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iPhone Calls Only Works on Speaker: 9 Troubleshooting Tips 

Last Updated Dec 18, 2022
iphone call

Although speakerphone can be a convenient option at times, there may be times you prefer to keep your calls more private. Additionally, there’s often an echo when using the speaker option that can significantly interfere with the phone’s audio quality. 

Luckily, there may be a solution if your iPhone calls only work on speaker. Read on to learn the reasons why you may run into this issue. You’ll also find nine troubleshooting tips that have helped many others resolve this problem. 

Make Sure the Volume Is Up

If you can only hear your phone calls when you turn on the speakerphone, the first thing you should check is that your call volume is turned up. This may sound obvious, but it can sometimes be turned down by mistake. 

You can only adjust the call volume while you’re on a call. So, to make sure your call volume is turned up, you will need to make a phone call. 

If you’re unsure who you could call to test this, consider this:

  1. Dial your voicemail
  2. Once the phone starts ringing, or making an audible noise, tap to disable the speaker option
  3. Use the Volume Up button on the side of your iPhone to increase the call volume

If the volume being turned down was the issue, you should begin hearing the call even though you do not have Speaker enabled. 

Check for Connected Devices

If your call volume was not the problem, it could be that your phone is connected to a Bluetooth device. This is a common issue that can easily be overlooked. So, you should check to ensure your iPhone isn’t connected to your car, a portable speaker, or headphones. 

To make sure your phone isn’t connected to another device:

  1. Open the Settings on your iPhone. 
  2. Tap Bluetooth
  3. Scan your list of devices and ensure they all say “Not Connected.”

If you have a device that says “Connected,” turn your Bluetooth off and attempt a call. Turning your Bluetooth off will disconnect your phone from the device, and you should be able to hear your call without putting it on speaker. 

Clean the Earpiece

If there is dust, pocket lint, or other debris clogging the earpiece, it could keep you from hearing your phone calls until you put them on speaker. 

Cleaning the earpiece will remove these things and fix the audio issue they’re causing. However, this piece can be very fragile, so you should be careful not to damage it while you’re cleaning it. 

You’ll want to avoid using blunt objects to remove whatever is blocking the speakers forcefully. When cleaning the earpiece on your iPhone, it’s best to use condensed air or putty that’s made for this type of job. 

Clean the Charging Port

Like your earpiece, these things can also build up in the charging port. If these things apply pressure to specific areas inside the port, your phone may detect them as headphones being plugged into the phone. 

Use a flashlight to look into the port and ensure nothing is lodged inside. If so, you can use the same methods recommended to f

Restart Your iPhone 

Sometimes, rebooting your phone can fix many issues and glitches you’ll run into with your iPhone. 

If it’s been some time since you’ve restarted your phone, it means your phone’s RAM hasn’t had a chance to clear all of the temporary data it’s stored since the last reboot. 

To fix this, simply power your phone off, leave it off for at least 60 seconds, then power it back on. 

Update the Software

If your iPhone is still running on an older version of the iOS software, the problem may be related to bugs within the software version. New software updates come with bug fixes that can fix many issues like this. 

So, if you still have to put your phone on speaker after you’ve rebooted your phone, you should check to see if an update is available. 

You can do this by going to: 

  1. Settings
  2. General
  3. Software Update

Once here, your phone will automatically scan for an update and allow you to install it if available. 

Factory Reset the iPhone

If none of the solutions above have resolved the problem, your last resort for fixing the issue yourself is to factory reset your phone. This will remove all of the data and settings from your iPhone. 

To factory reset your iPhone, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure you have a recent iCloud backup.
  2. Go to Settings
  3. Go to General
  4. Tap Transfer or Reset
  5. Tap Erase All Content and Settings

After confirming the choice, your phone will restart. After the loading bar goes away, you’ll set your phone up as a new phone. 

Find a Professional for Repairs 

When the troubleshooting tips above do not fix the issue where iPhone calls only work on speaker, it usually requires professional repairs to fix the problem.

Attempting these repairs on your own will likely void any warranty covering your device, so it’s best to contact Apple for further assistance. 

Conclusion

Now you know multiple troubleshooting tips when your iPhone calls are only working on speaker so you can get back to making those important phone calls without everyone hearing.