It can be extremely annoying to experience Bluetooth lag in your car. You can’t enjoy your music on the road if it’s constantly cutting out and skipping. The experience makes driving a terrible one, and it’s frustrating. Fortunately, there are some easy fixes you can try so you can enjoy your favorite music once again.
What Is Bluetooth Lag?
When technology experiences a delay in response or action, it is referred to as lag. This delay can be caused by slow internet speeds or choppy video playback. However, when people talk about “Bluetooth lag,” they are typically referring to a specific issue: the delay in audio transmission between a Bluetooth device and the speaker or headphones. This can result in choppy audio, static, or even complete dropouts.
Several factors can contribute to Bluetooth lag, including interference from other devices, the distance between the source and destination, and codec compatibility. In most cases, the primary reason for Bluetooth lag is an overcrowded Bluetooth connection.
What causes Bluetooth lag in car?
Some reasons why you may experience issues with connecting your phone to your car’s Bluetooth system include:
- Interference caused by other wireless devices in the area.
- A weak signal from your phone or other devices.
- Poor reception from your car’s audio system.
- Outdated firmware on your phone or the car’s Bluetooth unit.
- Incompatibility between the Bluetooth versions used by your phone and the car.
- Too much distance between your phone and the car’s Bluetooth receiver.
How To Fix Bluetooth Audio Lag in Car?
Method 1: Restart Device:
Sometimes, restarting your device and your car’s infotainment system can help resolve temporary connectivity issues. You can try restarting your electronic device by turning it off, unplugging it from its power source, and then plugging it back in after a few minutes if it isn’t working properly. If that doesn’t work, you could try another outlet or power strip.
Method 2: Update Software:
If your car has a Bluetooth system installed at the factory, it may require an update, particularly if your car is from around 2007 or earlier. When you connect a newer smartphone to this system, it may cause audio delay or even incompatibility issues.
To perform a firmware upgrade, you can contact the manufacturer of the car or refer to the manual. However, not all car models can be upgraded to modern standards. If this is the case for your car, you may need to switch to an aftermarket Bluetooth audio system.
Method 3: Clear Paired Devices:
In your car’s infotainment system, clear any previously paired devices and re-pair your device. This can sometimes resolve connection and lag issues. On your Android device, go to the Bluetooth settings, forget the connection to your car, and then re-establish the connection.
You start over when you forget and reconnect your paired device on your phone. The configurations you have already applied will be erased. You can use this to fix Bluetooth audio delays.
Step 1: Launch the “Settings” app.
Step 2: Click Bluetooth and select the device you want to connect to.
Step 3: Select ‘Forget This Device‘ and confirm the action.
Step 4: Select your “device” once your phone can search for it and pair it.
This is how you connect your Bluetooth device. There is also an important factor called interference that affects latency. Here are the details you need to know.
Method 4: Reduce wireless connections:
If you notice Bluetooth delays, it may be due to interference from too many wireless connections in the area. To resolve this issue, consider turning off other Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connections in your car.
If you encounter problems with your car’s Bluetooth connection, it could be due to interference from nearby wireless connections. To troubleshoot this issue, make sure you are in an area with minimal wireless activity. This will help you determine if interference is the culprit for any lag or connectivity issues.
Method 5: Reduce the connection distance:
Your phone should typically connect to the Bluetooth system in your car, but this may not always be the case. If the Bluetooth receiver in your car is not visible, the layers of plastic covering may obstruct the connection, resulting in a limited range of just a few feet with a decent connection.
One possible solution is to bring your phone closer to the Bluetooth receiver. This can be challenging if the receiver is located in the trunk, as is the case with some Bluetooth car amplifiers.
However, if you want seamless Bluetooth playback through your car speakers, it may be necessary to relocate your phone closer to the receiver.
Method 6: Connect a Bluetooth receiver to your car stereo:
You must understand that you don’t have to replace your whole car stereo system to experience wireless features. Instead, you can easily add a Bluetooth receiver to your current setup. This is particularly advantageous if you already have exceptional car speakers and amplifiers.
Most Bluetooth receivers can connect directly to your car’s 3.5mm aux port. Once connected, pair your phone with it, and you’re ready to play your audio and videos. Just select a high-quality receiver with low latency features for an optimal experience.
Method 7: Audio Codec Selection:
When adjusting your phone’s Bluetooth settings, you might come across the choice of selecting a Bluetooth codec. It’s worth keeping in mind that various codecs offer different levels of low-latency playback. For Android phones, SBC and AptX codecs are typically reliable options, while iPhones rely on Aac for low latency.
One important consideration is that your car’s Bluetooth system must be compatible with the codec you choose in order to function with your phone.
Method 8: Change hardware:
If you own a good-quality smartphone, you might want to think about upgrading your car’s audio playback system. Often, the default car radio becomes old-fashioned and may not be compatible with the latest technology.
In such a scenario, the solution is to replace it with a newer system. However, make sure that the new stereo system has Bluetooth capabilities with low latency.
Method 9: Check Car’s Manual:
Consult your car’s user manual or contact the manufacturer’s support to see if there are any specific recommendations or troubleshooting steps for Bluetooth connectivity issues.
Method 10: Contact Support:
If none of the above steps work, you may need to contact the customer support of your car’s manufacturer or Android device manufacturer for further assistance.
8 Tips to Quick Fix Bluetooth Lag In Car
- Tip 1: Move the phone closer to the car
- Tip 2: Disable other wireless connections (WiFi, Bluetooth) on your phone
- Tip 3: Opt for the phone’s carrier network instead of tethering
- Tip 4: Update your phone’s firmware
- Tip 5: Activate Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) in Settings > Bluetooth
- Tip 6: Utilize a Bluetooth car kit with noise cancellation and antenna for cars or connect via USB cable
- Tip 7: Repair or replace damaged radio system parts; consult a professional if needed
- Tip 8: Clear signal obstructions such as metals or liquids near antennas
Remember, these steps can resolve most lag issues, but more complex fixes might be required in some cases, such as hardware changes or software upgrades.
Wireless technology like Bluetooth allows for convenient audio playback without cables. Unfortunately, Bluetooth has a few issues that ruin the audio experience.
There are a few things to consider when you want to eliminate Bluetooth lag in your car. These can include where the devices are located, how far apart they are from one another, and whether or not there are any obstructions between them.
How do I get zero latency?
Audio latency on Bluetooth earphones is not a bug – but an intrinsic characteristic. Hence, zero latency is not possible with Bluetooth earphones. Your best bet is to opt for wired headphones
Does noise cancellation increase latency?
No, noise cancellation does not have anything to do with Bluetooth audio latency.
How To Fix CarPlay If It’s Not Working Properly?
CarPlay software may need to be updated if that does not work or if you are still waiting for a fix. To check if your version of the software is up-to-date, go to Settings > General > About CarPlay. You may need to reset your iPhone or iPad if this doesn’t work. It is, however, a more drastic solution.
Why Is My Car’s Bluetooth Slow?
This is due to a bug in Bluetooth’s handshake protocol that only transmits data. As a result, the phone is decoding audio into data and the car is decoding audio back into the phone. As a result, your encode takes a long time to decode, and your decode takes a long time to play.