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Why Does One Of My AirPods Die Faster? (Quick Answer!)

Jamey Muller
Updated: July 6, 2022
5 min read

Perhaps one of the biggest mysteries for Apple enthusiasts, specifically those who use AirPods, is why the other one’s battery capacity doesn’t seem to be equal to the other.

But just what exactly could be causing this bizarre AirPod battery phenomenon? Below are the possible reasons why.

Here’s Why One of Your AirPods Dies Faster Than the Other One:

If wearing earphones/earbuds and listening to music and podcasts as you go about your daily tasks comes as naturally as breathing to you (as I know it does to me), you may not notice that you tend to have an unconscious bias or preference for using one of them or keeping one of them in your ear more than the other.

If someone talks to you, you barely even notice that you just automatically take one out.

In the case of Airpods, the most common reason why one dies faster than the other is that you use it more often. Being wireless, they operate on separate batteries, and naturally, if one is more active, it’s bound to drain much sooner. 

Other Reasons Why One of Your AirPods Could Die Faster:

Of course, using one more than the other isn’t the only reason. Some may not even be because you use one more than the other. 

Your Microphone Setting

Both AirPods have a microphone installed in each of them, and if you leave it in its Automatic default mode, whichever one you take out of the case first will be the one with the active microphone the whole time.

Similarly, if you set it to Always Right or Always Left, only one will always have its microphone turned on, leading to faster battery drain. 

A way to avoid this is to consciously switch up which AirPod you take out of the case first if your microphone is set to Automatic or to change it from Always Right to Always Left and vice versa every once in a while.

This way, both of them will have a relatively equal amount of usage, and you won’t have to worry as much about one dying first.

Battery Damage

Any damage to the battery, either by getting dislodged when you drop your AirPods too often or water accidentally getting in, would reduce the efficiency and usability of either one or both of your AirPods. 

Another reason is the tiny lithium-ion batteries they use. All lithium-ion batteries eventually wear out and become completely unusable, but because the ones in AirPods are so small, they’re more prone to degradation.

This could lead to more “deep discharge” instances or when you drain a full battery to 10% or less. 

When your AirPods go through a deep discharge multiple times a day, it puts more strain on the lithium-ion cells in the batteries and negatively impacts their overall lifespan.

It’s good to be more mindful of your usage and avoid completely draining the batteries before charging them. 

They Don’t Get Recharged Often Enough

There are times when you neglect to put your AirPods back into their cases where they can rest and recharge. Some might think this is completely harmless, but that’s not necessarily the case.

Your AirPods are smart earbuds, and if you leave them hanging in a random spot, their sensors will keep trying to connect to something, even when your Bluetooth is disabled. 

Like a deep discharge when used too often without charging, your AirPods will enter a “low-power” mode wherein the sensors remain active and consume power for nothing. This could be more damaging to its batteries in the long run. 

The solution is very simple, and it’s just to always place your AirPods back into their cases after use and make sure that you’ve recharged the cases before doing so. 

Damaged Charging Case

Although much less common, there are times when the problem is not the AirPods themselves but the case. If the charger isn’t functioning as it should, this could mean that your AirPods might not be getting properly charged.

Do look for anything that may be amiss with the charging case, such as the lights (not lighting up at all or very dim) or if it feels unusually warm to the touch. 

Once you’ve determined that it’s damaged, you should get a replacement immediately.

Manufacturing Defect

This pretty much comes with the territory when you’re dealing with electronic devices, and even AirPods, which is supposedly a high-end product from a globally renowned company, isn’t an exception.

Sometimes, it’s going to be because something went wrong during its manufacture that somehow went undetected by quality control, and there’s nothing you can do about it from your end. 

Apple has received so many reports of one AirPod dying much faster than its twin that they acknowledged it as a legitimate manufacturing defect.

As long as your AirPods are still under warranty, you can get in touch with Apple and arrange for a new one to be shipped to you. 


Is It Normal for One AirPod to Die Faster?

Generally, since the battery percentage displayed on the screen of whatever Apple device your AirPods are connected to is more of an approximation, it’s not unusual for them to show different numbers.

If you use your AirPods often enough, it’s not easy to track how you’re using them and which actions and smart features drain the most battery. 

As long as the difference isn’t too significant (perhaps anywhere between 5% to 20%) and you’re sure that you’re using them equally, it shouldn’t be much cause for concern. There’s nothing wrong with your AirPods.

However, if you feel like one is still getting drained abnormally fast despite all the troubleshooting you’ve done and the safety precautions you’ve taken, then it’s probably time to bring it to an Apple store near you and have it looked at by a professional.

You can also contact Apple Support via phone or email if a physical store isn’t accessible to you. They’re available 24/7 to address any concerns you may have.


Apple Support

Written by
Jamey Muller
I'm the head-writer @ Knowledge Eager (or, in plain English, I'm the guy writing the majority of the content here). Addicted to the stock market, football, sushi and tacos.
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Jamey Muller
I'm the head-writer @ Knowledge Eager (or, in plain English, I'm the guy writing the majority of the content here). Addicted to the stock market, football, sushi and tacos.