Rechargeable hearing aids are manufactured so that you’ll have to stress less about running low on batteries, but the technology may also make you a little concerned when you depend on your devices to hear. Do rechargeable hearing aids work as well as advertised or do they even work at all?
The worry is understandable and so are the question you might have. A hearing aid is often a necessary part of one’s everyday life, as necessary for a simple trip to the grocery store as they are for the enjoyment of a movie or television show. When a piece of technology impacts so many aspects of your life, it’s crucial that it functions correctly and dependably.
How Do I Know What Kind of Battery I Have?
Most contemporary hearing aids have rechargeable batteries by default, so it’s likely if you bought your hearing aids recently, it has one of two types of batteries. Silver-zinc batteries, which can normally be distinguished by a battery door on the device, are rechargeable, but every so often they need to be replaced. A Lithium-ion battery, however, will not have a battery door because the batteries will last as long as the hearing aid does.
How to Care For Your Rechargeable Hearing Aid
For the most part, rechargeable hearing aids do work, and they work well. As battery technology has improved in the last several years, the dependability of these devices has increased substantially. In order to improve reliability, however, there are a few maintenance measures users can take as they would with any other electronic technology.
- Be Careful of Wires: Either the charging station or the hearing aid itself will have some kind of wire element on most hearing aids. Most hearing aid users are advised to be aware of these wires; the connection that allows the device to charge can be damaged if you pull on or hold it by the wires.
- Keep Your Hearing Aids Dry and Clean: No matter how often you use or do not use your hearing aids, they have ample occasion to gather dust, debris, and moisture. Your hearing aid may not completely charge if it is subjected to any of these three things. When connecting your hearing aid to your charging station, as with any other time, it’s crucial to keep your device clean.
- The Charging Station is Where Your Hearing Aids Should be Kept: If you regularly store your rechargeable hearing aids on their recharging station you can extend the life of your battery. Charging a battery that is not fully drained does not reduce long-term battery life. In fact, you can actually increase the life of the battery by making certain your hearing aids are charging while not in use. For many people, putting their charging station beside their bed is a convenient reminder to charge the devices when it’s not in use.
How to Replace a Rechargeable Battery
If you have lithium-ion batteries, they should last as long as your device does. Consequently, you shouldn’t have to worry about replacing those batteries. Your hearing aids can then be simply charged as long as necessary.
Hearing aids that rely on silver-zinc batteries, however, may call for new batteries occasionally. Changing batteries in the correct way can help improve the longevity of your hearing aids. Because of this, hearing professionals suggest the following:
- Be sure you wash your hands before replacing your hearing aid batteries.
- Confirm that your battery compartment is free of moisture and clean.
- Five minutes before taking off any tabs that might be attached let the batteries sit at room temperature.
- Don’t get rid of any plastic tabs or packaging until you’re ready to use batteries.
- Store batteries in a room temperature spot that is also sure to be dry.
Long Periods of Non-Use
If you are planning not to use your hearing aids for long amounts of time, leaving them on the charger might no longer be the best way to store your devices. Just disconnect your hearing aid and put it in a dry cool place if, for example, you know you won’t be using them for several weeks or a month.
Think about leaving the battery door open so you can stop moisture from corroding the batteries if you use silver-zinc batteries.
Keep it Charged Every Day
For most people, and for day to day use, charging your hearing aids once a day should be adequate for all of your needs. A lithium-ion battery, for example, will typically require just 3-4 hours to charge enough battery power for a 24 hour period.
Do rechargeable hearing aids work? They don’t only work, they are becoming more common all the time. To see all the different models, contact your local hearing aid retailer.