If your AirPods battery discharges quickly, giving you significantly less use time, here are the tips to improve it. Once you follow some of the recommendations here based on your needs, the battery life of your AirPods should increase. This will ensure it lasts longer, and you can listen to more songs or talk for extended hours using your AirPods (1st, 2nd, and 3rd generation), AirPods Pro, or AirPods Max.
How long do the AirPods battery last?
Battery backup of any device, including AirPods, depends on various factors. Apple advertises the number it derives from testing in special lab environments under set standards.
Apple claims the following hours of listening time for AirPods with a single charge when the volume is set to 50%:
- AirPods 1st generation: 5 hours
- AirPods 2nd generation: 5 hours
- AirPods 3rd generation: 6 hours
- AirPods Pro: 4.5 hours
- AirPods Max: 20 hours
You get the following hours of listening time with the AirPods case:
- AirPods 1st generation: 24 hours
- AirPods 2nd generation: 24 hours
- AirPods 3rd generation: 30 hours
- AirPods Pro: 24 hours
- AirPods Max: The case cannot charge the headphones.
Apple doesn’t talk about the lifespan of AirPods battery. But typically, results have concluded that your AirPods are good for two years. After that, their battery lifespan falls significantly and may even leads to permanent lower volume.
- How to see the battery percentage of AirPods on any device
- How AirPods and their case charge: how fast, what gets prioritized (and when)
12 tips to improve AirPods battery life
Here are some useful tips to get more hours out of your AirPods. Now, I do not expect you to follow all these every time. But once you know about these, you can use them whenever you’re low on battery and away from a charger.
1. Use AirPods at a lower volume
The battery life mentioned above are when the volume is set to 50%. If you use your AirPods at the maximum volume, it’ll use more battery. So, unless needed, try to use them at a low volume, which is good for extended usages and also healthy for your ears.
2. Put your AirPods in the charging case
Often, I fall asleep with AirPods in my ear, and overnight they come off and stay outside the case. In the morning, when I check their battery, it’s in the red.
Whenever AirPods are not in use, put them inside their case to charge them and preserve their current battery.
3. Do not open the case lid unnecessarily
When you open the AirPods case, its status light glows, and it becomes available to connect with your iPhone, iPad, or Mac. Opening the case lid when not needed will waste battery. So, please avoid doing that.
4. Disable AirPods “Hey Siri”
AirPods 2nd generation and later support hands-free Siri. When this is enabled, the AirPods microphones are always listening to catch the “Hey Siri” hot word.
AirPods have tiny batteries, and if you want to get just a bit of extra work from them, you can disable this feature by going to iPhone Settings > Siri & Search and turn off Listen for “Hey Siri”.
Note: This also turns off “Hey Siri” for your iPhone.
5. Turn off spatial audio
When you go to the official Apple AirPods page, it mentions that your AirPods 3rd generation’s battery backup decreases by an hour when you use spatial audio.
There is no reason to think this won’t affect AirPods Pro and Max. So, if you want to get the most out of your AirPods, turn off spatial audio.
6. Disable Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency mode
Apple’s AirPods page also mentions that turning off ANC and Transparency mode increases your listening time by 30 minutes. If you don’t need these features, turn them off to improve your AirPods battery life.
Bring the iPhone Control Center and press the volume slider. Now, tap the appropriate icons to turn off Noise Cancellation and Transparency mode.
7. Cut down extra features
The battery life figures are simple listening time with extra features turned off. The moment you use additional conveniences, it starts taking a toll on AirPods battery. Turn off anything extra like Live Listen audio, Headphone levels, and Conversation Boost to get the most time from your AirPods on a single charge.
8. Use a single AirPod instead of both
I never use this as I’m not very comfortable using just one AirPod. It feels incomplete. But if you’re in a tough situation with little battery left, and you just have to continue a long call or listen to something, keep one of the AirPods in the case and use just one. Use the other pod when the battery of one AirPod is out.
9. Avoid too hot or too cold temperatures
Like all Apple products, AirPods battery will offer the most when operated in non-extreme temperatures. If you’re in an extremely hot or cold surrounding, it can negatively impact the listening time you usually get.
Additionally, if your AirPods are hot due to charging on a MagSafe or wireless charger, consider leaving them unused for a while until the case and the AirPods cool down.
10. Update to the latest AirPods firmware
Like iPhone, iPad, Watch, Mac, and other devices, your AirPods also get updates. This isn’t very frequent and happens automatically without your manual intervention. But if you constantly get poor battery life, make sure your AirPods are on the latest firmware.
11. Reset your AirPods
If none of the above solutions help, you can unpair the AirPods and pair them again. Here’s how to do that:
1) Open Settings and tap Bluetooth.
2) Tap (i) next to AirPods name.
3) Tap Forget This Device.
4) Put the AirPods in their case and pair them by pressing the button on the case.
Here are some additional useful tips to get the most out of your AirPods and their case battery:
- Use Optimized Charging.
- Do not overcharge the AirPods case.
- If you plan to store the AirPods unused for a long time, charge the case to 50%. Do not store any Apple product with full or empty charge.
- Keep your AirPods and their case clean and dry.
Apple Store tip and trick to get AirPods battery replaced
If your AirPods are too old, you may consider getting a replacement, or even their battery serviced. Now, the Apple Store guy will ask you to pay more and insist on buying new AirPods. But if you like, here’s a trick on getting them to service the AirPods battery at a significantly lower price.
Consider a backup for your AirPods
Reportedly, AirPods demand is falling due to increased competition from cheaper brands. Now, I have been using AirPods since 2018 and love them. But if you are someone who travels a lot or for any reason constantly runs out of charge, consider buying a cheaper AirPods alternative. You can use it alongside your AirPods. Another handy option is to invest in a good power bank that can charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods multiple times.