No matter how you use it, the speaker holes on your iPhone eventually get clogged with dust, dirt, or wax particles. This will affect the sound quality and volume when playing music, incoming calls ringing and while talking during a call. You must already be looking for a way to remove all the dust and clean your iPhone speakers without damaging them.
Well, there are a million ways to fix this, but we have selected the safest methods you can try to clean iPhone speaker holes.
Let’s look at the best possible methods available to clean dirt off iPhone speaker grilles. We have selected the methods based on the ease and safety of doing. And oh, don’t forget to check out the dos and don’ts you should keep in mind before attempting to clean your iPhone speakers.
What are the iPhone speaker holes / grilles that you can clean?
As you may already know, iPhone not only has one speaker, but there are two speakers you should take care of. If you are using an iPhone 8 or newer, you will see two sets of “speaker holes” on the bottom edge of the device. In fact, only one of them is a speaker and we will talk about it.
Let’s talk about the main speaker grilles on the iPhone located on the bottom edge. If you look at the bottom edge from the front of your iPhone, the grille located on the right is the actual speaker and the left one houses only a microphone. This is more prone to dust clogging and water trapping than the secondary one. See the image below.
Let’s now take a look at the secondary speaker grille located at the top of your iPhone screen. This acts as a stereo speaker pair for the main speaker and is used as a headset during a call. Being a tiny speaker grill, you’ll find relatively minor dust and clogs here.
Before you decide to clean your iPhone speaker using the methods explained below, make sure which speaker is causing problems due to dust. If you can’t hear properly from the headset during audio calls, there must be a problem with the secondary speaker at the top of the screen. If incoming ringtones or music playback are affected, the problem is mainly with the main speaker grille.
1. Use soft brushes to clean the iPhone speakers
The most efficient and recommended way to clean your iPhone speaker is to carefully use a soft bristle brush. While Apple doesn’t approve of cleaning speaker grilles on their own, they officially recommend using such brushes just in case you need to.
If you are using an old toothbrush, make sure it is in the “Soft” or “Extra Soft” category and confirm by pressing the bristles firmly with your fingers. Do not use the toothbrush if the bristles are even slightly hard.
2. Remove dust using masking tapes
Using masking tapes, also known as painter’s tapes, is an effective way to remove dust from your iPhone’s speakers. Why masking tapes? Compared to normal scotch or electrical tape, masking tapes leave little or no residue and adhesive particles after peeling them off. They are much easier to attach and detach.
The voice speaker grilles on your iPhone are easier to clean with masking tapes. You can tear off a piece of painter’s tape and stick it on top of the speaker. Draw on the tape using your nails so that it catches more dust. Then, carefully remove the tape to get rid of speaker dust on your iPhone.
You can also try cleaning the lower speaker grilles using masking tape. However, it won’t be as effective as you might think as the main speaker holes are much deeper.
3. Use cleaning putty or cleaning slime
Sometimes, all of the above methods may not be very effective for removing oily or waxy dust. In these cases, you can use cleaning putty or cleaning slime like AirSquares. You must have seen such cleaning slimes in some craft videos.
Cleaning grout and slime is very effective in pulling out the dust stuck inside the iPhone speaker holes. You can use the same to clean the main speaker grills and the voice speaker on your iPhone.
4. Use small dust blowers
Most of us would have this tiny dust blower that blows air when you press the belly part on it. These tiny plastic dust blowers are so cheap and you can get under a couple of bucks. If you have such dust blowers, force some air into the speaker vents on your iPhone to remove the dust.
Please don’t confuse dust blowers with leaf blowers. Since the sprayers blow a small amount of air into your iPhone’s speaker, they are effective in removing tiny, non-sticky dust particles.
5. Use Canned Air to clean the speaker holes on iPhone
The compressed air or gas duster has really proven effective in removing hard dust and dirt from your iPhone speaker. We don’t recommend this method unless and until none of the other methods work for you.
Warning: the compressed air / compressed air / gas duster may contain harmful contents that can represent a serious health hazard. Use only with caution and adequate safety measures. Also, direct air blowing into the iPhone speaker can cause permanent damage to the hardware.
If you have a can of compressed air, you can blow air from a safe distance (not directly into the speaker grilles) to remove dust and clean it. This method allows you to clean dirt off iPhone speakers most of the time.
6. Use toothpicks (carefully) to remove dust from the speakers
Even after blowing pressurized air into the speaker vents, you may still see some dust particles sticking to the edges. In such cases, we need this old school method to remove them. Take a toothpick or small piece of plastic to clean the iPhone’s speaker grilles.
Before entering, make sure the speaker grilles are visible and that there is enough light because you don’t want to make a mistake here. A small flaw can cause permanent damage to your iPhone’s speaker, so only do it with utmost care.
7. Remove the water from the speaker using sound
If your iPhone got wet from rain, splashes, or immersion in water, the iPhone speaker may not work properly for a few minutes. If you still hear a crackling noise from the iPhone speaker while playing music, it must be due to water trapped inside the speaker holes.
Removing water from the speaker grille is not easy with any of the methods described above. Well, however, by playing some noise at a certain frequency, you can easily eject the water from the iPhone speaker. There are many websites and apps that allow you to play that noise for some time so that you can dry the wet speaker grilles on your iPhone.
You can use the App Store’s Sonic app to generate this noise at any frequency. Generates noise at around 160Hz or more to repel water from the speaker. You can play with different noise frequency levels to get better results in cleaning your iPhone’s wet speaker.
An alternative method to completely eliminate the water particles from the iPhone speakers is to keep the device with silica gel.
Cleaning iPhone Speakers: Dos and Don’ts
Good for you if you scroll down to this part because it’s important to know what to do and what not to while cleaning your iPhone’s speakers. Let’s discuss all of them.
What to do:
- Carry out all the steps very carefully.
- Use only soft bristle brushes.
- Test your speakers before and after cleaning.
- Make sure to remove the iPhone case before cleaning.
Not to do:
- Do not use disinfectant or similar liquids to clean the speakers.
- Do not wash iPhone to clean the speakers.
- Do not blow compressed air directly into the speakers.
- Do not unnecessarily clean speakers or microphones unless you find too many dust particles.