(Last Updated On: February 11, 2021)

AirPods that keep disconnecting randomly can be a pain. Read on to find out what causes it, and how to fix it on different devices.

AirPods have only grown in popularity since their release in 2016. Though, despite their incredible sales numbers, they’re not perfect. From the start, disconnection issues have been a problem for AirPod users.

The occasional disconnection may not be a huge hindrance at first. But this problem can become more irritating over time. All the more so if it happens in the middle of an important phone call. It can turn a supposedly simple phone call into a series of call-backs.

Today, we’re going to take a look at why your AirPods may be disconnecting, as well as the best solutions to those problems.

A pair of Airpods (From: Pexels)
A pair of Airpods (From: Pexels)

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Why Your AirPods Keep Disconnecting

There are many reasons why your AirPods may disconnect from your device. Some are easier to fix than others.

Either way, it’s good to have an understanding of what causes the disconnections, so that you can take proactive steps to stop them.

Bluetooth interference

As with all wireless Bluetooth headphones, Airpods are susceptible to Bluetooth interference.

Devices that operate on the same wavelength as Bluetooth can interfere with your Airpods’ connectivity. This causes a variety of issues, including disconnection.

For example, if you’re next to a Wi-Fi router, you may experience Bluetooth interference. This is because the router uses the same 2.4GHz frequency to communicate with other devices on the network.

Issue with iOS Version

If your iOS version is out-of-date, you may encounter bugs or errors that have already been fixed in a later version. These errors can include compatibility issues between your AirPods and device.

To ensure this doesn’t become a problem, make it a habit to keep all of your devices up-to-date so they’ll run smoothly with the latest patches.

Hardware problem

In some cases, the problem can sit within the electronics of the AirPods.

If your AirPods have suffered physical damage over time, there is a chance that the electronics inside may be faulty, causing sporadic performance issues.

Seeing as AirPods are designed to be a portable product, there’s no doubt that they’re going anywhere and everywhere with you.

Because of this, you want to take care of them as best you can. A great way of making sure no harm comes to them is getting a protective case for them to live in.

Wrong settings

If your device isn’t configured with the correct settings, your AirPods may not maintain a consistent connection.

To ensure your AirPods stay connected to each device you pair them with, it’s good practice to review the Bluetooth settings to ensure there are no anomalies.

Low battery

Since they’re wireless, your AirPods need sufficient charge in order to function properly.

When your AirPods run flat, they will automatically disconnect from any paired device. In some cases, this can also happen randomly if the battery is almost depleted.

Because of this, it’s recommended you keep them charged to avoid questionable performance.

Quick Fixes for AirPods That Keep Disconnecting

Finding and fixing your AirPods’ disconnection problem is relatively easy, and in most cases, can be done in a matter of minutes.

Below, you will find a multitude of solutions that may stop your AirPods from disconnecting. Before making any changes to your Settings, be sure to start with the first solution and work your way down.

Check the AirPods’ battery level

First and foremost, you should check how much battery your AirPods have left. In order for your AirPods to connect to your device (and stay connected), they will need enough battery.

Checking the battery of your AirPods on iOS

  1. While your AirPods are still inside their case, open the lid and hold them close to your device.
    AirPods next to iPhone. (From: YouTube/LoFi Alpaca)
  2. After a few seconds, the remaining battery amount will show on your screen.
    iPhone showing remaining battery. (From: YouTube/Lofi Alpaca)
Alternatively, you can check the charge status of your AirPods on iOS using the battery widget.

Checking the battery of your AirPods on Mac

  1. Take your AirPods out of their case, and leave them out.
  2. On your Mac, click on the Bluetooth icon in the menu bar. If there is no Bluetooth symbol, enable it by going to System Preferences > Bluetooth and ticking the “Show Bluetooth in menu bar” option.
    Click on Bluetooth Icon (From: Youtube/HowToiSolve)
  3. Hover over the AirPods in the menu, and it will display their current battery percentage of each earbud, as well as the case.
    Hover on the Airpods to see battery (From: Youtube/HowToiSolve)
    Hover on the Airpods to see battery (From: Youtube/HowToiSolve)

Check that Bluetooth is turned on

In order for your device to establish and hold a connection with your AirPods, your Bluetooth needs to be on.

If you encounter issues when connecting to your AirPods, try turning your Bluetooth off then on again. This ensures that the closest device (your AirPods) are the first to connect.

Enabling Bluetooth on iPhone and iPad

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone.
    Opening Settings. (From: YouTube/Payette Forward)
  2. Go to Bluetooth.
    Tapping Bluetooth. (From: YouTube/Payette Forward)
  3. Toggle the switch to the right to turn Bluetooth on.
    Enabling Bluetooth. (From: YouTube/Payette Forward)
If you have Siri enabled, you can also ask Siri to enable Bluetooth by saying “Hey Siri”, then “Turn on Bluetooth”. For instructions on Mac, go to our guide on how to connect any bluetooth headphones on Mac.

Enabling Bluetooth on PC

  1. Right click on the Start button, and left-click Settings.
    Going into Settings on Windows 10.
  2. Click on Devices and toggle the switch to the right to turn Bluetooth on.
    Turning on Bluetooth.
If you encounter any issue in enabling Bluetooth on PC, feel free to check out our article on the different problems and solutions in connecting bluetooth headphones to PC.

Put the AirPods back in the case (then take them out again)

If your AirPods disconnect, sometimes they won’t automatically reconnect. If this happens, put them back in their case.

When you put your AirPods back in their case, they will begin charging. This automatically eliminates any paired connection.

After 5 seconds, remove them from the case and put them back in your ears. The AirPods will then automatically reconnect to your device, and once the lid to your case is opened, it will establish a fresh connection.

Reset your Airpods

Over time, it’s not uncommon for AirPods to run into issues. This includes the AirPods not charging, not connecting, and of course, random disconnections. These can usually be fixed with a simple reset.

When you reset your AirPods, you remove any paired device history. This will effectively reset them back to factory so that your device is the first to pair with them and set them up.

  1. Put both of your AirPods back in their case, and ensure they each have a decent charge (above 75%).
    Closed AirPods case. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)
    Closed AirPods case. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)
  2. Open the lid to your AirPods case, and hold down the button on the back of the case for 20 seconds.
    Holding the reset button down. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)
    Holding the reset button down. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)
  3. You will see the indicator inside the case turn from flashing white to flashing amber, which indicates the AirPods have been successfully reset.
    White flashing light turning to amber. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)
    White flashing light turning to amber. (From: YouTube/Serg Tech)

Turn off ‘Automatic Ear Detection’

Each AirPod contains a sensor that tells them when they’re in-use, and when they aren’t.

This sensor can sometimes have trouble detecting if they’re in your ear or not, which results in them disconnecting themselves in an attempt to save power.

To isolate your disconnection issue, you can disable this setting to see if it fixes the problem.

  1. Before starting, make sure your case is open. Once open, go to Settings, then select Bluetooth.
    Going into Bluetooth settings. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)
    Going into Bluetooth settings. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)
  2. Tap on the “i” that’s on the right side of your AirPods in the list of devices.
    Accessing AirPod settings. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)
    Accessing AirPod settings. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)
  3. Deselect the Automatic Ear Detection option.
    Disabling Automatic Ear Detection. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)
    Disabling Automatic Ear Detection. (From: YouTube/HardReset.Info)

What to Do if Your Airpods Keep Disconnecting on Specific Devices

If your device isn’t configured with the correct settings, your AirPods may not function properly. Here are the steps on how to keep your Airpods connected and working properly on different devices.

Airpods keep disconnecting on Mac

To ensure the audio from your Mac is coming through your AirPods, check to confirm they are the preferred output device.

  1. On your Mac, open System Preferences.
    Go into System Preferences. (From: YouTube/ Paravuth Hem)
    Go into System Preferences. (From: YouTube/Paravuth Hem)
  2. From here, click Sound, then click Output.
    Go into Sound, then click Output. (From: YouTube/ Paravuth Hem)
    Go into Sound, then click Output. (From: YouTube/ Paravuth Hem)
  3. Select your AirPods from the device list to ensure they’re the active output device.
    Make sure AirPods is the selected output device. (From: YouTube/ Paravuth Hem)
    Make sure AirPods is the selected output device. (From: YouTube/ Paravuth Hem)

Airpods keep disconnecting on an iPhone or iPad

If you have some incorrect settings on your iPhone or iPad, this can easily be fixed by forgetting the AirPods from your device, and connecting to them again.

  1. Go into Settings on your iPhone or iPad, and go into your Bluetooth section. 
    Going into Bluetooth settings. (From: iVideos YouTube)
    Going into Bluetooth settings. (From: YouTube/iVideos)
  2. Tap on the “i” icon next to your AirPods.
    Accessing AirPods Bluetooth settings. (From: iVideos YouTube)
    Accessing AirPods Bluetooth settings. (From: YouTube/iVideos)
  3. Select Forget This Device, then tap again to confirm.
    Forgetting the connection. (From: iVideos YouTube)
    Forgetting the connection. (From: YouTube/iVideos)
  4. Restart your device, then connect to the AirPods again.
    Connecting the AirPods. (From: iVideos YouTube)
    Connecting the AirPods. (From: iVideos YouTube)
If this doesn’t work, try forgetting all of the previously connected devices in your Bluetooth list before reconnecting your AirPods. This will prioritise the AirPods.

Airpods keep disconnecting on Apple Watch

If your AirPods are facing issues with your Apple Watch, there is a really easy fix to making sure they’re both performing at their best.

  1. Start by turning off your Apple Watch, then your iPhone.
    Turning off Apple Watch. (From: YouTube/iDB)
    Turning off Apple Watch. (From: YouTube/iDB)
  2. Turn your iPhone on, and then your Apple Watch.
    Make sure to turn on your iPhone before your Apple Watch to ensure this fix is performed properly.
    Turning on Apple Watch. (From: iDB YouTube)
    Turning on Apple Watch. (From: YouTube/iDB)
  3. Once both devices are back on, connect your Airpods to your Apple Watch and check for performance issues.
    Pairing Apple Watch with AirPods. (From: Team AG YouTube)
    Pairing Apple Watch with AirPods. (From: YouTube/iDB)
If this doesn’t work after carefully following the steps, try resetting the Airpods.

Airpods keep disconnecting on Windows PC

If you use your AirPods with a Windows PC, you may have noticed that when a song is paused, the automatic on/off function inside your AirPods can sometimes cause them to disconnect in an attempt to save power. This is because they think there is no longer a device connected.

To fix this, you can alter some settings within Windows.

  1. Right-click on your Start button and click Device Manager.
    Access Device Manager
    Access Device Manager
  2. Click on View, and ensure that ‘Devices by type’ is the chosen option."View
  3. Expand the Human Interface Devices section, and you will find two entries: “<Name> AirPods Audio/Video Remote Control HID” and “<Name> AirPods Hands-Free Call Control HID”
    Toggle Human Interface Devices
    Toggle Human Interface Devices
  4. For each, right-click and select Properties.
    Click on Properties
    Click on Properties
  5. There, go to ‘Power Management’. Uncheck the ‘Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power’ option then click ‘OK’.
    Disable Power Management
    Disable Power Management

Conclusion

Now that you have the necessary knowledge to stop your headphones from disconnecting on their own, you can enjoy audio that’s free of interruptions.

Did the above solutions fix your problem? Let us know in the comments below!