Your EarPods and How To Disinfect Them

  • Jun 23, 2023
  • By Hafiz Aamir
  • 0 Comment

This may come as a surprise to you, but yes, these devices that you insert into your ears need to be cleaned and disinfected regularly. The need to disinfect them comes from long hours of use and exposure to the external environment.


Earpods have been people’s companions in the gym, classroom, restaurants, and many other places. After a long session at the gym, some people choose to wipe off their sweat and get on with other activities, while others choose to fully clean and sanitize the earpods.


Your Earpods need to be properly cleaned because of how much damage they can cause to your ears. This article covers the importance of properly disinfecting your earpods.


Why Disinfect Your Earpods?


Your ears are protected by earwax because they are vulnerable to bacteria. When bacteria and other microorganisms get trapped in the earwax, they disrupt the protective function of the earwax. When earpods are worn in the ear, the contaminated wax gets stuck on them and can be transferred to another person when shared.

Earpods can also get bacteria on them from every unclean surface, like hands, pockets, purses, and even the earpod case. A moist earwax is a perfect place for the multiplication of bacteria.

Yeast also lives in the ears and can develop into serious infections if left uncared. When earpods are worn, the yeast in the ear can stick to them, and when unattended to, can cause fungus growth in the ear canal where they love to dwell.

Your earpods can host germs when they come in contact with infected surfaces. Disinfecting your earpods ²after every use can help prevent exposure to these microorganisms.



Materials Needed for Disinfecting Earpods


Your Earpods are tiny and would therefore not require many other types of disinfecting materials that you may typically use to clean other items around the house. It would help if you avoided sharp objects when disinfecting your earpods due to the sensitivity of the manufacturing materials.

Below are the necessary materials required to disinfect your earpods:

  • Soft lint-free cloth
  • Toothpick or dental floss stick, or cotton swab
  • Hypochlorous Acid



How to Disinfect Various Parts of The EarPods


Your earpods have different parts that make up their design and outlook. Disinfecting your earpods in segments helps to get the best result and to ensure that all the necessary parts are well disinfected. Here are the proper ways to disinfect each part:


Earpods Speaker Hole


The speaker hole in your earpods is the best hiding place for earwax; disinfecting it specifically helps to tackle contaminated earwax. Take the pointed tool you prefer, be it a dry cotton swab or toothpick. Dip the cotton swab in a solution of HOCl and carefully dig out the earwax trapped in the speaker hole.


If your earpods are AirPods Pro, the silicone tips that serve as a covering for the pod speaker also need to be disinfected. This is done by carefully removing the silicone tips and rinsing them in water, or preferably a cup of hypochlorous acid to help kill off the germs. You can use the dry lint-free cloth to wipe them before they are reattached.


Earpods Case


Disinfecting only your earpods without the case is an incomplete action, and won’t prevent the EarPods from propagating further contamination. It would, therefore, help if you disinfected what houses your earpods after disinfecting the earpods themselves to avoid further contamination.


After taking the earpods out of the case, dampen the cloth with alcohol or HOCl and wipe them clean. Avoid getting moisture into the earpods charging port during this activity. A soft bristle brush is advisable for the inside of your case to get into the less accessible areas of the earpod case.


Lightning Port


Knowing how to disinfect earpods also requires paying attention to other areas of the device, that we will cover in detail. Another part of the earpods you can disinfect is the lightning port. This needs a lot of caution! To avoid damaging the port, do not fully insert the cotton swab into the port. Bacteria hide in places conducive to them, and the port is not exempted.


Are Disinfectants Safe For Earpods?


Most earpod manufacturers advise their customers to avoid using products that contain hydrogen Peroxide or bleach because of how strong they can be.

Wipes that contain 70 percent Isopropyl alcohol or 75 percent ethyl alcohol are much better alternatives to disinfect earpods. They are to be used gently on the exterior surfaces of all types of earpods. Abrasive or solvent cleaners can damage your earpods even if they are safe for household use. Do not soak the earpod or case in any solution because liquid can go into places that can cause irreversible damage.

Hypochlorous Acid is a better replacement for bleach and hydrogen peroxide. It is a mild acid that is non-toxic and eco-friendly, and yet more effective than chlorine bleach. You can learn more about HOCl here.



How often should My Earpods be Disinfected?


The need to disinfect the earpods depends on the frequincy of use. Regular use may cause more earwax to be formed in the ear, resulting in more breeding ground for bacteria.


Why Do Earpods Start to Sound Muffled?


Your Earpods may sound muffled due to earwax build-up on the speaker holes.
A thorough cleaning may be all that is needed to get a better quality sound.


Extra Tips for Cleaning EarPods


  • Do not run your earpods underwater.
  • Always use a clean and dry lint-free cloth.
  • Avoid using soaps, shampoos, lotions, detergents, oil, acids, solvents, perfumes, and other harsh cleaning products.
  • Do not use earpods immediately after cleaning; allow them to dry.
  • Clean speaker holes and meshes with a cotton swab.
  • For cleaning the charging port, remove all dirt from the lighting connector.
  • Earpods are not waterproof, so do not allow moisture into any openings.




Other Uses of Hypochlorous Acid


We said earlier that hypochlorous acid is a general disinfectant. These are the other things that hypochlorous acid can be used to disinfect:

  • Food Produce
  • Meat
  • Furniture
  • Surgical/Medical Equipment
  • Livestock
  • Water
  • Seafood
  • Poultry
  • Household furniture and fittings
  • Toilets and bathrooms, among others.



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