By Heather Sandy, MA, CCC-A, Audiology Consultants
Q: What can I do at home to troubleshoot hearing aid problems?
A: Proper care of your hearing aids can prevent many common problems.
While we are always happy to help you in our office with the cleaning and care of your hearing aids, there are several things you can do at home to troubleshoot problems. The following are common symptoms and possible solutions:
My hearing aid is “dead” or not loud enough:
- Replace the battery
- Make sure the battery is inserted correctly and is the right size
- Check for earwax blocking the sound outlet
- If your instrument has wax-traps or filters, replace those
- If your instrument has tubes or domes that you can change, replace those
- If you have a volume control, make sure it is adjusted properly
My hearing aid is intermittent, cutting in and out or distorted:
- Check the microphone openings — are they clear?
- Check for moisture or earwax blocking the sound
- Inspect the battery and battery compartment. They should appear clean, with no rust, corrosion, or moisture
My hearing aids are “squealing” or “whistling” — this is called feedback:
- Make sure the devices are properly inserted in your ears
- Check for earwax or debris blocking the sound outlet
- Check for debris blocking the microphones
- Feedback is often caused by excess earwax — your audiologist or physician can look in your ears to determine if this is the cause
If these suggestions do not solve the problem, contact your audiologist for further advice. Many times, a little cleaning is all that is needed to get your hearing aids in good working order again. We have many specialized cleaning tools and replacement parts in our office. If a device cannot be repaired in-house, we may send it to the manufacturer to be repaired.
Hearing aids can last for several years with some regular care and cleaning. If you are having any hearing aid problems, please let us know. We are here to help you hear your best!
If you have any questions about this article or your hearing health, please feel free to contact Audiology Consultants at
563-355-7712 or visit audiologyconsultants.com.