If you own a Lenovo laptop, you’ll already know how capable these machines are at providing solid performance when running various tasks and entertainment.
If you want to watch or listen to any media content your Lenovo laptop without disturbing others, then using a pair of headphones is key.
However, if you cannot seem to get your Lenovo laptop to play sound through your headphones, or your headphones are not being registered as being connected, then you have a problem.
In this article, we’ve compiled some of the best solutions to fix headphones that are not working on your Lenovo laptop so that you can enjoy the media you wish to listen to.
Table of Contents
1. You Need to Update or Roll back the Drivers
Drivers are essential to ensure that your hardware works and functions as it should.
When it comes to using your headphones with your Lenovo laptop, having the correct and up-to-date drivers can truly dictate the difference between uninterrupted listening and having no sound whatsoever.
If you’ve suddenly found that your headphones seem to no longer function on your Lenovo laptop, it could be due to a faulty or out-of-date driver.
Drivers can occasionally update with errors and when they do it can wreak havoc with your connected devices, including headphones. Driver problems such as this may be the result of a bad download during an update or a problem that occurred in the installation process.
SmartHomeStarter.com concurs, explaining that:
“Sometimes headphones stop working because the driver hasn’t been updated or the driver updated and now there is a bug in the system in the audio driver that’s causing the headphones to not connect properly.”
If your headphones are no longer connecting and no conditions have changed regarding volume settings or physical issues with the hardware in question, then it is very likely that the driver is to blame.
Thankfully, it is very simple to fix audio driver issues, you just need to follow the steps listed below
Here’s How to Roll back/Update your Audio Driver:
- Click the Windows icon in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen to open the Start menu.
- Begin typing ‘Device Manager’ and click to launch it when it appears.
- Locate the relevant driver from the section titled ‘Sound, video and game controllers’
- Open ‘Properties’ by right-clicking the headphone driver and selecting the option.
- Navigate to the ‘Driver’ tab and either:
- Choose ‘Roll Back Driver’
- Or ‘Update driver’ (Select this option if ‘Roll Back Driver’ is unavailable).
Once this process is complete, your headphones should be detected, and there should no longer be a problem.
However, if your issues persist, we recommend that you continue reading for further solutions.
2. Try Using the In-Built Troubleshooter & have Microsoft Detect & Fix your Problematic Headphones
If you’re using a Lenovo laptop then you’ll be using Windows 10 or Windows 11 as your operating system.
Both these versions of Windows are equipped with helpful troubleshooters that can solve all manner of problems without the need for much user interaction or in-depth knowledge.
Many users have found this incredibly handy when they are experiencing problems with their audio equipment and, by running the audio troubleshooter, a solution has been quickly implemented and hardware, such as headphones, regains its functionality.
Using the Microsoft audio troubleshooter when you experience a problem with your headphones on a Lenovo laptop is a prudent course of action and can sometimes save you a lot of time and effort.
If the troubleshooter detects the specific problem preventing your headphones from working, it saves you from having to engage in detective work. Better yet, if the troubleshooter does detect the problem, then it is very likely that it will offer an automatic fix.
If you want to let Microsoft’s audio troubleshooter do the hard work for you, then use the steps listed below.
Here’s How to Run the Audio Troubleshooter to Fix your Headphones on Windows 10:
- Right-click on the Windows icon found in the bottom left-hand corner of your screen.
- Choose ‘System’ from the list of available options.
- Now click ‘Sound’
- Finally, click ‘Troubleshoot’ from within the ‘Output’ menu.
This will allow your Lenovo laptop to scan for any potential issues that are preventing your headphones from working correctly.
Once the scan is completed, you may find that the troubleshooter suggests specific steps on how best to resolve the issue that has been detected. Simply follow the onscreen instructions and your headphones will be playing sound once again.
For a more in-depth answer, take a look at our article about headphones not working on Windows 10.
If you are running Windows 11 on your Lenovo laptop, then use the steps below instead.
Here’s How to Run the Audio Troubleshooter to Fix your Headphones on Windows 11:
- Navigate to ‘Settings’ from the Start menu and then click ‘Troubleshoot’
- Click ‘Other troubleshooters’
- Here you will view a range of troubleshooters you can activate depending on the problem.
- Select ‘Run’ for the ‘Playing Audio’ troubleshooter and a new window will open.
- Ensure you choose ‘Headphone’ before clicking ‘Next’
- The troubleshooter will now run, detect any issues, and offer the steps that you need to take.
For more solutions, take a look at our article about headphones not working on Windows 11.
3. Uninstall your Audio Driver Completely to Resolve all Audio Issues (Including Headphones)
If you’ve found that you have no sound playing from your laptop with or without your headphones plugged in, then it may be worth completely uninstalling your audio driver.
When there is no sound coming from your in-built speakers as well as your headphones, it indicates that the problem lies with the laptop and not the headphones.
Many users have found that once they complete the uninstallation process, all audio problems are resolved, including issues with headphones.
Here’s How to Uninstall the Audio Driver on your Lenovo Laptop:
- Click the Windows icon to open the Start menu.
- Type ‘Device Manager’ and select it when it appears.
- Click on ‘Sound and Gaming Controllers’ to expand.
- Locate either ‘Conexant’ or ‘Realtek’ and right-click it.
- Choose ‘Uninstall’
- Click the check box for ‘Delete the driver software for this device’
- Reboot your Lenovo laptop.
Lenovo’s support page explains that this process should ensure that ‘High Definition Audio’ becomes the generic driver and that:
“Once a generic driver is installed, try using your earphone and check if the problem is resolved. If not, download and install the latest audio driver from Lenovo Support Site.”
Check also our article on microphone problems with Lenovo PCs.
4. Set your Headphones as the Default Device on your Lenovo Laptop
If you want to listen to any media on your Lenovo laptop using headphones, then the headphones in question must first be recognized by the system.
Some Lenovo users have found that occasionally, some headphones are not automatically recognized when they plug them in. There are a few reasons why this can happen, but the good news is that you can trigger your Lenovo laptop into recognizing your headphones by setting them as the default device.
This simple trick can allow you to quickly get your headphones working again and it should prevent this issue from occurring in the future.
The process of setting your headphones as the default device differs between Windows 10 and 11, but we’ve got you covered for both.
Here’s How to Set your Headphones as the Default Device on Windows 10:
- First, you need to open ‘System’ by right-clicking the Windows icon and selecting it from the list of options.
- Now click ‘Sound’
- In the ‘Output’ section you have the option to ‘Choose your output device’.
- Use the drop-down menu and select your headphones from the list.
- Unplug your headphones and then plug them back in again.
Here’s How to Set your Headphones as the Default Device on Windows 11:
- Click the Windows icon to open the Start menu.
- Click ‘Settings’
- From ‘System’, click ‘Sound’
- Choose your headphones as the output device in the section titled: ‘Choose where to play sound’
It can be frustrating when your headphones are not working on your Lenovo laptop, but, as you have seen, there are some solutions that you can try that should solve the problem.
However, it’s worth remembering that sometimes the solution you need may be more straightforward than you might first think.
Always isolate any headphone issue you may be having by doing the following:
- Check that your headphones are securely connected to your laptop.
- Ensure that the cable you are using is undamaged.
- Ensure that your Bluetooth headphones are charged and switched on.
- Ensure that the volume level on your laptop is not set to low or set to mute.
- Ensure that the media app that you are using is not set to mute.