Troubleshooting Soundbar Problems: Common Soundbar Problems & How To Solve Them

Imagine coming home from work, making your favorite snack, and throwing yourself on the couch. And to make that moment even more relaxing, you turn your TV on, hoping to watch your favorite movie. 

Three words can describe that scenario: 

Heaven on Earth.

The only problem with that scenario is that TV speakers tend to have poor sound quality, usually killing the vibe. Now, one way to boost any TV’s sound would be to use a soundbar - and luckily for you, you can find soundbars at very affordable prices.

However, life’s full of surprises. Things happen - and sometimes, the soundbar stops working in the middle of your favorite movie. If that happened to you, don’t worry: 

I know a thing or two about troubleshooting soundbar problems. 

So, stay with me, and learn how to recognize - and fix - some common soundbar problems.

soundbar-not-connecting

Before we get down to business, I have to say that I genuinely hope that the following soundbar troubleshooting suggestions I have for you will help. Remember to attempt each option one at a time to isolate the problem more efficiently.

If you can’t seem to find a solution even after going over this guide and following my advice, you might want to contact your retail store or manufacturer for help. In case that doesn’t work, either, take your speaker to a local repair shop. 

On that note:

If your soundbar stops working and is still under warranty, there is a solution. You can get a free replacement or free service from the retailer - or, in some cases, directly from the manufacturer.

Now, back to the main topic: 

There are many common soundbar problems - and just as many potential solutions. So, read on, and I’ll help you discover and solve most (if not all) of them:

The Soundbar Doesn’t Power On

One of the most common problems has to do with the speakers' power. If you try to turn on your soundbar but it doesn't work, there's likely an issue with the power connection. 

It could be because it isn't getting power or because its internal power system has failed. 

The first thing you should do is check if the power socket is turned on. I know, I know. You might feel a little bit embarrassed if you’ve forgotten to do such an obvious thing, but believe me when I say: 

It happens to everyone. 

Consider yourself lucky if this turns out to be the cause of the problem; it’s an easy fix.

Power Strip Turned On

Then, using the built-in power button or the remote, try to turn the soundbar on again. If it still doesn’t turn on, try a different power socket. And if that doesn't work, either, please make sure the cable isn't damaged and is correctly plugged into the socket and the soundbar. 

If it's connected through another device, such as an extension cord, try connecting it directly to the wall socket. And what if it still doesn’t power on - even after you try a different power cable? 

If all these attempts fail, you might not be able to fix it yourself.

Soundbar Plugged In 2

Soundbar Goes To Sleep Mode On Its Own 

If you’ve ever experienced this - don’t worry, It’s not the worst thing ever. Again, I’ll try my best to help you deal with this problem. 

Here’s some excellent news: 

The most common cause is usually easy to resolve - you most likely have the soundbar’s sleep timer enabled. 

Check the Settings and disable the "Sleep Timer" to resume your uninterrupted media watching. You'll also want to make sure the soundbar isn't programmed to turn off automatically when your TV is turned off. 

Cable Connection Problems

If you've used a cable to connect your TV to the soundbar but still don't have audio, the most likely cause would be an improper cable connection or a damaged cable.

If the soundbar is on, but there’s no sound, check the connection first. Begin by turning off the internal TV speakers with the TV remote. Next, ensure that your TV's speaker choice is set to external - and verify if you're getting sound now.

Most soundbars may also be connected to a TV and other devices via HDMI, optical, and RCA cables. If you've connected your television to the speaker with one of these cables, make sure it's firmly plugged in. 

You can unplug and firmly re-plug the cable.

If you did everything I recommended and it still hasn’t helped, you’ll need to take things a step further and test a new cable to see if it would work. 

If you're still having trouble getting sound, you can also try a different connection method. Here’s an example: 

If your HDMI connection fails, try an optical or RCA cable instead -  depending on what your TV and soundbar support, of course. 

Soundbar-HDMI-vs-Optical

If your devices have several ports for different types of connections, you could try all of them - maybe you’ll find one that works. While doing so, make sure the soundbar's source input is set correctly, though.

For example, while utilizing an optical connection, set the source to optical. And when using an AUX to RCA wire, set the source to AUX. 

You get the idea.

On a similar note, remember to change the TV’s source to a component if you've connected one to it. And if you've connected a component device to your soundbar, you need to ensure that the speaker's input source is set to “Component,” too. 

While troubleshooting cable connections, make sure both devices' volume is turned up.

If you've tried all the potential cable connections and still don't have sound, don’t worry. You can also try to reset the soundbar. 

To reset your soundbar, press and hold the reset button for a few seconds - then see if you can hear anything. 

If none of these options work, contact your manufacturer for help. Or, if it’s no longer covered by warranty, get the equipment checked by a local electronics repair professional.

No Audio From The Subwoofer

Some soundbars will come with a separate subwoofer. So, if the subwoofer is causing the issue and there’s no sound coming from it, the first step will be pretty obvious - make sure it's turned on. 

If it's not receiving power, check if the power cord is securely attached to the sub and the outlet. Also, make sure the wire is connected to a working power outlet. If it still won't turn on, look for signs of damage on the wire or choose another power cable.

If the subwoofer seems to be on, but there’s no sound, it’s possible that you haven’t connected it to the soundbar correctly. 

SR-B20A-subwoofer-out-circled-in-red-1

You could try re-linking the two units by rebooting them. If they fail to link again, you could press the "Reset" button on them one by one.

If there’s still no audio, the only thing left to do is to ask your retailer or manufacturer for further advice. 

Wireless Devices Won’t Pair 

Nowadays, the majority of speakers feature wireless connectivity options - typically Bluetooth connectivity, which allows you to connect your devices wirelessly. 

Now, there are benefits to this; wireless connections reduce wire clutter and improve portability. 

But sometimes, you can experience issues with pairing a device to the speaker via Bluetooth. 

If your device isn't pairing, make sure no other devices are connected, and then try again. Some Bluetooth speakers can only pair with one device at a time.

Also, try pairing the devices when they're closer to each other since the Bluetooth range can be a bit limited on some devices. 

Another troubleshooting option would be to restart both devices. After you do that, check if the soundbar’s Bluetooth is turned on - you can usually activate it using the remote - and try pairing them again. 

If you're still having pairing issues, there's one more thing you could do - reset the soundbar. But in case the problem with Bluetooth connectivity persists, contact the manufacturer.

Soundbar Relax

Final Words

So, my mission today was to help you with troubleshooting soundbar problems. 

And to be honest with you, I did everything in my power to give you all the information I felt you needed to identify and fix common problems. Now it’s up to you to absorb all the info and use it wisely. 

To conclude, most of these soundbar problems aren’t that big of a deal and can be solved pretty easily. That’s good news, right? 

So, the next time you get annoyed when your soundbar fails to work, don’t let it get to you. Just take a deep breath and apply some of the solutions I covered in this guide. 

If all else fails, you can always replace your current setup with one of the best cheap soundbars!


Barry Allen

About the author:

Barry Allen

I grew up to be a self-proclaimed stuck-up audiophile, and I – partially – blame Pinnacle Speakers for it.


The whole point of me starting this website was to keep the tradition going. Although the means have changed, the mission remains the same: Bringing „sterling sound“ as they once put it into home theaters and sound systems worldwide! 


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