Picture of the JBL Charge 4 power bank speaker, top view, showing the Volume DOWN and UP buttons circled.

JBL Charge 4 Buttons, Codes, Meanings

The JBL Charge 4 speaker has six buttons and several lamps across its top, as well as battery gauge lights across the front bottom. The Power button lights in white to show that the speaker is ON or OFF. There’s also a port access panel on the back bottom. This protects the USB-C charge in and USB-A out ports as well as the auxiliary (AUX) inlet.  Here, we offer our JBL Charge 4 buttons guide.  This shows where the control buttons are on the speaker, explains what each button does, tells when to press them, and how to use them in general.

JBL Charge 4 Buttons: Guide Functions, Descriptions, and Locations

The JBL Connect+ Button

The Connect Plus button is used to connect two or more JBL Connect+ compatible speakers together, in “party mode”, such that they all play the same audio content. Like speakers joined in Amazon’s multi room music groups, all speakers linked via Connect+ sync with each other. That is, they all play the same audio at the same time.

Picture of the -Connect Plus- button circled on the top of the JBL Charge 4.
The -Connect Plus- button circled on the top of the JBL Charge 4.

How to Use the Connect Plus Button

You press this button on each Bluetooth speaker you wish to add to the Connect+ group.

The picture above shows the speaker not joined in Connect+, because the that button is dark. But, it lights when you connect the speaker to a Connect+ group.

The Volume Down (-) and Volume Up (+) Buttons

The JBL Charge 4 has two volume controls on its top, one on each side of speaker center, near the Bluetooth and Power buttons. the volume buttons are in the shapes of the minus and plus symbols. When pressed, these lower and raise the output volume of the speaker by reducing or increasing the volume setting on the paired source Bluetooth device. See the Volume Down and Volume Up buttons circled in the next picture.

Picture of the -Volume DOWN- and -Volume UP- buttons.
the -Volume DOWN- and -Volume UP- buttons.

How to Use the Volume Buttons

With the JBL Charge 4 paired and playing, press the minus shaped button to decrease audio output level from the speaker. Press the plus shaped button to increase audio output. Note that these controls have no effect when the speaker is not paired.

Also, the volume setting may change from paired device to paired device. That is, each paired device remembers its own volume setting. So you may have to readjust the sound output when you unpair the speaker from one Bluetooth device and pair it to another.

The Power Button

The Power button switches the Charge 4 on and off.

Picture of the -Power- button glowing.
The glowing -Power- button.

How to Use the Power Button 

Quickly press and release the Power button to turn the speaker ON or OFF.

This button glows solid white any time the speaker is ON.  See this button glowing white in the last picture above.  The button is dark when the speaker is off, as shown next.

Picture of the buttons panel.
The buttons panel.

The Bluetooth Discovery Mode / Pairing Button

There is one row of buttons on the JBL Charge 4.  Each button in that row has a unique shape icon. First, we have the Bluetooth button, near the center of the speaker top, as pointed at by the green arrow in the next picture. Note its squiggly shape.

Picture of the -Bluetooth- button lit or blinking on the JBL Charge 4.
The -Bluetooth- button lit or blinking on the JBL Charge 4.

How to Use the Bluetooth Button

You’ll use this button anytime you’re pairing the JBL Charge 4 with a never-before-paired BT device.  So, with this speaker powered on, press and release the Bluetooth button to place the Charge 4 into discovery mode. When in discovery / pairing mode, the speaker transmits its name and other connection information over the Bluetooth airwaves. This allows nearby Bluetooth devices to discover and connect to it.

The Play Pause Button

This button looks like a right-pointing arrow and is found near the right side of the Charge 4, as circled in yellow, in the next picture.

Picture of the -Play Pause- button.
The -Play Pause- button.

How to Stop and Restart Play

Press this to pause audio play. Press again to resume audio play.

Note that this is not a mute button. That is, pausing play in this way stops media playback on the source Bluetooth device to which this speaker is currently paired. If streaming, the stream pauses.  So, you won’t miss any content when you pause the speaker, as the source device (your phone, tablet, or computer) remembers the point where you stopped play. So it resumes playback at that spot when you press the play pause button again.

Move Ahead in a Playlist with the Play / Pause Button

Finally, you can skip forward to the next song in a playlist with the Play-Pause button on the Charge 4. As the song plays, do the following…

      • To advance to the next song, quickly press and release the Play-Pause button twice.  Upon doing that, your source device advances to the next song in the current playlist.

JBL Charge 4 Buttons: Combinations, Codes

The Reset Button Combination

You can reset the JBL Charge 4 to factory default settings and state by pressing the Volume UP and Bluetooth buttons at the same time and holding them in until the reset begins. See these buttons in the next picture, highlighted by the green arrows.

Picture of the Bluetooth and Volume Up buttons highlighted.
The Bluetooth and Volume Up buttons highlighted.

You may wish to reset the speaker to correct any erratic or strange behaviors you see from it such as failing to pair, sound distortion, failure to power off when you press the power button, and so on. Note that resetting seems to invalidate any saved connection information to this speaker on your source Bluetooth devices. So you’ll have to forget those connections and re pair the speaker after a reset in order to play your audio content through it once again.

Low Frequency Mode Button Combo

By default, the JBL Charge 4 has its bass mode turned on.  This adds a bit of extra treble and lots of extra bass to the audio output.

Picture of the -Volume Down- and -Bluetooth- buttons.
The -Volume Down- and -Bluetooth- buttons.

How to Toggle Low Frequency Mode Off and On

You can turn low frequency mode off by pressing and holding in the Volume Down (-) and Bluetooth buttons for about ten seconds, until the oval ring around the buttons lights up, as shown in the next picture.  Find these buttons on the top of the speaker, as shown in the picture above.

Picture of the oval button ring glowing.
The oval button ring glowing.

To turn low frequency mode back on, again, press and hold the Volume Down and Bluetooth buttons in until the oval button ring lights up again.  Release the buttons when you see that.  Then, when the ring goes off, low frequency mode has been activated once again.

JBL Charge 4 Service Mode Button Combination

When in this (often called ‘weird’ or ‘secret’) mode, the JBL Charge 4 does not power ON unless you connect its external power source. Thus, it will not run on the internal battery while in Service mode.  And then, when you connect power, it powers up without you pressing the Power button.  I.e. It comes on as soon as you apply outside power.

Further, you cannot turn it off while in Service mode unless you disconnect the external power source. And then, it powers off without pressing the Power button.  So when this service mode is active, the Power button does not work.

Indeed, none of the buttons seem to work in Service mode, except for the ones needed to exit service mode.  E.g. The speaker won’t pair with any devices or other speakers when you press the Pairing button, and as mentioned, the Power button does not switch it off either.

How to Turn On Service Mode

To turn on this Service mode on the JBL Charge 4, power up the speaker first, and then press the Pairing and Play-Pause buttons at the same time, until the speaker powers OFF, which usually takes ten seconds or so.  Find these buttons pointed out in the next picture. Note that you can enter this mode as long as the speaker is ON, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s connected to external power or not.

Picture of the -Bluetooth Pairing- and -Play-Pause- buttons on the JBL Charge 4.
The -Bluetooth Pairing- and -Play-Pause- buttons on the JBL Charge 4.

How to Turn Off Service Mode

But once you activate this Service mode, then to turn it back off , you must connect external power again. Why?  Because the speaker won’t come on without outside power, and you can’t change modes without the unit being powered UP.

So, connect your speaker to AC power and turn on the speaker.  Then, with the speaker Power button glowing, you press and hold the Pairing and Play-Pause button combo for ten seconds or so, until the unit powers off.  Then, normal speaker operation returns.

JBL Charge 4 Lock Mode Button Combination

Entering this mode powers down the speaker and disables the buttons, except for the one needed to exit this mode.

How to Enter Lock Mode

To turn on  Lock mode, power up the Charge 4 first. And then press and hold in the Volume Down (-) and Play-Pause  buttons at the same time, until the speaker powers OFF, which usually takes ten seconds or so.

Find these buttons pointed out in the next picture. Note that you can enter this mode as long as the speaker is ON. Note that it doesn’t matter whether the unit is connected to external power or not.  But remember that unlike in Service mode, you don’t need to connect the power adapter as long as the internal battery has enough juice to power up the Charge 4.

Picture of the -Volume Down- and -Play-Pause- buttons.
The -Volume Down- and -Play-Pause- buttons.

How to Exit Lock mode

Again, you can restore correct operation by cancelling this mode. But note that when Lock mode is active, you can switch it back off without connecting the charger, if the battery is not dead.  But if you don’t know battery status, then to be sure that you can boot the 4 after you exit Lock, just go ahead and connect external power anyway.

    1. Connect the speaker to AC power.
    2. Then, press and hold the Power button for ten seconds. Then release.
    3. Wait two seconds.
    4. Finally, press and release the Power button.  The speaker should then boot up normally, with proper operation returning after that.

The JBL Charge 4 Battery Status Lights Gauge

This speaker is also equipped with five lights that show the amount of charge currently in the built in power bank battery.

How to Read the Battery Status Gauge

When the internal battery is full, all of these lamps glow white.  As the power bank discharges, fewer of the lamps glow. In the next picture, the speaker is shown at between 60 and 80 percent charge. Note that four lamps to the left are lit in this situation.

Picture of the battery gauge showing 80 percent full.
The battery gauge showing 80 percent full.

As the battery further discharges, more battery level lights at the right go out, until the charge amount reaches between 0 and 20 percent. In this case, only one lamp, the one on the far left in the last picture, glows.

Finally, when the battery discharges to critically low levels, the far left battery light blinks. Speaker shutdown will come soon when this occurs.  So, recharge it right away for continued musical enjoyment.

Other Posts About the JBL Charge 4

    1. Charger Adapter Specs
    2. Updating the Firmware
    3. JBL Charge 4 Review, Specs and Features
    4. Finding the Currently Installed Firmware Version
    5. Low Frequency Mode, How to Turn On


    1. JBL Charge 4 Product Page, on JBL.com