What to Do If Your AirPods Go Through the Wash

If your AirPods accidentally go through the wash, remove the AirPods from the case and dry all the items with a cloth or paper towel. Use a cotton swab to dry the inside of the charging case and other hard-to-reach areas. Then, let the AirPods dry for 12-24 hours before using or charging them. 

This is a very likely issue that can happen to anyone, to be honest. For that reason, it is important to know what to do in the event that it does happen. Let’s go a bit more in-depth.

Can AirPods Survive a Washing Machine Cycle?

While AirPods aren’t waterproof, the good news is that they’ll probably survive a washing cycle. Since you’ve probably forgotten the case in one of your pockets, the cloth should provide enough protection for the washing cycle’s duration.

It’s also worth noting that AirPods are IPX4. And while that doesn’t mean they’re fully waterproof, they can still withstand some splashes of water and sweat

Such rating, coupled with the fact that AirPods are kept inside a case, and the case is inside a pocket, should be enough to save your AirPods from an accidental journey inside your washing machine.

However, it’s very important that you let them dry before attempting to use or charge them. Drying them up manually is also recommended.

How to Save Your AirPods After Accidentally Washing Them in Your Washing Machine

To restore your AirPods’ condition after they go through the wash, follow these steps:

1. Take the AirPods out of the case and leave the case opened

2. Clean the AirPods and the case with a dry microfiber cloth

3. Use a cotton swab to reach the inside of the case and other hard-to-reach areas

4. You might want to consider using a blowdryer to get rid of any remaining water. However, it’s important that you set the blow dryer at the lowest temperature and keep it at a suitable distance from your AirPods to avoid frying the device’s delicate electronics

5. Let the AirPods and the charging case dry for up to 24 hours

6. You can optionally put the AirPods and the case in a bowl of rice to accelerate drying.

Are There Waterproof AirPods Cases?

There are many third-party waterproof AirPods cases available on the market. These integrate a waterproof seal that keeps water out of your AirPods. They’re still not meant for intentional submerging in the water, but they can definitely be quite handy in accidents such as leaving your AirPods in the washing machine.

Nevertheless, very few users use these types of cases, but if you’re one of those people that frequently forget stuff in their pockets, you might want to consider getting one.


To recap, the Apple AirPods of all generations can definitely survive going through the wash in most cases. 

Nevertheless, the way you handle it plays a huge role here. Just make sure that you wipe the AirPods and the case as soon as you find them, and refrain from using them until they’re completely dry. A period of 16-24 hours should be enough.

Also, consider investing in a waterproof case just to be on the safe side. Signing up for AppleCare+ might also be a good idea.

Brian Clark

I’ve been a writer with Musician Wave for six years, turning my 17-year journey as a multi-instrumentalist and music producer into insightful news, tutorials, reviews, and features.

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