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Prolonging the lifespan of your hearing aid batteries could save you both time and money. If you can get a few extra days out of each battery, that’s a decent amount saved during the course of 12 months.

Luckily, there are actually a handful of things you can do to optimize your hearing aid battery life. If you can turn these eight guidelines into habits, you should see a difference immediately.

Here are eight ways to optimize the life of your hearing aid batteries.

1. Buy new hearing aid batteries

Hearing aid batteries unopened in the package can last for years. However, like all batteries, power is diminished as each year passes, so it’s always better to purchase the newer package.

2. Don’t remove the tab until you’re ready to use the batteries

Hearing aids take a special kind of battery known as a zinc-air battery. Each one has a plastic tab covering small holes on the top of the battery. Right after the tab is removed, air enters the holes and stimulates the zinc.

Right after this occurs, the battery is active and the power will begin depleting (reapplying the tab has no effect). That’s why you should pull the tab only if you anticipate using the battery immediately.

3. Employ the five-minute rule

Just after you remove the tab, don’t insert the battery into the hearing aid immediately. Rather, wait about 5-7 minutes. This will permit the air to thoroughly activate the battery, enhancing its life by up to three days.

4. Store at room temperature

You might have heard that you can lengthen the life of your batteries by keeping them in your refrigerator. The colder temperature reduces the release of power, or so the reasoning goes.

The problem is that the exact opposite takes place. Zinc-air batteries and moisture do not mix, and the condensation that develops from the refrigerator leads to corrosion and a higher risk of early failure.

Simply store your batteries at room temperature for the greatest results.

5. Leave the hearing aid battery door open when not being used

If you’re not using your hearing aid, turn it off and open the battery door. This minimizes drain and blocks corrosion. But keep in mind, don’t store your hearing aids in the bathroom; temperature changes and moisture are detrimental to the batteries. Your bedroom side-table is probably the best place.

6. Invest in a hearing aid dehumidifier

If you have a hearing aid dehumidifier, you won’t have to worry about where to store your hearing aids. At night, place your hearing aids in the dehumidifier to eliminate moisture and to provide a secure place for storage.

7. Remove the batteries if you won’t be using your hearing aids for prolonged periods

If you don’t anticipate using your hearing aids for a while, taking out the batteries completely will help prevent corrosion from collected moisture within the hearing aid.

8. Wash your hands before changing the batteries

Always remember that dirt, grime, and moisture are bad for both the hearing aid batteries and the hearing aids themselves. That’s the reason it’s important to wash your hands before replacing the batteries.