How to Clean Filter on A Portable Oxygen Concentrator?

How to Clean Filter on A Portable Oxygen Concentrator?

The filter is probably one of the vital key parts of an oxygen device, so it is only natural to know how to clean the filter on a portable oxygen concentrator.

If you are wondering about the answer, don’t worry because we got you. Read through this article to learn the step-by-step guide to properly cleaning your device’s filter!

How to Clean Filter on a Portable Oxygen Concentrator?

Amongst the most essential parts of maintaining an oxygen concentrator is filter cleaning. The filter protects the device and the user from particle matter and prevents the risk of acquiring infection. Keeping them clean is necessary to ensure that it is still safe to use. Here is a brief overview of how you can clean it:

  1. Turn the power off.
  2. Locate and remove the filter.
  3. Make the cleaning solution.
  4. Dip filter into solution.
  5. Rinse the filter.
  6. Let the filter air dry.

Why You Need to Clean the Filters of Your Portable Oxygen Concentrator

The gross particle filter is the filter that cleans the air that enters your oxygen concentrator. So, you can probably imagine just how important it is to make sure that it keeps clean. Here are a few reasons why you need to keep it clean:

To Ensure You Inhale Clean Oxygen

The gross particle filter of your device serves as the filter that helps keep the oxygen pure, clean, and safe to breathe in. While this part of your device can quickly get dirty, the ‘gross’ in the name actually pertains to the large particles it captures, such as dirt, dust, and any pollution in the air.

Without a clean filter, these particles could potentially enter the machine, clog the working components of the device, or penetrate deeply into the oxygen therapy patient’s lungs. 

For Device Longevity and Peak Performance

Keeping your filter clean ensures that the oxygen device maintains its peak performance. Moreover, keeping it clean can increase the unit’s longevity and may help you prevent needing a replacement soon.

To Experience the Full Benefits of Your POC

Having a clean filter will ensure that you can maximize the benefits of your portable oxygen concentrator. Some of these benefits include ease of travel (when driving or in high altitude), high quality sleep, better mood, and improved quality of life.

Read more: 16 benefits of a portable oxygen concentrator

Step-by-Step Guide on Cleaning Portable Oxygen Concentrator Filters

Like a heating and cooling system, the filter of a concentrator pulls in air and converts it to clean oxygen. Keeping it clean is absolutely necessary for those with COPD or lung diseases. It is to ensure that they receive proper oxygen therapy. 

Below is a detailed step-by-step guide on cleaning your oxygen concentrator filter!

What You’ll Need

  • Mild dishwashing detergent (liquid)
  • Soft cloth
  • Paper towels or bath towels 

Step 1: Turn the power off

Before anything else, ensure that you turn off the device completely. Either you unplug it from the electrical outlet or remove the batteries from the machine. Make sure the power remains turned off until you reconnect the filter.

Step 2: Locate and remove the filter

Please refer to the owner or manufacturer’s manual for removing the filter. Each model and unit has its own inner workings that are uniquely its own.

There is a high probability that the air filter for one unit is located differently from the filter of another. So, it would help if you check the manual first to avoid making a mistake. 

Step 3: Make the cleaning solution

The next step involves making the cleaning solution. You can do so by filling the sink or a tub with warm water and a little bit of mild dish soap. 

Step 4: Dip the filter into the solution

When the solution is ready, dip the filter into it. You can use a damp cloth to gently scrub and clean any excess dust or dirt. Add more mild detergent for stubborn spots or stains, then rub it off using your fingers. 

Step 5: Rinse the filter

Rinse the filter using clean water. Then, rinse the sink or tub and refill with water. Place the filter into it and gently move it about.

Make sure to remove all excess soap and residue. After the initial rinse, you probably need to add more soap to disinfect the filter. 

Gently massage the soap into the filter as you did in step 4. Be careful not to rip or tear the filter. After massaging it, thoroughly rinse the filter with warm water. 

Step 6: Let the filter air dry completely

Remove the filter from the water and set it on a dry bath or paper towel. Let the cloth absorb the excess water and leave it in a well-ventilated room out of reach from pets and pests.

Check your filter for damage like tears, crumbling, fraying, and holes. If you notice damage, you might need to get a new one. 

Ensure that the oxygen concentrator filter is completely dry before you reattach it to the device. For extra safety and optimum performance, you might also want to clean the nasal cannula or mask. You can use white vinegar or dish soap to do so. 

How Often Should Oxygen Concentrator Filters Be Cleaned?

Regularly cleaning your filter is advisable if you want the machine to work correctly.

Both portable and home oxygen concentrator filters need routine inspection at least once a week. You can brush dry them to remove any dust or dirt particles. If it is excessively dirty, wash with warm, soapy water and dry thoroughly before reinstalling. 

Most portable oxygen concentrators have reusable filters. You can use the guide above to clean it. For more accurate care and cleaning tips for your oxygen device, refer to the user manual. It will include the way how to best appropriately maintain it. 

Note that some oxygen concentrators have multiple filters that require maintenance. There is such a thing as external and internal filters for other concentrators. 

External air filters include cabinet filters, intake, and micro disc. These filters typically consist of felt or foam that is either washable or replaceable.

Most people do not want to take the time to wash and dry them. Instead, they replace the filter weekly or monthly. Since filters are usually sold in packs, their cost is relatively inexpensive. Oxygen concentrator users who live in dusty environments need to replace or wash weekly. 

On the other hand, internal air filters include outlet filters, sound inlet, bacteria, and HEPA. Technicians or authorized service engineers of the equipment provider often replace these filters.

Though, if you are a mechanically-inclined individual, you may be able to replace it on your own. Check with your manufacturer and ask for the recommended replacement schedule for this type of filter. 

How to Know if the Filters Need Immediate Cleaning?

You might be wondering about the right time to clean your filter. Below are a few indicators that cleaning the filter is needed:

1. You See Particle Build-Up During Your Regular Inspection

You need to perform regular inspections on your filters to ensure that they are clean. You can do this once a week.

If you see particle build-up on your filter during this visual check, then it is a clear indicator that it needs to be cleaned. The build-up could either be dust, dirt, mold, pollen, allergens, or any pollution. You might even find fur or tiny hair in there! 

2. You Are Experiencing Certain Symptoms

An obvious sign that your oxygen device is not working properly is when you experience specific symptoms like headaches, drowsiness, and breathing irregularities. If these symptoms persist, there is a chance that your POC unit is the reason.

Try checking the filter of your device. A dirty filter could potentially be the cause of these symptoms. 

How to clean the filter on a portable oxygen concentrator infographic by Sprylyfe

FAQs About Cleaning Portable O2 Concentrator Filters

Why do portable oxygen concentrators have filters?

Filters are the parts within the oxygen concentrator that help keep the machine running systematically and pristinely. It is responsible for transforming the air into breathable oxygen.

Filters are what ensure that you have a better quality of oxygen. Not to mention that it helps prevent the risk of infection. 

How long do oxygen concentrator filters last?

Depending on how often or frequently you use it, the filter that came with your concentrator can last anywhere from 6-12 months. You will need to keep it clean, though.

A clean filter ensures that your device will continue working correctly. For most concentrators, the filter is removable. You also have the choice to replace it instead of cleaning it. 

Where is the filter on my oxygen concentrator?

Every oxygen concentrator unit is different. In most instances, these filters are easy to locate. They are found inside and are generally accessed by removing an access panel on the rear or side of the device. To make sure, refer to the user’s manual that came with your concentrator. 

How do you open a concentrator filter?

You will need to locate the filter. You can do so by reading the manual provided with the device. Detailed explanations of the interior and exterior of the machine are usually included. Once you have located it, follow the manual’s instructions on accessing and removing it.  

Ensure Your Safety With A Clean Portable Oxygen Concentrator

Like any other electronics, oxygen concentrators will also collect dust and dirt. It could also come in contact with particles and substances that could make them sticky.

The device’s filter is something that you should be looking out for the most. It is, after all, what makes the oxygen the device releases breathable. Fortunately, it is not hard to clean nor maintain. You can use this article as a starting point, or read your device’s manual for more specific instructions.

At SpryLyfe, you can find top-quality portable oxygen concentrators and compatible filters at affordable prices! Call us at (800) 314-8225 now and score amazing deals!
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