Most JBL Bluetooth speakers, including the Charge 5, offer truly wireless operation via the lithium ion battery they have inside. And when that battery dies, you can recharge the speaker via an AC or car adapter. Sometimes though, the JBL Charge 5 is not charging fully. Or perhaps not at all, even when you connect the charger. In this piece we explain how to troubleshoot and solve this problem.
How to Tell that the JBL Charge 5 is Not Charging
Among the ways you can tell that the Charge 5 is not charging, is by reading the battery status gauge. Now this meter starts pulsing red near its bottom during play. This alerts you that the battery is running low on power. And this flashing keeps going, even when you attach the charger.
But the gauge should change now to blinking white, when you apply charging power. When the light changes to white, that means that the speaker is getting some power from the adapter. But if it keeps blinking red, then correct recharging is likely not happening.
You can also feel the adapter’s side panel ten or fifteen minutes into the charge cycle. At that time, it should be slightly warm to the touch. Note too that the speaker itself warms a bit as well during proper recharging. But if you sense no warmth, then again, the JBL Charge 5 is probably not charging.
Furthermore, the battery gauge normally shows battery recharging status. I.e. As the unit recharges, more and more of the meter bar lights up white. If you don’t see this happening after two hours of recharging, then chances are, charging is not going well.
Thus when the speaker is not recharging, you’ll want to figure out what’s wrong and how to fix. So in this post, we offer reasons why this might happen. And then we give possible fixes for this common problem.
JBL Charge 5 Not Charging, Reasons and Fixes
As we stated earlier, it’s normal that the battery status gauge pulses red when the battery inside is about dead. But this meter should switch to a flashing white light when you connect the charger.
Normally though, this meter only displays only white light. Furthermore, the amount of the meter bar glowing tells you how full the battery is. It can look as follows. The whole gauge bar glows.
Or, if the speaker is OFF when charging completes, then all lights in this gauge go dark.
Now the gauge may not change to white when you plug the charger into the speaker. If so, then several things might cause this, and we list these below.
1.The Power Outlet May Be Dead
The adapter for the JBL Charge 5 may not output any juice at all. This can happen because it is getting none to begin with. We might see this when an AC or car circuit is defective. Perhaps you have a tripped breaker or blown fuse. Faulty wiring, or power failure can cause this as well.
Check that your receptacle has power by plugging in a lamp or other device. Then reset circuit breakers. And if the outlet has a light switch that controls it, then flip that switch ON. Or simply try a different outlet.
2. The AC Adapter is Defective
The JBL Charge 5 not charging can also happen because the adapter provides SOME but not FULL amperage.
Now as the unit ages, its output energy can fall over time. So this power supply might not deliver the correct amount if it is very old. Thus you may see the gauge turn to a blinking white light, but not gradually move toward full charge. Or, it may advance, but more slowly than usual. Please note that this speaker needs 3 amps at 5 volts fully recharge in the fastest time of 4 hours. Indeed charging will not go as fast as we hope, if the charger cannot match these specs.
The solution is to replace the adapter. Get one that has a USB-C plug and delivers the maximum 5 volts at 3 amps (15 watts). We advise that you buy a replacement directly from JBL for the safest yet fastest charging.
3. The Battery in the Charge 5 is Faulty
As lithium ion batteries age, they lose their ability to fully recharge. Plus the characteristics of the charging current change as the batteries age. Normally, as a battery charges, it draws less current as it fills. But in the case of cell failure, it may draw too many or too few amps. Then this can confuse the charging circuits into behaving like no charging is occurring. So the gauge continues flashing.
To repair this, replace the battery. But realize that you can’t easily get the old one out of the JBL Charge 5. Indeed, changing the battery means that you must take the speaker apart, and this is intricate work.
Also note that doing this likely breaks the moisture seal. So the speaker will no longer be safe to use, should you expose it to water.
Breaking this seal may alter the sound quality as well. So get someone to replace the battery who knows how to pick the right replacement. They should also be able to restore the seal to as it was, as they reassemble the speaker. A good battery should fit well inside the speaker and provide 3.6 volts and at least 7,500 mAh (27 watt-hours). But we suggest using only JBL certified batteries for this speaker.
4. The Speaker Might be Defective when the JBL Charge 5 Is Not Charging
Even if you have the proper power supply, the charging current may still be too low or too high. This can occur when the battery management circuits fail. Note that these systems read the battery status, and switch off the charging current when they deem the battery full.
But when they go haywire, the battery might see no power at all though the charger itself is fine. Thus, the speaker never charges. Again, in this case, the battery gauge might never stop blinking, even with the charger attached. You may also see that the speaker doesn’t play as long before dying. Or it might not play at all.
The best answer here, is simply to get a new JBL Charge 5. Why? Because the electronics in this unit are quite small. So unless you can replace the system board(s), just buy another speaker to go the easy route.