iPhone 4 Earpiece Troubleshooting

Are you having problems with your iPhone earpiece not working? The most typical symptom is you make or receive a call and cannot hear ringing or the other caller through the speaker.  Usually switching to speakerphone will work until you have time to address the issue. There are many forum posts across the web with various solutions, I decided to put a short list together with the actual fix I discovered.
  • Check volume
    • Sometimes the volume is just turned down too low, while this seems like a big duh!, its always good to check this first.  Volume is adjusted while the call is taking place otherwise your ringer or system volume are changed.
  • Reboot
    • Ahhh. the ole windows trick, sometimes this fixes it.
  • Headphone plug
    • Try plugging in headphone, can you hear the caller now?  Occasionally the iPhone will incorrectly think that headphones are plugged in.  Inserting and removing the headphones can sometimes fix this.   Others have various cleaning methods including paperclips to remove junk in the bottom of the port or using an alcohol wetted q-tip.
  • Bluetooth
    • Does it work with bluetooth?
    • Try turning off bluetooth, sometimes the iPhone thinks it is still connected when it is not.
    • This is occasionally caused when the iPhone loses its connection with a bluetooth device.
  • Huff the Earpiece
    • This is my own discovery.  I tried all the above plus doing a full reset.
    • Pucker up,  make like you are going to kiss the earpiece and lightly blow back and forth (lightly!) while your lips remain pressed against the glass.  If the speaker is frozen/jammed, this will free it.
    • My guess it that perspiration causes the internal speaker to get stuck and moving it with air will free it.
    • It seems crazy but it fixed my phone
  • Restore
    • Restoring to factory settings using itunes will usually resolve any issues caused by third party software.
    • Restore, then don’t restore your own data and test the phone.
  • Apple Store
    • If you are under warranty, time to take it back to an Apple store
    • Out of warranty?  Did you buy with MasterCard or Amex?  Both double your warranty on many electronic devices.  Check with your card provider to see what additional coverage you may have.
Good luck!

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