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CPAP support during a power outage

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CharmingSalmonSeaLion1510 +0 points · over 3 years ago Original Poster

If you live in an area subject to frequent power outages, you’ve probably had to deal with the issue of how to run your PAP machine during an outage. The first line of defense, of course, is to have either a generator, a whole house battery, or deep cycle (usually marine) battery backup.

But it is also frequently the case that if you are dependent on oxygen, PAP, or other electrical medical equipment, your local electrical utility will prioritize outages affecting you. However, they can do that, ONLY if they are aware of your medical needs.

So, be sure to contact your local utility to see if they offer this service. If so, register with them. If not, encourage them to do so, and stress the medical necessity.

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wiredgeorge +0 points · over 3 years ago Sleep Enthusiast

I live in a very rural area (there is an X out on our road marking the official middle of nowhere) and when the power goes out, there is no prioritizing anything. It means that a transformer has blown up OR a transmission line is down. I purchased a generator and have a switch near my inside breaker box where I can cut over various rooms in our home to run off the generator. All I need to do is start the generator, plug it in (30A service) and flip the switches adjacent to our home inside breaker box. Our little generator is a tad under 4k running watts so can't run the home heating or A/C but can run most all else including a room window A/C. If you are on a PAP machine, consider setting up this type arrangement. If I had more money, I might want to look at solar/batteries as a solution but this takes some serious money to set up but would also help with your electric bill and might save you money in the long run!

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jnk +0 points · over 3 years ago

Although it is by no means my area of expertise, I believe that it may be important to remind some CPAP users, especially those using certain older humidifiers, of the importance of a pure/true sine wave when attempting to go off-grid:

"If you use a CPAP machine, especially one that includes a heated humidifier, then you’ll probably want to go with a pure sine wave inverter to avoid damaging the unit. It’s always a good idea to check the recommendations of the manufacturer, but most CPAP manufacturers recommend going with a pure sine wave inverter." -- https://www.lifewire.com/pure-sine-wave-inverters-534758

"Alternating current (AC) produced by a TSW [true sine wave] inverter . . . has a smooth waveform. This differs from the modified sine wave (MSW) of square wave and modified square wave inverters. The waveform of these types of inverters is a rough, stepped, digital approximation of a TSW."
-- https://y79961nbs4u2hvbnwronx9zx-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/sine_wave_white_paper.pdf

For older ResMed machines, especially, this is important for using the humidifiers:

"Q. I am going camping. What do I need to run my sleep apnea machine?

"A. You will need a marine or deep cycle battery – rated 50 amp hours or higher, plus one of the following:

"For AirSense 10, AirCurve 10, Lumis and S9 machines, a ResMed converter is available from your nearest ResMed Accredited Outlet.

"Alternatively, you can use a modified sine wave inverter with a continuous power rating of 150w or higher for these devices. (not for use with older machines using H2i, H3i or H4i humidifiers). Enquire about purchasing an inverter at your local electronics store.

"For older machines using H2i, H3i or H4i humidifiers, you’ll need a pure sine wave inverter with a continuous power rating of 300w and a peak/surge rating of 500w.

-- https://www.resmed.com/au/en/consumer/support/therapy-and-maintenance/travel-faqs.html

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