Mercury or zinc? Understanding Hearing Aid Batteries

A battery is a battery, right? Turns out, the batteries you use in your brand new pair of hearing aids are not the same as the ones you put in your remote controls or kids’ toys. But don’t worry. You don’t have to figure a whole new set of battery rules on your own. Your Carlsbad audiologist will explain all you need to know before you leave the hearing aid center. Below are just some of the questions they will answer.

What kinds of batteries do hearing aids use?

Hearing aid batteries
Your hearing aids use disposable zinc-air batteries that are color- and number-coded for easy replacement. The type of battery needed depends on the style and size of your hearing aids and includes: 5 (red), 10 (yellow), 13 (orange), 312 (brown) and 675 (blue).

You have a few options of where to buy your batteries. Most pharmacies carry replacement batteries. You can also purchase them online or from your Carlsbad audiologist’s office.

How do zinc-air batteries differ from other battery types?

Zinc-air batteries require oxygen to produce power. They come individually wrapped. Once the packaging is open, oxygen enters through tiny holes to activate them. Your Carlsbad audiologist recommends waiting at least a minute before inserting the batteries into your hearing aid to ensure they have absorbed enough oxygen in order to work properly.

How long will hearing aid batteries last?

On average, batteries last five to seven days depending on the size and style of your hearing aids, your degree of hearing loss, the amount of time your hearing aids are used and your listening environment.

How do I know when it’s time to change the batteries?

The first thing you should do if there is no sound coming out of your hearing aids is to change the battery. Other signs include sound that is distorted or unclear and unusually low volume levels. Newer hearing aids allow you to check the battery level on your wirelessly connected smartphone. Some hearing aids are designed to produce an audible tone warning you when batteries are low.

Are there steps I can take to extend battery life?

Store your batteries at room temperature and avoid exposing them to moist or humid environments. This includes the refrigerator, as temperature extremes and condensation can shorten their life. Keep batteries away from keys, coins and other metal objects that can cause them to short circuit or discharge. When removing your hearing aids, turn them off and open the battery compartment door to prevent excess moisture and battery drain.

While these tips and tricks can be a tad overwhelming while you are learning how to use your new hearing aids, know that you are not in this alone. Your Carlsbad audiologist will be there for you and is only a phone call away.