Fixing Headset Mic Not Working With These 12 Hacks

Christina Griffith

Microphone issues are somewhat common with headphones. No matter the brand you own, it can happen to anyone.

If this is your first time experiencing problems, the solution may be easier than you thought.

There's no need to throw away your headphones just yet. Take a mic test first, then try the subsequent options.

The benefits of adding a microphone go beyond the addition of speakers. A higher brand also requires new jacks and cabling, and the more complex the technology, the more it costs.

The most common causes of any problem are usually dirt and lint. Long term, it can lead to significant issues. When you maintain proper headphone hygiene, they should last for a long time.

1. Make your microphone the default device

Depending on your computer, your headset mic may be disabled or not set as the default media device.

Alternatively, the microphone volume is so low that it cannot record your voice. To double-check, go to the settings:

While holding down the Windows logo key, press the R key on your keyboard simultaneously. Then key in "control" and press Enter.

  • Choose Large icons from the View by drop-down list in the Control Panel.
  • Select the Recording tab in sound.
  • Simply right-click anywhere in the device list that is empty and selects Show Disabled Devices.
  • Right-click the Headset Microphone to enable it.
  • Select Set as Default Device from the context menu when you right-click it again.
  • Right-click Headset Microphone and select Properties from the drop-down menu.
  • Toggle to the Levels tab, then move the volume slider to the highest setting.
  • Try it out now that your headset’s microphone is enabled and configured as the default device. You’ve increased the microphone volume. If it does, you’ve found the solution.

2. Update Your Audio Drivers

Your laptop or motherboard maker should have an audio driver for your hardware on their official website. You should go there, download and install the appropriate official driver, and then restart your computer. That should suffice.

If you can’t download the official driver for whatever reason and the one you have installed isn’t working. Please take these procedures to adjust the default driver:

  • Select Device Manager by right-clicking on your Start button or pressing Windows logo key + X.
  • Expand Sound, video, and game controllers, then right-click on High
  • Definition Audio Device
  • Choose the Update driver from the context menu.
  • Choose the second alternative: Look for driver software on my machine.
  • At the bottom, select this option: Allow me to choose a driver from a list of options on my PC.
  • Then click Next after selecting High Definition Audio Device.
  • A warning message will appear. Then, it will ask to affirm you to change this driver. Please click Yes.
  • Restart your personal computer and check to see whether the microphone is working properly.

3. Allow Apps To Access Your Microphone

Allow your mic to hear your audio. First, you must enter the Windows 10 system settings. You may need to manually grant the program access to your headset mic from time to time. Follow these simple instructions to modify your settings:

  • To access your Settings, press the Start button and then the gear symbol.
  • In the pop-up window, select Privacy.
  • By adjusting the privacy settings on your headset microphone, you can allow access to it.
  • On the left panel, scroll down until you see the Microphone. It should be opened.
  • By going to the privacy settings and selecting the microphone, you can give your headset mic access.
  • Check that the “mic for this device” is turned on by clicking Change.
  • Allow access to your headset mic Windows 10 by going to the privacy settings.
  • Also, make sure the setting “Allow apps to access your microphone” is enabled. It’s located directly beneath the Change button.
  • By adjusting your privacy settings, you can allow access to your headset microphone.
  • Keep in mind that the instructions may vary slightly depending on the Windows version you’re using.

4. Ensure Headphone Mic Isn’t Muted

Try the following solutions to address the headset mic not working problem:

  • Ensure the mute button on your device isn’t turned on.
  • Gamers use this to mute their audio, so they don’t bother their teammates until they have something vital to say.
  • To disable mute on your computer, check if your headset is correctly connected to your computer.
  • Ensure your headset’s mic is set as the system’s default recording device.
  • Follow these procedures if you’re using Windows 10:
  • First, go to Settings > System > Sound from the Start menu by clicking on the Start button.
  • Ensure your mic is selected under “Choose your input device” under the headline “Input.”
  • Finally, test your mic by selecting the “Test your microphone” option and speaking into it to ensure sound is received.

5. Make Sure The Mic Is Enabled

It could cause problems if your headset mic has been deactivated for any reason or if it isn’t listed as the default device on your computer. Check the following settings to make sure everything is turned on:

  • Using the Windows + R keyboard shortcut, open the Run Dialog. Then press OK after typing “control.”
  • Change the view to Large icons once you’ve entered the Control Panel.
  • In Windows 10, press and open the Sound settings.
  • Right-click any open area under the list of recording devices on the Recording tab.
  • How Disabled Devices and Show Disconnected Devices are the two options you’ll have. Make sure that number one is turned on.
  • Make sure your Headset mic is “activated” by right-clicking on it.
  • It will give you a choice to enable it if it isn’t already:
  • Ascertain that your primary headset is set to Default Device.
  • Finally, right-click on your Headset mic and select Properties to ensure that total volume is enabled.
  • Open the levels tab and set the volume slider to100%. Then, simply move the slider to the right all the way.
  • To make the change permanent, click OK and Apply.

6. Clean Your Headphone Jack

Your headphones male jack might also get dirty. If dirt, even a little film of oil, gets caught on your jack, it can damage its conductivity.

Get a small piece of cotton or a dry lint-free cloth to do this. Soak the cotton in isopropyl alcohol for a few minutes and then press out the excess.

Dry the jack after wiping it down. Allow it to completely dry before reusing it.

After that, proceed to the socket. You can either blow out the worst of it using compressed air first.

Then wipe the inside with isopropyl alcohol. It’s best to send it in for service if it’s gotten too deep.

7. Windows Recent Update

If you’re a Windows user, you might also be dealing with a faulty update while updates are generally beneficial.

Unfortunately, we’ve all had a few irritating Windows upgrades. The issue with your mic is that the settings may have changed, requiring permission to be granted again.

  • If your mic isn’t picking up after a recent Windows 10 upgrade, try these steps to allow your apps access to it again:
  • Firstly, go to the Start on your computer.
  • Select mic under Privacy in your Settings (the gear symbol).
  • Turn on “Allow apps to access the microphone” by pressing the Change button.
  • You can pick which particular programs have permission to access your mic under “Choose which apps can access your microphone,” in addition to providing your operating system access to the mic on your headset.
  • Check to see that everything you use regularly is turned on. It’s worth noting that restricting access to specific apps will have an impact on their functionality.

8. Try To Use A Different Jack

It is a test to see whether the problem is caused by something other than your microphone.

The jack is required to connect the microphone’s audio to your computer. That signal isn’t going anywhere if the jack is scraped, unclean, or broken.

Whether your cable is detachable, try an alternative one to see if the problem is resolved.

If your jack isn’t detachable, we’ll need to go through all of the other processes first before replacing the jack.

If your headphones are under warranty, I’d recommend sending them in before doing surgery on them.

We can try to tackle a few other jack-related issues first, aside from a damaged jack.

9. Increase Your Microphone’s Volume

This issue has occurred to us all you’re speaking, but no one can hear you. Follow these instructions to “speak out” if the volume on your mic is too low.

  • Always double-check that your headset is plugged into your computer by lightly pressing the jack into the socket.
  • Next, double-check that your mic is in the right place. It should be open, with the mic turned out so that sounds can be received.
  • Follow these six steps to increase the loudness of your microphone in Windows 10:
  • Select Settings > System > Sound from the Start menu. Alternatively, get to this by right-clicking on the speaker icon in the right bottom corner and selecting Properties.
  • Check that your mic is still selected as your Chosen input device under the Input tab.
  • To open the popup, select Device Properties.
  • Play with the Microphone and Microphone Boost sliders in the Microphone
  • Properties window’s Levels tab as needed. When you’re satisfied with the volume, click OK.
  • Speaking into your microphone when the “test your microphone” box is ticked is an excellent way to test it.

10. Ensure Hardware Is Compatible With Mic

Microphones are divided into four categories:

  • Two-in-one headset or earphones with only one jack (microphone and audio in the same 3.5mm jack)
  • A headset has two 3.5mm jacks: one for the microphone and the other for the audio.
  • A microphone-equipped USB headset/headphones.
  • A microphone-equipped Bluetooth headset/headphones.

If your headset/headphones have two 3.5mm jacks, your computer/laptop should have two 3.5mm ports. One for audio and the other for the microphone. One jack is insufficient.

If your computer only has one jack. You’ll need a single-jack headset or a converter that converts two 3.5mm jacks to a single 3.5mm jack.

If your headset/headphones only have a single 3.5mm socket for audio and microphone.

Your laptop should also have a single 3.5mm headset port to capture both audio and sound from the microphone.

The headphones that came with older iPhones are an excellent example of this.

The following are examples of other types of converters:

  • Convertor from a single 3.5mm to a double 3.5mm (this one is for single jack headsets to connect them to a laptop with dual audio ports)
  • A single 3.5mm USB converter is all you’ll need.
  • A two-in-one 3.5mm to USB adapter

11. Check The Female Jack

The conductive substance lining of the socket (or female jack) is the same. It collects the audio signals and sends them back to your computer.

However, if a small amount of dirt, lint, or dust gets inside, it might scrape the surface, interrupting or blocking the signal.

The “locking system” might also be disabled, permitting the male jack to pop out. When the male jack is inserted, this simple spring and ball mechanism locks it in place.

It ensures that the connection is stable and that the audio signals are sent to your computer.

You may need to send your media device in for repairs if you can visibly feel the jack not inserting correctly into the jack socket.

While replacing the socket on many devices is technically doable, it is not recommended to have prior experience and the necessary tools.

It’s also possible that tampering with the equipment will void your warranty.

12. Clean Your Microphone’s Mesh Screen

You know your ear-pods get clogged with earwax and dust if you’ve ever looked inside them.

The same thing happens to your microphone mesh. It’s clogged mainly by lint and dust. It’s possible that removing all of the gunk will solve the problem.

It’s easy to clean the microphone mesh screen on your headset. The screen isn’t too fragile.  You can gently brush off any lint or debris with an old toothbrush (or something similar).

Loosen certain difficult portions. You could use anything pointed to get into the corners, such as a toothpick, a paper clip, or a needle.

If you don’t have a toothbrush, you might wrap these in a piece of toilet paper to remove any debris. First practice on another device.


Ensure your headphone’s mic works correctly by using the preceding troubleshooting tips.

Some headphones feature a built-in microphone that you can use with your computer, smartphone, etc., to establish a voice chat. Unfortunately, these sorts of headphones frequently have trouble with the microphone for various reasons.

But, most of the time, the issues are straightforward to address.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Is My Headset Mic Not Working Properly?

Ensure the mute button on your device isn’t turned on. Check to see if your microphone or headset is connected correctly to your computer.

Make sure your microphone or headset is set as the default recording device on your computer. Make sure your microphone is chosen in Input. Select an input device.

How Do I Fix My Headset Mic?

Check your device’s sound settings to see if your call or media level is very low or silent.

If this is the case, simply boost your device’s call volume and media volume. As previously stated, dirt particles can readily build and obstruct your device’s microphone.

Why Is My Mic Not Working, But I Can Hear?

Your microphone may be operating correctly, but the volume of your microphone is set too low, preventing others from hearing you.

Check the volume of your microphone (also known as the recording or input device on your computer) to ensure it is at an appropriate level.

Why Is My Audio Not Working?

Check to see if your headphones are plugged in. When headphones are plugged in, most Android phones turn off the external speaker.

It’s also possible that your headphones aren’t fully seated in the audio jack. To restart your phone, tap Restart.

Christina Griffith
Zupyak is the world’s largest content marketing community, with over 300 000 members and 3 million articles. Explore and get your content discovered.