible that there is another shorting of wire.

Fix Together Two Non-Working Headphones

This is a brilliant idea. If you happen to have a headset whose jack is bad and another whose ear bud is broken, you might be able to bring out a new working headset with the help of these. Simply cut each in half and connect the working halves with each other. There you have it, working mesh headphones.


You can try to fix your broken headphones yourself at home. Just because headphones are cheap and affordable does not mean you should have to buy them every other week. You can follow the steps outlined in this article to fix the problems with your headphones. You can get help from a tech savvy friend or do it all by yourself.

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You can fix a non working jack and a shortened wire simply by following the steps above. If still you are not able hear perfect sound from your headphones, then try getting it fixed from a technician who knows his way around headphones. With few bucks, you can get your headphones good as new.