What to Do if Hearing Aid Stops Working?

Hearing aid bring so much depth connectivity to the lives of those suffering from hearing loss. From re-engaging with a conversation to enjoying the radio in the car, it can have a major impact when a hearing device isn’t operating properly. This leaves many users wondering what to do if their hearing aids stop working. The first step will always be reaching out to a hearing healthcare professional and learning more about what could cause damage and the need for repair with hearing devices. 

 Types of Hearing Loss

There are a variety of reasons people find themselves reaching out to a hearing practitioner. A hearing evaluation at Southwestern Hearing Center will help each patient understand possible solutions to their hearing issues and find which compatible hearing aid device might work best for each type of hearing loss. 

  • Noise-Induced: This form of hearing loss is typically the result of repeated exposure to high decibel levels or exposure to a particular sound that causes damage to the inner ear. This type of hearing loss can be either permanent or can go away as the ear heals. Commonly, this issue occurs inpatient who works in a noisy environment and consistently attends loud events. 
  • Age-Related: Age-related hearing loss is the most common reason patients suffer a reduction in hearing abilities. As we age, our natural ability to hear stimuli at the same. Many find themselves struggling with volume control and interacting in regular conversations as hearing deteriorates. 
  • Congenital: Some patients are born with hearing impairment or with congenital diseases that result in hearing issues throughout life. People with hearing loss of this kind typically make use of quality hearing devices earlier in their lives and use them for long periods

Common Hearing Aid Problems

The hearing care providers at Southwestern Hearing Center provide patients with more than just hearing evaluations and customized hearing care solutions. A hearing care professional can also help with devices for repairs and replacement filters and parts. If a device is beyond repair, our team can help contact the manufacturer for repair or replacement. 

Clogged Connector Tubes

One downside to wearing hearing aids daily is the device’s tendency to disrupt the ears’ natural ability to clean itself by removing excess earwax. Instead of regularly cleaning out, there can be a buildup of wax inside the ear canal and, eventually, the connector tubes of a hearing aid. 

When this issue occurs, replacement tubing must be ordered and a hearing aid specialist can replace the clogged tubes. Unfortunately, there isn’t a great way to repair a clogged tube, so replacement is typically the best option. 

Battery Damage

Batteries can suffer physical damage for many different reasons when in a hearing device. Whether moisture has caused erosion or long-term use has caused a battery to simply have run its course, battery damage is one of the most common hearing aid issues wearers face. Most of the time, this problem can be fixed by simply replacing the damaged battery. In some cases, hearing aid professionals will need to extract safely and put in a fresh battery.  

If the battery compartment or the hearing aid battery door has been damaged, either a hearing device professional or the manufacturer will most likely need to implement extensive repairs or replacements of inner device parts. 

Hearing Aid Hook Damage

The hook portion of a hearing aid is the connective tube or hook that goes over the ear shell, keeping the hearing aid in place with a behind-the-ear hearing aid design. Damage to this hook is one of the most common repairs hearing aid technicians see. Without this hook in proper condition, the hearing aid cannot be worn appropriately or kept in place on the ear. 

While minor damage might be subject to repair my hearing aid professionals, most damage to the hook will require a replacement hook. 

Maintenance at Home

There are many ways users can utilize a cleaning tool, their hearing aid settings, and correct hearing aid maintenance to avoid the need for hearing aid repair. Digital hearing devices are a wonderful life addition, but they also take some work to maintain and keep working at their best. 

Don’t Pull the Tab

Hearing aids use a specific kind of battery known as zinc-air batteries. These batteries have small holes on the surface that allow air into the battery to stimulate the zinc and produce power. When a new battery is opened, the surface will be covered with a plastic coating. When you’re ready to use the battery, you will pull the coating off with a tab. Once this tab is pulled, the battery will begin to drain. Make sure you leave the plastic tab in place until you’re ready to use the battery. 

5-Minute Rule

When you’ve pulled out that new battery and removed the plastic coating, don’t put the battery into your hearing aid immediately. Waiting 5 minutes will allow enough air to flow into the surface holes to fully activate the batteries’ power centers. This will provide some extended battery life in the long run. 

Store at Room Temperature

The zinc-air batteries in hearing aids utilize airflow to function. This means they don’t mesh well with moisture. For these batteries, storing them in the refrigerator can harm the life of the battery by exposing it to condensation. Room temperature storage is going to help your hearing aid batteries run at their best. 

Users can also invest in a hearing aid dehumidifier if moisture becomes a consistent issue. 

Air Them Out

When you aren’t using your hearing aids, open the battery storage door to give the batteries access to air and minimize wasteful battery drain and possible corrosion. If you know you don’t be using your hearing aids for a longer period, take the batteries out completely. This can also help to prevent stuck moisture in the device from creating corrosion. 

A hearing aid cleaning kit can also help users keep their devices in top condition and avoid costly repairs. 

When Hearing Aids Stop Working

When hearing aids stop working, users should immediately reach out to their hearing device specialist to begin repairs or start the replacement process with the manufacturer. While there are many ways hearing specialists can repair damaged devices, there are also ways users can help avoid issues with proper maintenance and cleaning at home.