Why Do Headphones Break So Easily?

Why Do Headphones Break So Easily

Ever wonder why your headphones don’t last very long? Here’s why… 

We live in an age where things are made to be used and then thrown away. For this reason, many of us don’t expect our headphones to last forever. 

How often do you find yourself replacing your headphones? Once a year? Once every six months? More? 

Well, you’re not alone. Read the reviews of nearly every headphone set online and you’ll be treated to such gems as “I’m impressed, these lasted for a whole six months!”  Is this the kind of longevity that should impress us? 

There are a whole host of things that are making our headphones bite the dust early, and knowing what they are can help you to make your pair last longer. 

There are 8 main reasons why your headphones are breaking so frequently… 

1. Humidity, Sweat And Moisture, Damage The Circulatory System 

This is one of the most common causes of headphones breaking – particularly when you live in an area where rain is common. 

Our headphones can get filled with moisture when we go for walks in the rain or when we work out while wearing them. Wearing a hat over the headphones can also lead to them filling up with moisture, as can wearing them straight out of the shower. 

How can you prevent this from happening? 

  • Purchase waterproof headphones 
  • Don’t wear headphones in the rain or directly after a shower 
  • Exercise with over-the-ear headphones  

2. Wires Can Tear When The Earbuds Are Pulled Too Hard 

How gentle are you when you remove your headphones from a device? Do you firmly pinch the base of the jack and slowly pull it out? Or do you yank it out using the wire? 

If your answer was option two, then this may be causing your headphones to head to an early grave.

While your headphone jacks can accidentally get tugged out of a device, most of us remove them this way without thinking of the damage we are causing. 

This method of removal can damage the copper wires inside the ear buds and cause stress fractures in any part of the wires inside the cable.   

Buying a 90 degree jack (rather than a 180 degree one) can help reduce this damage. 

3. Setting The Volume Too High Is Bad For The Headphones, As Well As Your Ears 

We all know that listening to your music too loud is bad for your ears. But, it is also really bad for your headphones too. 

You’ll probably notice that after doing this for a while, the audio starts to get patchy and crackly. This happens because the speakers inside your headphones can actually break if they spend too long at maximum volume. 

To prevent this, try to not raise your volume above 60% for more than an hour everyday. 

4. Leaving Headphones Dangling Off The Side Of Other Items Can Damage Them 

When you let your headphones dangle off the side of furniture when you are not using them, you actually put a vast amount of stress on the wires. This is a type of stress that they are not designed to handle. 

They can also sustain damage if someone walks into them, they get caught on something, or something rolls over them. 

You can avoid these issues in two ways. Your first option is to get a case to store your headphones in when you aren’t using them.

The other option is to create a space on your desk or bedside table where you can safely store your headphones. 

5. How You Store Your Headphones Might Be Causing Them A Lot Of Damage 

Following on from the problem before, tying your headphones up when you are not using them can cause just as much damage as letting them dangle off items of furniture. 

Lots of people wrap their headphones up into a tight coil or tie them into a not to prevent the wires getting tangled when they are not in use. This can cause stress fractures all along the wires and damage the wires in both the jack and the ear pieces. 

To prevent these, use clips to hold your headphones together or instal a wall hanging system for them in your office.  

See our article on untangling headphones HERE.

6. Sleeping With Earbuds In Will Lead To Them Breaking Prematurely

We don’t want to spoil your fun, but sleeping with your headphones in is one of the worst things you can do for both your headphones and your ears. 

Wearing headphones at night causes problems because most of us roll around in our sleep. This can cause tearing inside the main wire of the headphones. It also puts too much pressure on the core wire inside the headphones and this rolling can often tear the jack out of your device. 

If you want to listen to music or an audiobook before bed, then your best option is to play it out of your phone or a set of wireless speakers. 

7. Not Using A Case Is A Surefire Way To Break Your Headphones  

If you and your headphones are on the go a lot, then you should invest in a headphone case. They will drastically improve the lifespan of your headphones and you will have to spend less time detangling them. 

Having a case in your pocket for your headphones means that you will always have somewhere safe and dry to store your headphones. They will prevent the wires from getting damaged by being shoved into your pocket or tied up in a knot. 

8. Some Headphones Aren’t Made To Last 

The sad truth is that a lot of companies don’t make their headphones to last. 

Every time one of your headphones breaks, you have to buy another pair. The longer your headphones last, the less likely you are to purchase another set and the less likely the headphone company is to make money. 

You can avoid having to buy new headphones by buying a set that’s designed to last.