AirPods 2 wireless: Case no longer charges - free exchange

Charging problem: AirPods 2 charging case defective?

With some things you only know how often you actually use them when you no longer have them. This is what happened to mine AirPods 2that I've always had in my pocket since I bought it. They are, so to speak, my loyal companions and my headphones to-go.

Unfortunately they gave up the spoon yesterday. I only heard the typical plimmplumming in the headphones that they utter when the internal battery is running out, but when I then put it in the case, I briefly saw the battery indicator on my iPhone, which is also the same as the case 0 % Certified battery level.

No matter how I tried it, the AirPods battery case no longer wanted to accept a charge (Photos: Sir Apfelot).

No matter how I tried it, the AirPods battery case no longer wanted to accept a charge (Photos: Sir Apfelot).

AirPods Case has stopped charging - LED indicator is off

Well, I thought, you have to give the case a little power again - which surprised me a little, since I had already plugged it into the Lightning cable an hour or two beforehand.

When I put the case back in, I noticed that the LED (which is only built into the AirPods 2 and Pro) was not shining. Normally, the battery case signals that the charging process is in progress with a small, red LED light. No light therefore means no charge.

Case deeply discharged or charging cable defective?

My first guess was that the case was perhaps so empty that it had to be on the electricity for a while before there was another sign of life. This effect is sometimes found with deeply discharged iPhones, which neither make the typical charging sound nor display the power signal immediately after being plugged in and only come back to life after a few hours on the charging cable.

With the AirPods, however, nothing happened even after an hour and I was already doubting my charging cable and charger. Briefly plugging in my iPad showed that everything was fine with the power supply unit and charging cable.

Test with Qi charging - also a failure

My last idea was to put the case on a Qi charging station - after all, the AirPods 2 wireless case should be just as easy to charge over it. But this last attempt also failed. There was simply no power to convey to the case.

Support chat with Apple and a free replacement case

Since I bought the AirPods 2 just under a year ago, Apple - as far as I know - has to provide a free solution for battery problems if the cause was not caused by improper handling (fall or water damage). The reason for this is the built-in battery in the AirPods and in the charging case.

Recommended reading: Difference between guarantee and warranty

The support staff confirmed this to me and pointed out that an Apple technician will look at the case after it has been sent in. Should he find out that the case has suffered water damage or a fall, the repair costs would have to be borne by me.

So far, I've only had good experiences with Apple Support. So also in this case. Even if it is an exaggeration to ask how I am feeling, I think it is a nice gesture.

So far, I've only had good experiences with Apple Support. So also in this case. Even if it is an exaggeration to ask how I am feeling, I think it is a nice gesture.

New case will be delivered and the old one will be packed

The exchange - for those who have not yet carried out an exchange at Apple - takes place either directly in an Apple Store or by shipping.

When it comes to shipping, Apple sends the replacement case on its way immediately after the agreement with support. When you receive it, you unpack the new case and put your old, defective case in the box. The shipping agent then takes the parcel back with him and you already have a working device while the old one is still on the way to Apple.

To protect yourself, the credit card will be charged with 85 euros for this exchange. This amount is only used as security in the event that you fail to deliver your defective case. If Apple receives the faulty device and there is no fault on the part of the user, this amount will not be charged to the credit card.

As security that I will send the old case back when I receive the new one, 85 euros are reserved on the credit card. If the defective case arrives, the amount will not be debited.

As security that I will send the old case back when I receive the new one, 85 euros are reserved on the credit card. If the defective case arrives, the amount will not be debited.

Short note: serial number and model no. the AirPods

The serial number of Apple devices is always extremely important for every support request, so that the employees can check whether the warranty is still available. Accordingly, I made myself smart about how to find them before contacting them. In my case, I could no longer look in the iPhone because the AirPods no longer connected.

But there is a second way, because the serial number of the AirPods can also be found on the case - only very well hidden in the lid. With the naked eye I couldn't see anything there with the best will in the world, but with the iPhone's magnifying glass function you can photograph and decipher the serial number quite well.

The serial number of the AirPods can be found well hidden in the lid. I could only see them with the iPhone's magnifying glass. I have made them unrecognizable in the photo.

The serial number of the AirPods can be found well hidden in the lid. I could only see them with the iPhone's magnifying glass. I have made them unrecognizable in the photo.

My conclusion on the exchange

I have to admit that I always find the contact with Apple Support very helpful and solution-oriented. I spent a good 20 minutes chatting with the employee because he even wanted things like the version number of my macOS and the serial number of my MacBook Pro (whatever that was helpful for), but after I sent everything to him, the exchange took place quickly initiated.

The case will arrive shortly and hopefully my AirPods 2 will work as usual again. Despite everything, I took the opportunity to order the AirPods Pro. I stood firm for a long time and waited for an offer, but it just doesn't come. These things sell so well that Apple doesn't really have to tweak the price.

When the AirPods Pro arrive, there will also be a review - even if the big hype was a few months ago. Maybe right now you can reach a few readers who, like me, are still pondering whether they need the AirPods Pro when they already have the AirPods 1 or 2.

I will report!

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