Ew, your AirPods are crammed with earwax and gunk. Find out how to clear them the fitting manner

Ew, your AirPods have nasty gunk all over them. How to make them squeaky-clean

Clear your earbuds commonly.


Katie Teague/CNET

When is the final time you cleaned your AirPods or different earbuds? In case your ears really feel yucky once you take them out or you have not cleaned them shortly, now’s the time. Over time, earwax, grease and gunk can get caught inside your earbuds. It is gross and might boring the sound popping out. 

There are methods to securely clear your earbuds with out inflicting injury, relying on the sort you could have. As an example, you will need to be extra-careful when cleansing the mesh speaker and microphone on AirPods when eradicating any sticky gunk — we’ll inform you how.

Earlier than you begin getting your earbuds squeaky clear once more, make certain they’re off and disconnected from all the paired units.  We’ll inform you what to make use of to wash them and what to keep away from. And if you happen to’re trying into getting a brand new pair, this is what to find out about buying and selling in or promoting your earbuds to purchase the most recent, third-generation AirPods.This story was lately up to date. 

Not cleansing your earbuds can result in infections

Your ears naturally produce earwax, medically often called cerumen, to guard your ears. Once you use earbuds typically, that wax can stick with them and harbor micro organism. Repeatedly placing the earphones in your ears with out disinfecting them can switch the micro organism into your ear canal, which can result in an an infection, in keeping with Baton Rouge Common.


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How to clean earbuds with removable silicone tips

If you own a set of earbuds with removable silicone tips, like the AirPods Pro or the JBL Reflect Flow Pro, you’re in luck because they’re a bit easier to keep clean. The silicone tip helps protect the speaker from earwax and other debris, and they easily pop off. 

To clean the tips, remove them from the earphones and soak them in warm, soapy water for 30 minutes. If they’re really dirty, you can agitate the container to loosen up the gunk. Next, use a clean cloth or a cotton swab to remove any remaining earwax or dirt and let the silicone tips completely dry.

If you have a pair of earbuds that don’t come with silicone tips, you can purchase some on Amazon, depending on the style of your earbuds. For instance, the regular AirPods don’t come with the tips, but we like these $10 ear tips you can add to the AirPods yourself.

Read more: See our picks of the best AirPods Pro accessories

Apple Airpods Pro

Clean the silicone tips often.


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Best methods for cleaning your AirPods and other earbuds

Apple has a few suggestions for the right way to clean your AirPods. One method is using a disinfecting or alcohol wipe to clean the exterior surfaces of your earbuds — do not use it on the speaker mesh. If using any liquids to clean your earbuds, let them dry completely before using them again.

For the microphone and speaker meshes, use a dry cotton swab and a soft-bristled brush to gently wipe away any dirt. Don’t press too hard, since you don’t want to push the wax through the mesh, which would be nearly impossible to get out. 

CNET contributor Matt Elliott suggests using Fun-Tak to remove any stubborn leftover earwax. To do so, rub the Fun-Tak together to warm it up and then press it against the speaker to pick up the wax. You can then use a wooden toothpick to scrape off anything stuck to the sides of the speaker hollow.

If you want to stick with only Apple products, the giant tech company just released its very own Polishing Cloth — it costs $19 and has a compatibility list. While AirPods don’t appear to be on the list of products compatible with… a cloth, it could still be useful for hard-core Apple fans wanting to give their earbuds a shine. Otherwise, you might seek out a basic microfiber cloth for external dusting.

You should clean your charging case, too

If you’ve got wireless earbuds, they typically live in a charging case. (We hope you’re not just tossing them into your jacket pocket or backpack to collect lint.) Since that’s their home, you’ll want to keep it clean, too. 

First, use a soft, dry, lint-free cloth to wipe away dirt. If needed, you can slightly dampen the cloth with water or alcohol, but avoid getting any liquid at all inside the charging ports.

wireless-airpods-charging-cases

Keep your charging case clean, too.


Rick Broida/CNET

Don’t clean your earbuds like this

While we understand some earbuds are waterproof or water-resistant, we don’t recommend submerging them in water to clean them — just the removable silicone tips. Too many things could go wrong. For instance, some earbuds that are waterproof are only designed to be submerged in water for roughly 30 minutes. But what happens if you forget about them? Instead, stay on the safe side and dampen a microfiber cloth or a cotton swab and gently wipe away the dirt. 

We also don’t recommend using sharp objects, such as a safety pin, to clean your speaker or microphone meshes, as it could puncture the speaker. Instead, use a soft-bristled brush or wooden toothpick to gently remove any gunk.

For more information, here’s what you need to know about Apple’s newest AirPods, as well as the differences between the new AirPods 3 and the AirPods Pro.

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