Should I be skeptical about rechargeable hearing aid?

For active professionals using rechargeable hearing aids: what’s your experience? Many brands now offer rechargeable options, promising better performance and lower costs. But, as someone always on calls and in meetings, I worry about the aids dying at critical moments. I prefer quickly swapping batteries over waiting for a recharge. The model I’m considering only has a built-in battery, without the option for traditional batteries. My main concern is reliability—fearing they’ll stop working mid-conversation, especially if I forget to charge them or leave the charger behind while traveling.


Oh, you are stirring the hornets nest here :slight_smile: . This topic usually gets very heated - there seem to be a lot of people on both sides of this debate. I think the key is figuring out if the HAs you are considering will last throughout the day.

I, like you, was skeptical when I got my latest HAs, so my audi suggested that I do a trial with rechargeable aids and if I liked everything else about them but would prefer the battery version, I would swap them out. That’s what I did and surprisingly I prefer the rechargeables. I have the Oticon Moores, and I wear them for an average of 16 hours a day and have between 25-30% remaining when I take them out at night. I also have the portable charger that charges them ~5 times that I bring when I travel.

For me, I like knowing that I can get through a meeting / event without them going dead. I know this because firstly they always last throught the day (and when they don’t my audi can replace them in her office) and if I was in doubt I can check the battery level on my phone. I did have experiences with my older replaceable batteries where they died at inconvenient times (in a meeting, etc) where yes, I could change them quickly, but not without distracting everyone. So for me they have actually removed the battery stress that I used to have.

However, a lot of people don’t feel the same as me. I know there are some brands that do not last an entire day for people, so that would make a big difference. There are also brands that can’t have the batteries replaced without sending them back to the manufacturer.

This is just my opinion and experience, I’m sure you will get others!


Oh thanks, I should have searched the forum first for this topic. I will do that now.

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As a working professional, I dropped Phonak yesterday like a bad habit because they eliminated CROS support for the Naida P & L UP line. Not only, that, in their latest lines they only support rechargeable batteries on CROS. So, that really rubbed me the wrong way that a tech that I bought into 10 years ago, Phonak no longer supports and decided to say eff you to me and others.

It’s a deal-breaker for me when I work all day. Clearly, zero thought was put into this decision for working professionals. I have meetings. My hearing is inaudible without hearing aids. I wear my aids 24/7 and cannot be without them for three hours. It might be fine for those who are retired and old. But not for me.

This made trialing my new Oticon Xceed 1s an easy decision.


Few things to think about. How long might you need the aid on during the day, what aids are you talking about and how burdensome is it for you to plan a bit and charge the aids 30 minutes during the day?
If you’re talking Resounds and I think Starkeys, they have pretty long rechargeable battery lives and it shouldn’t be an issue at all. If Phonak and you have long days, you’ll definitely need to plan. If that’s too much hassle, pick an aid with a disposable battery.

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I totally understand your skepticism. If they want to force the rechargeable batteries maybe make the batteries replaceable by the user and provide an additional set of batteries that we can immediately use and so on. I am looking into Signia IX and it only comes in this type of batteries. Maybe I will have either to downgrade to AX or find another brand.

As a retired IT Profesional i will say that i now prefer rechargeable aids. My issues with the disposable batteries was them dying right in the middle of an important phone call or business meeting. At least with the rechargeable aids I am reassured of the fact that they will last for at least 16 hours even with streaming phone calls. But i always preferred using over the ear headphones over my aids and with rechargeable aids that i wear that would mean a good 24 hours of battery life from a fulp charge. Now all I have to say to you is choice the best aid for your hearing loss, not because it has some othet secondary things other than the best aid for you to understand conversations.


I think initially, most HA models that became the rechargeable type require that you send in your HAs back to the factory to get the batteries replace once they can no longer hold a long enough charge in the day for you. This can take you out of commission for up to a week or two easily. But when Oticon released their rechargeable models, the batteries can be replaced immediately at your HCP’s office if they keep it in stock. The HCP will need to reset the battery statistics in the software for the new batteries, but that can be done in the same visit. I don’t know if any of the other brands have opted to go that way yet or not (replace same day at the office for instant turn-around time), so that’s something you also want to ask when you consider whatever brand/model of rechargeable you’re interested in.

You can probably even replace them yourself at home if your HCP is willing to let you keep a pair of spare batteries yourself. But you’ll probably need to bring your HAs in to get the batteries’ statistics reset in the software at some point, though, unless you’re a DIY who do your own programming. Oticon doesn’t sell their spare rechargeable batteries to the public, though. They only make it available through their HCP channel.

I think if you have a pair of backup HAs that run on disposable batteries and can stream for your calls and meetings, then it’s OK to go with a new set of HAs that are rechargeable. But if no backup, then you should probably find a brand/model that has the disposable battery option just to be safer.

I’ve known of an Oticon user who had rechargeable More model but went back to the disposable version when they upgraded to the next gen Real model because they ran into issues with their More rechargeable batteries and had had to replace them under warranty. Of course the Costco KS10 (the Phonak Paradise equivalent) is notorious for its rechargeable battery reliability as well. You should probably not count on rechargeable HA’s reliability (battery-wise) unless you have a pair of disposable battery type backup HAs to fall back on.


Thank you, I didn’t know Oticon going to release a new rechargeable hearing aid. I know they didn’t release anything this year per my audiologist though.

I do have my current pair as a backup, but also don’t want to risk buying rechargeable ones unless these new hearing aids have features that aren’t present on previous models. For example, I might go for Signia AX instead of the most recent release IX etc.

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I mostly thinking about Signia and Oticon. I currently wear Signia and it is the best hearing aid I ever had (nx model), but that could just be because my audiologist configured it right this time. Thought I am still unsure because if I have 20% out of pocket to whatever hearing aid I end up buying.
Buying from Costco I will spend about $200 out of pocket, but other premium hearing aids it will $1000 out of pocket. You can say, I am still weighting the pros and cons.

You’re right. And I think retired people are where the majority of their market is and that is why they pushing their rechargeable IMO.

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I have the Starkey rechargeable HAs. When I switched, I had the same concern as the OP. I purchased a Starkey Turbocharger to keep in my briefcase. This allows adding 3 hours of life with 8 minutes on the charger. It is also a battery and easily fits in a pocket, so can be used anywhere. In the 2 years with these HAs, I have not needed it to get through my workday. I work in an office environment.

The only time my HAs run out of battery is if I am in a noisy environment for hours during the day - and that is an environment where I prefer to turn off the HAs anyway. I generally put my HAs in around 06:30 and they are still working when I put them in the charger and go to bed around 10:30.

As to forgetting your charger while on a trip, this is where the turbocharger comes in. Since I don’t need it in my briefcase, I keep it and it’s charging cord in my travel kit. It is smaller than the stock charger, so works great for travel.


I have a similar charger for my Oticon aids
And if i amaway from home for any amount of time i have my backup aids with me. Not because of rechargeable hearing aids but because due to my hearing loss. I have been wearing aids for 20 years, i know from experience any type of electronics can die without warning in a heartbeat.


I was an IT professional… the last 25 years for a large group of hospitals. No way rechargeable aids would have worked for me. On-call 24/7, all nighters, endless meetings, etc…


I’m not sure where the idea that rechargeable is better for retired people comes from. I am a professional and in work meetings a lot, and no question that I prefer the rechargebles for work. I did not like not knowing when the disposables were going to run out. Yes, you can just change them frequently, but that always seems like a waste to me. With rechargeables I know if I charge them overnight I don’t have to worry the next day at all. I have no stress about them dying in the middle of something important.


This is the single most important reason I also find that is the true advantage of rechargeable batteries. I just don’t like to waste batteries by changing them out earlier than necessary. And along with that is the fact that you would have to carry spare batteries on you everywhere you go if you don’t change them out before they go empty.


If you don’t like carrying spare batteries, what do you think of carrying a charger? The Phonak Lumity manual tells how to reboot the aids to clear an error condition, and one step is putting them into the charger. I don’t see the same in other rechargeable aids’ manuals I looked at, but on these forums I’ve seen mention of putting aids into a charger to get them working again.


For my Oticon Moores, putting them in a charger does nothing that turning them on and off doesn’t do (besides charging of course). So if something could be fixed by putting it in the charger, it should be fixed by turning them on and off. On the rare occasion I have had a connection issue (rare since the firmware problem was fixed ~a year ago) I just turn the HA on and off with the button.

When they were new and I was not confident in how the batteries would work, I did bring the travel charger to work for the first few days. I have not brought it now in over a year - for me anyway it has not been necessary.


Phonak Lumity L-R re-charge times, per p. 15 of the User Guide:
30 min. - 30%
60 min. - 50%
90 min. - 80%
3 hr. - 100%

The aids provide an aural warning about an hour before recharging is required.

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