How to Clean Your Headphones and Earbuds

Writer: admin Time:2019-01-01 12:44 Browse:

So, you’ve cleaned your phone, keyboard, and mouse, but what about your headphones? Cleaning out any ear wax and disinfecting your headphones isn’t only good for your hygiene, it may even improve the sound quality.
Why Clean Your Headphones?
Whether you have over-the-ear or in-ear headphones, you should clean them regularly for both hygiene and maintenance reasons. This is especially true if you use your headphones while you exercise, as so many of us do.
Sweat can build up and make the ear cups smell bad. Ear wax can clog drivers and reduce not only volume, but also sound clarity. Then there’s all the dirt you can’t see like bacteria and other microbes that might make you sick. Clean headphones are just more sanitary.
If you adjust your headphones while you’re at the gym, you can transfer anything you’ve touched to them. If you touch a contaminated earbud, you could spread the virus to other surfaces, or become infected with it if you touch your mouth, nose, or eyes.
Studies have shown that headphones increase bacterial growth inside the ear, and it can be passed from one person to another if the headphones are shared. Even if you don’t share yours, think about what your earphones have touched and whether you want to put that inside your ear.
A variety of staphylococcus is one of the most common bacteria that can be transferred from your ear to your earbuds. An overgrowth of this sort of bacteria could also cause an ear infection. Cleaning your earbuds will help you reduce this risk.
Cleaning Over-the-Ear Headphones
How you can clean your over-the-ear headphones will vary. Many brands are designed with easy cleaning in mind, and have removable ear cups and cables that you can unplug on both ends.
Other brands aren’t as easy to clean, so you’ll need to take care not to damage them while you do so. If possible, consult the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions. Apple, Beats, and Bose are just a few of the brands that offer basic cleaning instructions.
To clean your headphones effectively, you’ll need the following supplies:
A soft damp cloth
Isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol that contains 70 percent alcohol or higher
Cotton balls or Q-tips
A paper towel, tissue, or clean cloth
If you’re concerned about damaging any fabric on your headphones, perform a test on an inconspicuous area first. Rubbing alcohol is unlikely to permanently damage leather or PVC (faux-leather) in the amount you’ll be using. If your headphones are all-plastic or metal, you don’t need to worry.
Follow these steps to clean your over-the-ear headphones:
If possible, remove the ear cups from the headphones to more easily access the mesh below.
With your soft damp cloth, wipe away any stuck-on grime or dirt from both the ear cups and the main headphone unit. Get as much off as you can as bacteria and other nasties will cling to dirt.
Dampen a paper towel or clean cloth with rubbing alcohol. Clean the entire surface of the ear cups and the rest of the headphones.
Dampen a cotton ball or Q-tip with rubbing alcohol and clean any nooks and crannies. Do this on both the ear cups (in areas like fabric folds) and the main headphone unit.
Extend the headphones to their maximum size, and then clean them thoroughly with a towel or cloth and some rubbing alcohol. Clean any buttons, volume dials, or remotes you might use. Spend some extra time on the area where you grip the headphones when you put them on and take them off.
Dab a paper towel or Q-tip in some alcohol and wipe the mesh on the main speakers. Make sure you don’t miss any spots.
If your headphones have a microphone (like a gaming headset, for example), don’t forget to clean the mesh and adjustable arm with alcohol, too.
Finally, wipe down any cables, including the rubber grip near the jack, with a paper towel and some alcohol.
Let the alcohol dry completely (it should evaporate quickly) before you reassemble and use your headphones again. If you let the isopropyl alcohol evaporate, it shouldn’t leave any streaky marks or residue.
Cleaning In-Ear Headphones
In-ear headphones are, arguably, even less hygienic than the over-the-ear kind because you actually put them inside your ear. Some earphones sit quite deep in your ear canal and form a seal, thanks to silicon tips. While the sound is unbeatable, the risk of getting an ear infection is greater.