Hearing aids are powerful devices that consist of tiny sophisticated parts and perform numerous advanced functions. Regular maintenance of your hearing aids will prevent the need for frequent repair service and provide you with years of reliable better hearing.
Keeping your hearing aids dry and maintained is an important step to better hearing health.
Keep your hearing aids dry
Moisture is one of the main causes for hearing aid repair because moisture can accumulate in and around the hearing aid and cause damage to the device. Prolonged exposure to excessive amounts of moisture will cause your hearing aids to malfunction and not provide you with the best hearing.
Moisture can be the result of excessive sweating during warm seasons, physical activities or steam from the shower or bath. Be sure to remove your hearing aids prior to doing any physical exertion that may cause you to sweat profusely or wipe your devices dry occasionally while in use. You can also try wearing a sweatband on your head to absorb perspiration before it can get into your hearing aids.
Placing hearing aids in a dehumidifier or dryer when not in use will keep them dry and well maintained:
- A dehumidifier dry kit protects your hearing aids against moisture and can prevent any damage to your devices. Be sure to open the battery door when placing aids in your dehumidifier to allow aids to air out.
A UV-light kit is another option that prevents moisture damage to your hearing aids. It also has the added benefit of reducing the accumulation of harmful bacteria and viruses that can put you at risk for skin and/or ear infections.
Ask your hearing care provider which option is best for your everyday hearing aid maintenance routine.
Keep your hearing aids maintained
Wax buildup is another one of the main causes for hearing aid repair because earwax can accumulate and clog sound ports and vents. This may result in weak, distorted sound coming from your hearing aids or no sound at all. You may experience feedback from your hearing aids when this happens. Feedback is commonly heard as a whistling sound that is produced by the hearing aid microphone when your ears or hearing aids are plugged up with earwax.
Using a proper wax system for your hearing aids is an important step in keeping them well maintained and long-lasting. Your hearing aid wax system acts as a filter to block earwax from accumulating inside your device. Be sure to ask your hearing care provider which wax system is appropriate for your hearing aids and get into the routine of changing this filter weekly or more frequently if needed.
Consult with your hearing care provider if earwax can no longer be removed from the earpiece opening, the earpiece tube is yellow and brittle or you can no longer turn up the volume without getting feedback whistling.
Hearing aid repair troubleshooting tips
There are some common troubleshooting repair steps that you can take if your hearing aids are not functioning properly:
- Check the battery: Make sure the battery was inserted into the battery compartment properly, with the positive shiny side facing upwards. Test or change the batteries in your hearing aids using a fresh batch.
- Clean the hearing aid: Use the brush and wax loop to gently swipe away any dirt, wax or debris near the sound ports and vents.
- Change the wax system: Change the wax filter on your hearing aids to unplug earwax, dirt or debris that may be clogging up the microphone or ports preventing sound to flow through. If unchanged, you may experience reduced volume or feedback whistling.
- Inspect silicone domes or tubing for BTE (behind-the-ear) models: Replace disposable silicone domes every two-four weeks or visit your hearing care provider to change the tubing on your hearing aid. If it has become hard or shows signs of wear and tear, it is time to be changed. We recommend having your hearing aid tubing changed every three months.
Contact your hearing healthcare provider if you are still having issues with your hearing aids, even after you have attempted to clean and troubleshoot them yourself. In some cases, hearing aids may require more extensive repair that your hearing provider can assist you with.
How can I get my hearing aid repaired?
In most cases, hearing aids can be repaired in your hearing aid clinic, as an “in-house” repair. If your hearing aid cannot be repaired in the clinic, it may need to be sent out for repair to the manufacturer.
Most hearing aid manufacturers in Canada are located in Ontario, therefore it may take between five to ten business days to receive your hearing aids back from repair. These repairs may be covered by your hearing aid warranty package. If the warranty has expired, there may be a service fee for the repair.
Your hearing care professional will advise you before they send your hearing aids out for repair service.
Hearing aid care tips
Here are some general hearing aid care tips that you can practice daily to keep your hearing aids in pristine condition and provide you with reliable better hearing every day:
- Keep hearing aids away from hot or humid environments, such as a parked car on a sunny day to avoid battery corrosion and damage to the hearing aids.
- Remove hearing aids before showering, bathing or swimming.
- Keep hearing aids away from children and pets. Dogs in particular are attracted to the earwax scent on your hearing aids and may attempt to chew on them. Cats enjoy playing with small devices and hiding them.
- Remove hearing aids before using body care products such as lotion, hairspray or make-up. These products may clog the microphone input and volume control switch.
- Keep hearing aids in a dry dehumidifier container when not in use.
- Always carry your hearing aids in their case to protect them from damage and dirt when not in use.
- Avoid dropping your hearing aids to prevent damage.
When to consult a hearing healthcare professional
Consult with your hearing healthcare professional if you experience discomfort or pain in your ear. In some cases, the hearing aid may need to be adjusted for fit or there may be the possibility of an ear infection eluding to the pain. Your healthcare professional will be able to determine the cause of soreness and assist you in receiving the proper treatment.
Hearing aids should be checked regularly as recommended by your hearing care provider. Your hearing care provider will check that your hearing aids are in good working condition and adjusted appropriately to your hearing level so that you are hearing at your best.
If you require assistance with your hearing aids, our hearing healthcare professionals can help. Visit our directory to find a hearing healthcare professional in your area.