You may dream of snowflakes and icicles but be wary of Old Man Winter’s frosty effects on your hearing aids. Your devices are very susceptible to moisture, and temperature changes will create condensation that damages your devices.
Hearing Aids And Condensation
While cold, dry air can drain disposable batteries, condensation is the greater threat to hearing aids. Condensation can form as soon as you step into a warm space from the frigid outdoor world. Internal components, like electrical elements and batteries, will malfunction if they’re exposed to moisture.
Behind-the-ear and receiver-in-the-ear hearing aids are also more likely to malfunction in the winter because moisture can clog mics, receivers, and tubing.
Signs Of Moisture Damage
Hearing aid batteries corrode when they’re exposed to moisture, so it’s essential to know the signs of moisture-induced damage. Signs of damage include:
- Distorted audio
- Sounds fading in and out
- Sound cutting out with loud noises
Take these steps to troubleshoot your hearing aids:
- Remove the batteries and clean and dry battery contacts with a cotton swab.
- Wipe away moisture and wax from the ear molds with a soft, dry cloth.
- Use a drying kit, dehumidifier, or hearing aid air blower to get rid of internal moisture.
- Let the battery compartment dry overnight and insert new batteries.
How You Can Protect Your Hearing Aids
Here are some preventative measures that will keep your hearing aids dry this winter.
Check the weather: Look at the forecast before you head outside so you can plan for snow, rain, or ice.
Pack the proper gear: Wear ear wraps, wide-brimmed hats, or hooded jackets to keep moisture away from your hearing aids. Keep an umbrella in your car in case you forget a hat.
Plan for physical activity: Wear a sweatband or hearing aid sleeve to wick away moisture while you shovel snow, play with the grandkids, or take a walk.
Have a routine: Make it a habit to dry your hearing aids every night during the winter to combat condensation. Leave the battery compartment open so that moisture can evaporate.