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Need Help? Call 1-800-535-1724

Local Ohio: 419-534-4185  Local WV: 304-534-7810

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Replace Filters, Tubing and Mask Cushions

Filters, tubing and mask cushions are the items that most often need to be replaced. Filters help to clean the air generated by the CPAP machine. In general, fine filters should be replaced every four weeks. People living in homes with smoke or pets will need to replace CPAP filters more frequently. Tubing should be replaced every 12 months. There are different types of hoses and some, such as heated hoses, are specific to the manufacturer. The life expectancy of mask cushions and nasal pillows vary based on the care and cleaning of the products, generally lasting three to six months. Read below for more detailed instructions for cleaning.

Timeline for Replacements

  • CPAP Filters - Every 2 to 4 weeks. More often in homes with smokers and pets.
  • CPAP Tubing - Every 3 months.
  • CPAP Mask Cushions - Every 2 to 4 weeks.
  • Humidifier Chamber - Every 6 months or as needed.

CPAP Humidifier Cleaning and Replacement


Nearly all current CPAP machines now come stock with a heated humidification system that helps cut down on morning dry mouth as well as keeping your nasal turbinates from drying out and becoming irritated and inflamed. However, the humidification chamber needs to be cleaned out daily to prevent bacteria build-up as well as calcification. Here's how:


  • Remove chamber from humidifier carefully so water doesn't enter your CPAP machine.


  • Open chamber and wash with warm, soapy water.


  • Rinse well with water and allow to dry on a clean cloth or paper towel out of direct sunlight.


  • Fill with distilled or sterile water. Do not use tap water as it may contain minerals and chemicals that can damage components of the machine. It is also not recommended to use filtered water (i.e. through a Brita filter) for the same reasons.


  • Once a week the humidifier chamber should be soaked in a solution of 1 part white vinegar 3 parts water for approximately 15-20 minutes before rinsing thoroughly with distilled water.


  • Some humidifier chambers are dishwasher safe, but make sure to check your CPAP machine's manual before cleaning in a dishwasher.
  • Humidifier chambers should be replaced every 6 months or as needed.


CPAP Mask Cleaning and Replacement


Most CPAP mask cushions are made of silicone, a gentle, non-irritating material. However, while silicone is a very comfortable material for masks, it doesn't have a very long lifespan, and without proper care can breakdown quicker than expected. Therefore, cleaning your CPAP mask is crucial in making it efficient as possible. Here's some tips on CPAP mask cleaning and replacement:


  • Wash mask daily with warm water and mild, non-fragrant soap or purchase CPAP mask specific wipes and detergents.


  • Rinse with water and allow to air dry on a clean cloth or paper towel out of direct sunlight.


  • Before using mask at night, wash your face thoroughly and don't use facial moisturizers. Facial oils and moisturizers can breakdown the silicone faster.


  • Once a week soak mask in solution of 1 part white vinegar 3 parts water before rinsing in distilled water.


  • Headgear and chinstraps should be washed as needed by hand using warm soapy water, rinsed well, and air dried. Do not place headgear or chinstraps in washing machine or dryer.


  • For replacement schedules of CPAP masks you should check both your manufacturer's recommendations and your insurance allowance. However, for most masks it is recommended that you  replace the cushions 1-2 times per month, and the mask every 3-6 months


  • CPAP tubing should be cleaned weekly in a sink of warm, soapy water, rinsed well, and left to hang-dry out of direct sunlight.


CPAP Filters Cleaning and Replacement


Your filters are located near the back of the CPAP machine where the device draws air from the room that it compresses to your pressure settings. Nearly all CPAP machines have a disposable white paper filter and some have an additional non-disposable grey filter as well. Here are some cleaning tips for your CPAP filters:


  • You should clean the grey non-disposable filter at least on a weekly basis. You may have to clean it more regularly if you have pets, smoke inside your house, or if your home is especially dusty.


  • Rinse grey filters with water and allow to dry before placing back into your machine.


  • The grey re-usable filters should be replaced when it begins to look worn or after 6 months.


  • Replace disposable white paper filters monthly or more frequently if it appears dingy or dirty.


  • Your CPAP machine itself does not need to be cleaned but you may want to dust it down with a slightly damp cloth as desired.


General CPAP Maintenance & CPAP Cleaning Tips


Make your CPAP equipment cleaning part of your morning routine, allowing the equipment ample time to dry during the day.


  • Keep machine and accessories out of direct sunlight to avoid damaging them.


  • Never use bleach to clean accessories.


  • Other machine accessories such as power cords and data cards may need to be replaced due to equipment malfunctions.


  • Place machine on a level surface away from objects such as curtains that may interfere with the air intake.


  • Always use distilled or sterile water when cleaning components.


  • Keep track of when you should order replacement parts for your mask and accessories so that you always get the most out of your therapy.


With these simple tips on cleaning and maintaining your CPAP device and accessories, you will assuredly have a much better CPAP therapy experience. And remember, you can always contact us here at Positive Sleep Solutions for any of your CPAP needs or questions at 800-535-1724.





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