ASHI and MEDIC First Aid Blog

February 18, 2020

Troubleshooting an AED

Like any electronic device, an automated external defibrillator (AED) can sometimes need a little troubleshooting help. Fortunately, an AED takes the guesswork out and will provide a troubleshooting message for the user. Here are some common issues and how to address them.

First off, don’t panic! AEDs are designed to detect problems during use and guide you through correc­tive actions. If a troubleshoot­ing message occurs at any time, stay calm and follow the AED’s audio and visual instructions. If the AED indicates:

A problem with the pads: The pads are not completely adhered to the skin or there is a poor connection to the AED. Press pads firmly, especially in the center, to make sure they are adhering well. A wet chest or thick chest hair may prevent the pads from sticking. Ensure that the chest is dry, and quickly shave the hair in the areas where the pads will be placed. Also make sure the pads’ cable connector is firmly connected to the AED.

Analysis has been inter­rupted due to movement: Stop all sources of movement, such as chest com­pressions or rescue breaths.

Battery needs replacement: There may be only enough energy for a limited number of shocks and only a few more minutes of opera­tion. If the AED fails to operate, the depleted battery should be removed and replaced with a new one. If a battery needs replacement during resuscitation, it should be replaced during a CPR interval. 

Remember, when it becomes necessary to troubleshoot an AED, CPR should be provided, without interruption, until the problem is corrected or another AED becomes available. Pauses of CPR lasting longer than 10 seconds should be avoided.

Instructors: Purchasing training equipment is probably the most important, and expensive, investment you and your Training Center will make. Click the button below for suggestions on what to consider as you research purchasing (or re-purchasing) AED trainers.

Read "AED Trainers – How Do I Choose?" 




Subscribe to Email Updates

HSI-CTA-EmergencyCareTraining (1)
Screen Shot 2018-11-16 at 4.40.14 PM