How to Clean iPhone Speaker Slot

The best way to clean your iPhone speaker slot and other parts of your phone is with electronics cleaning puddy or gel. You can also use tape, forced air (just not too much pressure), and dry cleaning clothes to get everything cleaned up. 

I’m Donovan, an audio enthusiast and home studio owner. I have experience with many audio products and electronics, and I’ve owned iPhones for over a decade. I know how to clean the speaker slot through my own attempts to do so. 

This post will show you how to clean an iPhone speaker slot. I’ll show you a number of different methods you can try to clean your phone effectively, and I’ll also point out some things you should avoid to prevent any further damage. 

Let’s get to it. 

Key Takeaways

  • Cleaning putty or cleaning gel is the best and most effective way to clean your iPhone’s speaker slot. 
  • You can use multiple methods to clean an iPhone speaker slot effectively, but you should avoid using liquids as they can cause damage to small parts and pieces of your phone. 
  • You can purchase phone cleaning kits that come with materials and tools that work well for the task, but you can also use more everyday items and do just as good of job. 
  • A dirty speaker slot will lower your iPhone’s volume and hinder performance. 

How to Clean iPhone Speaker Slot

You can clean the speaker slot on your iPhone in several different ways. All of the methods shown below will work, and the one you choose really just depends on if you want to spend money on specific products or use everyday items you might already have. 

Regardless of how you clean your speaker slot, keeping this part of your phone free from dirt and debris is important. This can get stuck in the speaker slots and negatively impact your phone’s performance. 

Another thing to keep in mind is that you don’t want to use liquid cleaners if you can avoid it. Newer iPhones are built to be water resistant, but you still don’t want to soak your device in harsh chemicals or cleaners.

While you can technically clean your phone with alcohol or mild cleaners, I’d only suggest doing this for your screen, not the slots and ports. There is a chance that liquid seeps into the internal components of your iPhone, which is a quick way to damage it. 

You also should never take apart your iPhone to clean it. It’s pretty difficult to take apart an iPhone in the first place, but I still wanted to mention that so you don’t get any crazy ideas as your start cleaning things up. 

1. Cleaning Puddy or Gel

Cleaning putty or cleaning gel is one of the best ways to clean the speaker slot on your iPhone. This product looks like playdoh or another kid’s toy, but it actually does an outstanding job of cleaning hard-to-reach places. 

You just need to break off a little bit of the putty or gel from the main block and push it down over the speakers on your iPhone. Then when you pull the material off, it will cling to the dirt and debris that is stuck on your phone. 

You can buy cleaning putty at most electronics or craft stores. It’s affordable and reusable, so it’s an easy solution you can use multiple times to keep your iPhone in good working condition. You can also clean other things with it, like your car or computer. 

2. Forced Air

Forced air is another solid option to use to clean your iPhone speakers, and all of us have an endless supply. If your speakers aren’t too dirty, you might be able to just blow away dirt and dust to get everything looking good again. 

Blowing on your speakers will only remove debris that’s already loose, so you might need to wipe or rub it with another one of the cleaning products beforehand. But it’s worth trying before you put too much effort into cleaning. 

You can also buy cans of compressed air from an electronics store. These come with a long tube that you can direct the air wherever you want to go. This will have a little more pressure than you can blow with your mouth. 

I don’t recommend using an air compressor because this will have too much air pressure and can potentially damage your iPhone. But you can try using a vacuum if you have one that blows air.  

3. Tape

Tape is another good cleaning method to explore, and this method can function like DIY cleaning putty. You can use pretty much any kind of tape, but I think masking or painter’s tape works best for the task. 

Simply peel off some tape and then place the sticky side onto your iPhone speakers. Press down with some pressure to help the tape get into the holes. Then peel the tape off, and it should take some dirt with it. 

You can also roll up the tape and then stick that into the speaker holes or charging port. This will give you more rigidity, which can assist with getting into those harder-to-reach spaces or removing more gunk. 

4. Toothpick 

A toothpick can also be a good cleaning tool to help get your iPhone speakers in better condition. You just need to be careful when using this cleaning method because you don’t want to damage the sensitive parts of your phone. 

Always use a wooden toothpick for this, not a metal one. A wooden toothpick shouldn’t damage any parts of your phone, but a metal one can easily scrape, scratch, or otherwise ruin more sensitive components. 

I generally just use the toothpick to gently scrape away any build-up on the speakers. Then I’ll blow or wipe the material away with a cloth or cotton swab. A toothpick can remove caked-on dirt better than a brush or air sometimes.  

5. Brush

A brush is another good tool to use when you’re cleaning your iPhone speakers. I think a clean toothbrush does a good job, but you can use any brush you might have around the house if it doesn’t have metal or wire bristles. 

You can just run and rub the brush over the dirty parts of your phone to clean them up. The brush will do a good job of lifting build-up and gunk that might be challenging to wipe away with softer materials. 

Brushes with tighter and more compact bristles will work better for this. Think of a toothbrush rather than a hairbrush as an example of this. You still might need to wipe away debris after brushing, but it’s a good starting point. 

6. Cotton Swabs

Cotton swabs will also work for cleaning your iPhone. These tend to work better when your speakers aren’t that dirty, but they are a common household product that most people have lying around and are easy to use. 

Just wipe the cotton swab over any areas of your iPhone speakers that are dirty. You can apply as much pressure as needed with these swabs without risking damaging your phone. You might need to use several swabs if your phone is really dirty. 

Some people dip the cotton swab in rubbing alcohol or another cleaning product before wiping it over their iPhones. While this might be alright if it’s not overly saturated, you don’t want to get too much liquid into the ports of your phone. 

7. Cleaning Cloth 

Using a cleaning cloth is another very effective way to clean up your iPhone speakers. You can use any soft and non-abrasive cleaning cloth, like an electronics or a glasses cloth, for the job. 

Most of us have these clothes lying around the house, so they make another easy option for getting things cleaned up without spending money. They are typically made of microfiber, so they are durable and quick to dry. 

Again, some people like to use a cleaning cloth dipped in a bit of alcohol or other cleaning agents. This is fine as long as you don’t get it too saturated. I recommend starting with a dry cloth and seeing how effective that is before getting it wet.  

8. Cleaning Kit

There are also phone cleaning kits available for purchase that will have everything mentioned above and then some. These are a solid solution if you don’t mind spending money and want all the tools you need to effectively clean a phone. 

I don’t think these kits are necessary for everyone, and there are plenty of ways to clean your iPhone speakers without spending money. But the kits can come in handy if you have a lot of phones in your household or don’t have any of the other materials lying around. 

Most kits will come with cleaning putty, brushes, wipes, and other materials that do a great job of keeping your phone clean. Browse around for different options if you have any specific needs or preferences. 

How to Clean iPhone Speaker from Water

If you drop your iPhone in water, you’ll want to clean it up so the liquid doesn’t stay in the speaker holes for long. Newer iPhones can handle some water without any issues, but you don’t want to leave it soaking for hours on end. 

Cleaning water out of your speakers is different than general cleaning, so here are some tips for this specific purpose. You can start by wiping any visible water away with a cloth of cotton swab. 

You can even use apps on your iPhone to help push water out of the speakers. Anything with a low frequency will make the speakers move back and forth, helping you out when getting water out of the way. 

You can also place your iPhone in a bag of rice or a ziplock bag with several silica gel packets. These both do a solid job of removing moisture and will help get your iPhone dried out and as good as new. 


Here are a few short answers to some of the most frequently asked questions related to how to clean an iPhone speaker slot. 

How much does it cost to clean iPhone speaker? 

You don’t need to spend any money on cleaning your iPhone speaker if you use products you already have around the house, like an electronic’s cloth and Q-tips. But if you buy cleaning putty or a kit, you’ll probably need to spend $5 to $30. 

How do I clean my iPhone slot? 

You can clean the charging slot on your iPhone in the same way you’d clean the speaker and microphone. Cleaning putty is a great option that will reach into the port and cling to debris. You can also try using a toothpick to gently scrape away anything that’s really stuck. 

Does rubbing alcohol clean iPhone speakers? 

You should not use rubbing alcohol to clean your iPhone speakers. While this material will technically work to get things cleaned, it can also seep into the electrical components of your phone and cause damage. You shouldn’t use liquid cleaners. 

How do you get dirt out of top iPhone speakers? 

Using cleaning putty or cleaning gel is one of the best ways to get dirt or other debris out of your iPhone speakers. You can also try using a cleaning cloth and cotton swabs if you don’t have putty but should avoid using liquid cleaning products. 

Can I use hydrogen peroxide to clean my iPhone speakers? 

You shouldn’t use liquid cleaning products to clean your iPhone speakers. Hydrogen peroxide can technically work as a cleaner, but using too much of it can potentially damage your phone. Never pour liquids directly into the speaker holes on your phone. 

Can iPhone speakers get clogged? 

iPhone speakers can easily get clogged with dirt, dust, and other debris during normal use. This will eventually lead to poor performance when you want to use the speakers for a call or to listen to anything from your iPhone. 

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are plenty of ways to clean the speaker slot on your iPhone. You don’t need to spend any money if you have some of the products I mentioned here lying around the house. Start with a simple wipe down and go from there. 

Cleaning putty or gel is one of the best products to clean your iPhone. It’s affordable and easy to find, and I recommend getting some to have around. It comes in useful for other purposes and does a really effective cleaning job. 

Do you have any tips for cleaning an iPhone speaker slot that I didn’t mention? Let me know in the comments below. 

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