4 reasons why your Bluetooth won't connect and what you need to know

Updated Oct 19, 2020 | Same topic: Handy Maintenance Tips

Explaining the Bluetooth technology in cars today and the four most common reason why the Bluetooth of your vehicle won't connect.

Bluetooth started taking over the entertainment world decades ago. Almost everyone appreciated its simple use back then. But no one saw how it would become essential in today’s in-car convenience and leisure system.

It started to be a built-in feature for phones way back. Every Filipino knows that the Bluetooth was first intended for convenient data transfer between two devices such as photos, videos, and documents. It competed with the Infrared technology which served a very similar purpose.

bluetooth on car

Bluetooth started taking over the entertainment world decades ago

Today, most late-model cars (especially those with shocking prices) are equipped with the latest Bluetooth technology. If you ever experienced using Bluetooth, you know how it makes entertainment devices much more convenient. So, if you don’t have Bluetooth in your car, you are missing out on a lot of features that could make your ride more enjoyable.

Car infotainment system

Most late-model cars are equipped with the latest Bluetooth technology

If you don't have one in your car yet, there's good news for you. There is also aftermarket Bluetooth audio equipment available in the market. This way, you can enjoy the Bluetooth stereo feature without the “new car” cost.

But what if your in-car Bluetooth connection won’t connect? Is there something you did for this to happen? Was your aftermarket Bluetooth stereo a cheap model? Philkotse.com listed the most common reasons why in-car Bluetooth systems won’t let you connect.

Having trouble with pairing your device to your Bluetooth stereo? The causes may be one of these possible reasons:

1. The devices may not be compatible with each other

This refers to your Bluetooth-kit and handheld device. If this is your first time pairing your device and the headset or the device to the head unit, you may first want to make sure that the two different devices are compatible with each other. Bluetooth connectivity is supposed to be universal. But, there will still be times when your device and Bluetooth unit will not get along.

The good thing is that Bluetooth technology has improved so much that newer versions are now made to be compatible even with the older versions. So if your device is a little “left-behind” under the “updates” criteria, there should be less concern about it now.

Bluetooth connectivity

Bluetooth connectivity is supposed to be universal

However, there are still circumstances when your Bluetooth unit and device will totally decline pairing up with each other. One of these is if one of your devices is equipped with “Bluetooth Smart”. These particular devices only pair with fellow Bluetooth Smart-enabled electronics only.

If you ever experience having two devices refusing to pair up no matter how many times you try, do a little research first. Make sure that 1) neither of the two devices is Bluetooth Smart-enabled or 2) both of them are.

>>> Check out: [Philkotse guide] How to properly install Bluetooth in your car.

2. There may be an obstruction between the two devices

Almost everybody knows this fact. Bluetooth-connected devices can only remain paired if they’re close to each other. This is usually about 30 feet. But this could still depend on the area.

If there are obstructions on the way, you can expect the connectivity to be less satisfactory. So, the less obstruction there is between the two paired devices, the better the Bluetooth connectivity is.

Bluetooth devices

If there are obstructions on the way, you can expect the connectivity to be less satisfactory


The proximity of the two devices to each other is important. Consider getting the two electronics closer. Also, make sure that there are no obstructions between them. If you’re having trouble doing this, try getting a phone holder or mount that you can stick in the air vent.

Once you tried this advice but your electronics and gadgets still choose to decline each other, leap over to reason number 3.

>>> Also check: Top 4 best Bluetooth kits for your car and its cost.

3. Make sure your handheld device is properly charged

If you’ve ever used a handheld device with Bluetooth connectivity to play music using an independent stereo, you know just how much battery power it uses. So if you’re using a phone, tablet or phablet with low battery power, you may need to charge it first. This is because most smart devices have a smart battery-saving function that disables other less necessary options to save power.

You can opt to turn the smart battery-saving function manually so you can use your Bluetooth. But, you may not be able to fully enjoy the functionality because your device may run out of battery power soon.

Charged device

So if you’re using a phone, tablet or phablet with low battery power, you may need to charge it first

>>> You might concern: [Philkotse guide] Simple ways to get Wifi in your car.

4. Check if the two devices are ready to be paired with each other

Pairing a handheld device with an in-car Bluetooth-capable entertainment unit is usually an easy thing to do. However, the pairing process can still be different depending on the types and kinds of devices that are concerned.

If you want to pair your smartphone to an earpiece or a car stereo kit, you first have to make sure that the unit is in pairing mode. Most in-car Bluetooth entertainment comes with a singular multi-functional button. This button is usually responsible for powering the device on and off. It can also activate the pairing mode.

bluetooth car kit

Pairing a handheld device with an in-car Bluetooth-capable entertainment unit is usually an easy thing to do

The on/off function can be activated by a single push. The pairing mode can be activated by pressing the button for a few seconds. In some systems, you have to push the button a few times quickly depending on the unit model.

When pairing your phone to your car’s head unit, make sure that they are both discoverable. If you’ve ever used two phones before to send or receive a file, you would know why this is necessary. If you still don’t have any idea as to how your Bluetooth kit works, refer to the manual.

Hanna Sanchez

Hanna Sanchez


Hanna is one of the most competitive swimmers in the country during her day. It was not long before she discovered her passion for the automotive industry as well. Nowadays, she balances her passion through writing as well as coaching.

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