Is the Performance of a Hearing Aid Affected by Cold Weather?

Senior friends wearing aids enjoying a day on the slopes

In contrast to popular opinion, winter is fun! Alright, it can definitely be a bummer if you need to go anywhere. Or if you aren’t properly prepared. But during those chilly winter months, you can find plenty of enjoyable things to do.

Don’t believe it? Well, here are only a few examples of how cold weather can be enjoyable: you could go sledding or skiing. You could go for a snowmobile ride. You could go out onto the ice for some ice skating or ice fishing. With the proper gear, winter can be just as much of an outdoor season as spring, summer, or fall (and the hot chocolate is so much more rewarding when you’ve been outside in the cold).

But that’s a significant caveat: you need the right gear to remain comfortable. Perhaps you’re wondering if your hearing aid counts as part of that gear and whether it will be impacted by the cold. Or can cold weather damage my hearing aids?

Up to a point, most hearing aids will be fine in any weather

Hearing aids are designed to be used full-time. They’re constructed so you can wear them to the supermarket, out on a hike, or simply around the house. Which means that hearing aid makers are aware that these devices might take a beating. But just because hearing aids are meant to be worn all of the time doesn’t mean you should do anything drastic with them.

The majority of hearing aids are designed to be basically “all weather” as a result. Most hearing aids can function quite well between the temperatures of -13 and 158 degrees Fahrenheit. There are some places that will sometimes get colder than -13 but otherwise, that covers the broad spectrum of temperatures.

You will be able to hear well in the majority of settings and that’s a wonderful thing. So why don’t my hearing aids seem to work as well when it’s really cold? Hearing aids will function in the cold, just perhaps not as well.

Guidelines for hearing aids in the winter

Luckily, there are certain things you can do to help ensure your hearing aids continue to function at peak efficiency (or near enough) even in cold weather.

  • Keep your hearing aids secured in your ear by making use of accessories.: In order to be sure your hearing aids remain securely in place in your ears you can make use of one of many available clips or straps. This can be especially relevant if you’re involved in strenuous activity, including skiing, skating, or sledding.
  • Make sure you have freshly charged batteries: Hearing aid batteries don’t necessarily freeze but they will die faster in the cold. This means you’ll want to make certain you have a full charge before going out into any inclement weather.
  • It helps to wear a hat or earmuffs: Not only will this keep your ears cozy, it’ll keep your hearing aids toasty, too! And the warmer your hearing aids are, the more ideally they’ll be working. Maybe you’re wondering whether your hearing aids will still function if you have earmuffs over them. Well, it depends on the hearing aid, but in most cases, your hearing aids will still keep working.
  • Speak with us about how your hearing aids are fitting: At times, when they get really cold, hearing aids can be uncomfortable. Decrease any possible discomfort by getting help from us with the fit of your device.
  • When you aren’t using your hearing aids, store them in a dry and warm place: Your hearing aid will function better and with fewer issues if you keep moisture out of it. Maybe you’re not sure how to remove moisture from your hearing aid. In most situations, you can dry it off and then leave it somewhere warm and dry.
  • Letting your hearing aids get wet isn’t a smart idea: When snow melts, it’s wet, so be cautious about exposing your hearing aids to snow. If you’re going to ask, “Well, can I use hearing aids when it’s snowing or raining”? Yes, you can. Although most hearing aren’t waterproof, they are normally water resistant. So while your hearing aid will probably be fine if it gets a bit wet, you should dry it as soon as you can.

Perhaps you’re wondering how to safeguard your hearing aids when it gets cold. That’s exactly what we’re going to explore.

If your hearing aid quits working, what should you do?

Occasionally, unfortunately, your hearing aid will quit working even when the weather is warm and dry. There are a few basic troubleshooting measures you can take (for example, ensure the batteries are charged and that your devices are good and dry). If you still can’t determine why they aren’t working, we should be able to help you with that.

Don’t let cold weather keep you from enjoying life!

There are plenty of reasons why you may want to stay indoors when it’s -10 degrees outside. Perhaps you don’t like the cold. Maybe you’re going to make yourself some yummy hot soup. Maybe snowmobiles aren’t your jam. The important thing is that it shouldn’t be your hearing aids that are stopping you from living your greatest winter life.

That’s particularly true if you take care of your devices, and observe the guidelines outlined above. Call us if you have any concerns about how your hearing aids may be effected by the cold.

The site information is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. Schedule an appointment to see if hearing aids could benefit you.