How to Clean a CPAP Machine

How to Clean CPAP
Written by Piotr Sawicki

How to Clean CPAP? Just like it is important for you to have a shower every day, it is equally necessary to keep your CPAP machine clean. This should also be on a regular basis.

The main reason towards ensuring your CPAP machine is clean is to avoid bacteria and fungus. This can easily find a breeding ground in a dirty and unhygienic CPAP.

To ensure proper care and maintenance, your CPAP machine needs daily as well as weekly cleaning. So how can you go about cleaning your machine? Let’s look at a few tips below.

Daily Routine

Start off with the mask. With a damp cloth that has been dipped in detergent, clean the whole surface of the mask including the inner part. Pay special attention to any hard to reach places and areas that come into contact with the skin. Ensure you thoroughly cover every part of the mask

Once you are done, take a clean and dry cloth and wipe the surface again. Then place it in a clean place to air dry.  

Other than using any regular clothes to clean your CPAP, there are also special towels designed specifically for CPAP Cleaning. These can be acquired at the sleep center.

Some CPAP machines do not have a humidifier but for those that do, ensure you have emptied the contents every morning. Clean the humidifier reservoir and fill it again with clean distilled water. This will go a long way towards preventing harmful microorganisms from finding a place to thrive in.

If you are under the weather due to a cold, or flue, you need to be extra careful with your CPAP machine. Do proper cleaning of the humidifier reservoir, mask and hose to rid any bacteria or viruses.

Weekly Routine

To stop dust and other contaminants from accumulating in your CPAP, you will need to conduct a thorough weekly cleaning routing.  

First, fill the sink with clean water. Add a mild detergent that is ammonia free and dip the mask and tubing inside. You can also include the humidifier reservoir.

Using your hand, swirl the components and see to it that they are completely soaked. Do this for 5 minutes. It will ensure the water gets to every part of the mask, hose and reservoir.

Take them out, rinse them and hang them in a clean dry place to allow for air drying.

The CPAP will not be left out either. Use a damp cloth to carefully wipe the surface. Be vigilant not to use a cloth that is too wet as water could damage the machine.

Cleaning the filters

The filter should also be given special attention. It is situated at the back of the CPAP close to the mechanism that sucks in the air and compresses it.

There are two types of filters, a white one that is disposable and a grey one. It is this grey filter that needs cleaning. Take it out, soak it in clean warm water and rinse the dust free. Leave it out in a safe place to air dry them return it in its proper place.

The grey filter can be cleaned more than just on a weekly basis if your residence is especially dusty. Once it starts to shows signs of wearing out, you can opt for a replacement. This can also be done every 6 months.

The white paper filters needs to be replaced every other month.

Cleaning the Humidifier

The humidifier can be a perfect place for bacteria, mold and fungus. These can cause disease. To keep the humidifier clean, use clean distilled water. Add one part vinegar to five parts of the distilled water and soak the humidifier in for not less than 30 minutes.

Take it out, rinse it again with distilled water and let it air dry before placing it back to the machine. Distilled water will prevent mineral build up during repetitive cleaning. The humidifier reservoir needs to also be replaced. This can be done after every 6 months.  

General Cleaning tips

  • Ensure cleaning is done every morning
  • Always keep the CPAP away from direct sunlight as this will only damage the equipment
  • Avoid at all times to use bleach while cleaning your CPAP
  • When cleaning, ensure you use sterile or distilled water.

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Conclusion How to Clean CPAP

By following some basic tips, you can ensure that your CPAP machine is always healthy and clean to use every time you need it.

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Piotr Sawicki

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