How Waterproof Are AirPods?


According to Apple, the latest AirPods are resistant to water and sweat. This is an incredible feature, as we all know how dangerous water is to any electronic device. Whenever water gets into your electronic device, it destroys it by causing its components to short-circuit or through corrosion. But since some AirPods are water-resistant, does this mean they are free from water damage?  

Quick Answer

AirPods are not waterproof. Despite being water-resistant, you should try everything you can to avoid getting them wet. Some AirPods are sweat and water-resistant, but these qualities are not permanent conditions and will most likely diminish over time. AirPods aren’t designed to be used while swimming, showering, or walking in heavy rain.

This article will discuss the types of AirPods and the amount of water each can withstand without permanent damage. We will also mention the activities you should avoid while using your AirPod. Finally, we will teach you what to do when you inadvertently get your AirPod wet. 

Are AirPods Waterproof or Water Resistant?

The two words might sound similar, but there is a clear difference between waterproof and water-resistant. If an electronic device is waterproof, it has been designed to withstand water no matter how much. You can throw it in an ocean of water, and it will still work perfectly. 

On the other hand, a water-resistant device only has a small layer of protection against water. Being water-resistant is a temporary quality that diminishes with time. Apple’s latest AirPods have an IPX4 water-resistant rating, meaning they can withstand the odd splashes of water and wetness from sweat. But with time, their water resistance diminishes through normal wear.

Apple has not made waterproof AirPods, and even the latest AirPods will sustain damage if exposed to too much water. The first and second-generation AirPods and AirPod Max are not water-resistant. If you have any of them, avoiding activities involving heavy sweating is best. 

The third-generation AirPods and AirPods Pro are water-resistant with a rating of IPX4. 

Activities To Avoid While Using AirPods

Since you know your AirPods are not waterproof, you should avoid water-related activities. If you’re using the first and second-generation AirPods, you shouldn’t even use them while working out, as your sweat can damage your device. As for the water-resistant AirPods, avoid the following activities.

  • Swimming: Do not swim with your AirPods. That volume of water is more than your AirPods can resist and will damage them instantly. It will take a miracle to get them working again.
  • Showering: Remove your AirPods before you use the shower. Avoid placing your AirPods under running water.
  • Sauna/Steam room: Your AirPods aren’t designed to withstand the sweat and heat in a steam room or sauna.
  • Water Sports: Do not use your AirPods while playing sports like water polo, water skiing, etc. Even if you can somehow avoid getting them wet, it is too risky, and any mistake can cause permanent damage to the AirPod.
  • Washing: Make sure you empty your pockets before putting them in the washing machine. Your AirPods are unlikely to survive if you put them in the washing machine or dryer.

How To Dry Off Wet AirPods

No matter how careful we try to be, we are still humans who are prone to mistakes. If you get your AirPods wet through negligence or by mistake, there are things you can do to save the situation before throwing in the towel. 

  1. Wipe the AirPod with a clean and dry lint-free cloth. If the liquid that got your AirPod wet is coffee, tea, juice, or any other liquid apart from clean water, you should first clean the AirPod with a cloth dampened with fresh water to remove the particles in the liquid and prevent the AirPod from being sticky. Do not clean with paper towels.
  2. Dry the AirPods. Do not be tempted to use heat or compressed air to dry your AirPods, as this can damage your device. Avoid using rice, blow dryers, or radiators to speed up the drying process. Instead, place the AirPods in a dry open area with gentle airflow and allow them to dry naturally for two hours or longer. Sometimes, it’s best to let it dry overnight.
  3. Return the AirPods to the charging case. Ensure the case is dry before you put the AirPods back in the charging case. Clean the case with a dry cloth and carefully place the AirPods in the case. 

The steps above are effective in drying wet AirPods. Still, there is no guarantee that your device will work, especially if the water has already made its way into the AirPods’ internal components. There might be instant damage, or it could take weeks or months before the circuit rusts. When that happens, your only option is to replace them.


Apple’s warranty doesn’t include water damage, so you should do everything possible to avoid getting your AirPods wet, even if you have the latest water-resistant ones. 

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