Tubing

I went to the audi’s office last week and got tubing replaced. I couldn’t turn HA’s up without getting too much feedback, so I wanted thick wall tubing. I watched her do it, and I know it is something I could do easily myself, at very low cost. I have been researching the past few hours, and think this place might be the best option, except they are out of stock with the tubing puller

What vendors do others use?

If you have heavy test fishing line you can make your own tubing puller. Just take a piece that is about 10-12 inches long, loop it over and tie it at the end. To pull the tubing through poke the looped end through the earmold from the end that goes in your ear canal, stick the tip of the tubing through the loop and pull it back through the earmold.

Some tubing is too fat to go through the earmold. I try to use the thickest wall that I can so I don’t have to glue it…

The typical size is size 13T or 13TT (super-thick).

I’ve never needed a puller to remove the tubing from the earmold and I don’t use glue anymore to keep the tubing in the mold. I start off by making a slit in the tubing where it is connected to the earhook and gently pull the tubing off the hook,if it won’t come off easily make sure you have cut all the way though the tubing at the hook, otherwise you risk breaking the earhook. Then I take a coffee cup and heat up about 2" of water in a microwave until it is as hot as very hot cup of coffee, I then drop the earmold and tubing in for about a minute, once the minute is up you just have to pull the tubing out of the earmold. I then take a toothbrush and clean the mold prior to inserting the new tubing. Next, I use the removed tubing as a template for the new tubing and cut the portion that will go into the earhook the same length and then slip the other end of the tubing into the earmold and cut it about 1/16" past the end of the inside portion of the mold, by doing this the tubing won’t slide out over time, but if you want to cut it flush you will need to put superglue on the tubing to keep it in the mold. I started doing my own replacements after the person at the audiologist office broke my earhook replacing my tubing and on one of my last visits I gave the guy at the office a lesson on how I do it and he now does it my way and he can do it faster and doesn’t have to ream out the hook to remove the old glue since it comes out with the tubing and he hasn’t broken any more earhooks. My audi gives me 6 replacement tubes at a time and I replace them about every 4 months.

I’ve never used a tube puller either. Why would you need one? You just twist and pull at the same time and tubing comes off.

If you need to cut the tubing off, it means you should of changed the tubing a long time ago.

Some deeper acrylic moulds don’t let you push the new tubing through easily even with a long ‘tail’ . As the good Doc says, you want tubing to have a good interference fit - ideally without using adhesive. Getting the tubing down the mould can sometimes require the use of a puller.

Those pliers for stretching the tube to put it on the hook are awfully expensive. Is there an economical way of doing this, given the fact I might go RIC later?

And I watched her put glue on the join between earhook and tubing. I presume that glue is an essential?

Yeah, she really had to put some effort into pulling the tubing through the mold. I didn’t see her warming them up before, though.

I made the order. This should save me mucho dinero.

Brute force and ignorance works for me :wink:

If you are struggling though try pushing the tubing along a tapered pen tip - like a BIC biro, it will usually splay the end sufficiently to get it over the earhook tip.

A fine gauge knitting needle should work even better. However, I bought the pliers. I can sell them later. Even this purchase is less expensive than tube replacement!!

With no tools the whole job takes me less than 5 minutes. I wouldn’t put any glue on the tubing going into the earhook.
Naida,
I only cut the tubing at the earhook as a precaution, it’s better to be safe than have a broken earhook. One quick cut with an X-acto knife and you have no chance of breaking the hook.

I had a really hard time pushing new tubing into my Grandmas molds but with brute force, it was very easy to do. Must easier then getting these pliers and also saves you money!

Also if you cut the tubing along the end and make it really pointy then it’s a lot easier.

The tubing I get already is pointed and has a portion of the tubing that goes through the mold is cut away so it goes through pretty easy and no real force is needed.

NO. No glue to keep tubing on the earhook…earmold maybe…earhook, never.

Yep…sometimes I have to use the expanders but that’s only when I have tubing that is very narrow and won’t fit over the earhook. That’s maybe 5% of the time though.

Well, I traded my stash of tonic water :o for a piece of fishing line. Won’t have to change tubes for a few months yet, unless I get tired of the beads I have on my tubes right now.

Where can I get the right earhooks (other than audi office) for my HA’s if I should break them in the process?

If no glue at the earhook/tube join, then I really want to use that tube expander!!

The diagonal cut on the tubes should be enough to get them through, given that my molds are in the canal only. But if I want to change beads–

I panicked this morning when I couldn’t get any sound out of my right aid. Drove 40 mi. to find out it was a bit of condensation in the tube. She showed me how to test for that. :o Dri-Bricks do not last a full two months. No charge for the visit. But I got a bulb blower to take care of that, and some spare earhooks. Package had arrived by the time I got back home.

Tech praised me for developing self-sufficiency.

She did mention a little cut in the tube when you take it off of the earhook, because of the possibility of breaking the earhook. Wonder if she reads this board?

Ear wax and moisture with diminish or completely take away any sound from coming out of the HA. Next possible cause is a clogged filter or wax guard if your HA has one, always check off the basic possibilities before making a trip to the audi’s office. However, we all learn the hard way.
Time is money to the audi and if they can eliminate replacing a broken earhook caused by them pulling off a earmold tube by making a simple cut in the tube where it meets the hook then that is money in their pocket. The blower comes in handy especially during the summer if you sweat a lot. Do you have a Dry n Store or just the drying jar? If you don’t already have a D n S I would get one and most of your moisture problems will go away.

Yeah, with that air blower bulb, I can eliminate that possibility immediately. Unscrewing the earhook, turning the HA on, and holding it in your hand can produce a magnificent squeal if the problem is in hook/tube/mold. She made mention of watching condensation develop in tubes on hot days.
Half of the earhooks she gave me have filters built in; she suggested I experiment with that and see how I like the sound. I may save them for summer. Since they switched brands, and ReSound discontinued that model, I may be one of few clients left who use that particular earhook.

I have a D&S, but I had put the brick in it on New Year’s Eve, so it was at the outer edge of effectiveness. I also have a homemade jar that I used to take it to office.

You definitely don’t want to put any glue between the tubing and the earhook. Tubing expanders aren’t a necessity, but it sure makes it easier to pull the tubing over the earhook. If you do use glue, just a drop or two at the elbow will do it.

A tubing puller is great, especially if you use thicker tubing. You can probably make one yourself pretty easily, it’s basically just a loop of wire on a handle. Thread the loop through the earmold backwards, put the tip of the tubing through the loop, and pull through.

To stop all this problems with condensation, you need to disconnect tubing from ear hooks every night, this allows ear hook to dry out over night and then you can use the puffer for the tubing. I then put mine in my d&s.

To me, disconnecting the tubing and ear hook every night is simple maintenance and if your not doing that, your not looking after your HAs properly.

Can’t believe people don’t do this simple maintenance.

Naida,
With removing the tubing from the earhooks every night, how often do you have to replace you tubing? Just curious.

About every 4 to 6 months but I’m also very active, with climbing and mountain biking. I’ve been told the more active you are, the more the tubing would be need to be replaced.

I was changing them every month for a while coz my tubing used to fall out of my earmolds but have found out that my holes in my earmolds are drilled for the size of double thickwall not thickwall so that problem has been solved so don’t need to replace them as much.

I’ve never had my ear hook block either but I read about this a lot, that the ear hooks blocks. If you look after the HA properly, people shouldn’t get blocked ear hooks either.