Why Are My AirPods Flashing Red?


If this is your first pair of AirPods, you might be confused about the colored lights on the case. In particular, a red light on the AirPods case can be worrying, and you might have trouble figuring out what it means. The good news is that it’s nothing serious, and you can quickly solve the issue.   

Quick Answer

Your AirPods might be flashing for a few different reasons. The battery of the earpieces or the box itself might be low, or you might have accidentally switched your AirPods with your friend’s pair, and the case fails to recognize it. In some cases, outdated firmware can also cause your AirPods to flash red.

It’s important to know what the AirPods case is trying to tell you with the flashing red lights so that you can fix the problem. Read on to know what it means. 

Why Are Your AirPods Flashing Red?

You might see a red light on your AirPods for several reasons.

Quick Fact

First-Gen AirPods have the status light present on the inside of the case. Meanwhile, in all the other generations, the status light is present outside.

Reason #1: Pairing Error

There’s some pairing error if you see a flashing amber or red light on your AirPods case. You don’t need to worry about this since it’s pretty easy to fix. All you have to do is just reset the AirPods. 

To do so, here’s what you have to do.

  1. Put the earpieces back in the case and close the lid. After about 30 seconds, open the lid but don’t take out the AirPods yet. 
  2. Unlock your phone and go to Settings > “Bluetooth”
  3. Under “My Devices”, find your AirPods
  4. Tap on the info (“i”) icon beside the name of your AirPods and tap “Forget This Device”. Tap “Forget Device” again to confirm.
  5. Long-press the button at the back of the case to disconnect the AirPods from all devices. Once you see a white light on your case, you’ll have to follow the setup wizard to connect them again.
  6. If you still see a flashing red light, it’s better to take your AirPods to the Apple Store.   

Reason #2: Low Battery

The battery is low if your AirPods’ case has a consistent red or amber light. This could be the battery of the case itself or the earpieces, and you can quickly figure out which one it is. 

A red light on the case when the AirPods are not inside means you need to charge the case. You can get at most one more charge from the case at this stage before it completely runs out of juice.

But if you see an amber or red light on the AirPods case while the earpieces are inside, that means that the battery of the AirPods is low and that they’re currently being charged. It’s best if you don’t take them out until they’re fully charged and the amber light turns green. 

If you see an amber or red light when you plug the case in, that just means your case is charging. In this case, too, it’s better if you leave the case plugged in until the red/amber light changes to green.

Reason #3: Error Storing AirPods

You might also see a red light on your AirPods because of mismatched earpieces. For instance, you might mix the AirPods’ orientation while storing them or accidentally exchange your AirPods or the case with someone else. The latter’s chances are very low, but it can still happen.

And to fix this, you just need to get your case or AirPods back, and the red light will go away. 

Reason #4: Outdated Firmware

Apple products rarely have glitches, but they might appear if you don’t keep your AirPods up to date. One such glitch is the AirPods flashing red. To prevent this from happening, just ensure that you keep your AirPods up to date, and you won’t have to encounter any performance issues or bugs. 


The status lights on your AirPods can be pretty helpful since they can help you understand what’s going on with them. And if this status light turns red, you don’t need to panic. In most cases, it’s because the battery of the case or the AirPods is low or there’s a pairing error. Both of these problems are fairly easy to fix, so there’s nothing you have to worry about.  

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