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Cleaning in-ears?


RussInParis

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RussInParis

I've been using a pair of custom in-ears from Arizona Al for a number of years (3?) but the sound has gone from really nice and clear to kind of a muted bass-only sound.

 

When it first happened I could get a few moments of normal sound from one side when I jiggled the tube around, which made me think that the problem was related to cleaning out excess wax from the acoustic tubes.

 

Problem is how to do this; I tried forcing some ear cleaning drops in the tube and putting them in hot water and blowing them out but still have the same muted bassy sound.

 

Has anyone else ever had a problem like this and figured out how to fix it?

 

Thanks.

 

Russ

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Guest Kakugo

Get a hold of some concentrated hydrogen peroxyde. The stuff pharmacies commonly sell is so diluted it's little more than water.

Be careful when handling it: a little spray can ruin a good dark shirt. :P

 

Put the H2O2 in a container and dip your earbuds in it for 30 seconds each: be very careful not to dip them all the way to where the speakers reside.

Leave the earbuds to dry overnight with the speakers facing up: you don't want water to run into them.

You should already feel an improvement.

If that wasn't enough, repeat the treatment.

 

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Just so everyone is clear, Arizona Al's earbuds do not have the drivers in the earpiece/earbud. The drivers are at about mid-chest level and the sound runs from there up through hollow tubes to each earbud (L/R).

 

When I got mine from Al, they came with a small "tool" that had a very small rectangular shaped piece of wire at the end that could be inserted into the ends of the hollow tubes (after first removing the earbud) to clean them out. This has worked well for me. The only other thing I have done is wash the earbuds themselves in mild soap and warm water, but I suspect your problem, as you mentioned, is wax in the ends of the sound tubes.

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  • 1 month later...
RussInParis

Update: After looking in local stores, I ended up ordering 6% hydrogen peroxide from Amazon and soaked the tubes and in-ear molds in this for a couple of days.

 

Result: no change. Sound is still very muffled and bassy. When I unscrew the acoustic tubes from the drivers I can hear the sound coming from the drivers and the highs and volume certainly seem to be there.

 

I've tried sending a message to Arizona Al to see if I can simply buy replacement tubes, as I've run out of ideas.

 

Russ

 

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...I've tried sending a message to Arizona Al to see if I can simply buy replacement tubes, as I've run out of ideas.

 

Russ

 

I had Al replace my sound tubes at last summer's UnRally, so it can be done.

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You can also purchase those replacement tubes from EAR Inc. in Colorado. I'm sure Al will help you when he gets the message.

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Bill_Walker

Al walked me through fixing mine over the phone. At the transducer end (i.e., the junction where wires go in one end and tubes come out the other), if you push back the covering a bit, you'll see that there's a metal collar around each tube. Unscrew that collar, and you can then remove the tube. Get a can of compressed air, and use that to blow air from the transducer end toward the earmold end, blowing any accumulated wax out of the tube. Put the tube back through the collar, push it onto the transducer fitting, and then tighten the collar.

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RussInParis

Thanks for the suggestions although I didn't see the tubes on the EAR site; if you have a link or search phrase that would help, let me know.

 

I have unscrewed the tubes from the transducers to soak in the hydrogen peroxide and tried blowing them clear after. But I'll try the compressed idea thing too.

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If the compressed air trick doesn't work you could contact EAR in Boulder on Tuesday and they will send you a set of the tubes. They get brittle over time anyway. The tubes are inexpensive.

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Al walked me through fixing mine over the phone. At the transducer end (i.e., the junction where wires go in one end and tubes come out the other), if you push back the covering a bit, you'll see that there's a metal collar around each tube. Unscrew that collar, and you can then remove the tube. Get a can of compressed air, and use that to blow air from the transducer end toward the earmold end, blowing any accumulated wax out of the tube. Put the tube back through the collar, push it onto the transducer fitting, and then tighten the collar.

 

You did remove them from your ears first, right? :grin:

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Bill_Walker
Al walked me through fixing mine over the phone. At the transducer end (i.e., the junction where wires go in one end and tubes come out the other), if you push back the covering a bit, you'll see that there's a metal collar around each tube. Unscrew that collar, and you can then remove the tube. Get a can of compressed air, and use that to blow air from the transducer end toward the earmold end, blowing any accumulated wax out of the tube. Put the tube back through the collar, push it onto the transducer fitting, and then tighten the collar.

 

You did remove them from your ears first, right? :grin:

 

What? Can you speak up? I'm having a little trouble with my hearing.

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Al walked me through fixing mine over the phone. At the transducer end (i.e., the junction where wires go in one end and tubes come out the other), if you push back the covering a bit, you'll see that there's a metal collar around each tube. Unscrew that collar, and you can then remove the tube. Get a can of compressed air, and use that to blow air from the transducer end toward the earmold end, blowing any accumulated wax out of the tube. Put the tube back through the collar, push it onto the transducer fitting, and then tighten the collar.

 

You did remove them from your ears first, right? :grin:

 

 

What? Can you speak up? I'm having a little trouble with my hearing.

 

Whoa, talk about a target-rich environment. :wave:

 

Have a nice weekend, Bill. :thumbsup:

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