[11 Ways] iPhone Sound not Working Without Headphones

Don’t know how to do when iPhone sound not working without headphones? Find answers in this article. If all ways cut no ice, try to update your iPhone and don’t forget to back up the data first.

Kathy by Kathy Updated September 25, 2023
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Sound on iPhone not working without headphones.

The sound on my iPhone won’t work without headphones plugged in and can’t get it working, what’s the issue? What should I do to fix it? Thanks a lot.

- Question from Apple Community

Why iPhone sound not working without headphones?

With the iPhone Speaker, you can play music, videos, podcasts and more. But occasionally, the sound on your iPhone may disappear when you unplug or disconnect the headphones. There could be several reasons behind this issue.

⛔ Mute or silent mode is turned on your iPhone.
⛔ Your iPhone may be connected to a Bluetooth device, like headphones or a speaker.
⛔ A software glitch may cause sound issues.
⛔ The audio output source isn’t the iPhone's built-in speakers.
⛔ Some apps have their own volume controls.
⛔ The audio port or the speakers may have debris or dirt.
⛔ You are using non-Apple branded headphones, which may have compatibility issues.
⛔ Your iPhone is running an outdated iOS version.

How to fix iPhone sound not working without headphones

Before attempting to fix the issue, you can manually adjust the volume key to see if the sound has been muted. If not, you can continue reading the following article to find suitable solutions.

If none of the methods work, you can follow the steps mentioned in Solution 11 to update your system. It's advisable to back up your phone data before updating.

Solution 1. Restart your iPhone

Restarting your iPhone can solve some unknown software glitches on the device.

For iPhone X/11/12/13 or later: Press and hold either volume button and the side button simultaneously until the power-off slider appears > Drag the power-off slider to the right to turn off your device.

restart iPhone

For iPhone 6/7/8 or SE(2nd or 3rd generation): Press and hold the side button until the power-off slider appears on the screen > Drag the slider to the right to power off your iPhone.

For iPhone SE (1st generation), 5, or earlier: Press and hold the top button > When the power-off slider appears, drag the slider to turn off the device.

30 seconds later, press and hold the top/side button to turn on your iPhone.

Solution 2. Plug in and out your headphones again

Repeatedly inserting/connecting and removing headphones can sometimes help the iPhone recognize that the headphones have been disconnected. Make sure to do this several times to check if your iPhone can play sound normally without your headphones.

connect airpods

Solution 3. Check for Muted Apps

Some apps have their own volume controls. If you're experiencing sound issues in a specific app, check the app's settings for volume controls.

Solution 4. Check Mute Switch

You can also try to check if the mute switch (ring/silent switch) is turned on or the volume settings are configured in a way that's preventing sound from playing.

change sound settings

How to check Sound Settings: Go to Settings > Sounds & Haptics (or Sounds on older iOS versions) > Ensure that the volume sliders for Ringer and Alerts, as well as the various sound settings, are properly configured to your preference.

Note: If the Silent Switch doesn’t work, you can go to this page to find solutions: [8 Ways] Fix iPhone Silent Switch not Working

Solution 5. Use another headphone

If your iPhone is stuck in headphone mode and you're not using original Apple headphones, it's possible that there may be compatibility issues with the headphones you're using. You can try to use another headphone, try to connect or plug it to your iPhone and remove it to check if your iPhone sound can work normally.

Solution 6. Turn off Do Not Disturb

The Do Not Disturb feature could result in the error. You can go to the Control Center by either swiping down from the top-right corner of the screen (on iPhone with Face ID) or swiping up from the bottom edge of any screen (on iPhone with Touch ID). Then click on the Do Not Disturb section (or whichever Focus Mode you have), and switch it off.

control center on iphone

Solution 7. Clean the headphone jack

Occasionally, the iPhone case might interfere with the headphone jack, causing your device to remain stuck in headphone mode. So you can remove your iPhone case and with the help of needle or toothpick, clean the headphone jack to remove dust particles. Once it is done, check iPhone speaker to see if the issue is resolved or not.

Solution 8. Turn on and off Airplane Mode

Another way you can try is to turn on the Airplane Mode on your iPhone and turn off it after a while. You can go to Control Center to toggle it on or go to Settings app > Choose Airplane Mode to enable it.

turn on airplane mode

Solution 9. Changing Call Audio Routing

Call Audio Routing settings can determine where the sound from your iPhone is directed when you receive a phone call or FaceTime audio call. 

Here’s how to change the settings: Visit Settings app on your iPhone > General > Accessibility > Locate and click Call Audio Routing > You will see options like Automatic and Speaker. If Automatic is already selected, switch it to Speaker.

call audio routing

Then you can place a call or FaceTime audio call to test if the sound is coming from the speaker as expected. If it works normally, then change it again to the Automatic.

Solution 10. Reset all settings

If you are still experiencing the iPhone sound not working without Bluetooth headphones or wired headphones issue, you can try to reset all settings on your iPhone to fix it and this way doesn’t erase any iPhone data. (Go to Settings > General Reset > Choose Reset All Settings.)

reset all settings

Solution 11. Update software

If none of the previously mentioned methods work, your last option is to attempt a system update to see if it solves the issue. It's advisable to back up your phone data before updating.

Back up iPhone with FoneTool on Windows PC

With the all-in-one iPhone data management app - FoneTool, you can selectively back up photos, music, videos, contacts and messages or fully back up all iPhone data. In contrast, iTunes/iCloud only supports creating full backups.

For some people who need to switch to a new Apple ID, FoneTool can help you transfer data from iPhone to iPhone between different Apple IDs, or restore the old iPhone selective/full backup to another new iPhone.

And many people will encounter some unknown iTunes error like iTunes error code 3004 in the iTunes using process. But FoneTool can run stably on most iOS devices, including iPhone 4 to iPhone 15, iPad and iPod Touch.

Now you can download it on your Windows PC and learn how to fully back up your iPhone.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to the PC with a USB cable > If asks, click Trust on your devices.

Step 2. Launch FoneTool > Go to Phone Backup > Full Back > Click on Get Started.

full backup

Step 3. Check Enable Backup Encryption to protect your private data if you need > Choose a storage path to store your backup > Click Start Backup to begin.

start backup

Backup iPhone with Finder on Mac

Step 1. Connect your iPhone to your computer with a USB cable. You may need to enter the passcode or tap Trust This Computer on your iPhone.

Step 1. Choose your device on your computer. If you want to save Health and Activity data on iPhone, you can encrypt your backup by clicking on the Encrypt local backup option. Then tap on Back Up Now. Once the process is completed, you’ll see the latest backup on the interface.

back up iphone with finder

Now you can go to Settings on your iPhone > Choose General > Software Update to update your device.

Note: If you can’t update your iPhone, you can go to this page to fix the issue: 9 Ways to Fix iPhone/iPad Unable to Check for Update

When the iPhone has updated to the latest version, you can go to FoneTool (Backup History > Restore) or Finder to restore it.

restore iPhone backup


That’s all about how to fix iPhone sound not working without headphones. Hope you can solve the problem successfully. If all ways have no effect, you can choose to update your iPhone. And don’t forget to back up your iPhone before the process with FoneTool or Finder.

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