So you’ve just gotten a new hearing aid, how exciting! Hearing aids can vastly improve the quality of your everyday life in so many ways, from being able to listen to your favorite music easier to having better conversations with friends and loved ones. This being said, as with any other new piece of technology things may get complicated. And because it is not always possible to come into our office or speak with us over the phone to fix a problem with your hearing aid, I compiled a list of the most common hearing aid issues, followed by the main ways to fix them explained! My hope is that new (and experienced) hearing aid users can utilize this information to properly troubleshoot their hearing aid issues.

Issue #1: No Sound

  • First, make sure that your hearing aid is turned on. Most hearing aids are turned on and off manually so when inserting them into the ear, it is fairly easy to accidentally turn them off.
  • Second, check the volume. The volume is also very often changed manually and it is easy to do so accidentally.
  • If the power is on and the volume is set correctly, next check the battery. Make sure that the battery is put in right side up, and that the cover is fully installed. If that seems OK, check to see if the battery needs to be charged or changed.
  • If your hearing aid is still not working properly, check the receiver tube for any blockage.
  • Lastly, check the microphone for dirt or debris that may be preventing the sound from being picked up. If needed, clean the microphone of dust, dirt, and/or earwax and test it again.

Issue #2: Sound Isn’t Quite Right

  • Check to make sure your program and volume settings are where they should be. This may seem obvious, but like the previous solutions it is fairly easy for them to be accidentally changed just due to everyday wear and movement. If you need assistance changing them or don’t remember your settings, we are here to help. It is always helpful to write down your settings somewhere you won’t forget!
  • Next, take a look at the controls. Wax, dirt and other debris can often build up there. To clear them out, you will need to rotate dials or switch any switches a few times to clear out any lingering debris. Just don’t forget to set them back to your specific settings before putting the hearing aid back in!
  • If the last step does not work, try doing a general deep clean of your hearing aid. Clear the tube, microphone, and earpiece of any wax, dust, lint, or any other debris that can collect and block the sound from reaching your inner ear.
  • Next, check your battery and the contacts on either side of the battery terminal. These contacts and the battery can become corroded over time and may need to be replaced.
  • If there doesn’t appear to be any corrosion, there may be moisture caught inside your hearing aid. This can be solved by using a drying kit or a dehumidifier that removes moisture overnight while you’re sleeping. Don’t hesitate to contact our office for recommendations on these products!
  • If none of these troubleshooting steps solve the problem, come in and visit myself or one of our other hearing aid experts for assistance.

Issue #3: Whistling and Feedback

  • Always make sure that you have inserted your hearing aid in properly. When in doubt, try taking it out and putting it back in. Remember to keep your head straight and still until the hearing aid is secured to ensure proper placement.
  • If the sound still isn’t right, try using a different size earpiece or a closed tip dome earpiece instead for a different and more secure fit. If you do not have one on hand, they are sold online and in many pharmacies.
  • The whistling and feedback may also be the result of too much noise trying to get through the hearing aid, so try adjusting the volume a bit.
  • Next, inspect your hearing aid for any cracks in the tubing or the ear hook. If this is the case, bring your device in and we will replace the parts if needed.
  • If you find that none of these steps work or the whistling persists, sometimes it could mean that earwax is blocking sound from traveling through your ear canal. Blockages should be assessed and cleared by a professional, don’t do this yourself!

Issue #4: It Doesn’t Fit Quite Right

  • Do you remember ever dropping your hearing aid? Hearing aids are very delicate and even the smallest fall has the potential to damage it. If you think this may be the case, please do not try to fix it yourself. Anything like this is most likely an advanced repair and is best assessed and done by a professional. So bring your device in and we will do our best to help you.
  • Lastly, remember that fit can change over time! If you feel like something isn’t right, don’t hesitate to bring it into our office and our staff will happily help you in any way we can.

If after going through this list you still find your hearing aid is not working the way you would like it to, please feel free to contact us for more assistance.

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Molly LeRoy

Dr. Molly LeRoy has been working in the hearing healthcare field since 1998 where she started as a secretary at the House of Hearing while attending the University of Utah. She soon became a Board-Certified Hearing Instrument Specialist and also obtained her Doctorate in Audiology. As President and Owner of the ENT House of Hearing since 2003, Dr. LeRoy has dedicated over 20 years of her life to delivering superior patient care to every person that walks through the door.