Using your computer can seem like a completely visual experience, but audio is also an important feature in PCs. You may not have noticed how important it is until the audio on your computer stops working.
If there’s no sound coming from your speakers, don’t panic because it may be an easy fix. Before you start, ensure that you have plugged in all the cables correctly and that you have not muted the speakers by mistake.
It’s easy to forget that you’ve turned down your computers’ volume, so before you do any more troubleshooting, press the “Volume Up” button or restart your computer.
Why is my Windows 7 PC Sound Not Working?
A PC sound problem arises when you appear to have a fully functioning computer system, but yet it does not emit any sound even when turned up.
Below are the common reasons your computer speakers, sound card or headphones may not be working.
- Missing, corrupt or outdated audio or USB device drivers.
Broken hardware such as speakers, sound card, or headphones.
Defective USB motherboard port, mini-jacks, or third-party connectors.
If your PC is using Windows 7, you’re not alone. Many Windows 7 users have reported this issue. But the good news is that you can fix it by yourself.
Troubleshoot by turning up the volume, enabling audio or restarting your computer. Check that the audio mixer is working fine and that your headphones or speakers have been detected by your PC. If the sound is still not working, follow the steps listed below.
How to Fix the Sound Not Working in a Windows 7 PC
When troubleshooting PC audio problems, it’s better to use an elimination process that starts with the simplest problems first. Let’s go through a series of fixes so we can eliminate the minor issues before progressing to the major ones.
1. External audio hardware
Unplug any external headphones or speakers and check that the connectors are in good condition and not loose or frayed.
Remove all external audio peripherals and test them on another PC to check if you can hear any sound. If they work on the other PC, then the problem is not with the audio hardware (speakers/headphones).
2. Internal audio hardware
Install or re-install your audio drivers. This is the most common cause of many PC sound problem. Some audio drivers can become outdated due to new updates or Windows service packs, while some might simply become corrupt and will need to be reinstalled.
Search for the most up-to-date version of the audio driver and install it. Remember to uninstall the current driver before manually installing the new one.
Open up Control Panel > Device Manager.
Click on Sound, video and game controllers to expand it.
Check for a yellow warning symbol on any of the audio devices under the ‘Sound, video and game controllers’ tree.
Right-click on the device with the warning icon and choose
Restart your PC. If you see the option to stop Windows from installing the sound driver, cancel it.
Install the latest audio device drivers you downloaded and restart your computer once more.
Now check to see if the speakers or headphones are now functioning. If not, move to the next step…
When you are trying to fix a USB connected sound device like a USB headphone and have updated your PC audio driver and the sound still isn’t working, then make sure that you have updated the USB device drivers as well.
3. Defective hardware
If you have regular mini-jack connectors on your speakers or headphones, then you could have bad jacks on your sound card or bad physical USB ports. This can happen to either external or onboard cards.
If this is the case, you will need to take out the defective hardware by swapping out your motherboard, replacing the external sound card, or changing the defective USB ports. This can be expensive depending on the type of PC you own, so if you find that your audio hardware has broken, make sure you check first if it’s still under warranty so you can get a replacement for free.
Motherboard – If the motherboard is the problem, you may get an “Audio device is disabled” error, even though it’s not. When this happens and you’ve exhausted all other options, then its time to get a new mother board.
External sound card – This one is simple. Just buy a new sound card and swap it out. You can also troubleshoot easily by testing to see if a new card will work before investing in one.
USB ports – You will arrive at this conclusion only when your audio device works on other computers. Replacing your USB ports can be tricky, but once you replace the ports, your sound will work just fine.