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Hearing aids may be common, but they do have their negative side. You might feel like you have to change the batteries as often as you change your clothes.

With around 20% of the U.S. population suffering from a form of hearing loss, we know that one group of people are very happy, don’t we? Button battery manufacturers.

But all joking aside, if you have a hearing aid, then you need a battery that works and you want to know how to get the most life out of that battery. As a smart consumer, you know that a little research can go a long way. Making savvy decisions, can help you save a lot on battery replacements while ensuring that your hearing aid works when you need it.

Let’s explore 5 super-secret but practical ways to get the most out of your hearing aid battery.

1. Buy Smart From the Start

Hearing aids aren’t cheap. But the cost of hearing aids goes far beyond its price tag. Batteries are the greater expense that keeps on costing you year after year. Over time, batteries will exceed the cost of your hearing aid many, many, many fold. That’s why looking at how well a hearing aid uses its battery should be first and foremost in your buying decision.

Know the factors that can increase battery drain like:

  • Hearing aid type
  • Battery type
  • Your individual way of using the aid
  • The number of hours that you use it
  • And special features

Learn more about the features before buying. Consider how you’ll use them. And research how this will impact battery life when choosing your hearing aid. You want features that make your life better — not ones that just drain your battery.

For example, add-ons that seem so small at the time, like wireless connection, ability to input audio or synchronization, use a surprising amount of power. Balance your wants with your needs to make the right choice for you.

To get started, speak with a certified hearing aid vendor who’s willing to sit down and talk with you about features. Don’t be afraid to ask direct questions like…”How will this affect battery life?” Evaluate your costs now and the ongoing costs for batteries based upon your selections. Then make your choice.

2. Your Cleanliness Matters

What you can’t see could be impacting your battery life. Throughout the day, your hands build up skin oils, skin cells and dirt from normal activities. If you don’t wash your hands, then this comes in contact with the battery. It may seem harmless. But small particles can impact performance. In fact, changing your battery without washing your hands can even damage the hearing aid that you paid so much for.

Always wash your hands and dry them completely before handling the hearing aid and battery.

3. Cleanliness of Your Hearing Aid Matter Too

Develop a regular routine for cleaning the hearing aid. Ear wax and dirt will collect on the device and impact the way it works. As the dirty device struggles to work, it uses more power, draining the battery.

For one, dirt, ear wax and other nastiness collects on the hearing aid, clogging and blocking the ports and speaker. This might cause you to turn the aid up to hear using more battery.

Secondly, if the device is dirty, the battery will get dirty. It doesn’t matter if you clean your hands before handling a dirty device. Your hands are instantly dirty again and now your battery is as well.

Take a look at those recommendations by your manufacturer regarding how to care for your hearing aid. It will probably contain device-specific guidance on how to clean and maintain your hearing aid.

4. Don’t Neglect the Storage Instructions

Batteries frequently come in a pack. This way you already have one when you need it. But read the storage instructions to make sure you store them safely and in a manner that helps you extend their lives.

The pack may tell you to:

  • Leave those tabs on batteries until used
  • Store all batteries at room temperature
  • Avoid placing them near metal objects like flat wear or keys
  • Allow the battery to rest for 1 minute after pulling the tab before inserting

Following these simple rules can also significantly extend battery life.

5. Turn Hearing Aids Off

If you’re not wearing it, it’s still using energy to leave it on. Turn it off. Have a safe container in which to place it after you take it out, hopefully the one that came with the hearing aid. Open it up before storing, even for a short time, to prevent vampire battery drain that can be caused when moisture builds up in the hearing aid.

For long term storage, take the batteries out.

It’s important to note that better quality batteries last longer and better quality hearing aids should use less battery. As savvy shoppers, it’s easy to just look for the best price. But with hearing aids and batteries you really do get what you pay for. Take a little time to evaluate your options and you make a decision that will save you time and money in the long run.

With these simple tips, you can get the most out of your batteries.