Peak Hearing
News and stories from Peak Hearing Systems

March 2018
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Just how water resistant are the new generations of hearing aids?
Filed under: General
Posted by: @ 10:44 am
This has been an interesting week for accidentally testing the water resistance of the new generation of water resistant hearing aids.  All of the companies are boasting that their hearing aids are coated with water resistant compounds and gaskets that keep the water out of hearing aids.  It is a good trend but some of them appear to be better than others.  

Customer #1:  This is a new user in his late 50’s who has a physically active job and is a new user of hearing aids.  New users often make mistakes because they forget they have their hearing aids on and do things like go in the shower or snorkeling before they remember, oops, I have my hearing aids on.  While enjoying a soak in the hot tub one evening, he dunked his head under the water when his new Oticon Acto Pro Mini Rite hearing aids fell off and went to the bottom of the hot tub.   He retrieved them quickly and dried them off and brought them to me for analysis.  I tested them and found them to be working at the original specifications.  I was frankly shocked.  Their water resistant technology seems to be working very well.

Customer #2:  This elderly lady has recently been transferred to a assistant living facility and her Phonak Naida S hearing aid was bundled up in her bedding and washed and dried before it was found to be missing.  Her daughter brought it to me and I found the only problem was that the tubing going from the hearing aid to the ear mold was slightly melted.  I replaced the tubing and tested the hearing aid and it passed all the tests.  

Customer #3:  This is an experienced hearing aid user who I have known for years and tries every hearing I ask him to.  I recently wanted to test the new Starkey hearing aids and had a 3 series i110 model I had asked him to try.  He was impressed with the sound quality and his ability to hear in noisy environments but after a couple of weeks he started having problems.  I made some adjustments but after a couple of tries I sensed something might be wrong with them and I asked him to leave them with me for testing.  Upon analysis I found the microphone screens were plugged with moisture.  This was only after three weeks and it was affecting the performance of the hearing aids.  It appears the microphone screens are a little too small and too exposed to the surface to keep the moisture out.  It was a simple fix for me to clean them but I’m not sure that most customers will be able to keep the microphones cleaned without lots of trips to the dispenser.  The sound quality is superb but that may be overshadowed by the failure rate.

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