AED Cost of Ownership – AED Maintenance

Philips Adult SMART Cartridge

As with any purchase initial cost is of concern but as people operating business know, maintenance and upkeep must also be considered when purchasing any piece of equipment. Here we provide you with the basic information that you should know when making these cost comparisons.

Estimated Annual Operating Cost (EAOC)

This is simply the estimated cost that customers should include in their yearly budget for their AED maintenance. It includes the estimated cost of pads or electrode and battery replacement.

Spare Electrode Cost

Most manufactures recommend and common sense dictates that you should have a spare set of pads or electrodes, both adult and child, on hand with each AED. Some AED models are shipped with a spare set in addition to the pre-installed set.

Event Download Accessories

This is the equipment (like communication cords and software) that you’ll need in the event that you use your AED and want to download the patient data for review or in the event of litigation. You will also use this equipment in the event that you need to update your AED to new AHA standards or install a software update to your AED. Some manufacturers provide this equipment with the AED free of charge but some do not.

AED and Battery Warranty

All AEDs today come with a minimum 5 year warranty. Many customers ask about the life expectancy of an AED. This is a difficult question to answer as many AEDs will remain in-service well beyond their warranty period. However, we maintain that when considering the effective lifespan of an AED or budgeting for replacement units that you use the manufacturer’s warranty period as the estimated lifespan.

Battery Lifespan

We recommend using the manufacturer’s warranty period as the expected lifespan. For batteries not having a warranty has provided an average lifespan based upon customer’s experience.

Electrode Pad Lifespan

All AEDs have Electrode Pad expiration dates that are mandated and determined by the FDA. This is due to the tendency of the ionic gel surrounding the metal electrode plates to dry out and corrode the plates. Traditionally, these have been set at 2 years, but recently some manufacturers have been granted approval by the FDA for up to a 5 year lifespan. Be sure to check the manufacturers recommendation when figuring your annual cost.

An AED is not a buy and forget piece of equipment. They require periodic testing and regular upkeep of their components. However, the cost is negligible compared to the assurances they provide. offers solutions for managing an AED program like this one called PlusTrac from En-Pro En-Pro PlusTrac (5-Year Comprehensive).