Got some used hearing aids lying around? Much like other tech (cell phones, tvs, computers), many people with hearing aids trade up after a few years, in order to take advantage of the rapid advancements in hearing aid technology.
If you’re unsure what to do with your used hearing aids and want alternatives to simply tossing them in the garbage, keep reading!
Donate Used Hearing Aids: Give the Gift of Hearing
In 2015, Audicus partnered with the Hearing Charities of America to collect used hearing aids. The HCOA takes the hearing aids, refurbishes them, and donates them to low-income people who desperately need hearing aids but simply cannot afford them.
The HCOA provides donated hearing aids to people in the US and internationally, where the need for hearing aids is great but access is very limited. If you would like to donate your old hearing aids to Audicus, send them here:
Audicus Hearing Aid Donations
40 Exchange Pl.
NY, NY 10005
If you live near a Lions Club, they also take old hearing aids for repurposing. Contact your local Lions Club to see if that chapter has a hearing aid recycling program. In addition, your audiologist might also partner with a charity that repurposes hearing aids—don’t forget to ask them!
What About the Batteries?
Unfortunately, batteries cannot be donated the way used hearing aids can—once a battery is used up, that’s it. Can you toss hearing aid batteries in the trash once they are finished? This all depends on what kind of battery you’re using.
IF you’re using zinc air batteries (most hearing aids use these), the best option is to actually recycle them instead of throwing them in the garbage. Zinc and other metals in the batteries can leach out while sitting in a landfill, causing harm to the environment. Recycling centers will separate the metals and reuse them, while getting rid of the disposable parts.
If you’re using batteries with mercury in them, it is best to bring them to your town’s hazardous waste center. Mercury is a tricky thing and should not go in the regular household garbage.