Headphones not working or detected in Windows 10

If your Headphones are not working – maybe after installing an Update, it could be due to incompatible OS and drivers. Updates to several components of a computer are meant to fix stuff that is broken but sometimes results in breaking some other components. One such scenario is where a Windows Update breaks the headphone. The computer stops playing any audio using the headphones. This error is caused due to incompatible drivers.

Headphones not working after installing an update

Headphones not working in Windows 10

Here are some working solution that will help you if your Headphones are not working or being detected:

  1. Manually set Headphones as the default device.
  2. Update or rollback your Audio drivers.
  3. Use the Audio Troubleshooter.
  4. Rollback or install a newer Windows Update.

1] Manually set Headphones are the default device

Sometimes, when a headphone is plugged in, it does not toggle the default audio device. In this case, you can just set the default audio device to the headphones.

Right-click on the volume icon on the system tray and select Open sound settings. It will open the Sound section in the Windows 10 Settings app.

Headphones not working or detected in Windows 10

Under the section of Output, select Headphones for Choose your output device.

This should get the headphones working on your Windows 10 device.

2] Update or rollback your Audio & Bluetooth drivers

If the update is recent, you can roll back that driver to an older version that does not trigger this issue. In case there was no update, it is possible that the drivers need to be updated to the latest version. Install a new version of that driver if available.

The drivers you need to focus on are:

  • Bluetooth.
  • Sound, video, and game controllers.

3] Use the Audio Troubleshooter

To use the Audio Troubleshooter, open the Windows Settings app and navigate to the following path, Update & Security > Troubleshoot.

Select the option called Playing Audio.

And then click on the button called Run the Troubleshooter.

Follow the on-screen instructions, and this will fix your issue.

Further reading: Troubleshoot Windows 10 Sound and Audio problems.

4] Rollback or install a newer Windows Update

If this issue has occurred after installing a Windows Update recently, you can uninstall the Windows Update and reboot your computer to fix this issue.

Alternatively, you can also check for updates on Windows 10 to get a patch for this, which may have been released by Microsoft.

I hope this guide helped you in troubleshooting the issue.

Posted by on , in Category Windows with Tags
Ayush has been a Windows enthusiast since the day he got his first PC with Windows 98SE. He is an active Windows Insider since Day 1 and is now a Windows Insider MVP. He has been testing pre-release services on his Windows 10 PC, Lumia, and Android devices.