Forum · Traveling with CPAP- 6 quick tips

Write a Reply
8 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Ed +0 points · over 2 years ago

From a traveler who has been on CPAP over 25 years....here are some quick tips...

  1. TSA will pass your cpap right thru at the airport if you take your cpap out and leave it on top of the plastic tray.
  2. Never check your cpap as luggage. Take on board with you, it is medical equipment and can not be counted as a "carry-on".
  3. Always carry spare parts...save your old mask, tubing and a cord to plug in. I have stepped on my mask at night in dark hotel rooms overseas and always had a spare to use.
  4. Always carry a long distance connection with you, electric outlets are sometimes a long distance from your bed and your cpap cord will not reach. Especially on cruise ships.
  5. Foreign countries have different electric wall plugs...make sure you take an adapter.
  6. Take small bottle of Woolite to clean your mask, and small bottle vinegar to clean humidifier.
4 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] CPAP4LIFE +0 points · over 2 years ago

Thank you. These are some great helps!
Have you ever needed a battery back-up for your CPAP equipment and if so what did you use?

2 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] PreppedForLife +0 points · 11 months ago

I've had a CPAP for close to 15 years now and finally found a good option for camping and battery backup. There was some cost involved, but I can charge it via solar, meaning I can go out on extended trips (I love it). Here's a video I posted about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0TLDKqjQS6E

8 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Ed +0 points · over 2 years ago

Never went camping so no need for battery. There are batteries available for almost all types of cpaps, they range from 1-3 nights but you can't use the humidifier as they pull too much power. Cost around $300-500 depending on type of cpap. My doctor told me do not be afraid if for some reason you can't use your cpap..you won't die. Remember, you probably walked around for years with sleep apnea and you're still here. You should use your cpap but no need to panic if you lose house power, etc. on a temporary basis.

11 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] DiligentBurgundyCamel0439 +0 points · over 2 years ago

I am a dentist working in dental sleep medicine. Don't forget that many people can be fitted with oral sleep apnea appliances, which, in many cases, can be quite effective, and offer the ultimate in portability. a.b.luisi,d.m.d.

2 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] TidyPurplePeafowl8556 +0 points · over 2 years ago

I use a battery when I go hiking and camping. I usually bring 2 and recharging is not always an option. If you do not use the humidifier, the battery will last a lot longer. Make sure you have a car charger adapter as well as a plug in.

2 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] DiligentHarlequinTurkey4873 +0 points · over 2 years ago

If you are eligible for TSA PreCheck for your flight, you don't need to take the machine out of the carry bag. Even if you aren't eligible, ask if you need to take it out and sometimes they'll let you keep it in the bag.

If you take soap or vinegar, remember the container has to be less than 3 fl oz.

4 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] CPAP4LIFE +0 points · over 2 years ago

Thank you so much for all this great information. For those using a battery when camping is there a specific/brand battery or is it just one manufactured for that CPAP machine? There are a lot of power outages in my area and no generator.

33 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] truckerdad57 +0 points · over 2 years ago

On camping..... there are portable battery CPAP on the market that were designed for low power usage. Transcend by Somnetics and Z-1 by HDM are both available with lithium ion battery packs and solar chargers designed for them.

If you are going to use your home CPAP you need to convert 12-V battery power to what the CPAP needs. ResMed and Phillips both have 12-V power supplies for some models (ResMed S-9 yes... new S-10 not yet). Otherwise you need to involve an inverter. Inverter issues then get into how old your CPAP might be. Old models like the ResMed S-8 require special pure sine wave inverter to avoid burning out blower motors or scrambling compliance electronics. The new F/P Icon has issues when run on inverters.

Battery options depend on how you will be using it. Many folks use auto or RV deep cycle batteries. But you need to remember they give off hydrogen while charging and need good ventilation. Nicad batteries are cheap but develop a memory when used in a "float" charging application like a power failure set up. Lithium ion batteries are more expensive but work better.

There is not a specific brand of battery needed. Some manufacturers do offer battery packs specific for their machines but you don't need them.

Another thing to look at when camping is cpap induced hypothermia. There is another thread on the topic here.

34 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Kyle +0 points · over 2 years ago

Hi @truckerdad57 and @Ed, could we include these in the sticky so they're easier to find as the forums grow more active? You guys gave some great advice!

https://myapnea.org/forum/contribute-community-tips-for-using-pap-devices

2 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] RobinSez +0 points · over 2 years ago

When traveling overseas I have blown fuses in 2 different countries! I had the correct adapter to plug in the machine, but the voltage was different. Luckily the hotels had electrical converters. I now have a converter and adapters for various countries.

6 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] BillT +0 points · over 2 years ago

I check my CPAP machine when I fly. It's a zoo with everyone trying to cram their rollerboards into the overheads, with a lot of shoving and banging.. By the time I get on the plane there is literally no place to put even my small backpack full of personal stuff. Second reason is that it is a PITA to carry, along with my backpack, and I'm always futzing for a drink, my phone, ipod, etc. I'm not going to give it to the steward to put it away somewhere unbeknownst to me. One less thing to drop and break, one less thing to lose. It's never been damaged. I travel both domestically and internationally.

I put the machine in my checked luggage (which I would have checked anyways) and line it with socks and other materials. It's never been broken. If it is, it's not the end of the world.

I travel at least once a month and at least half the time it is by aircraft. On trips of two or one overnighters, I simply don't bring it. I sleep alone, so there is nobody to bother if I snore.

6 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] BillT +0 points · over 2 years ago

Regarding various voltages. Check the ratings on your cpap machine. You will not need a voltage converter, if your machine says it can handle 120 to 240 volts. All you need is the physical adapter. It sounds like RobinSez's machine was only designed for one voltage.

My Siemens (Made in Germany) CPAP handles both 120 and 240 volts and I have used it without problems in Spain.

By the way, lots of electrical equipment is dual voltage today, including laptop computers, chargers for cell phones and so on. You can get a magnifying glass (if needed) and read the fine print on each adapter to make sure.

2 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] RobinSez +0 points · over 2 years ago

I think my machine is kind of old - from 2010, but I have not checked the voltage. I'll check it but continue to bring a converter, too. Thanks.

8 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Ed +0 points · over 2 years ago

Kyle.....feel free to use the post where it will do most good. Ed

34 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Kyle +0 points · over 2 years ago

Thanks @Ed, I posted your tips in the sticky on this forum so they can help more people!

1 post
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] Sarah +0 points · over 2 years ago

On a few occasions, i've used my machine on a long overnight flight. If you are hooked into the plane's power, be sure to disconnect prior to the plane landing. One time I I overslept and didn't disconnect soon enough, and the power surge during the power switchover after landing fried my humidifier such that the whole unit didn't work properly. Worse, we had a devil of a time diagnosing the problem.

Many flights will no longer allow you to hook into their power due to security concerns so batteries will often be your only option. Batteries must usually be pre-approved by the airline, which, last time I did it, was a bit of an ordeal,,, Sarah

52 posts
Was this reply useful? Learn more...
   
[-] 2Sleepy +0 points · over 2 years ago

Thanks, Ed and others who contributed to this discussion. I do travel both by plane and on long road trips. Your suggestions were very helpful. I have also lost electricity for 5-7 days on more than one occasion during hurricane season. The battery back up info helped with that issue.

Write a Reply
Please be advised that these posts may contain sensitive material or unsolicited medical advice. MyApnea.Org does not endorse the content of these posts. The information provided on this site is not intended nor recommended as a substitute for advice from a health care professional who has evaluated you.