Hearing aids are incredibly powerful devices that provide life-changing functions for millions of people across the country. However, they are also very delicate devices that require a high level of care. Maintaining power is one of the most significant aspects, which is why you need to pay special attention to battery life.
Any audiologist will confirm that a large percentage of hearing aid problems can be attributed to the battery. Here’s all you need to know about this integral component.
The importance of avoiding low battery power
Everyone knows that without battery power, hearing aids serve no purpose. However, dead batteries aren’t the only concern. Faulty performances can start to occur due to low batteries. Problems include, but are not limited to;
- Lost program memory
- Altered features
- Temporary power cuts
- Volume problems
Essentially, if the battery isn’t kept in the right conditions, the hearing aids will start to show it. In truth, the battery should be the first item that you troubleshoot when minor faults surface. Fix these issues, and it’s likely that the performance levels will be restored to the desired level.
The lifespan of hearing aids
The first question that most new hearing aids users will ask revolves around how long the batteries will last. There are many contributing factors to consider but, as a rule of thumb, most batteries for hearing aids will last somewhere between three days and three weeks.
This exact time frame may be influenced by a range of different features, including:
- Hearing aid type: The choice between behind-the-ear (BTE), in-the-ear (ITE) and in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids may influence the capacity and energy consumption levels.
- Hearing aid brand: Some hearing aid brands are known to consume energy at a quicker rate than others, and the impacts of this factor should not be overlooked.
- Battery brand: Likewise, some hearing aid battery brands last longer than others.
- Duration of use: A hearing aids user that wears their hearing aids for 16 hours per day will naturally need to replace hearing aids more often than one that uses theirs for eight hours.
- Faults: Faulty hearing aids can force the batteries to work harder, meaning that they will run out far sooner.
- Features used: Hearing aid technology is at a greater level than ever before with several advanced features now available. However, things like Bluetooth connection and wind noise reduction will run the battery down far quicker.
- General care: Taking good care of the hearing aids gives them a far better chance of lasting for the maximum duration as advertised.
- Volume: If you have the hearing aid turned up to the max, it’s likely to shorten the lifespan of the battery.
What can be done to prolong the life of the battery?
Batteries for hearing aids aren’t known to last for too long, but this shouldn’t surprise you due to their small size and the fact that the devices are used for so many hours at a time. However, you can give the battery life a boost by following some simple steps.
Get into the habit of following this six-point plan for greater success;
- When removing the tab from the battery, let it sit for 5 minutes. This allows air to reach the materials inside.
- Wipe the battery connect points inside the battery door frequently.
- Turn the hearing aid off when it’s not being worn and open the battery door to minimize battery drain.
- Keep the battery stored in a box or drawer overnight, with the battery door open.
- When not wearing the hearing aid for more than 24 hours, remove the battery completely before storing.
- Avoid extreme temperatures and wet situations while also trying to avoid exposure to dirt.
When does the battery need replacing?
It’s natural that you want to extend the battery life as best you can. After all, an extra 10 percent from each battery could save you a lot of time and money over the course of a year. However, there are clear signs that the batteries need replacing.
If any of the following occur, a new battery is needed;
- Power drops out suddenly, permanently or temporarily
- The warning beep for a low battery has started
- The sound has become distorted
- Features start malfunctioning
Still need more information?
Keeping the batteries in good health is one of the most critical aspects of good hearing aid care. Get this right, and the devices will continue to deliver the desired performance time and time again.
While the above information should help, our audiologists are more than happy to provide further support. So, to learn more, call The Speech & Hearing Center at (423) 622-6900 today.