How to fix a phone when its alarm, ringer, and music won’t work.

Has your phones ringer stopped working all of a sudden? Is there no audio when playing music? Has your phones alarm clock stopped working? Can you no longer use the phones hands free loud speaker? Here is the reason and the solution.

The Reason

The reason why your phone is having these audio issues is because of the devices external speaker. The average cell phone has two speakers, the internal speaker (that you hold up to your ear), and the external speaker which the mobile phone uses for its speakerphone (hands free mode), its alarm clock, to play music, and most importantly the phones ringer and notifications.

So naturally if you’re having problems with this speaker you’re having lots of problems using your phone. You’re going to be missing calls because your ringer isn’t working. You might be having rough mornings because you use your phone as your alarm clock and now it won’t work, you can’t multitask with your phone because you have to hold your phone to your ear occupying one hand, and what’s the purpose of playing music if you can’t hear it playing?

The Solution

Now this issue can be fixed, and depending on whether or not the issue is software related or hardware related is going to affect how we fix this problem. Let’s hope its software because that is usually the easiest problem to correct. With hardware we have to talk about actually taking to phone apart which we’ll want to avoid, if we can.

Software related issue

Ok, cross your fingers, if it’s the software we can probably fix this issue pretty quickly. Let’s start with the basics and go from there.

Check your volume - and make sure it’s up all the way; if you can hear people on your internal speaker then it’s most likely not a volume issue, but you’ve surely checked that already. Try and lower the volume to 50%, if the speakers blown it might not play at 100% full volume. If lowering the volume got the sound to work, then you have found a temp fix but not a permanent one and should proceed to the hardware section below. Otherwise keep reading.

Check your apps – often when smartphones have issues it’s because of an app that isn’t getting along with your phone like it should. Especially on android smart phones (don’t get me wrong I love android, they just act funny sometimes when it comes to apps). Try and think of any app(s) that you downloaded or installed onto the phone around the time the issues started, then uninstall or remove those apps.

Perform a reset – well a reset is usually a last resort but at this point it can resolve the issue and I am recommending that you perform one. A reset should wipe any software bugs glitches potential viruses etc from the phone, but it’s also going to erase your information so we got the back that up first. This can be very different depending on your phones make and model.

If you have an Android smartphone then the guide How to backup and reset an Android smartphone can help lead you through the backup and reset process.

Hardware related issue

Well a hardware issue makes it a little more difficult to fix. In order to get your phone working correctly again, you’re device is going to have to be taken apart, the speaker removed, and then replaced with a working one. I seriously recommend you click this link and read “I can’t fix my phone, now what should I do?” it goes over options such as filing a warranty claim or an insurance claim, if you don’t have either of these options available then the article also briefly mentions self repair options which is what I’m going to cover in this part of the article.

Don’t be afraid – don’t be afraid to fix your phone yourself, it’s not as hard as you might think and it’s most certainly cheaper than taking it in to get repaired. The hardest part is going to be finding the replacement speaker that’s compatible with your phone. I recommend you check out Repairs Universe first; they carry a wide selection of smart phone parts which should include the speaker you need.

Through them the whole process is pretty seamless, Easy to find what you need, their prices are great (usually less than $15 for the Loud Speaker), they include the tool you need to take your phone apart for free, and possibly the best thing included is a free repair guide. Just go to their Smartphone Speaker Replacement page > click your type of phone > select your phone model’s loud speaker > add one of their recommended tools if you need one (it’s usually a screwdriver for if you don’t already have one) > click Add to Cart > then Proceed to Checkout > Fill out your info > Submit > Order Confirmation > then you’re done, it’s very easy, and again is what I recommend.

If they don’t have your part or if you’re feeling lucky and want to search for more affordable options just make sure that the part you order is the correct type of speaker, that it comes with the tool(s) you need to open your phone, and if you can then try and get a guide with instructions on how to install the speaker as well.

Once you get your parts follow the guide install your speakers and your ready to go.

Take it in to get repaired - If you’re not confident in your own abilities to repair your phone, you can’t find the parts, or just cannot wait for the parts to arrive then you could consider taking your mobile phone to a local repair shop and have someone else repair it for you. Again just do a search online find a local store and get an estimate. Obviously it might be a tad more expensive but it’s an option available.

Enjoy

I hope you enjoyed the article, I hope it was relatively easy to follow, and that it of course fixed your issue. Don’t hesitate to leave a comment below should you have any questions or suggestions. Also check out some of my other articles. Chances are you’ll learn something you might not have known before.

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3 Comments

Sim card

I'm trying to investigate if it's possible that my sim card destroyed/disabled the speaker on my phone. The speaker died on my last phone so I migrated the sim card to another phone I had in a drawer. The speaker worked ok until I moved the contacts onto the phone from the card.

Doubtful

Hi Damian,

I have heard of SIM and SD cards causing strange issues before but I have not come across a correlation between speakers malfunctioning after transferring contacts from a SIM card to a phone.

If you started having audio issues on your calls after inserting the SIM then it could possibly be an issue with the card as it could indicate that the SIM card is not connecting to your wireless carrier’s network properly and that bad connection is causing audio distortions which might sound like an issue with the speaker while actually being a problem with the network.

If the speakers did malfunction on both phones then it was likely just really bad luck. If you get another phone you could, for good measure, get a new SIM card along with it but like I said it’s unlikely that the SIM was the cause and I doubt that a new SIM would be necessary.

Found the problem

An investigation uncovered the problem. Somehow (who knows how), the sizes of the ringtone files had all been set to zero, zero length so no sound would play from their use. A recorded message via the record function as a ringtone worked fine. Apparently whatever zeroed the ringtones affected the new phone the same way when the contacts were transferred to it.

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