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Troubleshooting Hearing Aid Issues

If the hearing aid doesn't work at all:

  • Make sure the aid is turned on (don't laugh; this happens!).
  • Make sure that that the T-switch is correctly positioned (not in the "T" position).
  • Check if the battery is inserted correctly (+ and in the right place). If you have to force the battery, you probably have it wrong.
  • Check to see that the battery is not dead. If in doubt, try a new one (where you have to remove the sticky paper flap off the battery surface). A dead battery is the most common reason for "dead aids".
  • Check battery contacts to be sure they are not corroded.
  • Check tubing to be sure it is not clogged with moisture (shown by water or condensation in the tube).
  • Check earmold to be sure that sound bore is not clogged with wax.

If sound is weaker than normal:

  • Check battery. Replace if necessary.
  • Check tubing for cracks, fraying, moisture, etc. Replace if necessary.
  • Check that the earmold is not clogged with wax.
  • Reposition the earmold for a tighter fit; it may have been whistling (feedback) at a pitch you cannot hear.

If hearing aid goes on/off or has a scratchy sound:

  • Flick on/off switch back and forth, in case dust or lint has collected in the controls.
  • Check battery contacts.
  • Think where you have been. If in a very humid environment or have experienced excessive perspiration from vigorous activities, moisture may clog the aid and distort sounds. Use a hearing aid dehumidifier overnight and try again (see discussion above under "Moisture").
  • Check the tubing from earmold to the hearing aid and replace it if bent, cracked, frayed.

If the hearing aid whistles ("feedback"):

  • Probably an earmold problem. Remove the aid, put a finger over the earmold hole. If the whistling stops, the earmold was not properly inserted in the ear, or is not a good fit. Try it again in the ear; if the whistle continues, consult your hearing aid dispenser.
  • Sometimes feedback may occur when you have a blockage of wax in the ear canal, a stiff eardrum (from a cold, for example) or any condition that causes sound to be reflected from the ear canal. In these cases, the earmold may be fine, and the feedback will disappear when the condition is corrected.
  • Check volume control; it may have been turned too high. 
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