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9 Steps To Connect AirPods To Dell Laptop (2023 How-To)

How To Connect AirPods To Dell Laptop

Connecting AirPods to your Dell laptop can be pretty confusing at first. 

But trust me. This process is very easy. 

So, just follow the detailed guide I’ve written below.

And you’ll be pairing your devices in less than 5 minutes. 

Continue reading to find out:

  • 9 simple steps to connect your AirPods to your Dell laptop.
  • How you can set your AirPods as your Dell laptop’s sound output device.
  • 5 quick solutions you can try if your AirPods aren’t connecting to your Dell laptop. 
  • And a lot more… 

How to connect AirPods to Dell Laptop – 9 steps

#1: Open your laptop’s Action Center

At the bottom right corner of your laptop’s screen…

You’ll see an icon that looks like a message bubble.

Now, simply tap this symbol.

Then, wait for a new window to appear on the right side of your laptop.

“I can’t find the message bubble.”

In that case, simply press Window + A on your keyboard simultaneously.

And this should open up your device’s Action Center.

#2: Go to your laptop’s Bluetooth settings

You’ll find several tiles at the bottom of the Action Center.

So, from these selections, locate and right-click the Bluetooth icon.

Then, from the small pop-up window that appears, select “Go to Settings.”

#3: Turn ON your laptop’s Bluetooth

On the new window on your screen…

Turn ON the small toggle under Bluetooth.. 

After doing so… 

#4: Click the + icon

At the top of the Settings window, you’ll see a + icon with this text on its right side:

“Add Bluetooth or other device.”

That said, simply click this + button, and when a new window appears…

#5: Select Bluetooth

You’ll see 3 selections on your screen, namely:

  1. Bluetooth.
  2. Wireless display or dock.
  3. Everything else.

Now, since AirPods are audio devices…

They fall under the Bluetooth category.

So, simply select the first option. 

Then, let your laptop remain on this screen until you reach step 8. 

#6: Ensure that both of your AirPods are in their case

Return your AirPods in their casing, if they aren’t already there, then… 

#7: Put your AirPods into their pairing mode

Locate the small circular button at the back of your AirPods case.

Then, open up the casing’s lid.

After that, while holding your AirPods close to your laptop…

Press the circular button until the case’s LED light flashes white. 

Note: Depending on your device’s model, you’ll find the LED inside or at the front of your AirPods’ casing. 

#8: Select your AirPods’ name

You’ll now see your AirPods’ name on your laptop.

So, just tap your audio device from the list on your screen, then…

#9: Wait for your Dell laptop to pair with your AirPods

Once they do, try playing any media on your laptop. 

And check if you can now hear your Dell device’s audio through your AirPods.

“I’m still hearing the sounds through my laptop’s speakers.”

In that case, follow the steps below to…

Bonus: Set your AirPods as your laptop’s sound output device

Step 1: Open your laptop’s Sound Settings

At the bottom-right corner of your laptop’s screen…

Right-click the Sounds icon close to the message bubble you opened earlier.

And once a small window appears on top of your cursor…

Select Open Sound Settings. 

Step 2: Change your laptop’s sound output

Near the top of the new window on your screen…

Click the small drop-down menu under the heading Output.

Then, select your AirPods’ name from the choices that appear.

Now, ensure that the Master volume slider in the middle of the window isn’t set to 0, then… 

Step 3: Test your AirPods

Play any song or video on your Dell laptop.

And at this point, you should be able to hear your device’s audio through your AirPods.

You might also want to know: (13 Fixes) AirPods Connected But No Sound [Updated]

Why won’t my AirPods connect to my Dell laptop? 5 causes & fixes

#1: Your devices are glitching

Like all pieces of tech, your laptop and AirPods can also glitch.

So, the first fix you should try is to refresh their connection. 

Luckily, this process only takes a couple of minutes to do.

That said, go ahead and…

Refresh the connection between your AirPods and laptop

Step 1: Turn OFF your AirPods

Return both your AirPods into their charging case.

Then, close the casing’s lid so your AirPods can completely turn OFF.

Step 2: Deactivate your laptop’s Bluetooth function

Simultaneously press these buttons on your keyboard: Windows + A.

And on the new window that appears, locate and click the Bluetooth tile to turn it OFF. 

After doing so… 

Step 3: Restart your Dell laptop

Select the Windows icon at the bottom-left corner of your laptop’s screen.

Then, click the Power symbol directly above the Windows logo.

And from the choices that appear, select Restart.

Pro tip: Save your important documents and close all windows on your laptop before you restart it. This way, you won’t lose any important information, and your device will boot up faster.

Step 4: Reactivate your laptop’s Bluetooth 

When your laptop turns ON again… 

Press the Windows + A buttons on your keyboard once more.

Then, tap the same Bluetooth tile that you turned OFF earlier.

Once this selection turns into a color blue…

Step 5: Put your AirPods in pairing mode

Press and hold the circular button on their case.

And once the LED light on it flashes white, let go.

From here on, just follow the earlier steps to pair both gadgets again. 

#2: Devices are too far away

Bluetooth gadgets can stay connected as long as they’re within 30 feet.

However, for the most part… 

The closer your devices are, the stronger their connection becomes. 

So, bring your AirPods within 3 feet of your Dell laptop.

And once again, try pairing your devices. 

#3: AirPods have a low battery

Bluetooth devices are prone to connection problems if they have low batteries.

So this time, connect your AirPods’ case to a power source. And keep both earpieces inside their casing until they’re fully charged. 

Pro tip: Your Dell laptop’s battery should also be at least 80% before you try to pair your devices again. 

Recommended reading: 5 Reasons Why Your AirPods Are Dying So Fast + Fixes

#4: AirPods are trying to pair to other devices

If you’ve previously paired your AirPods with other gadgets, like your phone…

There’s a possibility that your audio device is still trying to connect to that.

So now, turn OFF other devices around you, except the ones needed for this setup. 

This way, the only gadget your AirPods will detect is your Dell laptop. 

So, both of them can connect without any interruptions.

That said, after turning OFF other Bluetooth-enabled devices around you, such as:

  • PCs.
  • Phones.
  • Laptops.
  • Smart TVs. 

Try connecting your AirPods with your Dell laptop again.

And see if they can now pair without any problems. 

#5: Your Dell laptop’s Bluetooth driver is out of date 

Your Dell Laptop's Bluetooth Driver Is Out Of Date

If you’re still having connection problems at this point…

Likely, your laptop’s Bluetooth driver isn’t up to date.

So, just follow these simple steps to… 

Update the Bluetooth driver of your Dell laptop: 

Step 1: Go to Dell’s official Drivers & Downloads website

Once the page fully loads… 

Step 2: Identify the model of your Dell laptop

You can do this by clicking the Download & Install SupportAssist option. 

Or, you may also manually input your device’s:

  • Service Tag.
  • Serial number.
  • Express Service Code. 
Step 3: Tap Check for Updates

You’ll find this under the RECOMMENDED heading highlighted in green.

Step 4: Select the Download button beside the Bluetooth driver

A list of available updated drivers for your device will appear on your screen.

So, simply locate the option that states Bluetooth driver.

Then, tap the Download button beside it. 

Step 5: Find the downloaded driver on your laptop

Open your PC’s File Explorer by simultaneously clicking Windows + E on your keyboard.

Then, follow these simple steps:

Step 1: Tap the Downloads option on the left side of the window.

Step 2: You should see the Today heading at the top of the list. 

Note: If you don’t, click the Date Modified option near the top of the window.

Step 3: Double-click your Dell’s Bluetooth driver.

It’s the file at the top of the list that ends in “.exe.”

Step 4: Follow further on-screen instructions. 

If you want a visual guide for updating your Dell laptop’s Bluetooth driver, watch this video: 

After following these steps, restart your laptop.

Then, try pairing your devices again. 

Bonus: 1 of your devices is faulty  

If your AirPods still won’t pair… 

Then, it’s time to connect other audio devices to your laptop.

This way, you can verify which of your gadgets is causing this issue. 

That said, if your laptop can pair with other wireless speakers or headphones… 

Then, your AirPods are the cause of this connection problem.

So, you should try contacting Apple support at 800-275-2273. 

However, if your laptop also refuses to connect to other audio devices…

It’s the root of the issue. So, you should reach out to Dell instead.