When you use something daily, it’s likely to need a repair every once in a while. But when it comes to hearing aid repairs, it’s easy to become worried about what’s needed, how long it will take and what it might cost. These are some common problems that could need more than just a quick fix.

Your hearing aid won’t turn on

If the on/off switch is working properly, this fix to this problem may be as simple as replacing the batteries or as complicated as a short or internal corrosion. Start at home by checking the battery contacts to make sure they’re clean (you can wipe them down with a cotton swab). Insert new batteries and make sure the battery door is closed properly. If the unit still doesn’t respond, it’s time to take it to your audiologist.

You don’t hear anything

First, do a quick examination of your hearing aid. Is the volume setting correct? Do you see any wax in the microphone? Use the hearing aid cleaning tools to remove any wax or debris that may be clogging the ports. If that doesn’t fix the problem, the microphone or receiver may not be functioning properly.

Things don’t sound right

If you hear crackling and other noises, your volume control may be dirty. Clean it with a brush and move the wheel up and down to loosen any dirt and debris. If you have behind-the-ear hearing aids, check your tubing for blockages or moisture. An improper fit can lead to feedback and whistling. Your audiologist is the first stop to have these things checked out.

Severe hearing aid damage

Whether you left your hearing aids in a hot car and now they’re not working or if the dog swallowed them; accidents can happen. You say you dropped your unit in a sink full of water? Wore it swimming? Took a shower with it? Water damage is the most common hearing aid problem. No matter what the uh-oh is, the best course of action is to do a physical exam of the hearing aid, check for any visible damage and then decide what to do. Maybe your hearing aid dehumidifier will dry out the unit. If not, perhaps some air from the hair dryer (turned on low) might work. Chances are your audiologist or the manufacturer may be able to make some repairs, but if you dropped the hearing aid and stepped on it, it’s probably a goner.

There’s no need to get upset over the possibility of hearing aids repairs. Things happen and more often than not there’s a fix. If you think you’re accident-prone or just want to be sure, an extended warranty may put your mind at ease. Even if you have to send your hearing aids out to the manufacturer, your audiologist likely will have a loaner for you to use while repairs are being made. And as they say, prevention is the best medicine, so daily maintenance is vital.