How to Check an AED

  • “How can I tell if my AED is on?”
  • “What happens if the AED battery is dead when I go to use it?”
  • “How do I know it’s working and will shock someone if it needs to?”
  • “There’s no way to tell if it’s on, right?”
  • “Do I wait to install the pads and battery until I need to use it?”

These are inquiries we receive from new AED owners every day, and they are all great questions! We all want to know whether our AED will be able to do its job in the event of Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA).

Becoming a first-time owner and operator of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) can be quite intimidating when learning all about the specific functions and features. Thankfully, every AED functions similarly and each manufacturer has developed its own status indicator showing you whether your AED is active and ready to be used. AEDs will also have their own unique way to alert you to change pads or batteries, and an indicator of when the unit may need troubleshooting.

Rescue Ready Chart has created a handy chart showing each make and model of AED we sell online, where to look for their status indicators, and how to tell if your AED is working. A good rule of thumb is to visually inspect your AED each day to make sure you see the green light, checkmark, or status showing it is ready.

Pads and batteries need to stay connected and installed at all times to ensure your AED is working properly, and each AED battery we sell has an expiration date printed on it. Enroll your AED, pads, and batteries in our myAED Management Program to help track your expiration dates, so you never have to worry about whether your device will work when you go to use it.

Please contact us right away at 1-800-695-1209 if you notice a red light or no clear indication of your AED’s status. We can help troubleshoot your device and advise you on what steps can be taken to successfully fix most issues.


Find your specific device here: How to Tell if your AED is Ready for Rescue



Blog By Blaire CzarnieckiWritten by Blaire Czarniecki
Customer Service Director

Fact checked by Phillip Woods, BA, NREMT-P, FP-C

Blaire attended the University of Tennessee where she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology- Child and Family Studies. She has been in the Automated External Defibrillator (AED) industry for over eight years and is the Director of Customer Service for Coro Medical. Blaire is also an American Red Cross-certified CPR/AED/First Aid Instructor, highly trained by each manufacturer on their specific AEDs, and knowledgeable regarding ALL State AED regulations and legislation.

“I know that every day I come to work, I am playing a part in saving someone’s life. I am passionate about these devices and am always looking for new and innovative ways to spread awareness and knowledge about Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA). I look forward to the day when everywhere I go, I will see an AED—when SCA will no longer take any lives.”

Last updated June 29, 2018