Is this a scam?

My sister has been wearing ReSound Quattro aids ($6800 new) for 2 years after 4 years with Oticon. Her audiologist is telling her that her “warranty” will expire in a few weeks, 2 years after purchase. They will sell her an extension for 2 more years at $795. They will not extend the “warranty” after the additional 2 years because they say that after 4 years of use, the hearing aids should be replaced with new ones.

Her other complaint with these hearing aids is that periodically the aids start beeping repeatedly. The audiologist says this is due to ear wax, which he then removes. The cost for an appointment with the Audi is $175, so that’s the cost of ear wax removal. She has never had this ear wax problem with her Oticons, which she still uses as a backup pair.

What’s your take on all this?

Hearing aids do not need to be replaced after four years of use. Today’s hearing aids can easily go six or seven years or even longer. If the hearing changes, they can be reprogrammed. Many people replace hearing aids every two or three years, just like many people buy a new car every two or three years. The old ones are not worn out, they just want something new and different. The pricing seems a little high. If she paid $6800 for the aids, it sounds like it should be a “bundled” price and service would be included without a $175 office call. If it were me, I would check some other providers for a cost comparison. It does depend on where she is located, in a large city the cost of running an office is much higher than in a smaller town. When I was still in practice, I did not charge for wax removal and service appointments were at no charge as long as the hearing aids were ones that I fit.


Seems pricy. I’m guessing office in a high rent district. This exemplifies why it’s important to understand pricing before one commits.

Yes, she lives in NYC, so overhead is high.

Here’s the update. She called the audiologist’s office, which is a group practice. Her Audi was not available, so the Secretary checked the records, which showed a 3 year warranty - not two. The secretary said that the warranty was good through May, 2022. But my sister bought them in August, but the Audi never updated the paperwork with ReSound to record the date of sale to the customer. May is the date when the practice bought them from ReSound. In addition, I called ReSound and was told that they will extend their warranty (at a cost) on all their products for up to 5 years. So, the comment that the aids can’t be warranted beyond 4 years was either a lie or incompetence. Same for the comment that she was only warranted for 2 years. My sister now has a call into the owner of the practice.


I’d also ask, what the repair would cost. I do not know about Resound. But 4 years ago, I paid only about ~250$ per aid for a full serive with my old Oticons. Since the repair wasn’t possible, they replaced them even for that price.
Same for my new Phonaks, my Audi said, the repair/replacement costs $200 per aid.
Maybe she could go to a different Audi and explain the situation. He might be ready to handle the repair. If he does he will have a new and happy customer.
There is also the possibility that only the receiver needs to be replaced. Then it will be even cheaper.

Hearing aids get replaced because the owner wants an upgrade in technology, they aren’t good enough any longer for the owner or they outright break and the owner would rather replace then repair. There’s nothing that day you should replace an aid every 4 years and I never have. What are we, millionaires

I used to change my hearing aids every 4 years because the health insurance covered their costs once every 4 years but now I am in an higher bracket (top end hearing aids) and they no longer cover them so I will keep then longer. I upgraded these from my old phonaks after 4 years just because these have built in BT and I no longer needed an expensive compilot 2 which had just gone dead.

I have a 5 year guarantee on these Phonak Paradise hearing aids and insured them for 5 years which cost me about 95 euro per year in the Netherlands.

When the technology didn’t change so fast, I wore a pair of hearing aids for 16 years.


To reader, the $1,399 new KS 10 from Costco which are the same as $6,000 Phonak Paradise work great and have three year warrant and free adjustments.

I have previously worn over last 22 years two pairs of Starkey and the two by pairs of Phonaks. My Audi was very nice and said that will be $6,800:-)

If she were my sister, after warrant expires and aids need repair go to Costco for KS 10.

Two Cent

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Fred, I have to disagree. The KS10 hearing aids are not “the same” as the Phonak Paradise. In addition someone buying them has to be comfortable with service from the Hearing Instrument Specialist at your local Costco unless you’re lucky enough to have an actual audiologist at your Costco, which is far from the norm. My experience with several Costco’s is that the HIS model is spotty at best. When buying a hearing aid in America, the services of an audiologist are bundled with it, so that has to be considered as part of the package. Being randomly assigned a HIS rather than being able to choose your own audiologist Iis a big deal to me.

I’m not saying that the KS10 made by Phonak is not a bargain and high quality, or that there aren’t pluses with the Costco sales and service model. I’m just saying that it’s not “the same”.


This is pretty bold talk from a one-eyed fat man.

My point was that my sister has no interest in the Costco service model. Remember her? This thread is about her experience. I have no idea why Costco was suggested since it has absolutely nothing to do with the topic.

Totally agree.
I answered your comments towards Costco.

Your sister is getting burned by her audiologist.
Chalk it up as experience.

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What is different about them?

I tend to call the KS10 (Which I am currently using) a cousin of the P90, On the outside microphone placement is different. Though internally, i believe, they are the same. Also Costco will not enable the tinnitus support.

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The buttons on the KS9 and KS10 are somewhat different than the Marvel and Paradise. I like them better (they’re more distinctly felt)

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I believe that by law all manufacturers would have to guarantee spare parts and reprogramming for their hearing aids for a minimum of 10 years.

I believe in the freedom of everyone to be able to change hearing aids every year and always have the best, but we must also respect the user who wants to keep their hearing aids longer at lower maintenance costs.

Personal reasons for changing the hearing aid do not have to come due to warranty extensions or lack of spare parts.

The duration of a hearing aid is indeterminate. For example, I have my magnificent Oticon Delta 6,000 from 2006 operating, but in my case I can no longer use them because my hearing loss increases.

In my work with the public I use my best Oticon OPN3 headphones, but in everyday use I do not mind using the Ino, Get or Hit of older technologies.

Currently the most versatile headphones are the Rite type since they allow you to extend the amplification range easily by changing the output power of the receiver (65,85,100db), without being forced to change the headphone.

I am lucky to have prosthetic technicians available who have the ability to program Oticon hearing aids from the Delta series to newer ones.

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When l had the Starkey BTE aids from 2007, it has been reconditioned twice and after 10 years, l went back to Starkey. They told me that they no longer service Starkey aids over 8 years old due to changing technology.