Because of the drawbacks of traditional batteries, rechargeable batteries have become increasingly common over the years. Rechargeable batteries cost a lot up front, but they save money in the long run and are more convenient to use than traditional batteries. As long as they are charged every night, they will last throughout the following day. The only significant inconvenience is going to an audiologist periodically to have hearing aid battery replaced, the same way you might have a laptop battery replaced. Rechargeable batteries also have a smaller impact on the environment than traditional disposable batteries.
How to find the best rechargeable hearing aids
The most important factor to look for in a rechargeable hearing aid is a long battery life after recharging. This is especially important if you anticipate using advanced features like Bluetooth, as these will drain the battery faster than normal use does. It also helps if the hearing aid is simple and easy to recharge. That way you'll always use the rechargeable battery and never have to resort to traditional batteries. Docks where you simply drop in the hearing aids and any remote are convenient.
Compare the best rechargeable hearing aids
We chose our top models based on value, consumer satisfaction and technology. Our top picks come from trusted and reliable hearing aid companies.
Rechargeable LI RIC by Miracle-Ear
The Rechargeable LI RIC hearing aid by Miracle-Ear is our top pick for rechargeable hearing aids. This model requires minimum effort on the part of the consumer, charging automatically when placed in its charger. You can expect 24 hours of use after a single overnight charge of the built-in lithium ion battery. The charging cable is compatible with common power sources. The Rechargeable LI RIC is a receiver-in-canal hearing aid, meaning it is small, discreet and lightweight. It is available in eight colors and is compatible with the GENIUScontrol and GENIUSlink apps, which allow users to control their hearing aid settings through their smartphones. Users can also stream audio to this hearing aid using Bluetooth technology.
Like other Miracle-Ear hearing aids, a 3-year warranty comes standard with the Rechargeable LI RIC hearing aid. The GENIUS ™ 2.0 Technology by Miracle-Ear uses an adaptive directional microphone to lessen background noise and isolate and enhance the noises users want to hear, like speech. It also has settings to help mask tinnitus. This hearing aid is appropriate for users with mild to profound hearing loss.
Imprezo by Zounds
The Imprezo model by Zounds is a behind-the-ear hearing aid, meaning the electronic parts of the hearing aid all rest behind the ear. Recharging is simple—just place the hearing aids and its corresponding remote in their charging station. An overnight charge will provide 20 hours of battery life. When the battery on the hearing aid is running low, you will hear a spoken voice notification. Users can expect a comfortable fit, as Zounds offers several tip choices so users can find the one most comfortable for them.
Imprezo features 20 channels. The remote control also has four different modes—Dining Mode, Party Mode, Music Mode and Quiet Mode to allow users to customize your listening experience. The Intuitive Noise Cancellation3™ technology by Zounds uses a directional noise reduction system to diminish ambient noise. Additional wind noise reduction and feedback reduction technologies also help diminish the noises you don’t want to hear. The Imprezo is suitable for users with moderate to profound levels of hearing loss.
Evoke 220 Fusion 2 by Widex
The Evoke 220 Fusion 2 by Widex is our top pick for rechargeable hearing aid with the best value. The receiver-in-canal model has an optional rechargeable version that we recommend. The model sits behind the ear and thus is not very noticeable to other people. Evoke also has a water resistant coating to protect from environmental damage. Sound-Sense Learn technology allows the hearing aid to learn your preferences and provide a more personalized hearing experience.
The Evoke hearing aid provides 10 channels and three customizable programs. Bluetooth connectivity is available in this model, meaning you can stream audio to the hearing aid from your Bluetooth compatible devices. The model comes in ten colors and features noise reduction technology. This hearing aid is suitable for wearers with mild to severe hearing loss. With a starting price of $1,299, Evoke 220 Fusion 2 by Widex is a great pick for a rechargeable battery with advanced technology features but a reasonable cost.
How do hearing aid batteries work?
Traditional disposable hearing aid batteries can last anywhere from three days to several weeks. The cost of using new batteries every few days or weeks adds up. Thanks to recent advances in technology, manufacturers are now able to create rechargeable hearing aid batteries that can last up to 24 hours on an overnight charge. Since most hearing aid wearers only use their hearing aids for 12 to 16 hours at a time, rechargeable hearing aids are a viable alternative to traditional battery-powered hearing aids. Rechargeable hearing aids require a steep initial investment, but over the long run they save consumers money when compared to traditional hearing aid batteries. They also have less of an impact on the environment.
- What is the difference between silver-zinc vs. lithium-ion battery?
There are two main types of rechargeable batteries used in hearing aids:
- Lithium-ion batteries:
Lithium-ion batteries are typically used in portable electronics like cell phones. However, they are not as popular for hearing aids because they must be sealed in the hearing aid to prevent the risk of fire caused by mishandling. Once the lithium-ion battery completes its lifespan, a wearer can either replace their hearing aid entirely or exchange it through the manufacturer.
- Silver-zinc batteries:
Silver-zinc rechargeable batteries are popular for hearing aids because they can be used interchangeably with zinc-air batteries, which are not rechargeable. Silver-zinc batteries are also significantly safer than lithium-ion batteries and 100 percent recyclable.
- Lithium-ion batteries:
- How much do rechargeable hearing aids cost?
- Rechargeable hearing aids range widely in price. Factors affecting the cost of rechargeable hearing aids include style, length of recharge, features, size, number of channels and even service and support. The most expensive rechargeable hearing aids will have several channels, numerous noise reduction features and a discreet style. The cost of rechargeable batteries are another factor to consider when calculating the price of a rechargeable hearing aid.
A silver-zinc rechargeable battery would only need to be replaced either once or twice a year, which would cost the wearer between $25 and $50. Lithium-ion batteries cost around $200, but they last much longer. The value of a rechargeable battery system is comparable to the value of 100 traditional hearing aid batteries. A person who needs hearing aids in both ears will go through about 100 disposable batteries each year, which could cost between $100 and $150.
- How long do rechargeable hearing aid batteries last?
- Hearing aid battery life ranges from six months to five years depending on battery type. Silver-zinc batteries can provide all-day power for rechargeable hearing aids after a four-hour charge, even while using features like Bluetooth connectivity. It is recommended that silver-zinc batteries be replaced once or twice a year. Lithium-ion batteries can last up to four to five years and offer similar daily usage times of around 24 hours after a three-to-four-hour charge.
- Are rechargeable hearing aids worth it?
- Rechargeable hearing aids might seem expensive at first, and the batteries cost a fair amount to replace. However, if you can afford the initial investment, they are well worth the purchase. You will save more money long-term using hearing aids with rechargeable hearing aids vs. traditional hearing aids with disposable batteries. It's also much more convenient to recharge your hearing aids every evening as part of your nightly routine rather than buy new batteries on a regular basis or have to worry about losing charge in the middle of the day. Overall, rechargeable hearing aids are a worthy investment.