Portable and home oxygen concentrators are designed to be self-sufficient. They produce their own oxygen, alarm you if something is wrong with the machine, and they can alarm you if they don't detect a breath. To produce its own oxygen, a concentrator draws in ambient air through a gross-particle filter and sends it through a filtration process to produce and compress medical grade oxygen. The one aspect where a concentrator is not self-sufficient is with its filters. Cleaning your oxygen concentrator's filters is an absolute must. If you go without cleaning your filters you risk damaging the unit and possibly voiding the warranty of your machine.
How to Clean your Oxygen Concentrator Filters
1. Locate and remove the filter: The first step to cleaning your filter is locating it and removing it. You will be looking for the gross-particle filter, it looks like a sponge or a mesh screen. The most common places on a concentrator that the gross-particle filter will be found are on the side of the unit or on the back of the unit. However, there are a few models like the AirSep FreeStyle or AirSep FreeStyle 5 which have the filter located on the front of the machine. Once you have located the filter, simply remove it from the concentrator. Note: DO NOT run the concentrator without the filter in place. If you need to use your oxygen while cleaning the filter, remember to put your extra filter in the machine before turning it on.
2. Rinse with warm water and soap: After you remove your gross-particle filter from your home or portable oxygen concentrator you will need to rinse it with warm water. Completely rinse the filter with warm water before adding soap. After the original rinse, you may then add soap to disinfect the filter. Gently massage the soap into the filter. Be careful not to tear or rip the filter while doing so. After massaging the soap into the filter, thoroughly rinse with warm water.
3. Check filter and let air dry: After you have completed washing your filter, it is important that you check it for any damage like fraying, tears, holes, and crumbling. If you notice that your filter is damaged, it is time for a new one. After checking your filter for damage, you will need to let it air dry completely before being able to use it again. If you need to order new filters give us a call at 1-800-520-5726. We can help you find the filters fit for your unit.
4. Concentrators without removable filters: Some portable oxygen concentrators do not have gross-particle filters that can be removed. These concentrators include; the AirSep Focus, LifeChoice, LifeChoice Activox, LifeChoice Activox Pro, and the LifeChoice Activox Sport. To wash the filter on those portable oxygen concentrators simply take a Q-Tip, dip it in rubbing alcohol, and wipe the filters clean. The filters look like vents and can be found on the side of the concentrator or on the front of the concentrator.
Note: It is beneficial to keep at least one extra gross-particle filter with your concentrator. You can rotate filters to prolong the life of the filter and this will ensure you are able to use your concentrator while cleaning the filter.