Finding out that your precious headphone is already broken is one of those most annoying days you could ever have. The good news, though, is that you do not have to go and buy a new pair right away!
There is still a possibility of fixing it by yourself. All you need to do is to get some things at the electronic store, and perform the process by yourself. Keep in mind, however, that the parts that you will be repairing will turn out to be delicate. Thus, you may face that risk of damage. However, if your headphones have already been broken, what more can you lose?
Searching for the Problem
Since you are not yet fully aware of what the problem is, it is highly recommended to locate the possible source first. Among the things that you can do includes listening while bending the cables. If you hear some audio with your headphones, the problem might be in the cable, and you can do something to fix it. You can also just try to push the plug first. If you notice that sound can only be heard if the plug is pushed, the problem may be in the plug. You may also want to use another earpiece, unplug the cables of your headphones, and plug the different earpiece. If there is sound, the earpiece has the problem. On the other hand, if the cables do not unplug from the earpiece, you may want to set up a multimeter. There are ones that are available at hardware stores. You will also need a knife here. These things are basically some troubleshooting procedures that you can do in order to identify the source of the problem. This is important so that you can also implement the right solution.
Fixing the Headphone Cable
If the problem has something to do with the cable, the first thing that you need to do is to test the cable itself. With this, you can wear the headphones first, and then turn the audio on. Try to bend the cable to 90 degrees across the top of your thumb, running it along the cable length. If the sound cuts or crackles in our out, there is the problem. After finding the part with the problem, you may mark it using a piece of electrical tape. After this, you can remove the isolation with the use of wire strippers. Then, you can cut the cord into two. If the wire is shredded inside, you can cut on any side to remove the issue. By doing so, you also need to remove the same amount from both left and right cords.
You may then continue by sliding on a shrink tube. This tube is made of rubber, looking just the same as the rest of the cable. All you need to do is to slide it to the cable for use later. After repairing, you can slide this back to protect the open area. Next, you can splice the wires. Splicing means joining the wires altogether. Keep in mind that it is very important to connect the wires with the same insulation of color, or no insulation at all. You can then solder the connections using a soldering iron. Afterwards, you can slide the shrink tube on the repair. This will strengthen and protect the cable which has been newly repaired.
Fixing the Plug
On the other hand, if the problem has something to do with the plug, you may need to buy a new jack plug. There are cheap ones that are available from electronic stores, or online sources. Choose a metal plug that comes with a spring and stereo connection. It should also be the same size as with your old plug. You can then remove your old plug. There are some types of plugs which can be easily unscrewed from the cable. Check the wires after unplugging the screws. If you notice that they are unbroken and still connected, you may still have to cut the cable off since the problem may be in the cable right beside the plug.
You can then strip the wires using wire strippers. You may see one loose and unshielded wire, with two shielded or insulated wires. The one that is bare is the ground wire, while the others are right and left signal. It is also important to note that side by side cables may come with an extra bare wire, but they may otherwise just be similar with single cables. After this, you can now fit the parts of the plug over the cable. This can be done by unscrewing the new plug, slipping the cover as well as the spring on the cable end.
The next procedure would involve connecting the wires to its probes. This is done by separating each of the wires inside your cable. You can then twist together the frayed ends so that each of the wires comes with a thin tip. You can then tie them firmly to the jack plug. Next, you can clamp the wires to the pins. This can be done with the use of a small vise or clip in order to set them in place. The three wires should not touch the other two. Then, you can solder the wires back to the plug, and reassemble its cap.
Fixing the Earpiece
If the problem is not with the two, you may want to check the earpiece. In doing so, you need to take the earpieces apart, and look for any loose wire. If the problem is quite obvious, good for you. All that needs to be done is to reattach the loose wire to the headphone driver using a soldering iron. Otherwise, you may need to replace the driver. Just a note, however, this may be more expensive than getting a new pair. Therefore, you may want to consider your options first. If all else fails, you may want to consider getting a new pair of headphones, and making sure that you take care of it in order to extend its life.