Bose SoundLink Color Won’t Turn On - Here is How to Reset It

Bose SoundLink Color Won’t Turn on – Here Is How to Reset It

Is your Bose SoundLink Color refusing to turn on when it isn’t plugged into a standard home receptacle? Does the battery accept a charge when these issues happen with your equipment?

If you’re troubleshooting your SoundLink Color, you’ll find that the speaker won’t always turn on when using the battery.

The first step is to ensure there’s enough of a charge present to have the unit activate.

When there isn’t enough power for the unit, you’ll need to give it a complete charging cycle before attempting to use the speaker.

Once you’ve taken that step, turned off the speaker, and turned it on again, you can take these additional actions if your SoundLink Color won’t turn on for you.

Bose SoundLink Color Won’t Turn on – Here Is How to Reset It

If your Bose SoundLink Color won’t turn on after you unplug it from a direct power source, you must hold the mute (three-dot) button. It takes about ten seconds for it to turn on from that action. When the first step doesn’t work, pressing the power button again should engage the product.

You’ll want to connect the Bose SoundLink Color with its charging cable to a powered computer port or USB charger to start solving this issue.

Three common issues happen with this speaker that can cause it not to engage when you take a direct power connection from the unit.

  • The battery might not be charged at all because the USB connection was not completed as expected. This issue happens when the cable gets partially removed from the port or charger at the outlet receptacle.
  • You have had the speaker disconnected from any power source for at least two weeks without using it. Once you reach this timeframe, the Bose SoundLink Color enters a battery protection mode. It’s how the company ships the units to stores or your direct address.
  • When the speaker has been unplugged for 72 hours with less than 10% charge remaining, it will also refuse to turn on for you.

If your Bose SoundLink Color operates after connecting it to a direct power source, one of these solutions will typically solve your problem.

When you continue to have playback issues because the speakers won’t turn on, you might need to take some additional troubleshooting steps to solve this issue.

What If My SoundLink Color Battery Won’t Charge?

If your Bose SoundLink Color won’t turn on, you might have a battery charging problem with your unit.

You’ll notice this problem because the battery level isn’t increasing, or the speaker doesn’t say that it’s getting power.

When you suspect that this issue is the cause of your problem, these ideas can offer a resolution to your concern.

  1. Disconnect and reconnect the charging cable at both ends. You’ll want to ensure both sides are firmly connected to the power source and the speaker.
  2. Try using a different USB cable for charging your Bose SoundLink Color. Older products can develop faults that prevent them from transferring power.
  3. Check your outlet to see if it is working. The Bose SoundLink Color plays a tone when it receives a charge. If you don’t hear it, try plugging in a different device to the receptacle OR try plugging the charger into a different one.
  4. If you have power at the receptacle, you might need to use a separate charger. Products with a higher rating will give your Bose SoundLink Color power faster, which means you could be using an underrated item. The manufacturer recommends using a 1,000 mA or 1 A charger for this speaker.
  5. Reset the Bose SoundLink Color. If you turn the speaker off and back on again, minor issues that can stop the speaker from playing can often get corrected.
  6. Check to see if any available product updates could be contributing to the problem. You can visit to find the latest enhancements and features for the product. If you see any instructions there, you’ll want to follow them in the order given to ensure the product works appropriately.

If these steps don’t solve your problem, you have two remaining outcomes to pursue.

Some speaker problems with the Bose SoundLink Color get resolved when you put the product into Ship Mode. The other step would be to seek professional services and repairs to restore functionality.

You can start a repair and replacement request for your SoundLink color at this link.

■ Did Water Get into Your Bose SoundLink Color Speaker?

Although the Bose SoundLink Color provides a waterproof experience, the speaker has an IPX4 rating.

Some consumers have confused it with the SoundLink Micro Bluetooth, which comes with an IPX7 waterproof rating.

Different IPX ratings deliver specific waterproof levels that you’ll need to consider when using your Bose speaker around water.

Eight different levels are currently available, although not all of them are assigned to your product.

The IPX4 rating on the Bose SoundLink Color protects the unit against splashing water from any angle.

With the IPX7 rating, you receive water immersion protection for up to 30 minutes at a depth of three feet.

If your Bose SoundLink Color was immersed in water, it might need to dry out before attempting to get it to work.

You’ll also want to contact Bose customer service for specific advice in this particular situation.

How to Enable and Disable Ship Mode for the SoundLink Color

When the Bose SoundLink Color ships to retailers or your address directly, it is almost always in Ship Mode.

This status protects the battery in the speaker when it goes through an extended period without getting used. If you leave it off for 14 days, the product enters this state automatically.

If you’ve determined that inactivity is the primary issue causing the speakers to not work on your Bose SoundLink Color, exiting Ship Mode should solve your problem.

You can wake the speaker from this mode by connecting it to a direct AC power source.

Once you hear the tone that the battery is charging, you can disconnect the USB cable and attempt to play it as a portable product.

If you need to reset the Bose SoundLink Color because none of the other steps have worked, you can force the speaker into Ship Mode without waiting two weeks.

This mode is different than a factory reset because it won’t erase your primary settings, such as the Bluetooth® connection memory or language selection.

You can have the product enter Ship Mode by following these four steps.

  • Connect the Bose SoundLink Color to a working power outlet.
  • Press and hold the speaker’s multifunction button for ten seconds.
  • As you continue to hold the multifunction button, remove the SoundLink Color speaker from the power source.
  • Release the multifunction button.

If you have an older model of the SoundLink color, you might not have the three-dot button or a multifunction button to use for these steps.

In that situation, you’ll want to hold down the play/pause button on your speaker for 15 seconds.

Before releasing the button, remove the charging cord from the unit to have it enter Ship Mode.

Your speaker will stay in Ship Mode until you return power to the battery.

You will want to wait at least five minutes before exiting this mode to ensure the rest process occurs as expected.

What If My SoundLink Color Still Won’t Work?

If you don’t want to send your Bose SoundLink Color in for service because the speaker won’t play while on the battery, you can continue using the product with a direct power connection.

Although this step limits the product’s portability, it’ll let you continue enjoying the fantastic audio that comes from the unit.

Although rare, a missed Bluetooth connection can sometimes disrupt the speaker when you run the unit from the battery.

If you clear out the existing devices connected with your SoundLink Color, it might restore its functionality.

If you just received your Bose SoundLink Color, the issue could be an activation delay when activating the speaker.

If you hold the play/pause button until the product starts working, it should bring it out of Ship Mode.

It might take more than 15 seconds for this troubleshooting resolution to work.

The other issue with older Bose SoundLink Color models is that the lithium-ion battery can eventually wear out.

Although you get up to eight hours of playing time with a new product, it is a consumable product.

The average lithium-ion battery gets about three years or 500 charge cycles of use.

Although you can remove a used battery to replace it with a new one, you’ll need to know how to de-solder the battery leads from the PCB.

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If it has been more than two years since you’ve had your SoundLink Color and you want to tackle that project, the UltraFire 18650B is an excellent choice, although it’s a flat-top design.

Please do not attempt to switch the battery in your Bose speaker unless you have the knowledge and experience to complete the process.


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