Used Hearing Aids
Hearing aids are medical devices that are made to uniquely fit the user, not only physically but in terms of programming as well. Hearing aids all work differently and bring different features and technologies, making it easy to find a hearing aid that best suits your type and degree of hearing loss. When hearing aids are considered a viable option for someone with a hearing loss, they are programmed using audiological software and the audiogram that was completed in a previous appointment.
This allows for the hearing aid to amplify frequencies according to your needs, as well as ensuring that the hearing aid is comfortable and helpful.
If you wanted to wear a used hearing aid, you would not be able to use it straight away.
This is because it is programmed to help the previous owner, and therefore must be reprogrammed to your specific type and degree of hearing loss.
There are additional factors that need to be considered when deciding on a used hearing aid that will be discussed throughout this article.
Can You Use Someone Else’s Hearing Aid?
Used hearing aids almost seem like the perfect solution to reducing the cost of hearing aids. However, there are a few reasons as to why used hearings may not be the option for you.
If you are someone that wishes to have discreet, custom style hearing aids, then used hearing aids are out of the question. As the name suggests, custom style hearing aids are made to perfectly fit the user. Custom style hearing aids, such as in-the-ear (ITE) and in-the-canal (ITC) hearing aids, are made using an impression from the original wearer so that the resulting hearing aid fits snuggly and comfortably in that person’s ear.
Like many things, our ear canals are unique and different both in width and shape.
Therefore, the chance of a used custom style hearing aid fitting you is extremely unlikely.
Furthermore, even if you went to get it remade to fit your ear, it would only add to the cost which means you might as well buy a new one fit for your ear.
Behind-the-ear (BTE) hearing aids on the other hand can be reused, so long as it is reprogrammed by an audiologist to fit your type of hearing loss. All you will need is a new mould, dome, or custom tip.
Something else that you must consider is that you will be using a hearing aid that may have outdated or less advanced technology. The technology of hearing aids defines what features are available to you, and how well they perform. A new hearing aid will be much better at reducing noise and cancelling feedback than an older one. Als
Alsoo, the overall clarity of a new hearing aid will be much better than a used one.
Various other considerations include whether the hearing aid is powerful enough, if the style is suited to your hearing loss as some styles increase the risk of occlusion or feedback depending the configuration of your loss, and finally understanding that you will still need to pay to have your hearing tested, as well as have the hearing aid reprogrammed, fitted to your ear, for ongoing service and for the dome or mould.
Used Hearing Aid Warranties
Another major downside of buying a used hearing aid is that it may no longer be covered by the manufacturers warranty and therefore if it breaks, or anything goes wrong with it, you may be up for costly repairs. Most hearing aid manufacturers can repair a hearing aid even if its out of warranty, however if the hearing aid is a number of years old they may refuse to repair the device leaving you with no options other than to throw the hearing aid out. If you do end up buying used hearing aids you may want to have them listed under your home and contents insurance policy for peace of mind.
Where Can I Donate Used Hearing Aids?
When you have bought a new pair of hearing aids, you may find that you no longer have a use for your old hearing aids.
While some people may keep their old hearing aids as a back-up pair should something go wrong with their new ones, if this not something you feel the need to do, donating your hearing aids is a great option to get rid of them as opposed to letting them become dusty in a drawer or throwing them out.
There are a few organisations where you can donate your old hearing aids that will use them for parts or to be fixed and sold to someone as second-hand. The most common place where you can donate your used hearing aids is a hearing aid bank. The hearing aid bank then fixes up the hearing aid to be used by someone else. Some organisations include:
- Recycled Sound: a community service project that collects, cleans, and reprograms donated hearing aids and gives them to those in the community who are unable to pay for a new one. They can be donated in person or through the mail.
- Ear Science Institute Australia: collects and services preowned or unwanted hearing aids. The serviced hearing aids are then distributed in Perth, Philippines, Indonesia, and Kenya. The hearing aids can be dropped-off at any Lions Hearing Clinic.
Donating your used hearing aids is an amazing thing as you are allowing those who would not be able to afford a hearing aid have a chance to hear and experience the benefits that you do when you are wearing hearing aids. Furthermore, those who cannot afford hearing aids are often those that are most in need of them as they may be unemployed, from a single-income family, asylum seekers, or refugees. Not being able to hear properly will only add to the burden.
Buy Used Hearing Aids
Buying used hearing aids is a viable option for those who are not eligible for the Hearing Services Program and cannot afford a new hearing aid. You can buy used hearing aids from hearing aid banks if you are deemed eligible.
Eligibility can include proof that you cannot afford a hearing aid and do not qualify for the Hearing Services Program. However, some hearing aid banks will require more in order for you to be eligible to their services.
What to look out for when buying used hearing aids
- Check the outside of the device and make sure that there isn’t much wear and tear and that the hearing aid looks to be in good working order.
- Open the battery compartment and look inside to make sure that the contacts are clear and that the battery door locks properly.
- Make sure the microphone and vents in the hearing aids are not blocked and are clear from dust or debris.
- Look for any signs of rust or that the shell of the hearing aid is cracked or broken.
- Turn the hearing aid on and make sure that it’s functioning properly.
Used Hearing Aid Values
Unless you alone sell your used hearing aid on an online store, you will not receive any compensation when you donate. When you buy used hearing aids, the price will vary depending on where you buy it.
For example, some hearing aid banks will give you a voucher which can used on buying a used hearing aid. Other hearing aid banks will merely offer the used hearing aids at a more affordable price.
Contact us on 1300 848 335 today for a free, no obligation consultation with one of our qualified consultants.