Using soundbars for music and movies can be a cheaper way of getting the theatre-like experience in your home, especially if you are not used to traditional home theatre speakers and the AV Receiver. Soundbars are durable and convenient to use, but you can experience a drop in sound quality from their speakers at certain times due for several reasons. One common suspicion among users who experience this is that the speakers might have blown out. So, if you are wondering whether or not you can blow out the soundbar’s speakers, I have some answers for you.
It is possible for you to blow out a soundbar’s speakers. You can blow out the speakers if you play music with them loud enough for a very long time. Sudden power surges from your power source can also blow the soundbar’s speakers out. To fix the blown-out speakers of the soundbar, you’ll need to recone the speakers or get yourself a new one.
Although soundbars are designed to be durable so that they can withstand some of these pressures, they can break down when their limits are exceeded. It is therefore important to know what causes the speakers to blow out and avoid them as much as possible. In this article, I’m going to discuss why speakers blow out and how you can fix them if you find yourself in such a situation.
How Do I Know If My Soundbar’s Speakers are Blown?
Finding out if your soundbar speakers are blown can be a tricky task. This is because you’ll mostly expect that once the speakers blow out, they should immediately stop working or produce any sound.
Well, the thing is the blown-out speakers of the soundbars sometimes continue to produce sounds even if they are blown out. Obviously, the sounds will be of poor quality so if you’ve been using your soundbar for quite a long time, a drop in the sound quality of the speakers should give you a hint.
However, the drop in the sound quality of the sound output does not also necessarily mean that the speakers are blown. So if you begin to hear some distortions or unusual sounds from your soundbar speakers, it could be that you connected your cables wrongly or other devices that are connected to the soundbar are just not working right.
There are some other ways by which you can tell if the speakers are blown out, so let’s take a look at them.
The common signs to look out for in the speakers are as follows:
- Visible speaker damage
- Lack of vibrations
- Narrow frequency spectrum
- Infinite speaker resistance
Visible Speaker Damage
Visible physical damages on the speakers are the commonest sign that you can look out for in a blown-out speaker.
If you suspect your soundbar speaker to have blown out, examining the exterior surroundings of the soundbar won’t be a bad idea.
You should be looking out for torn areas around the speaker. You can check the moorings and cones of the speaker to see if there are any tears and once you find any, there is a high chance that the speaker is blown out.
However, you should be very careful when you want to check the speaker since in most cases, you’ll have to take off the covering in the soundbar before you can access the speaker’s foam or cones.
If you’re not sure about your expertise, you should probably leave that out for the experts because you may void your warranty if you damage other components of the soundbar in the process of examining the speakers.
Lack Of Vibrations
When speakers transmit sound, they vibrate and disturb the particles around them. When they produce loud sounds, they vibrate even faster.
You can use the vibrations around the speaker to check whether or not the soundbar is blown.
Bigger soundbars need more power from the amps to produce sounds, so the power from the amp is able to vibrate the speaker visibly enough for you to detect by mere observation.
However, smaller soundbars have speakers that do not use that much energy so, the vibrations on the speakers may not be visible enough. However, you can turn up the volume of the soundbar and then use your fingers to feel around the speakers for vibrations.
If you do not feel any vibration, it probably means that your soundbar speakers are blown out.
Narrow Frequency Spectrum
Speakers are designed to produce sounds that can be heard by us. After all, what use will speakers be if we can not hear the sounds they produce?
According to studies, the human ear can hear sound frequencies that are between 20 Hz and 20 kHz. 20 Hz frequency is the deepest bass sound that you can hear while 20 kHz is the highest-pitched piercing sound that our ears can detect.
Speaker manufacturers try to design their speakers to match these frequencies so that they produce sounds that fall in this range.
If your soundbar is in a good condition, the speakers should be able to produce sounds that are close to the extremes of this range.
However, if the speakers are blown out, the range of sound frequencies that the speakers produce narrow significantly. In such a case, your speakers will not be able to produce a very deep bass sound or high-piercing sound in a music or movie that you are watching.
You can actually test your soundbars with the music of varying sound frequencies and if the speakers are not able to pick those tones correctly, you can have a reason to believe that they are probably blown out.
Infinite Speaker Resistance
Speakers, like ever conducting wire, have inherent resistance. These resistances of speakers can be measured using a multimeter.
The spec sheet of your soundbar will normally include the resistances of the speakers in the soundbar, which is Ohms.
If your speakers are healthy and have no problems, the reading on a multimeter when you measure the resistance of the speakers should be close to what the manufacturer provided.
If the Ohm reading is very far away from the manufacturer’s resistance, then your speakers may have been blown out.
Again, measuring the resistance with the multimeter will require that you remove the speakers from the soundbar. This may void your warranty as well, so if you are not sure of your skills, you should consult a professional technician.
What Causes Soundbar Speakers to Blow?
Now that you know how to detect blown-out speakers in soundbars, let’s discuss what really causes the speakers to blow out.
Your soundbar’s speakers can blow out as a result of these:
- Loud Music
- Power Surge
- Defects from factory
Although the manufacturers of soundbars put in a lot of work to prevent their products from blowing out, certain incidents like sudden power surges, which are beyond your control, can actually blow out the speakers.
Some causes are however within the user’s control so let’s discuss these in detail.
Playing music at very high volumes on your soundbars is the major reason why soundbar speakers blow out.
If you play music very loud on your speakers, you may get away with it a couple of times. But if you prolong this practice for a longer time, your speakers are going to wear out in the long run and then blow out in the process.
The underlying science behind the speakers blowing out has to do with the amp or receiver and the power ratings of the speakers.
Typically, large speakers and louder volumes of music demand lots of power from the amp or receiver in order to play the music at those volumes.
If your speaker’s rating does not match with the amp’s or receiver’s power supply, you’ll underpower or overpower the speakers, causing them to blow out in the process.
Even if the speaker’s rating matches with the amp’s, the power supply to the speaker at the volume may be low or high at some point in time and if that continues for a long time, the speakers may blow out.
The power supply from your power source can also affect the health of your soundbar. If the power flow is steady, it will have no problems with the soundbar.
However, sudden power surges can deliver extra power and overload your speakers, causing the coils to burn up and then blow out.
Most often, this scenario is beyond your control but you can use power guards to protect your soundbars from such power surges.
Defects from the Factory
Although the manufacturers of soundbars try their best to produce only quality materials for consumers, some substandard products occasionally find their way onto the market.
These soundbars which are able to escape quality checks are usually flawed with defects such as improper gluing and weak coils.
If your soundbar happens to be one such product, the speakers will very likely blow up after the slightest usage.
The good news, however, is that such defects often get exposed during the warranty period and so you can request a replacement.
How to Prevent Your Soundbar from Getting Blown Up
Soundbars generally should last between 6 to 15 years before wearing out fully.
However, if you do not keep the soundbar properly, it will certainly not last for its intended lifespan.
In order to prevent your soundbar from getting blown up, you should always use power guards when you use the soundbar. The power guard will shield the soundbar from any sudden power overload when power surges uncontrollably.
Also, you keep the soundbar clean at all times. Dust the soundbar and use a vacuum cleaner to remove all dust particles in and around it.
If you want to use the soundbar for a long, do not use it in a very hot environment. Try as much as possible to keep it out of reach of direct sunlight so that it does not overheat.
Lastly, try to listen to music at optimal volumes and if you happen to turn the volume of your music up so high, don’t forget to turn it back down immediately after you are done listening to the music.
How Do You Fix a Blown Soundbar Speaker?
If your soundbar speaker is blown, you can fix it by reconing the speakers.
The process is a bit technical so you want to leave that out for the professional technician if you don’t have the skills.
Basically, if you want to recone a speaker, you’ll have to remove all the damaged parts of the speaker and then replace them with healthy ones. If you want to try it out on your own, you can find some reconing kits on Amazon that you can use.
In most cases, replacing the damaged soundbar is economically cheaper than fixing it, so you’ll have to weigh your options.
If you want to cut cords from the traditional AV receiver home theatre systems, soundbars will be a better option. However, just like all speakers, soundbars can blow out as a result of a power surge or factory defects.
You can also blow them out yourself if you play music at higher volumes on it for a long.
If you are suspicious of your soundbar blowing out, turn up the volume and listen for any unusual sounds for confirmation.
You can prevent the loudspeaker from blowing out in the first place if you maintain it properly and remember to always use a power guard or power shield to protect your soundbars from sudden power surges.