Are your hearing aids not working? Suppose you are experiencing communication difficulties due to issues with your hearing aids. In that case, you can try things at home before contacting your hearing healthcare professionals for an appointment. 

We know how frustrating this situation can be and want to help. This article will provide tips on troubleshooting hearing aids for your devices to function correctly. 

Read on to find out what steps you can take if your hearing aid is not working and what needs to be fixed as expected to get back up and running quickly without a complete checkup.

My Hearing Aids Aren’t Producing Any Sound

Having hearing aids that don’t produce any sound can be frustrating. Thankfully, there are steps you can take to troubleshoot hearing aids that aren’t making any noise.

  1. Visually examine the hearing aid. Look for earwax blocking the microphone opening or sound outlet. If there is debris visible, carefully clean it away. If you see any damage to the device, contact your hearing care professional.
  2. Ensure the devices are turned on. If rechargeable batteries are used in the machine, ensure the charging unit is plugged in and correctly docking your hearing aid. If disposable batteries are being used, make sure that the battery door closes quickly; if it doesn’t close easily on its own, remove the battery, flip it over, and reinsert it into its compartment.
  3. If your disposable hearing aid batteries are dead, it may be time to replace them. Confirm that the batteries are dead by using a battery tester and checking the voltage of the old battery. After removing the sticker from a fresh set of batteries, wait two minutes before inserting them into your hearing aids to allow time for the air to activate them.
  4. If you have a hearing aid with an app, turn up the volume on that. If not, turn the volume wheel on your hearing aid several times to ensure it’s on.
  5. Try switching between the pre-programmed settings or memories. If your hearing aids have a button to change settings, press it and listen to see if that makes a difference.

    Extra Tip:
  6. If your hearing aid gets wet, immediately take it to your hearing care professional. Most hearing aids are not waterproof, so they may need to be replaced if they get wet!

Hearing Aids Aren’t Loud Enough

Suppose your hearing aids aren’t providing enough volume. In that case, you don’t have to rush to schedule an appointment with your audiologist. Here are some troubleshooting steps for increasing the importance of your hearing aids that you can try at home.

  1. Troubleshooting hearing aids can be done by visually examining the device. Look for earwax blocking the microphone opening or the sound outlet. If you wear a behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aid style with an earmold and tubing, inspect the tubing to ensure no cracks, blockages, or beads of moisture. Contact your hearing center if you need assistance replacing the tubing, filters, or domes. Most offices have walk-in hours or same-day appointments for troubleshooting and repair.
  2. You can adjust the volume of your hearing aid by using a hearing aid app or directly on the hearing aid. If you have a manual volume control wheel, turn it repeatedly to ensure you can hear a volume change.
  3. Try switching to a different memory or program. You may have accidentally switched to a different setting that is not your usual configuration.
  4. If it has been a while since you checked your hearing, schedule an appointment with your hearing care professional. By troubleshooting hearing aids with a professional, they will be able to adjust your devices to accommodate any changes to your hearing ability accurately.

Hearing Aids Sound Distorted

If hearing aids sound distorted, it can be challenging to understand speech and other sounds. You can take some steps to troubleshoot hearing aids not working correctly.

  1. If you have disposable batteries, check their contacts. These prongs connect with the battery when you close the door. If the connections are corroded, try opening and closing the battery compartment several times to clean them. Afterward, try replacing the battery and see if it makes a difference. Your hearing care professional can also clean the contacts for you. Suppose a storm is oriented correctly to make contact with its terminals. In that case, you will likely see very faint scratches on the surface of a used battery.
  2. Try a different program setting if you have difficulty hearing. You may have accidentally switched to a wireless setting meant to be used with an assistive listening device.
  3. If you suspect your hearing aids are damaged, contact your hearing care professional. They may have walk-in hours or same-day appointments for troubleshooting and hearing aid repair.

Hearing Aids Produce Feedback

If hearing aids are producing feedback, there are a few steps you can take to troubleshoot the issue at home before contacting your hearing healthcare professional.

  1. If you hear whistling from your hearing aids, remove them and reinsert them correctly. They may not be inserted properly. However, if the whistling stops when you turn down the volume on your hearing aids, there may be excessive sound leakage through the vent or around the earmold. Your hearing care professional can adjust the fit of your hearing aids to solve this problem.
  2. Earwax can block your ear canal, causing feedback in two different ways. You might turn up the volume higher than usual so you can hear through the earwax, leaking out more sound than usual, or sound can bounce off any blockage in your ear and leak back out. If your ear canals are blocked with earwax, visit your hearing care professional or physician to have them cleaned.
  3. Suppose the fit of your hearing aids or earmolds is not comfortable. For example, if you recently lost weight, your hearing aids may no longer fit properly. In this case, your hearing care professional can evaluate the problem and determine whether it can be fixed in the office or if you need to have new ones made.
  4. If your hearing aid has a behind-the-ear (BTE) style with an earmold and tubing, check the tubing to ensure that it’s fully connected to the hearing aid and the earmold and to see if it has become brittle, rigid, or cracked. If so, contact your hearing care professional for a replacement.

Hearing Aids Not Working Conclusion

Making sure your hearing aids are functioning correctly can be a daunting task. We hope that with the tips we’ve provided, you can help maintain hearing aid performance at home and extend their lifespan. 

Are your hearing aids not working still? If so, and these steps don’t resolve your issues, feel free to contact a qualified hearing healthcare professional for the next step. Your hearing healthcare professional can provide solutions tailored to individual needs and answer any questions. 

By taking proactive steps at troubleshooting hearing aid common issues, you’ll be able to maximize your full potential and stay connected!

Munawar Malik
Assistant Professor of Hearing & Speech | + posts

Munawar Is an Assistant Professor in one of the leading university in Pakistan. He holds a career of 31 years in the field of hearing, speech, language and special needs education as a clinician, consultant and a mentor. He has to his credit a series of articles and write ups in leading journals. More recently he has been on board with hearing people and contributing through his unique way of written expression.

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