Without good working batteries your hearing aids won’t do you much good. In order to hear your best it is important to get the most out of your hearing aid. The hearing aid industry has worked to develop standardize battery sizes. The 4 sizes each have a correlating color to make it easier to remember the correct size for your hearing device: 10 yellow, 13 orange, 312 brown, and 675 blue. The life of a hearing aid battery is determined by a number of factors including: the type of hearing aid, battery type, your environment and the number of hours in a day that you use your hearing aid.
The 5 Minute Rule
Hearing aid batteries are called zinc air because they are activated by air. When you remove the plastic tab on the back you are essentially starting the battery. For many years, hearing specialists have told patients to remove the plastic tab and give the battery a minute to take in some air before you place it in your hearing aid.
8th Grader Ethan Manuell of Minnesota used a science project to change that advice. He tested different lengths of time until he found the optimal amount of time each battery should be exposed to the air. According to Ethan if you want your hearing aid battery to last 2 to 3 days longer, you should let it sit with the plastic tab off for 5 full minutes before inserting it into your hearing aid! This discovery may improve your battery life by 80%. That translates into lots of money saved on batteries each year. Ethan’s “5 Minute Rule” has won several awards, including a U.S. Naval Science Award. Give the 5 Minute Rule a try and let us know how it goes.
Tips for extending hearing aid battery life:
- Store hearing aid batteries at normal room temperature. Years ago, putting batteries in the fridge made them last longer. The exact opposite is true with today’s zinc air technology. It is also good practice to store hearing aid batteries away from coins, keys and other metal objects because this may cause the batteries to short circuit.
- When the time comes to replace the battery in your hearing aid, wash your hands thoroughly. Grease and dirt on hearing aid batteries can cause damage to the hearing device.
- Anytime the hearing aid is not being used, it should be turned off, placed in a safe spot and left with the battery door open. This minimizes battery drain and allows moisture to escape, which will keep the battery from corroding and damaging your hearing aid. If you don’t plan to wear the hearing aid for an extended period of time, it is a good idea to remove the battery entirely.
Battery companies make millions of individual batteries every year. Occasionally, you will get one that doesn’t work as well as it is supposed too. When that happens, send the bad battery and the packaging back to the manufacturer. Often times they will send you coupons or replacement batteries.
Remember, your hearing aid can’t help you hear if it doesn’t have the power it needs. Buy quality batteries and keep these easy tips in mind to extend your battery life. You’ll be hearing all the sounds around you better than ever before.