For millions of Americans with hearing loss, hearing aids can bring the sound back into their life. In 2019 alone, over 3.9 million hearing aids were dispensed thanks to increased access, newer technology, and more patients seeking treatment. Whether it is bringing you closer to friends and family or reinvigorating your social life, hearing aids are raising patient’s quality of life across the globe with exciting and discreet options. Unfortunately, even the most advanced technology cannot help without power. To keep hearing what matters to you, here are three tips to extend the life of your hearing aid batteries.
The life of your hearing aid batteries can fluctuate depending on plenty of factors. Size, type, the condition they are in, and even how advanced your device is can determine how often you’re changing the batteries out or throwing your device on a charger. Unless your batteries are rechargeable, hearing aid batteries will typically last you between 3 to 7 days. There are ways to improve their longevity though, keeping you hearing much longer with fewer replacements.
Whether they are inside your hearing aid or stored away for safe-keeping, moisture is the enemy of your battery. Humidity and moisture can work its way inside of the battery’s casing and corrode important components that help the battery work. If you happen to use zinc-air batteries, moisture can actually block the air holes on the battery, preventing the hearing aid from receiving power. Regardless of the battery type you use, moisture can corrode, damage, and shorten your battery’s life cycle, so it’s good practice to keep them in dry, climate-controlled areas. Dry places will also ensure your device and stored batteries stay moisture-free too!
Believe it or not, those annoying plastic tabs actually have an important purpose! Battery insulating tabs not only protects the components of your battery during storage, but they also act as an insulator to prevent the battery from energizing before use. That way, your battery doesn’t begin its discharge process before you even try to use it. Removing this tab will allow air to enter tiny holes in the battery and expose the chemicals inside. This exposure allows the voltage to rise and activates your battery, which will start its life cycle. To make sure your battery lasts as long as possible, do not remove the insulating tab until you’re ready to pop them in your hearing aids!
Once the plastic tab is removed, the battery’s components activate and start the battery’s lifespan. There are a lot of different recommendations out there in regards to how long you should wait before inserting your battery, but some research has shown that if you wait five minutes, you can extend the battery’s life by as much as 2-3 days! That can make a large difference.
If you are struggling with hearing aid batteries and are looking for tips, contact a hearing health professional to discuss your specific batteries and hearing aid device. Spend more time enjoying your life and less time running for battery replacements.