What might be wrong with my earbud and how to fix it?

So I’m at work right now, and I don’t think I can get through today’s boring proofreading without some Zager & Evans to keep me company. So I plug in my Sony earbuds - they’ve got little rubber ear-pieces, which are removable and come in several different colors.

But, there’s a problem. The psychedelic sounds of Z&E are coming through clear as crystal in my right ear - but my left earbud isn’t producing any sound at all. That is, unless I apply the tiniest bit of pressure to the back of it (the plastic part) with my finger. If I touch it ever so slightly, it works, and I can hear the music from it. But as soon as I take my finger off, it goes mute again.

What could be the matter here? Whatever it is, it’s somehow pressure-sensitive. The sound comes through fine, if I’m holding my finger on the back of the earbud (and again, even the slightest touch makes the sound work) but once that finger is off, no dice.

Is there something I can do right here and now to fix this, so I can begin enjoying such masterpieces as Reginald Ludwig, Mr. Turnkey and The Candy Machine without running out to buy another pair of earbuds?

███** SIT NOMINE DIGNA **███

a wire or it’s connection is broken sitting just half a hair from where it should be. your pressure makes it in contact again.

You have an intermittent short. It you are talented with soldering really really tiny things and it is a wire pulled loose, you might be able to open it and fix it, if you have solder and a gun.

But if you don’t have the tools and the skills, it will be cheaper to replace the buds.

I doubt you could even get the plastic housing off the ear bud to get to the wire and speaker without breaking it to the point where you can’t put it back together again.

I guess it’s worth a try, since even if you can’t do anything you’ll just buy a new set which is what you would have done in the first place if you didn’t try to fix it, so…yeah.

Probably not fixable - and not worth trying given how cheap those things have become.

In the interim before you get a replacement, could you try using some tape to hold pressure on the appropriate parts?