While 28.8 million US adults suffer from serious enough hearing loss that they would benefit from hearing aids, 4 in 5 do not wear one. With hearing loss day-to-day tasks can become far more difficult, from hearing your doorbell to understanding speech on TV or in a public setting.
Both my parents have serious hearing loss and wear a hearing aid, and despite having invested in an extra loud doorbell, they still often miss visitors or deliveries if they’re in certain rooms of their house. If you, or a relative, are frequently not hearing their doorbell, you may either have high-frequency hearing loss that doesn’t suit your doorbell’s chime frequency, or too severe hearing loss for your doorbell’s chime loudness to reach.
This motivated me to search for a solution, and in the process of researching doorbells for the deaf and hard of hearing, I have created a guide for anyone hearing impaired who wants to buy a doorbell.
- What are doorbells for the deaf and hearing impaired? And what are the advantages?
- Types of Doorbell For the Hard of Hearing
- Best Extra Loud Doorbells For Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss
- Best Doorbells For Deaf: Severe to Profound Hearing Loss
- How to Choose a Doorbell If You Are Hard of Hearing or Deaf
- FAQs on hearing impaired doorbells
This guide covers extra loud chime doorbells for those with mild to moderate hearing loss, as well as visual doorbells with strobe light style light effects for more severe to profound hearing loss, and also includes wireless doorbells with video effects, so that you can see your visitor before answering the door.
What are doorbells for the deaf and hearing impaired? And what are the advantages?
Doorbells for the hearing impaired include extra loud doorbells that amplify the bell’s chime or ring, so that if you have a hearing impairment, you can still hear the ring and know that somebody is at your door.
Doorbells for the deaf work similarly to how they work in a hearing-accessible hotel room: rather than emitting a sound, they set off lights that flash to alert you of a visitor, so you don’t need to rely on sound at all. Some instead connect to your smartphone, vibrating or notifying you of a visitor via a smartphone notification. Many now have video feed options you can see in real-time who is at your doorstep.
Types of Doorbell For the Hard of Hearing
While most doorbells for the deaf and hard of hearing contain multiple alert options within one product, there are a range of types of doorbells for those who struggle to hear.
Extra loud doorbells and doorbell extensions
These doorbells often chime up to 90dB, around the same noise as a lawnmower or hairdryer, though some can reach the 110dB range.
Most wireless doorbells in this range have a variety of volume settings, and some even have a range of different chime options so you can pick one that matches your type of frequency-specific hearing loss.
Wireless doorbells will chime – or flash or vibrate if they offer these settings – and trigger your wireless receiver. You simply plug in the wireless receiver to a power outlet, and when someone arrives and pushes the doorbell, it triggers the receiver to play the chime, or flash the light pattern.
Flashing light doorbells
Alarms that emit flashing light rather than sound are flashing light alarms. They’re usually a feature of general hearing accessible doorbells, with the flashing strobe light option a part of many affordable extra loud doorbells you can buy on Amazon and similar stores.
In a similar vein to vibrating alarm clocks to help the hearing impaired wake up, vibrating doorbells alert you via either a vibrating pager accessory you can attach to your belt or jeans, or by vibrotactile notifications sent to your smartphone.
Smartphone / Wifi doorbells – including video doorbells such as Ring
Ring doorbells fit into this category, as they alert your smartphone when someone is arriving, giving you the option to access the video camera and see through your smartphone screen who is there.
This works not only as a general home security system, but is also a huge advantage as a doorbell for the hearing impaired, as they can be alerted via their smartphone’s vibration, and see with their eyes who is at the door via the video link.
Hearing aid compatible doorbells
Some doorbells are also compatible with certain hearing aid brands or products, such as Ring doorbells being compatible with Oticon hearing aids. This can feed doorbell chimes directly into your hearing aids, so you’re very unlikely to miss any arrivals.
In reality, most hearing-accessible doorbells contain a variety of alert options: even cheap doorbells for the hard of hearing usually have both flashing light options, loud chime options, and wireless receivers. Many are compatible with your smartphone and send you notifications when someone is there.
Best Extra Loud Doorbells For Mild to Moderate Hearing Loss
Mild hearing loss range is between 26-40 dB, with moderate hearing loss falling at 41-55 dB. In this range, you can still function on a day-to-day, but will struggle conversating when there’s background noise – and may struggle to hear your current doorbell’s chime.
Volume-boosting doorbells for mild to moderate hearing loss are extra loud doorbells to push your doorbell’s volume up into the dB range you can comfortably hear, so you don’t miss any Amazon deliveries, visiting family members, and other summonings to the door.
However, take into account that if you have any easily scared pets, this sudden loud chime can frighten them.
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Honeywell Home RDWL917AX2000/E Doorbell
- Choose from 11 pre-installed tunes or use the included USB cord to download your own MP3 files.
- The Series 9 Doorbell has a wireless range of 450 feet that allows you to take the doorbell with you to the basement, backyard or as far away from the sleeping baby as possible.
- The volume can be adjusted up to 90 decibels or muted with the option to set notifications to visual lighting alerts only.
- Mute and Sleep modes silence notifications for 3, 6, 9 or 12 hours — or permanently — for adjustable use throughout the day.
- The illuminated halo (7 color options) and LED strobe alerts can be set to light up when the doorbell is pressed.
- Audible range: 100m (450ft)
- Sound level: 90dB
- Custom ring: Yes
- Battery life: 5 years
- Alert options: sound and light
Honeywell are renowned for their high-quality wares, and have one of the best-selling doorbells for the hearing impaired, packed with different alert options and features.
Firstly, for frequency-specific hearing loss, you can pick the chime tone of your choice, to optimize for a ring you can still hear. Honeywell’s doorbell comes with eleven 90dB options, but you can use the attached USB socket to upload and use your own custom options if you have a chime or song that works best for you.
It’s portable, compact, and easy to set up and use. You can set it up to use the LED strobe light for flashing light alerts, and you can also customize it around your day-to-day needs, muting it at night with sleep mode (or during the day if you’re busy), and you can adjust the volume as you please.
Ring Video Doorbell 4 with Ring Chime Pro
- This bundle contains the all-new Ring Video Doorbell 4 (2021 release) and Ring Chime Pro (2nd Gen).
- 1080p HD video doorbell with improved video previews and battery life.
- All-new Color Pre-Roll Video Previews of all motion events means you’ll never miss a moment at your front door, day or night.
- Enjoy customizable privacy zones and audio privacy, enhanced dual-band (2.4 or 5.0 GHz) wifi connectivity, and improved motion detection.
- Receive mobile notifications when anyone presses your doorbell or triggers your built-in motion sensors.
- Alert options: vibration and phone notification
While not designed especially for the deaf or hard of hearing, Ring doorbells offer a fantastic and innovative new solution to not hearing when new arrivals reach your doorstep: notifying your smartphone, adn letting you use the video camera to see people with your own eyes so you can decide whether to answer the door or not. It even lets you communicate remotely with arrivals, so you can leave instructions to delivery drivers.
Instead of flashing lights, the Ring Video doorbells rely on you having your smartphone on you, and you not using Do Not Disturb mode or similar – as the ring triggers a vibration to alert you. So, to make the most of this video doorbell, you’ll need your phone on, and in your pocket. You can even connect your Ring doorbell to your Oticon hearing aid, if you have one.
For people who don’t own a smartphone or who don’t feel comfortable with new technology, we recommend a standard flashing or extra loud doorbell instead.
Best Doorbells For Deaf: Severe to Profound Hearing Loss
Severe hearing loss puts you in the 71-90dB hearing loss range, with profound at 91dB+. At these levels, amplified loud doorbells lose their effectiveness, and require a new strategy for understanding when someone is at your front door.
Instead, you’ll need a wireless doorbell signaler that flashes light patterns when someone arrives at your doorstep, and some can be used as vibrating receivers to better alert you.
PHYSEN Wireless Doorbell – ideal for those who want buttons and receivers in multiple rooms and doors
- 👍【Long Wireless Range】- Our wireless remote button is adopt high-frequency electronic technology to control doorbell chime. The range of wireless doorbells for home extend over 1300ft(400m) in open space. The wireless door bell has strong anti-interference features and you can pair it one-to-one, and NO need to worry about signal connecting wrongly with the next door.
- 👍【Waterproof & Easy to Install】 - The door bells & chimes wireless is made of high-quality ABS material, has strong IP55 waterproof function, working on -4°F to 140°F. Easy Installation: plug doorbell receiver in the socket and adhere the transmitter to the wall via Double-sided tape or Screws-in.
- 👍【Multiple Optional Ringtone & Mute Mode】 - PHYSEN classroom doorbell receiver features 58 chimes and 5 level adjustable volume(0 dB to 110 dB) to meet your needs for different occasions. Bright LED flash is suitable for the elderly and hearing impaired. The indoor chime can remembers your last melody and volume level after closing it. No need to reset the previous settings, really save your time.
- 👍【Expandable and Multi Use】- Wireless doorbell system can add more receivers or door bell ringer buttons as required, choose 1 button with 1 receiver or 2 buttons with 2 receivers or 2 buttons with 3 receiver sets, etc. Multiple doorbell chime can be configured to ring with different ringtones for your front door and back door. You will never miss your visitor!
- 👍【Wireless Doorbell Kit and Warranty】- Door Bell Kits Contains: 2 wireless transmitters and 3 plug-in smart doorbell receivers, double sided mounting tape, anchors, screws and A23 battery included. We will offer 18 months warranty and 24 hours customers service. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
- Wireless range: 400m (1300ft)
- Sound level: 0-110dB
- Custom ring: Yes
- Alert options: sound chime
- Battery life: 3 years
If you’re looking to hook up multiple doors to multiple rooms: to your front door, living room, bedroom, etc, then PHYSEN offers an inexpensive and effective way to do just that. Their standard package includes 2 buttons and 3 receivers, but you can expand that to 4 receivers if you need them.
The 110dB maximum chime noise is ideal for more severe deafness, and really booms throughout your home. If your hearing impairment is milder, you can shift the volume down through the 5 available volume options, and you can mute it at night or if you just want some peace and quiet and don’t want to answer the door.
You have a wide variety of 58 melodies to pick from – so either pick one you love, or one you can hear clearly. It also has a very wide wireless range of up to 400 meters, so wherever you’re at in your house, you should be able to connect your receivers without issue. If you’re using two buttons and multiple receivers, you wont’t find better value for money than these.
Security2020 WC180 Wireless Door Chime with Flashing Strobe Light
- Audible range: 100m (450ft)
- Sound level: 95dB
- Battery life: 5 years
- Alert options: sound and light
Ideal for a front door, or a deaf person’s bedroom, the Security2020 WC180 reaches a slightly louder 95dB than the Honeywell doorbell, but doesn’t have the same customizability options for different rings and chimes. It still offers sound and light options, but the chime is a standard 3 or 4-note chime, rather than anything you want to change it to.
Where the Security2020 shines is with how easy it is to add extra door chime buttons to different doors in your house. For example, if you want to have the lights flash in your bedroom as well as your front door, this can be done easily – you’ll just need to purchase an additional button.
How to Choose a Doorbell If You Are Hard of Hearing or Deaf
Pick an alert system that works for you
If your hearing loss is only mild, then you may not need to use the flashing light or vibration features on some doorbells. Instead, you should only need a doorbell that can chime a bit louder than your current one, such as the PHYSEN and Honeywell doorbells.
However, if you are severely deaf and will not hear most sounds, even if they are amplified to 90dB+ noise levels, you should consider a vibration or strobe light doorbell alert system, such as the Ring doorbells if you’re good with tech and have a smartphone, or the Honeywell or other light alarms.
Adjustable volumes make life easier
While a very loud volume might suit you as you can clearly hear your doorbell, there may be times when this isn’t ideal. For example, if you have younger family staying and the very loud chime scares them, or frightens any pets.
Having the versatility to switch to a more normal noise level prevents any issues in these situations, and other adjustable features such as a mute mode when you don’t want to be disturbed also make life easier.
Buy enough buttons and receivers
Before buying a wireless doorbell, think about what exactly you need them for. If it’s just your front door, then you know you’ll just need the one button, and as many receivers as you feel you need to cover the rooms you’re likely to be in. But you may need more than one button, such as for a bedroom, and multiple receivers if you have a large home with many different rooms.
Pick a trusted brand and highly-rated product
Our hearing impaired doorbell recommendations focus on reputable products from reputable brands, with thousands of reviews from overwhelmingly happy customers to back them up. Large brands such as Ring and Honeywell have built their reputations based on stellar service and products, and have the capacity to help with their support if you’re having trouble using or setting up your doorbell.
FAQs on hearing impaired doorbells
Other hearing product recommendations you may be interested in:
- The best phones for the hearing impaired
- The best hearing amplifiers
- The best bed shakers and vibrating alarms
Last update on 2022-09-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API