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How To Fix Bluetooth Headphones When Only One Side Works

Bluetooth Headphones

If your Bluetooth headphones malfunction, it can cause inconvenience whether you want to listen to your favorite music or watch a movie. A few users report that their wireless headphones are acting up quite often.

Quick Answer

It is possible to fix Bluetooth headphones when only one side works by rebooting or resetting them, disabling mono mode on your device, resetting the headphones, or listening to a compatible audio file. 

Headphones let us listen to music and podcasts in peace, without bothering anyone else. But how can you enjoy your tunes when the balance of the sound gets disrupted?

This article will go over some of the most common causes of Bluetooth headphones malfunctioning on one side and explore different ways to fix them.

Why is Only One Side of My Bluetooth Headphones Working?

There could be many reasons why your Bluetooth headphones have stopped working from one side. A few of these can be:

  • Headphones need to be reconnected.
  • The sound balance is misadjusted on the device.
  • Headphones are stuck in Mono mode.
  • Bluetooth Headphones are damaged and need replacing.
  • Low wireless headphones battery.
  • Incompatible audio files.

Methods to Fix Bluetooth Headphones

Fixing Bluetooth headphones is an easy process. If you can figure out what is causing the problem, you will know where to put your troubleshooting efforts.

Below are five methods to fix your Bluetooth headphones when only one side works.

Method #1: Reconnect Your Headphones

Sometimes, turning off and on the wireless headphones can fix the conflicts between the devices and can fix the sound issue on one side. Doing this is very easy.

  1. First, restart your headphones and your device.
  2. Next, unpair the headphones from the device.
  3. Now, pair the headphones again and see if you can get the sound working again on both sides.

Method #2: Check Side Balance

Using Bluetooth headphones with a PC, a setting might have adjusted the audio speaker side balance to left or right rather than in the middle. To check this:

  1. Launch the “Settings” app in Windows and navigate to “System”.
  2. Next, select the “Sound” option in the left pane.
  3. Now choose your paired Bluetooth headphones device.
  4. Finally, adjust the sound balance in the middle and see if you can hear from both sides.

If you want to adjust the sound balance on your smartphone, go to “Settings” > “Accessibility” > “Audio/Visual”. Under “Audio Balance”, move the slider to the middle.

Method #3: Disable Mono Mode

Mono mode is a setting that will connect the left and the right channel of your Bluetooth headphones to one channel, thus often causing one side to malfunction. If your wireless headphones are stuck in mono mode, it often causes one side to malfunction. 

To fix the issue, try disabling the mode in the following way.  

  1. Like in the first method, navigate to the “Sound” option in “Settings”.
  2. Under the sound balance adjuster, toggle the Mono switch to the off position.
  3. Now connect your headphones and see if the issue persists.

You can also try resetting your headphones if they are stuck in Mono mode. First, turn off your Bluetooth and press/hold the volume up and down button on the right earcup of your headphones for 20 seconds. Next, release the buttons when you hear a sound confirming the action.

Method #4: Check With Sound Cable

You can use a cable with your wireless headphone to troubleshoot the issue. To do this:

  1. Insert the end of your headphone’s sound cable and plug it into your device’s TRS (3-pole) jack.
  2. Now check if you can hear the sound from the malfunctioning side.
  3. Once you hear the audio, disconnect the cable and listen again in wireless mode to confirm the fix.

While playing audio, you can also push the plug back into the headphone. The Bluetooth might be damaged because of rough handling, so reinserting might help your headphones work again. 

Method #5: Check for Damage

Your Bluetooth headphones may be damaged, so you can only hear sound from one side. However, to confirm your suspicion:

  1. Use another headphone or borrow one from a friend and connect it with your device.
  2. If you still can’t hear the device, troubleshoot Bluetooth issues on your device.
  3. If you hear sound from both sides using a different pair of headphones, repair or replace your existing headphones.

Checking Audio files

Your wireless headphones might not be compatible with the audio files you want to listen to. A few audio files are formatted to play on the left or right side of the headset. So before trying anything else, play another audio file and check if you can hear from both sides of your headphone.


If your wireless headphone battery is low, one side can start acting up, like static sounds or muting.


In this guide about fixing Bluetooth headphones when only one side works, we’ve discussed the possible reasons for the issue. We’ve also explored different methods to get the sound back on both sides.

Hopefully, now your troubles are over, and now you can enjoy your favorite music or watch movies without having to stress one ear more than the other.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why am I not able to connect my Bluetooth headphones to my phone or computer?

Many Bluetooth devices like headphones and speakers require a pairing process to connect. When you try to connect them with your phone or computer, a pop-up notification may appear asking if you want to allow this device. The notification will show the Bluetooth handle of the device that is trying to connect with you.

To pair or connect your headphones, make sure that the Bluetooth handle of your device is open on both devices. If either of these is blocked, it might lead to an error message, and for specific devices, there may be no connection.

Can dirty headphones cause one side to stop working?

You might have a habit of using your Bluetooth headphones outdoors and do not clean them regularly. So when the headset collects dust, one side can stop working.

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