Finding Your Lost AirPods Case: A Step-by-Step Guide

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Everyone was awe-struck with Apple’s sleek and compact wireless earphones well before they were launched. But compact devices are tiny and tiny devices are easy to misplace.

Factor in how expensive AirPods are, and no one wants to lose them, ever.

Are you wondering what to do if you have lost or misplaced your AirPods or the case? It is a scenario we dread, but one that can happen to any of us. Do not fret. There are a few measures you can take, both before and after misplacing the device, to prevent such misfortunes.

In fact, many third-party manufacturers released anti-lost straps and neck straps for AirPods to ensure you never lose them. We recommend not taking a chance and getting one just in case. Luckily, Apple is known for its forward-thinking designs.

They put in measures should you ever need to find lost or misplaced AirPods. That is why it is so important to be up-to-date with the following:

  • Apple’s Find My app in iOS 13+ and iPad
  • Locate AirPods using iCloud’s Find My Service (on a map)
  • Play a sound to help find AirPods

In this post, we will discuss the ins and outs of how to use these features should you ever lose your precious AirPods.

How to find your lost or misplaced AirPods case?

You can only track a lost or missing AirPods case if one or both of your AirPods are in it and you set up Find My with an apple device before the case went missing.

Sadly, there is no way to track a misplaced AirPods case if it is empty or if you did not turn on Find My before the case was lost.

There are three possibilities when you misplace your AirPods case – a) the case was empty, b) it had one of the AirPods in it, or c) it had both of the AirPods in it. Our suggestions only apply if the case has one or both AirPods in it.

There is no way to track an empty AirPods case. If you did so, refer to the last section on how to buy a replacement AirPods case. Here are a few ways to locate the case if it had one or both AirPods inside:

Use Find My Network

This method works for 3rd generation AirPods, AirPods Pro, and Airpods Max. Open the Settings app on your device (iPad, iPhone, or iPod) and tap on your name. Select Find My and tap Find My [device name].

Turn on the network by clicking on “Find my Network.” You should be able to see the location of your AirPods case if one or both AirPods were inside it.

Play a Sound

This method works if your AirPods are in the case and near your device that is connected to Bluetooth. Open the Find My app. Tap on ‘Devices’ and select your AirPods.

Select ‘Play Sound’ and look out for a sound (chime) that gradually grows louder. In principle, the AirPods are making the sound. But as they are in the case, you should be able to locate the case as well.

Find them on a map

Find My allows you to select your device and shows them on a map. Open the app. Go to Devices > AirPods. You can see the location.

However, it only works if you turned on the Find My feature before the device was misplaced. Otherwise, you will see ‘No location found.”

Find AirPods using iCloud

Use iCloud to locate your device using a computer or when you do not have your iPhone with you. Log into your iCloud account and go to ‘Devices.’

If you don’t have your iPhone, you can also search for AirPods at To find your AirPods, log in to your account and go to the Devices section.

Can you track an AirPods case?

You can track an AirPods case if it has one or both AirPods in it. Apple has designed the “Find My” feature to locate or track a lost or misplaced device. There is no other possibility to retrieve your case if you have not activated Find My before the device was misplaced.

Find My works with AirPods (Regular, Pro, and Max). Regrettably, there is no option to track an empty AirPods case i.e. if your AirPods are not in it. The only way to locate an empty case is to click on the Car icon in the Find My app. Hopefully, you can find them at the precise location when they went offline.

Otherwise, you need to launch a search operation and hope for the best. We discuss how to do that in the next section. You can also use the Find My service on MAC or iCloud. Learn how to use a computer or desktop to find AirPods using iCloud here.

How can I find my lost AirPods case with one AirPods in it?

The only thing worse than losing the case is losing the device along with it. Fortunately, it is easier to find the charging case if the AirPods are online and one of them is in the case. The simplest way is to use Find My and play a sound. Follow the sound to locate the device.

Here is a step-by-step explanation of how to do it:

  • Open Find My App on your phone
  • Select the AirPods paired with your iPhone
  • Tap the ‘Play’ button next to the green dot
  • Turn the volume to full and follow the sound to track the device

You cannot play a sound to locate AirPods in the case the device is offline. A gray light next to your AirPods indicates it when you go to the Find My app. However, you can still find the last location when they were connected to the internet by clicking the ‘Car Icon.’

This is not a surefire way of finding them. But once you know the last known location, you can trace your steps and look manually in all the possible places you might have left them.

How to find only one AirPod?

The following method can help you find one AirPod if you have misplaced it or if it is separated from the other.

Go to the App and turn on Find My (device). Turn on the network and you will see the location of the AirPods on the map. Get the AirPod and place it in the case. Refresh the map and it will show you the location of the other AirPod.

Use Separation Mode: Better safe than sorry

You can set up separation alerts for your AirPods using your iPhone and the Find My app. The feature is only available to users who have an iPhone 12 or a subsequent model. It works with 3rd gen AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max devices once they are added to Find My.

For more information take a look at this YouTube video.

If you set up ‘Notify When Left Behind,’ you receive a notification alert on your iPhone or iPad (with iOS 15 or later) each time you leave your AirPods at an unknown location.

You can turn it off or add locations where you do not wish to receive any notification.

Can you buy a replacement AirPods case (will it work with previous AirPods)

If none of the aforementioned methods work or apply to your predicament, Apple will replace lost items for a fee ranging from $59 to $99. You can buy a replacement AirPods case – new or refurbished – from your nearest Apple Store if you have lost it.

The AppleCare warranty does not cover lost or misplaced devices. But you can go to Apple Support and the Apple ID to chat with their Support team.

If you have the serial number for your device, you can make a reservation at a store and order a replacement.

There are no compatibility issues regarding performance or reliability if you get a replacement case. You will only be offered a case that is compatible with your AirPods. That is why you need to know the serial number.

That being said, the period, rates, and availability for a replacement case may vary from region to region. Contact or visit your nearest Apple Store for the exacting details on receiving a replacement.


Apple has several measures in place to give you the confidence to carry your AirPods and charging case everywhere. Again, get a neck-strap for your AirPods and turn on ‘Separation Alerts’ because prevention is better than a cure.

However, if you lose your AirPods, we have outlined all the tools at your disposal to replace them. Use these countermeasures and you will not have to worry about losing your device or buying a replacement. Leave a comment to let us know what worked for you.

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