If you (or your patient) suspects a hearing aid might be broken, don't panic. These three easy steps will tell you if the hearing aid still works.


check the battery

Make sure the hearing aid has a correctly installed battery inside of it by opening the battery door and looking for a plus sign on the battery door itself that should line up with the flat, positive side of the battery. If you are unsure, consult the user guide/manual for the hearing aid, if available. If not, call our office and we can help determine next steps.  Close the battery door, wait ten seconds and then gently close your hand around the device, it should make a squealing sound (feedback).  If no sound, move to step 2. If it howls away, move to step 3. 

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Clean the hearing device

It's possible that wax or other debris is occluding the sound outlet. If the device is an in-the-ear model, there may be a wax filter that can be changed or the device can be cleaned with a wire loop tool that should be in the patient's hearing aid case. If the device is a behind-the-ear model it may have a dome that can be changed or it may have a custom earmold that can also be cleaned with a wire loop. Again, if you are unfamiliar with the particular components of the device, consult the user guide/manual, if available. If you are unsure, or cleaning or changing these components still gives you no sound when you cup the device in your hand, give our office a call. We can help you troubleshoot over the phone or you can arrange to have the device dropped off at our office for in-house troubleshooting.


check the ear for earwax

If the device is known to be working (emits feedback), try placing the device gently in the patient's ear.  Most devices are marked with a color indicator (right = red and blue = left).  If the patient still reports they cannot hear clearly, check the patient's ear for wax and have the appropriate medical professional remove it, if possible.  If there is no wax, it's possible the patient's hearing may have decreased and the hearing device is no longer loud enough.  Please call out office and we can schedule an evaluation to help troubleshoot further.

Still having trouble? Give us a call, we'll walk you through what to do: 413-776-1700.