What’s wrong with my hearing aid?

Just like any other electronic device, hearing aids can sometimes malfunction. Don’t worry though - we can assist you in diagnosing minor problems with your hearing aids and how to troubleshoot to find the problem. The following tips and information could save time and cut back on frustration by helping you fix your hearing aid yourself.

IF ... one of the issues you’re having is:

  • Total sound loss
  • Infrequent or weak amplification
  • Internal noises and/or distorted, garbled sound

THEN … troubleshoot your device by asking or considering one the following questions:

1. Is my hearing aid on?

If you’re getting no sound from your hearing aid, check that the hearing aid battery door is fully closed (if wearing a non-rechargeable device) and the hearing aid is switched to the “ON” position. If you have a volume control, be sure the volume is not set on the minimal setting or even on mute.

If you have a rechargeable hearing aid, ensure that your device is fully charged using the All-In One Charger or Mini Turbo Charger. If the LED light on the charger is glowing green, it indicates the hearing aids are charging. If the light is solid green, they are fully charged. When charging without the charger cord the LEDs will turn off when the hearing aids are fully charged.

2. Is anything wrong with my battery?

For the hearing aid to work the battery has to lie in the hearing aid just right (refer to your instruction manual for information on proper placement). Similar to other batteries, hearing aid batteries are polarized and have both the “+” and “-” symbols. The smooth end of the hearing aid battery is the positive pole. Make sure the placement of the battery in your hearing aid is correct. If it happens to be upside down, of course your hearing aid won’t have power. Now check to see if you’re working with a weak or dead battery. Use a fresh battery from the package and remove the sticker/tab from the new battery. It is recommended that you wait 3-5 minutes after removing the tab before inserting the battery. The time lets the battery fully charge before being used.  Place the new battery into the hearing aid. If you own a battery tester, also use this to check the battery’s power. To learn more about the lifespan of hearing aid batteries, check out this previous blog.

For rechargeable hearing aids, it is recommended you charge your hearing aids every night before bed. Lithium-ion batteries should last you all day, even when streaming. If it is consistently not performing up to this level, there could be an issue with your hearing aid battery, and it may need to be evaluated.

3. Is my hearing aid clogged or plugged?

Moisture, oils, earwax and other various small materials can build up in the microphone(s), sound port, and/or tubing of the hearing aid causing the functions to not work properly. Periodically complete the following:

  • Use a clean, dry cloth or tissue to wipe hearing aid.
  • If your hearing healthcare professional supplied you with a cleaning tool or brush, use it to clean and remove debris from the hearing aid’s components.
  • Clean and/or replace wax guard/protection. 

Our how-to videos page shows how to properly maintain your device for each hearing aid style.

For more hearing aid cleaning and care tips, click here.

4. Am I using the best hearing aid program for my hearing needs?

Your hearing aid may have multiple programs. If so, verify that you are using the most fitting program for your personal surroundings. Some programs that are intended for the telephone or specific environments may sound quite strange if you are using them in the wrong or alternate situations.

See your hearing professional

It is important to remember that certain types of malfunctions should be referred to your hearing professional to prevent further damage to the hearing aid or to keep from voiding the hearing aid's warranty. If the troubleshooting suggestions above do not resolve the problem or if there is physical damage to your hearing aid, contact them. Repairs or modifications may be made in-office, or the hearing aid may need to be sent to the manufacturer for repair. Your hearing professional can help figure out the best course of action. Contact a local hearing clinic by clicking here or calling (888) 919-6824. 

By Starkey Canada