In theory, a typical hearing aid battery could get over 100 hours. But in the real world, you can get anywhere from 3-22 days out of a battery depending on whether you use advanced functions that take more energy or follow certain maintenance methods and precautions that impact battery life.
Some of this extra battery drain is completely worth it. When you’re celebrating your birthday with the family in a noisy restaurant, you want to be able to hear every word. Isn’t that worth an extra 10 cents?
But in other cases, you may be draining your batteries for no reason unaware that it’s even happening. These are the habits you’d like to stop to make your hearing aid batteries last longer. Here are 10 secrets to help you do just that.
1. Be Careful About Buying in Bulk
Buying your hearing aids in bulk seems like the obvious way to save money. If you have a membership at Sam’s, Costco or another discount warehouse store, you can buy a 6 month supply. But hearing aid batteries, like all batteries, slowly lose their charge even while unopened.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy in bulk if you can. But don’t buy too much at once and to get the most battery life for your money, wear both hearing aids for at least 8 hours a day to get your money’s worth.
2. Buy the Newest Pack
In line with number 1, always look for the newest pack when buying hearing aid batteries. If you buy them online, make sure you know the expiration date. Selling outdated products online is a very common tactic retailers use to get rid of old inventory.
It’s at a bargain price for a reason.
3. Once Opened, Use Them
Modern hearing aid batteries are powered using zinc. The zinc sits dormant until activated so energy loss is minimal. But once you remove the tab, you activate the zinc and the proverbial clock starts ticking. At this point the battery begins to drain, even when not in use.
Have you ever popped a new battery in and then stopped using your hearing aids for a couple weeks? If you did, you’d probably come back to a nearly dead battery. Only wearing your hearing aids when you think you need them, doesn’t really save that much battery. Saving battery life by restricting time worn is a hearing aid myth.
To get more out of your batteries, wear your hearing aid batteries throughout the day every day.
4. Wait Five Minutes, Get 3 More Days
It’s so tempting to pop a battery out of the package and insert it. You want to get your hearing back as quickly as possible. But allowing the zinc about 5 minutes to activate after removing the tab before inserting it can give you as many as 3 more days on that hearing aid battery life. That’s huge!
5. Don’t Freeze Your Batteries
You may have learned as a young adult to put batteries into the refrigerator or even the freezer to reduce the loss of energy before usage. But this actually has the opposite effect on zinc batteries. Keep them in a drawer in your bedroom instead.
6. Open Up the Door
Moisture speeds up battery drain. Get into a habit of opening the battery door and leaving it open when not in use. This reduces trapped moisture and extends battery life significantly.
7. Don’t Store Them in Humid Places
A drawer in your bedroom is the perfect place to store batteries because it’s one of the driest places in most homes. Hearing aids and hearing aid batteries should not be stored in the bathroom or kitchen where they’ll be exposed to steam and humidity.
8. Get a Dehumidifier
If you live in a humid part of the country, consider getting a dehumidifier for your hearing aid case and/or the room where you store the batteries. This also helps prevent corrosion which could ruin your hearing aids.
9. Remove the Batteries for Extended Disuse
If you have an ear infection or can’t wear your hearing aids for several days for some reason, take the batteries completely out to get a little more life out of them.
10. Follow Good Hygiene Practices
Dirt, oil and skin cells are always on your hands. These can muck up the hearing aid connection so that it’s not getting all of the battery juice that the battery is producing. Always wash your hands before handling hearing aids or batteries. This will improve the connection.
These secrets will help your hearing aid batteries last. Check out more advice on how to optimize your hearing aids.