How to Clean Earbuds

How to Properly Clean Earbuds with No Experience – Explained

Just got a new pair of earbuds last month and it has become visibly dirty now? No need to worry anymore! Learn how to properly clean earbuds with no prior experience.

There’s no doubt that earbuds are one of the most popular gadgets today. Their portability, utility, and ease of wear ensure that a wide range of everyday consumer needs are met without the need to carry any extra items with them. From tuning in to your favorite music and listening to a podcast to talking over a phone and canceling ambient noise near you, earbuds have practically become indispensable now. Tranya T6, in particular, is best known for its wide range of useful functions!

As such, if you love listening to your favorite music or podcasts on your earbuds while traveling to work or jogging early morning, you might want to pay attention to how clean they are. This is because these little gadgets can easily become dirty, inviting all sorts of nasty things like earwax, sweat, dust, and even harmful bacteria. If you often use your earbuds, all this can quickly build up and potentially affect the performance and health of your earbuds besides also posing a threat of ear infection for you.

That’s why it’s important to clean your earbuds. In this article, we will show you how to properly clean earbuds with no experience with simple household items as well as how to prevent them from getting dirty in the first place. Now, without further ado, let’s begin!

Why Is It Important to Clean Earbuds?

A Dirty Earbud Piece

Before we dive into the process of cleaning earbuds, it is vital to first understand why is it important to clean earbuds in the first place. After all, what’s in it for you?

As told above, cleaning your earbuds is not just a matter of aesthetics, but also of health (for you) and quality (for earbuds). Because of constant usage, earbuds are exposed to various sources of dirt and germs, such as earwax, sweat, dust, and bacteria. Consequently, these can accumulate on the surface as well as inside the earbuds over time and cause several problems, such as:

  • Reduced Sound Quality: This happens when you suddenly start noticing that you aren’t picking up the lyrics from your earbuds’ sound. This is because dirt and earwax have accumulated and blocked the sound output of your earbuds, making them sound muffled and even distorted. This, in turn, affects your audio experience and makes you miss out on the details and nuances of your favorite music.
  • Damaged Speakers: To make matters worse, dirt and earwax not only block the sound output but can also corrode the metal parts of your earbuds. Sweat is the main culprit here. As such, this can result in even poorer sound quality or even complete failure of your earbud's components if moisture manages to get in contact with the delicate electronic parts inside. Replacing them can be costly and inconvenient.
  • Ear Infections or Irritation: Last but not least, bacteria and fungi can grow on your earbuds because the nasty cocktail of earwax, sweat, grime, and dirt facilitates their ideal ecosystem. These can get transferred to your ears when you use them and can cause infection in your ears. Needless to say, this can be painful and even harmful to your hearing; causing itching, redness, swelling, or discharge in your ears.

Now, who would want all these problems with their earbuds? That is why, in order to avoid them, it is important to clean your earbuds. This not only helps you keep your earbuds in good condition but also extends their lifespan. Moreover, it also keeps your audio experience in check as well as protects your ear health.

How Often Do You Need to Clean Earbuds?

A Hand Holding a Pair of Wired Earbuds

Cleaning your earbuds is not something that you should do once and forget about it. It is a habit that you should develop and maintain in order to ensure the best performance and hygiene of your earbuds. But how often do you need to clean your earbuds? The answer depends on how often and how long you use them, and in what conditions.

Depending on your usage, here is a general guideline that you can follow:

Weekly: Quick cleaning is recommended weekly for users who regularly use their earbuds and in extreme sessions. If you are one such user, you can also opt to quick-clean your earbuds twice a week if you notice any visible earwax or dirt buildup.

As such, quick cleaning is a simple and fast way to remove grime from your earbuds. You can use a soft cloth, a cotton swab, or an alcohol wipe to gently wipe the surface of your earbuds and it will do the job.

Monthly: Thorough cleaning is a more detailed way to clean your earbuds, requiring utmost attention. This method is used to clean earbuds, especially in the hard-to-reach areas, such as the mesh or the speaker holes.

To conduct a thorough clean, you can use a soft brush, a toothpick, or even a needle to gently remove the dirt and wax from these areas. You can also use some rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide to disinfect your earbuds first and kill any bacteria or fungi. [More on this in the following sections]

Thorough cleaning should be done at least once a month if you use your earbuds regularly, or more often if you use them in hot or humid conditions, or if you sweat a lot while using them.

Equipment And Material Needed to Clean Earbuds

Equipment Needed to Clean Earbuds

Fortunately, cleaning your earbuds does not require any fancy or expensive equipment or material. You can use the common household items that you probably already have at home such as:

  1. A soft cloth: This can be a microfiber cloth or an alcohol wipe.
  2. A soft brush: This can be a toothbrush, a makeup brush, or an interdental brush.
  3. A cotton swab: This can be a Q-tip or a cotton bud.
  4. A rubbing alcohol: This can be any regular isopropyl alcohol or hydrogen peroxide (use only the 3% formulation variant).
  5. A toothpick/needle: This can be a wooden toothpick or a metal needle.

With that said, it’s now time to clean your earbuds. In the next section, we will guide you in detail on how to use the above-mentioned materials in order to properly clean earbuds with no experience required!

How to Properly Clean Earbuds with No Experience?

How to Properly Clean Earbuds

Cleaning your earbuds is not a difficult task, even if you have no experience. You just need to follow some simple steps provided below and use the equipment and material that we mentioned in the previous section. However, this is not to say that you are allowed to be careless. Even with no experience, all the steps mentioned below should be done with one’s utmost attention to detail.

In addition, depending on the type of your earbuds, you might also need to adjust some steps, but the general procedure is the same:

1.    Clean the Earbud Tips First

The earbud tips are the parts that go inside your ears and are in direct contact with your earwax and sweat. Therefore, they need to be cleaned first and thoroughly.

To clean your ear tips, you need to remove them from the earbuds first. This can be done by gently twisting and pulling them off. Then, you need to soak them in a solution of warm water and dishwashing liquid for about 15 minutes. This will help to loosen and dissolve any dirt or wax on them.

After soaking, you need to rinse them well with clean water and dry them with a soft cloth. You can also use a cotton swab to clean any crevices or holes on them. Make sure that the earbud tips are completely dry before putting them back on the earbuds. Make sure not to air blow the ear tips; let them get dry in the open air. This is because blowing air will blow the dust particles back on your ear tips again.

2.    Clean the Earbud’s Mesh Cover:

After you are done with the ear tips, it is time to turn toward the earbud’s mesh cover. For those who don’t know, an earbud’s mesh cover is a part that covers the speaker and protects it from dust and moisture. Because ear tips are placed on top of this mesh cover, it also gets clogged with dirt and wax over time and, therefore, needs to be cleaned.

To clean the earbud’s mesh cover, all you need is a soft brush, such as a toothbrush or a makeup brush, and gently brush away any visible particles from the mesh. Make sure to hold the earbud with the mesh facing downward so that any particles fall out instead of going inside. Additionally, you can also use a toothpick or a needle to carefully scrape off any hardened dirt or wax from the mesh, but be very gentle so as not to damage it.

3.    Disinfect the Mesh Cover:

After cleaning the mesh cover, you now need to disinfect it to kill any bacteria or fungi that may be present on it and not visible to the naked eye. To do this, you need to use a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide and lightly wipe the mesh cover with it. Do not soak the cotton swab too much, as you do not want any liquid to drip inside the earbud. The alcohol or peroxide should evaporate quickly and leave no residue.

4.    Disinfect The Outside of The Earbud and Cords:

All the technical work requiring attention to detail has been completed now. Congrats! You can now give yourself a pat on the back.

However, our work here is not done yet. The outside of the earbud and cords are also exposed to dirt and germs, so they need to be disinfected as well. To do this, you need to use a soft cloth dampened with rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide and gently wipe the outside of the earbud and cords with it. Do not rub too hard or too long, as you may damage the surface or remove the paint. You can also use an alcohol wipe instead of a cloth.

5.    Allow The Earbuds to Dry:

The last step is to let your earbuds dry completely before using them or storing them in a case. To do this, you need to place them on a clean and dry surface away from direct heat or sunlight for at least 10 minutes. Do not use a hairdryer or a fan to speed up the drying process, as they may blow lint or dust back into the earbuds.

Tips To Keep Your Earbuds Clean Longer

A Hand Holding a Pair of Wireless Earbuds

Although you have cleaned the earbuds for now, your job is not done yet. Earbuds will inevitably get dirty again and you would, sooner than later, find yourself in a situation to clean it again. However, here are some steps that you can follow and ensure that each session between cleaning earbuds lasts you longer:

Store your earbuds in a case: When you are not using your earbuds, you should always put them in a case or a pouch that protects them from dust, dirt, and moisture. This will help to keep them clean and safe from damage. You can also use a sealable plastic bag or a ziplock bag if you don’t have a case or a pouch.

Wipe your earbuds after each use: After using your earbuds, you should always give them a quick wipe-up with a soft cloth or an alcohol wipe to remove any sweat, oil, or residue that may be left on them. This will help to prevent the buildup of wax and dirt on the earbud tips as well as the mesh cover. You can also use a cotton swab to clean any crevices or holes on the earbuds.

Avoid sharing your earbuds with others: Lastly, sharing your earbuds with others can also introduce new bacteria or fungi into your ears and cause infections or irritation. It can also transfer dirt and wax from their ears to your earbuds and vice versa. Therefore, you should avoid sharing your earbuds with others.

To Wrap Things Up

Earbuds have become an integral part of every individual’s life. They are no longer limited to listening to music and working out. Among many things, earbuds serve as a vital tool for noise cancellation and hearing aids. Therefore, it is important to keep them clean and ensure that no wax, sweat, or grime accumulate inside them.

By following the steps mentioned in the article above, you keep safely and properly clean earbuds, even with no prior experience. What do you think? Share your thoughts with us and let us know in the comments below!

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