Ever catch yourself jamming out to your favorite tunes in the shower? Or even belting out a song or two?
I bet you do!
Don’t worry, you’re not alone; everyone rocks out a bit when they’re alone. Music makes even the most routine tasks, like washing the dishes or taking a shower, a little more enjoyable.
I’m a big fan of listening to music or podcasts while I shower, and I usually use speakers. But I’ve often wondered, just like you, if it’s possible to wear AirPods in the shower.
In this guide, I’ll share with you the realities of using AirPods in the shower, drawing from my personal experience of numerous real-life fixes, and tips to prevent damage.
The Clever Fix
If you happen to take a shower with your AirPods on (whoops!), immediately remove them and dry them thoroughly with a lint-free or microfiber cloth. Let them air dry for about 3 to 5 hours before checking if everything is working fine.
(Note: If your AirPods have been soaked for an extended period, it would be wise to let them dry overnight.)
Can you wear AirPods in the shower?
The answer, unfortunately, is no.
AirPods are designed to be water-resistant, not waterproof.
They can hold up against a bit of rain when you’re out and about or even a heavy sweat session at the gym, but they’re not designed to withstand running water like in a shower.
What’s the difference between water-resistant and waterproof?
Well, if something is water-resistant, it can resist water penetration up to a point.
But if it’s waterproof, it’s entirely resistant and can tolerate water exposure for prolonged periods.
Apple is clear in stating that AirPods are water and sweat-resistant, not waterproof.
What are IP ratings?
Products like our AirPods come with an Ingress Protection rating (or IP rating).
These ratings, given by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), indicate how resilient the product is to dust or water exposure.
You’ll usually find the rating on the product’s packaging, stylized as “IP” followed by two digits.
The first digit tells you how well it holds up against solids (dust), ranging from 1 to 6. While the second digit tells you its resistance to liquids (water), ranging from 1 to 8.
Higher numbers mean more resistance.
What is the IP rating of AirPods?
The 3rd Generation AirPods and AirPods Pro come with an IPX4 rating.
The “X” indicates that they haven’t been tested for dust resistance. The “4”, on the other hand, means they can resist water splashes from any direction.
What should I do if I showered with my AirPods?
First off, don’t panic! AirPods are so small and fit so snugly in your ear that it’s easy to forget you’re wearing them.
However, this forgetfulness might lead you to wear them in unintended places, including the shower!
(It’s okay if you intentionally showered with your AirPods — I won’t judge. But remember, that’s an expensive gamble!)
So picture this: you’re washing your hair, completely in the zone…
Suddenly, you realize you can still hear music.
Your AirPods are drenched!
Time is of the essence here. If your AirPods are drenched, don’t even think about putting them back in the case.
Instead, grab a lint-free cloth or a microfiber towel and give your AirPods a good wipe down, making sure to dry all the nooks and crannies, including the speaker meshes and mic.
Looks can be deceiving. Your AirPods might appear dry on the outside, but water might still be lurking within. Let them air dry for the next 3 to 5 hours to be safe.
If they’ve been thoroughly soaked, you might want to play it safe and leave them to air dry overnight.
Remember: Resist the temptation to speed up the process with a blow dryer. AirPods aren’t fans of direct heat; it could potentially damage their delicate internal components.
Fix 2: Use silica gel packets
Silica gel packets, those little packets found in shoeboxes, vitamin bottles, or electronics packages, are actually desiccants that absorb moisture.
While you should never eat these (as the labels caution “DO NOT EAT” and “THROW AWAY“), they’re perfect for drying out your soggy AirPods.
Just place your AirPods in a dry container (a plastic bag or a small food storage container would do), add some silica gel packets, seal the container, and let it do its magic for at least 5 hours.
Fix 3: Use the Water Eject shortcut
You can also take advantage of a nifty Siri Shortcut called Water Eject.
This shortcut uses sound waves to vibrate your AirPods and force out the water.
To download the Water Eject shortcut:
- Open Settings > Shortcuts.
- Switch the Private Sharing toggle on.
- Download the shortcut using this link.
Once the shortcut is on your device, pair your AirPods with your iPhone, hold the proximity sensors on both AirPods, and tap Water Eject from the list of Siri Shortcuts.
Feel free to repeat this process until all the water is forced out. After you’re done, let your AirPods air out for a few hours before rocking out again.
Fix 4: Buy new AirPods
After you’ve tried the solutions I’ve suggested, it’s time to test your AirPods to see if they’re back to normal.
If the sound is distorted or they’re completely silent, they might have sustained severe water damage.
In this case, you might need to shop for a new pair.
If you’re covered by AppleCare+, water damage might be categorized as accidental damage. Your policy covers two incidents of accidental damage every 12 months, and you’ll only need to fork out $29 for the repair or replacement.
If you’re only covered by Apple’s one-year limited warranty, water damage isn’t included. You can still get AppleCare+, but only if it’s been less than 60 days since you bought your AirPods.
How do I protect my AirPods from water damage?
1. Don’t wear your AirPods in the shower
If you’re a fan of shower-time tunes or podcasts, opt for a Bluetooth speaker instead. Remember, your AirPods are water-resistant, not waterproof.
2. Don’t use your AirPods near water
This isn’t just about avoiding a dip in a glass of water. Keep your AirPods away from sinks, toilets, or pools.
It’s easy to forget they’re in your ears and end up dropping them in water when washing your face or going for a swim.
Always remember to take them out before any water-related activity.
3. Dry and clean your AirPods after every use
Don’t make it a habit to leave sweat on your AirPods after working out or running.
Your AirPods are sweat-resistant. But dry your AirPods before placing them back in the case to prevent dust or dirt from sticking to them, which could lead to connection problems or mic issues over time.
Sweat or water resistance is also not permanent. Having a lint-free or microfiber cloth handy is a good idea.
4. Place your AirPods in the case when not in use
Lots of folks (myself included!) have a tendency to slip their AirPods into their pants pockets when they’re not in use. Sounds harmless, right?
The trouble begins when it’s laundry day.
You toss your pants into the washing machine, add some detergent, and hit the start button. It’s only then that you realize your trusty AirPods are still snuggled away in your pocket.
To avoid such a catastrophe, always store your AirPods in their case when you’re not using them.
And remember, when I suggest cleaning your AirPods, I definitely don’t mean tossing them in with your dirty laundry!
5. Buy a water-resistant AirPods case
Looking for an extra layer of protection? Think about investing in a water-resistant case for your AirPods.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast or a frequent traveler like me, a water-resistant case is a no-brainer.
On the flip side, if you typically stick to home or office environments, this might not be necessary.
Nonetheless, a water-resistant case offers an added security blanket for your AirPods and, trust me, it’s a real worry saver.
Relax, you’re not the only one who’s ever pondered on the idea of jamming to some tunes with your AirPods while in the shower.
But here’s the deal: AirPods and showers don’t mix. AirPods are only water-resistant, not waterproof.
The AirPods Pro and 3rd Generation AirPods come with an IPX4 rating. This means they can handle a little splash here and there, but not much more.
If your AirPods accidentally got a shower, you can dry them out using:
– A lint-free or microfiber cloth
– Silica gel packets
– The Water Eject Siri Shortcut
But, if they suffered permanent water damage, you might need to bite the bullet and get a new pair.
Remember, Apple’s basic warranty doesn’t cover water damage. But with AppleCare+, you’re covered for two incidents of accidental damage per year.
Your goal should be to keep your AirPods away from water at all costs. Keep them dry, especially after sweating it out at the gym, and always store them properly. And buy a water-resistant case if necessary.