Contemporary technology has changed the way we power electronics of every type, from cameras to phones to music players. A powerful, rechargeable hearing aid battery is finally living up to the hopes of hearing aid makers to replace the outdated disposable power sources of the past.
Disposable hearing aid batteries have historically been the power source of choice among manufacturers, with size 312 batteries serving as one of the more prevalent battery types. The most prominent form of this battery, now, is “zinc-ion”.
The Downside to Disposable Hearing Aid Batteries
The presence of air effects a zinc-air battery, as the name indicates. The user has to pull a little tab off the back of a 312 zinc-air battery to activate it.
They will begin draining power the moment they are fully oxygenated. That means power is start to drain even if the user isn’t ready.
The biggest drawback to disposable batteries, for the majority of users, is how short they last. Some reports have cited the average life expectancy of a size 312 disposable battery to be from 3 and 12 days, which means users could replace their batteries around 120 times per year.
Because of this, besides having to buy 120 batteries, the user will need to change and properly dispose of batteries at least two times every week. That’s most likely over $100 in batteries from a cost perspective alone.
Rechargeable battery Advancements
Fortunately, for hearing aid users looking for another approach, there have been profound developments to rechargeable hearing aids that now make them a viable option.
Studies have shown that most people overwhelmingly prefer to use rechargeable hearing aids. Until now these models have traditionally struggled to provide a long enough charge to make them worthwhile. However, modern innovations now facilitate a full day of use per charge.
Users won’t see significant cost savings by changing to rechargeable batteries, but where they will see a demonstrated improvement is in quality of life.
On top of supplying 24 hours of use time, these contemporary models lead to less frustration for the user, since there’s no more swapping and properly disposing of batteries. They just need to put the battery on the charger.
When a disposable battery gets near the end of its life it can’t run your hearing aid at full capacity. And you can’t determine how near the battery is to failing. As a result, users risk putting themselves in a situation where their battery may die at a crucial time. Not only is this a safety concern, but users may miss out on important life moments due to a faulty battery.
Types of Rechargeable Hearing Aid Batteries
There are unique benefits to each of the different materials that rechargeable batteries are constructed from. The ability to maintain a charge for 24 hours is one reason why integrated lithium-ion batteries are one worthwhile option that manufacturers provide. And smart-phones are powered by this same type of battery which might be surprising.
Another kind of modern rechargeable battery is a silver-zinc. This innovative approach was initially manufactured for NASA’s Apollo moon missions. With this technology, even your existing hearing aids can probably be upgraded to run on rechargeable batteries. Just like lithium-ion, silver-zinc can also produce enough power to last you for a full day.
Some models even allow you to recharge the battery while it’s still in the hearing aid. At night, or at some other time when the hearing aid is not in use, the whole hearing aid can be placed right into the charger
Whichever option you choose, rechargeable batteries will be substantially better than disposable batteries. You just have to do some research to decide which solution is best for your needs.
Take a look at our hearing aid section if you’re searching for more information about what battery would be best for you or any other info about hearing aids.