What is the best way to clean my CPAP machine?

What is the best way to clean my CPAP machine? | Intus Healthcare

Last updated on January 31st, 2023 at 12:57 pm

How to properly clean your CPAP supplies

Cleaning your CPAP equipment is a quick and simple way of making sure your therapy is comfortable and effective. A clean CPAP mask helps maintain a good seal during the night and reduce or prevent skin irritation – and it only takes a few minutes!

This page will explain how to quickly clean and sanitise your CPAP machine, mask, and tubing.

What is the best thing to clean your CPAP with?

Here is a list of some basic supplies to clean your CPAP equipment that you likely already have:

  • Warm water
  • Antibacterial dish soap
  • A soft terry cloth
  • White vinegar
  • A towel

Once you have your cleaning equipment, you can begin your CPAP cleaning routine.

How to clean your CPAP equipment in 6 steps

To be followed daily:

  1. Begin by disconnecting all of your equipment before beginning your cleaning, e.g. unplug the device, take out the water chamber from your humidifier (if you have one), disconnect your mask and tubing, remove a hose fleece if you use one, and disassemble your mask headgear, cushion and frame.
  2. Fill your sink with warm soapy tap water and let your mask and accessories (mask parts, tubing and humidifier chamber) soak for about 30 minutes. Avoid getting velcro mask parts wet, as this can ruin the lifespan. If you use heated tubing, ensure the electrical connection point does not get wet. You can add a small amount of white vinegar into the water to clean minerals that have built up; please ensure no fabrics are in the cleaning mixture when adding vinegar.
  3. Rinse thoroughly with warm drinking-quality water.
  4. Allow your mask parts and humidifier to air dry on a towel away from direct sunlight to avoid damage. You may find it easier to hang your tubing over a shower rail to dry. 
  5. If your filters become discoloured, it is clear they need to be cleaned or replaced. To clean your reusable CPAP filters, remove them, rinse with warm water, squeeze all access water out and blot with a towel to dry. If your machine uses disposable filters, do not follow the cleaning process, as they need to be replaced depending on their replacement schedule.
  6. Ensure all equipment is dry before reconnecting them to your CPAP device. With a lightly damped cloth, wipe the outside of your machine. This removes dust and dirt particles without damaging your machine. Make sure it is completely dry before plugging it back in.

We understand it can be hard to keep up with this daily cleaning routine, so doing it weekly will also benefit you. However, cleaning your mask cushion daily is essential. 

Please note you should always refer to your CPAP machine or mask product manual guide when cleaning your equipment.

How to clean AirFit F30 CPAP mask

How often should I clean my CPAP?

CPAP manufacturers advise cleaning your supplies daily. Some other daily advice to follow is to use fresh distilled water in your humidifier and to clean your face before using your CPAP mask. This helps to prevent illnesses and remove access oils from your mask.

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Why is it important to clean your CPAP?

Cleanliness is very relevant when using a CPAP machine. An unclean or improperly cleaned unit can open up a host of potential issues. Some of the most common include:

  • Red facial marks
  • Skin irritation 
  • Chronic respiratory conditions

Without cleaning your CPAP equipment, you also run the risk of:

  • Mineral build-up in the filter
  • Premature wear and tear of your equipment
  • An increased risk of health issues such as sinus problems
  • The growth of mould and bacteria
  • The possibility of voiding your machine’s warranty

Considering your CPAP hygiene will benefit your long-term health and support the longevity of your equipment. Each part of your CPAP equipment’s lifespan depends on your usage frequency, cleaning routine and whether the part makes direct contact with your face.

Can I use bleach to clean my CPAP machine?

No, under no circumstances should you use bleach to clean your CPAP equipment. This can be extremely harmful to your health.

Avoid using the following to clean your equipment:

  • Moisturising soaps
  • Bleach,
  • Scented oils
  • Chlorine
  • Alcohol-based solutions

As these can irritate the skin and damage your supplies.

CPAP machine cleaning accessories

SoClean CPAP Sanitiser

The SoClean 2 is an easy-to-use CPAP disinfector that automatically sanitises your equipment. The fast and effective appliance kills 99% of germs with no water and no chemicals with a two-year warranty.

Simply place your mask, tubing and water reservoir into the SoClean and push the button. The sanitiser uses ozone gas to kill pathogens hiding in the dark, making your life much easier. The sleek SoClean removes the struggle of disassembling your equipment.

However, you will still need to clean your CPAP equipment as SoClean 2 is a sanitiser. You can find out more about the device here.

CPAP Mask Wipes

If you would like a quicker and easier way to clean your mask. You could consider CPAP cleaning wipes. These handy wipes take away the hassle of using soap and water to clean your mask. They have been created using natural ingredients derived from citrus, coconut and other plant extracts.

You can choose between citrus-scented or unscented wipes; each pack contains 75 wipes. The wipes are alcohol and latex-free.

These are also a great way to wipe down the outside of your CPAP machine.

If you are travelling with your CPAP, these are a great source to pack with you, as they are efficient and small.

Cleaning consistency is key

The best way to lessen the symptoms associated with your Obstructive Sleep Apnoea is to clean your machine properly, so feel free to refer back to these instructions when needed.

It is always beneficial to keep note of your CPAP equipment replacement schedule. As all parts have different duration periods, so keeping notes will help you get the most out of your sleep therapy.

If you are unsure about cleaning parts of your CPAP, refer to the user manual, as this will help. Alternatively, you can contact us.

Author robertf