Soundbar Common Problems Troubleshooting

Soundbar Common Problems Troubleshooting

Isn’t it frustrating when your new device just won’t work? It could be something small like trouble with pairing bluetooth or even having no sound at all from your soundbar.

We have compiled some of the most common problems with soundbarsso troubleshooting is made easier than ever.

The Most Common Troubleshooting Problems

Bluetooth Pairing Issues

Bluetooth is meant for convenience, but it can make your life more difficult if you have to spend hours figuring it out. 

For starters, Bluetooth requires devices to be in pairing mode for a successful connection. You need to set your TV (or any other preferred device) and your soundbar into pairing mode and make sure that the devices are detectable.

If you have done this and the soundbar still won’t pair, one of your devices may be in need of a firmware update. An out-of-date soundbar can cause incompatibility with other devices.

illustration of Bluetooth connection to other devices

If that isn’t the issue, then you may need to perform a hard reset. We have an article about resetting your soundbar here.

It helps to identify where the issue is coming from. Is it a problem with your soundbar or the device you’re trying to pair with it? You can narrow down the issue by pairing your soundbar with other devices. If that is successful, then you can start troubleshooting the other gadget you’re trying to connect with your soundbar.

No Sound Coming from the Soundbar

Sometimes, it can be just a problem in the volume settings. If everything is connected properly, check the level of the volume. It is possible that it might be turned way down low or muted by accident.

The control of the sound should be from your soundbar, so make sure that the device it is paired with is at maximum volume. If the volume levels are normal, then you should check your connections. Jiggle the cables to make sure that they are secure. 

Man sitting on couch with hand on his forehead

It may take a light push of the digital optical cable to get the sound working again. If the connections are secure, double check if you have connected the cables to the right ports. You can also use the process of elimination by testing each port to see if one is damaged.

It may also be the cable itself that is damaged. If you have an extra one lying around, try connecting the devices with it to see if the original cable is the culprit. If none of the above works, try a different method of connection. 

There is Sound but It is Poor Quality

If the sound emitted from the soundbar is of poor quality or doesn’t seem to improve the sound from the TV speakers, there are a few things you can do to troubleshoot.

Certain soundbars come with sound modes [1]. The sound modes are preset in the soundbar to enhance certain content on your TV. For example, movie mode will clarify speech and improve the sound effects when you watch a movie.

It may be possible that you have accidentally set your soundbar in a special audio mode. If the sound is quiet, it might be because you have enabled “night mode”. This mode is used to deaden certain frequencies so as not to disturb people around you at night.

well-lit living room with TV

You may also notice that the sound from your soundbar doesn’t seem to be an improvement from your TV speakers because you haven’t enabled the compatible sound modes. Soundbars can come with speech/dialogue enhancement capabilities that will make a big difference once activated.

If sound modes aren’t the problem, then it could be that the sound quality of the content cannot be replicated by your soundbar. Some soundbars do not come with Dolby Atmos surround sound capabilities or Dolby Digital decoding.

If you are attempting to play content with the mentioned sound effects, it could make the audio sound weird. You will need to adjust the sound settings to better accommodate it.

The Soundbar Won’t Turn on

The first thing you need to make sure of if you believe your soundbar won’t turn on is to make sure it is actually off. It could just be in sleep mode.

When it sleep mode, it is still considered “on”. You can tell this by checking the indicator lights. When a device is completely off, the display panel will be off as well without any blinking lights.

Trying to figure the source of the problem may also have you go through the process of elimination. If you have a separate remote for your soundbar, you can check if it’s really the soundbar that has an issue or if it is the remote itself.

woman wearing hat facing the wall with projection in well-lit room

You can do this by pressing the “power” button on the control panel to see if it works. If it does, then your remote is the issue. Check if you have configured it correctly or if it needs a battery change.

If that still doesn’t work, then all the connections need to be checked. It’s worth inspecting the wires and ports for any damage.

Soundbar Turns off or Goes to Sleep

If you find that your soundbar often turns off on its own or goes to sleep, you may have unknowingly activated the auto sleep timer. Check your settings in the main menu and make sure you haven’t accidentally enabled the timer or auto power on.

The Soundbar is Out of Sync

If your soundbar is out of sync, check your connections and settings for any issues.

Static Noise or Hum from the Soundbar

If there is unwanted noise coming from the soundbar such as static, humming or crackling, you can begin tackling it the same way you would with other common soundbar problems. Start by checking all the connections and the source. For detailed steps to stop speakers from buzzing, read on what we suggested here

More often than not, the issue would be with the cable. If all the connections are secure, then try the same connections with a different cable. Sometimes the cable is having some interference with the connection.

If the problem persists, check your volume. The sound should be controlled by your soundbar and your other device should be at maximum volume. 

close-up of a tweeter

If your device is connected wirelessly, the placement of your soundbar can have a profound effect on the sound. Try to relocate your soundbar. If you have it sitting in front of your TV, try mounting it on top.

It is also possible that your devices are picking up signal interference from nearby electronic devices. 

The Subwoofer is not Working

Subwoofers that come with our preferred soundbars are often wireless, but there are some wired connections as well.

Regardless of the connection, you should first check if your sub is powered on. Many people forget to take this basic step when setting up their home theater system.

You then need to make sure that the connection is sound. Check the cables and the Bluetooth pairing to be sure of a strong link.

If there still isn’t any sound, you may have accidentally linked the soundbar to the wrong device. Make sure the sub is paired with the soundbar and not another external device.

The Soundbar Won’t Connect to the Internet

If your soundbar has Wi-Fi and you have trouble connecting to it, then it can be due to the soundbar still being paired with another device. To make narrowing down the source of the issue easier, you can unpair everything from your soundbar.

Once you have done that, try to pair your devices via Bluetooth or Wi-Fi again. More likely than not, this will have solved the problem.

Soundbar isn’t working with Netflix

If your soundbar isn’t working with Netflix, check the connections. This is quite a common solution we mention throughout the article, but it’s because it usually is the issue. Try to eliminate potential issues by pairing your device with other streaming programs.

hand pointing remote at TV showing Netflix

You may also need to look into your TV and Netflix audio settings to check if they are compatible. Make sure your systems (software and firmware) are up to date as well. Netflix movies and shows automatically choose 2.0 settings. 

If your soundbar can play 5.1, you may need to manually go into the details of the content and change the sound settings.

If Your Soundbar Still Isn’t Working

If you have tried all of our suggestions and your soundbar still isn’t working, doing a factory reset is your last resort.


Why does my soundbar cut in and out?

Your soundbar will cut in and out most likely due to loose connections, interference or physical obstruction. Make sure there is nothing that creates an obstacle between your device and soundbar, and be sure that the connections are secure and that the cables are undamaged.

How do I get my TV to recognize my soundbar?

You can get your TV to recognize your soundbar by ensuring that the device is discoverable. Pair the devices with Bluetooth and check if your TV and soundbar have compatible cable connections.

Why does my soundbar sound distorted?

Your soundbar will sound distorted because of incorrect settings. It could be because of a less than optimal sound mode you have chosen or the audio settings themselves.

Why does my soundbar keep muting?

Your soundbar will keep muting because there is no audio signal sent from the HDMI ARC input to the output. In this case, your soundbar will automatically mute itself. To solve this issue, you can turn off the control for the HDMI.

How to stop my soundbar from quieting the volume?

You can stop your soundbar from quieting the volume by checking the sound modes. In many soundbars, the “night mode” will be responsible for lowering the volume because it was designed to mute certain frequencies.


With a home theater system that most likely consists of multiple devices, you are bound to run into some issues.

However, troubleshooting of electronic devices can be quite simple. For most problems, checking the cables and sound settings are the two most common solutions that fixes your problem immediately.

Which between the Sonos Beam versus the Bose TV Speaker wins in terms of sound quality, connections, setup, and more? Find all about that, next!

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Willie Greer
Willie Greer
Willie Greer is the founder of The Product Analyst. A cinephile, he has made it a personal quest to achieve the awesomest home theater possible. He now shares what he has learned through the years on the site, and has enlisted the help of tech-savvy colleagues in providing more insight about today’s most sought-after gadgets.