How to Set Up Bluetooth on Windows 10

Everything you need to know to set up Bluetooth on Windows 10.

ASUS USB BT500 USB 5.0 Bluetooth adapter and Bluetooth headphones (Soundcore by Anker Life Q30), Logitech keyboard, and 8Bitdo Pro 2 game controller. TechReviewer

Last Updated: September 10, 2021

Written by Brandon Jones

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How Do I Connect or Pair a Bluetooth Device on Windows 10?

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To connect or pair a Bluetooth device, such as headphones, keyboards, mouse, gaming controller, or other devices, you add it via the "Bluetooth & other devices" Windows settings.

The first step is to open your Bluetooth settings. You can access this by right-clicking on the Bluetooth icon in the taskbar. If you don't see the Bluetooth icon (TR) in the taskbar, you can alternatively search Windows (Windows Key + S) for "Bluetooth and other devices" and open it.

Then select Add a Bluetooth Device.

Right-click Bluetooth icon to add a Bluetooth device on Windows 10 Right-click Bluetooth icon to add a Bluetooth device on Windows 10 TechReviewer

If you don't see the Bluetooth button in the taskbar, you can alternatively search Windows (Windows Key + S) for Bluetooth and other devices and open it.

Pairing / Connecting a New Device

If you've already paired your device previously, and it's not working, you might need to either connect your Bluetooth device (TR) or remove your paired Bluetooth device (TR) before continuing to the next step.

Click the Add Bluetooth or other device button.

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Put your device into pairing mode. You can typically do this by pushing the designated button on your device. Check your device's manual for instructions on how to enter pairing mode. Some devices, like headphones, can be put into pairing mode by pressing and holding the power button on your Bluetooth device for 5 seconds while it's turned off.

Now click the Bluetooth option in the "add a device" window on Windows.

Add a device window for adding Bluetooth device on Windows 10 Add a device window for adding Bluetooth device on Windows 10 TechReviewer

Wait for the device to appear, then click your device to connect.

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How Do I Disconnect or Remove a Bluetooth Device on Windows 10?

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You can disconnect or remove a Bluetooth Device via Windows Bluetooth settings.

To do this, open your Bluetooth settings in Windows, then scroll down until you see the device you want to disconnect, then click it.

You will see two options, select Disconnect or Remove Device.

Disconnect or remove your connected Bluetooth device on Windows 10 Disconnect or remove your connected Bluetooth device on Windows 10 TechReviewer

Disconnect means that it temporarily will not be connected to Windows. However, it will remain paired.

If you disconnected the device, you can learn how to connect in the section connect a paired Bluetooth device (TR)

Remove Device means that it'll unpair and disconnect from Windows 10 and will not show up again until you pair the Bluetooth device again.

If you removed the device, you can learn how to pair and connect in the section connect an unpaired/new Bluetooth device (TR).

How Do I Connect a Paired Bluetooth Device on Windows 10?

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You can connect to a paired Bluetooth device in the Bluetooth settings on Windows 10

First, open the Bluetooth Settings on Windows (TR).

Scroll down on the Bluetooth settings window until you see your device, then click it to see the options.

If you don't see your device, you will need to pair your Bluetooth device with Windows 10 (TR).

Press the "Connect" button.

Connect a paired Bluetooth device on Windows 10 Connect a paired Bluetooth device on Windows 10 TechReviewer

Your Windows computer should now be connected to your Bluetooth device. If it is not, you may need to remove and pair your Bluetooth device (TR) again.

If it still doesn't work, here's how to fix common Bluetooth Problems on Windows 10 (TR).

How Do I Open Bluetooth Settings on Windows 10?

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You can open your Bluetooth settings on Windows 10 by right-clicking on the Bluetooth icon in the taskbar.

Next, select "Add a Bluetooth Device."

Pressing this will open a window that shows all of your connected Bluetooth devices, along with other devices and various settings for each one.

If you don't see the Bluetooth icon (TR) in the taskbar, you can alternatively search Windows (Windows Key + S) for "Bluetooth and other devices" and open it.

How Do I Open Sound Settings on Windows 10?

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You can access sound settings in Windows by right-clicking on the sound icon in the taskbar, then select "Sounds."

This window will give you more options to control your audio devices in Windows 10.

If you don't see the sound button in the taskbar, you can alternatively search Windows (Windows Key + S) for Sound Settings and open it. Then on the right side of the window, click Sound Control Panel.

How Do I Use a USB Adapter When My Computer Has One Built-in on Windows 10?

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If you want to use a stand-alone Bluetooth adapter rather than your built-in Bluetooth receiver, you'll need to disable Bluetooth on your device and then install the new adapter.

If you're trying to use a USB Bluetooth adapter on a computer with a built-in Bluetooth capability, you may run into problems running both at once.

Fix #1: Disable Built-in Bluetooth via Device Manager

The first step is to open the Windows device manager. To do this, Search Windows (Windows Key + S) for Device Manager and open it.

Make sure your USB Bluetooth adapter is unplugged before continuing.

Look for Bluetooth in the list and click to expand to see more.

You'll want to look for whichever Bluetooth hardware your computer has. Typically, Generic Bluetooth Adapter or a name with the brand of your computer or motherboard.

Right-click on that, then click Disable.

Now insert your USB Bluetooth adapter.

Fix #2: Disable Built-in Bluetooth via BIOS

You might have to disable your internal Bluetooth in the Bios of your computer.

Since this varies depending on the device, you'll need to search online for "Disable onboard Bluetooth in BIOS settings" along with the model/brand of your device.

How Do I Reinstall Bluetooth Drivers on Windows 10?

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To reinstall your Bluetooth drivers, you'll need to uninstall them from your device manager then install new drivers.

The first step is to open the Windows device manager. To do this, Search Windows (Windows Key + S) for Device Manager and open it.

Open device manager on Windows 10 Open device manager on Windows 10 TechReviewer

Look for Bluetooth in the list, then click to expand it. You'll want to look for whichever Bluetooth adapter you're using.

USB adapters will typically show up as Bluetooth (version #) USB Device or the device's model number.

Right-click on that and select click Uninstall Device.

Uninstall Bluetooth device in device manager on Windows 10 Uninstall Bluetooth device in device manager on Windows 10 TechReviewer

After the "Uninstall Device" window appears, check the box for Delete the driver software for this device, then click Uninstall.

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After that, you'll want to restart your computer.

Next, you'll need to know how to install Bluetooth drivers (TR).

How Do I Install Drivers for a USB Bluetooth Adapter on Windows 10?

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To install Bluetooth drivers for a USB Bluetooth adapter, you'll need to either update your drivers with Windows Update or download and install them from the manufacturer's website.

The first step is to make sure to restart your computer if you have made any recent changes, like uninstalling your Bluetooth drivers, before continuing.

Make sure that you plugged in the Bluetooth adapter.

Now to install your Bluetooth drivers again, search Windows (Windows Key + S) for Check for updates and open it.

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Click the Check for updates button on the Windows Update window.

Click the View optional updates button.

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Click the Driver updates dropdown to expand it, then check the box for the option that includes the words Bluetooth Controller device (or similar).

Click the Download and install button.

Install optional driver updates on Windows 10 Install optional driver updates on Windows 10 TechReviewer

The Bluetooth icon should appear again in your taskbar; if not, try this to fix the Bluetooth icon missing (TR).

Now connect or pair your Bluetooth device again.

If you’re connecting headphones and having audio problems, try this to fix your headphone audio (TR).

If the drivers that Windows has installed don't work, you might need to uninstall your Bluetooth drivers and install the drivers from the website of your device. To learn how to do this, go to the section manually install Bluetooth adapter drivers on Windows 10 (TR).

How Do I Manually Install USB Bluetooth Adapter Drivers on Windows 10?

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You can manually install Bluetooth drivers by downloading them from your device manufacturer's website then install them from Windows Device Manager.

You can usually find your device drivers by searching online for the model of your device.

For example, I'd search for "ASUS USB-BT500 drivers" for my device model (yours will most likely be different).

Make sure you download any drivers from a trusted source!

After you've manually downloaded the drivers for your device, open the Windows device manager by searching Windows (Windows Key + S) for Device Manager and opening it.

Make sure your USB Bluetooth adapter is unplugged before continuing.

Look for Bluetooth in the list and click to expand to see more.

You'll want to look for whichever Bluetooth hardware you have. Typically, Generic Bluetooth Adapter or a name with the brand of your computer or adapter.

Right-click on your Bluetooth device.

Click Update Driver

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From there, click Browse my computer for drivers and find the file where you downloaded it.

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