The last couple of years saw Apple revolutionizing the way we listen to music — thanks to its iconic wireless earbuds (aka the AirPods). With the addition of the latest generation of AirPods, the company continues to improve the shortcomings of the original model. However, even with all of the improvements made by Apple over the years, broken AirPods buds and cases are still a thing.
Sooner or later, you’re going to need a replacement AirPod.
Whether it’s a left AirPod replacement or it’s the right one, you’re going to eventually replace these wireless earbuds, especially if you use them often (or are prone to dropping the case). And when the need arises, know that an authorized Apple Service Provider can service your product. If you have to pay for their service, it all depends on whether your AirPods are covered by warranty or the issues you’re experiencing.
If it’s time to repair or replace your gadget, know that there’s no one way to service replacement AirPods. Here are some of your options.
The Cost of Components: How Much Will a Replacement Cost?
Before we dive into your options, know the money involved first. Can you budget to accommodate a replacement AirPod or an AirPod case replacement? How much is it to replace one lost AirPod?
Apple’s wireless earbuds aren’t the most affordable, but they are the most convenient option available in the market. With an effortless pairing procedure and reliable connectivity, it’s easy to understand why people prefer AirPods over other brands.
However, its wireless design makes it easy to misplace or break one of the earbuds. If you’ve damaged or lost one of your AirPods or the charging case, here’s how much you will probably spend for each component.
- Individual AirPods. $69 each
- AirPods wireless charging case. $79
- AirPods charging case. $59
- Individual AirPods Pro. $80 each
- AirPods Pro wireless charging case. $99
- MagSafe charging case. $79
- MagSafe charging case for AirPods Pro. $99
How Do I Get a Replacement AirPod?
Your first option is to make an appointment at the nearest Apple Genius Bar and bring your AirPod(s) into an Apple Store or authorized Apple Service Provider. Make sure to have with you your AirPods, the original sales receipt (or AirPods box) and the serial number (which you can see on your charging case).
If you want to mail your earbuds to Apple, call Apple Support first. Similar to the process above, make sure you have your wireless earbuds serial number first. Once you’ve settled the replacement with Apple, it’ll take about a week before you receive the replacement.
To replace your components entirely, follow these steps:
- Sign in to your Apple account with your user ID. Once you’ve entered this information, go to the support page.
- On the page, select Lost or Missing AirPods to open up the menu screen for replacement AirPods.
- The menu’s options include replacing a lost AirPod, replacing a charging case or even replacing broken AirPod Pro ear tips. If you damaged or lost an AirPod, choose the first option.
- Click on Order Replacement. However, replacement AirPods aren’t always available so you might have to choose Order a Replacement via Chat With an Adviser. With this option, you can be more specific about your preferences.
How Can I Replace My AirPods Pro for Free?
Apple offers a FREE service program for AirPods Pro models manufactured before October 2020. These models experienced a couple of manufacturing issues, which include:
- Active noise cancellation leads to audio problems like increased environmental noise (instead of blocking it)
- Static and crackling sounds when talking on the phone
If you experience these issues, you’re entitled to replacement AirPods Pro Buds for FREE. Apple’s free replacement program replaces either of the malfunctioning buds (but not the case). If you want to take advantage of this program, schedule an appointment and bring them to your nearest Apple retail store or authorized service provider. You can also call Apple’s Support to mail your AirPods in for service.
Once the company receives your broken model, they will examine it to determine its eligibility for replacement. After its eligibility has been confirmed, Apple will replace the AirPods Pro for free.
This free replacement program is not applicable to other models and lasts for two years after the retail sales of the October 2020 batch.
How Does Apple’s AirPod Replacement Work Under Warranty?
How does the warranty work for every Apple AirPod replacement? Each case is different; the warranty works according to the issue you’re experiencing with your wireless earbuds or charging case. There’s a chance you don’t have to pay for their service — as long as they are covered by the company’s 1-Year Limited Warranty, consumer law or AppleCare+. If your repair isn’t covered by any of these three, you’ll have to pay out-of-warranty fees to have your AirPods serviced.
Apple’s One-Year Limited Warranty covers manufacturing issues of AirPods and other Apple-branded products and accessories for a year, starting from the date you bought the product. The warranty doesn’t pay for damages incurred by unauthorized modifications or accidents. Check this page to see your coverage.
But whether you are under a warranty or not, Apple offers an after-service guarantee, which means they will service their products for 90 days or until your warranty ends.
Can I Use Third-Party Services to Replace my AirPods?
Apple Support isn’t the only place to find replacement AirPods, especially if you’re working with a tight budget. However, finding a third-party service that you can trust can be difficult. One trusted option is Podswap, a company that repairs individual earbuds before trading them for malfunctioning AirPods. It is a more affordable option compared to having your AirPods serviced by Apple (unless you have AppleCare+).
What Happens if I Lose an AirPod?
If you lose an AirPod, is it still covered by Apple’s warranty? Sadly, that’s not the case.
The warranty doesn’t cover lost or stolen models. With that in mind, if you’re not ready to give up on your loss yet, there are a few options to consider. Start by looking for your AirPod via the Find My app. If you registered your earbuds on the app, you might be able to find them. However, this won’t work if the battery is dead.
Getting a replacement for your damaged AirPod need not be a tricky task. As long as you understand your warranty and have access to nearby Apple support, you should be good to go.