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[Equipment] Data Based Cleaning Schedule
#1
I just got a shiny new ResMed S9 AutoSet after using a Respironics for over 4 years. The old Respironics manual recommended cleaning the humidifier tank with mild detergent once a week. The new S9 manual recommends cleaning the humidifier tank with mild detergent daily.

Cleaning the tank daily seems stupid to me. If you start with a clean system, the air coming in is filtered, and you use distilled water, I find it unlikely that microorganisms would grow to concentrations large enough to affect health in 2 or 3 days.

Is there any publicly available data that supports a specific cleaning schedule? I am thinking of something along the lines of: x% of users who clean their tanks every 6 months experience health problems related to microorganisms growing in the tank, while that number drops to y% for users who clean their tanks every week, and z% for users who clean their tanks daily.

I know that individual users report everything from almost never cleaning their tanks to cleaning them daily. What I would like is some hard evidence that would help me determine how long it takes for a clean tank to become dirty enough to be likely to affect my health.
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#2
Hi andersonsta,
WELCOME! to the forum.!
I only clean my water chamber once a week and have not had any problems, I think it's a bit much to clean it daily. I use distilled water as well.
Hang in there for more responses to your post and best of luck to you.
trish6hundred
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#3
it's always better from a legal standpoint to say "clean it constantly" than "meh, don't worry"

if the put realistic needs in there, someone's going to get sick, (probably from some unrelated thing), blame the cpap for it, and sue.

at which point resmed says "did you sanitize it every 2 hours like the instructions said?" "well, no" "case dismissed".
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#4
(07-12-2014, 12:37 PM)andersonsta Wrote: I know that individual users report everything from almost never cleaning their tanks to cleaning them daily. What I would like is some hard evidence that would help me determine how long it takes for a clean tank to become dirty enough to be likely to affect my health.

That would depend on many variables. What water is being used, what is the condition of the water system supplying the water if public and/or well water is being used, what are the atmospheric variants in which the machine is used, what are the health and cleanliness of the occupants of the residence, what is the current moon phase, what is the hand of one sound clapping........... and so forth.

That said, I try to clean mine quarterly.

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#5
I try to very regularly clean mine ............... sometimes. Have not had any respiratory infections since the start of CPAP which is about 4 years now.

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#6
Almost everyone has an S9 tank now that can be taken apart for cleaning.
Doing it daily may prematurely cause the nylon snaps (for want of a better word) to break.
Having said that, distilled water and a clean air filter do not guarantee the tank cannot be contaminated.
Look at the air flow data. It's swings positive and negative. The sensor is located upstream of the humidifier.
Does this not indicate that when we exhale, we expel air back up the hose, through the humidifier?

(Unless the zero flow reference is relative; and we only reduce the outflow of the machine...)

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#7
(07-12-2014, 02:54 PM)justMongo Wrote: Look at the air flow data. It's swings positive and negative. The sensor is located upstream of the humidifier.
Does this not indicate that when we exhale, we expel air back up the hose, through the humidifier?

(Unless the zero flow reference is relative; and we only reduce the outflow of the machine...)

you're not taking the mask vents into consideration in your theory.

yes, the "zero" flow is zero relative to respiration, not zero absolute.

you'd have to be exhaling incredibly fast, and hard, and with superhuman volume to get anything back down that hose and into the humidifier.
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#8
(07-12-2014, 03:09 PM)diamaunt Wrote: you'd have to be exhaling incredibly fast, and hard, and with superhuman volume to get anything back down that hose and into the humidifier.

I accept the challenge. It's hoses at 10 paces at dawn!

Actually I checked my negative flow and it records about 40 LPM.
Looking at a spread sheet where I did a curve fit to intentional mask leakage v pressure, at my pressure, the mask outflow exceeds 40. So, indeed I'd have a tough time pushing air back up the hose.

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#9
Being the clean freak that I am, I start withe a clean new tank every year or two. I try not contaminate it with soaps or detergents. I generally use reverse osmosis water. I also don't like to waste that valuable water each morning, although there is seldom anything left to dump. I don't put tap water in the tank to contaminate it either. So no washing, rinsing or dish washing of my PRS1 tank.
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#10
(07-12-2014, 04:48 PM)bwexler Wrote: Being the clean freak that I am, I start withe a clean new tank every year or two. I try not contaminate it with soaps or detergents. I generally use reverse osmosis water. I also don't like to waste that valuable water each morning, although there is seldom anything left to dump. I don't put tap water in the tank to contaminate it either. So no washing, rinsing or dish washing of my PRS1 tank.

What is your tank made of? Highly pure water is highly reactive with metals.

Actually, highly pure water (18 Mega-Ohm) is actually an electrical insulator. I've been involved in high energy research where a large 2 meter coaxial charge pulse line used water as an insulator. It carried a 2 Mega-Volt, 2 Mega-Ampere pulse to an Xray diode.

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