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It’s only natural that those who wear hearing aids want to get the most out of their batteries, yet there is not one brand of hearing aid batteries that lasts the longest. Battery life varies substantially, and a 2013 study into hearing aid battery lifespan concluded there were some differences between brands, but that study has some major issues. Here’s what you need to know.

The Best Brands of Hearing Aid Batteries

The study tested hearing aid batteries and calculated the number of hours each set of batteries lasted. It came up with the following results:

Size 675 Batteries

ManufacturerManufacturer Service LifeObserved Service Life
Renata560240
Energizer290264
Duracell280372
Rayovac110252
icellTech290240

Size 13 Batteries

ManufacturerManufacturer Service LifeObserved Service Life
Renata440300
Energizer310240
Duracell310286
Rayovac140276
icellTech330240

Size 312 Batteries

ManufacturerManufacturer Service LifeObserved Service Life
Renata360204
Energizer180156
Duracell170276
Rayovac140204
icellTech170204

Size 10 Batteries

ManufacturerManufacturer Service LifeObserved Service Life
Renata360240
Energizer190252
Duracell180252
Rayovac130276
icellTech208252

For size 675 batteries, the winner is Duracell, while for size 13 batteries, Renata comes in first. Duracell again is the top brand for size 312 batteries, but Rayovac wins for size 10 batteries.

But there is a major caveat: The study has significant limitations.

These Figures Are Not That Useful

First, the study was published in 2013. While zinc-air technology has not moved on that much, changes in manufacturing processes and chemistry can have a significant difference to the end result. Even something as simple as a change in factory — something that is quite common in the business world — can yield significantly different results. So the figures may well have moved on since then.

More significantly, the study itself was limited. It was restricted by geographical location, so only batteries available in Brazil were tested, and the laboratory was not strictly temperature and humidity controlled, so there were significant fluctuations on a day-to-day basis. This is relevant because zinc-air batteries rely on absorbing oxygen from the air to create a current. Humidity, in particular, can significantly affect batteries’ efficiency.

Even worse, the study only tested two batteries for each set of figures, and they were from the same batch. This means that individual performance was being tested, not the overall manufacturing performance of each battery. Creating a suitably rigorous study should involve 20 or 30 batteries, at the very least, all from different batches.

What These Figures Do Tell Us

These figures do tell us that manufacturer’s figures are not consistent, and that’s primarily down to the ways in which battery life can be tested.

Essentially, manufacturers can make up any testing method that “correspond as closely as possible to the performance results as experienced by consumers when using the product in practice.” This is according to Annex G of IEC 60086-1. The only stipulation is that the results must be reproducible and that they should be useful to consumers.

Given that the power draw between different hearing aids can vary wildly, manufacturers can essentially use any reasonable power draw conditions to paint their products in the best light possible. In addition, there is no requirement that they use the same methodology across each type of battery.

The result is a huge discrepancy.

What We Know

What this study does indicate is that comparing the manufacturer’s service life for each set of batteries is not helpful. A set of batteries that claims to have a service life of 560 hours has similar performance to a set of batteries that claims to have a service life of 110 hours. These manufacturer figures should be taken lightly and not used as the sole criteria when selecting a hearing aid battery. 

Batteries should be from a reputable brand, but after that, pricing should be the primary determiner for most people. This is because most batteries have to conform to similar standards in terms of voltage, size and charge capacity. Even different hearing aid designs can have an effect on the lifespan of different batteries, depending on how the battery door is constructed, the airflow to the battery and the battery holes.

This means that the conclusion is a little unsatisfying: There is no brand of battery that lasts the longest for all hearing aids and scenarios.

Hearing Aid Brand Reviews