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Fumes from humidifier
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vsheline Offline

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Post: #11
RE: Fumes from humidifier
(01-30-2014 10:31 PM)PaytonA Wrote:  This time I got noxious fumes with a humidifier water chamber that was at least half full of water and it is a chamber that has never been allowed to run dry. It was enough to make my nose hurt. The humidifier control is also on a fairly low setting. It is below the halfway point.

Hi PaytonA,

Perhaps the same thing happened to me last night. The water tub was full but I started smelling a burned-like smell. It also seemed like the pressure and airflow were perhaps less than normal.

I turned the machine off and moved things around, and the smoldering smell cleared up completely.

I think something had been obstructing the air intake (where the air filter is), and the lack of inlet airflow caused the machine to heat up.

If the outlet airflow is restricted (say we remove the mask from the hose and we use our palm to completely block the hose outlet) the machine is not stressed at all, because the outlet pressure is at the target output pressure and the machine has less work to do to maintain the pressure (it does not have to produce as much airflow). But if its inlet is blocked and it is unable to achieve the target output pressure, it may work as hard as it can but still be unable to reach the target output pressure. I think this was what was causing my machine to overheat.

Very important to not allow anything to get too close to the air inlet and obstruct it.

In your case, perhaps when you removed the humidifier you unknowingly also moved whatever may have been blocking the air inlet.

Membership in the Advisory Member group should not be understood as in any way implying medical expertise or qualification for advising Sleep Apnea patients concerning their treatment. The Advisory Member group provides advice and suggestions to Apnea Board administrators and staff on matters concerning Apnea Board operation and administrative policies - not on matters concerning treatment for Sleep Apnea. I think it is now too late to change the name of the group but I think Voting Member group would perhaps have been a more descriptive name for the group.
(This post was last modified: 02-02-2014 12:34 AM by vsheline.)
02-01-2014 11:46 PM
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jgjones1972 Offline

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Machine: ResMed S9 AutoSet
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Post: #12
RE: Fumes from humidifier
I had that happen to me once. I had just opened a new jug of distilled water and filled the tank with it. I couldn't get to sleep because of the burning sensation and smothered feeling. I dumped the tank and filled it again from the same jug. The same feeling again. So I dumped it and filled the tank from a new jug from a different store and everything was fine. The first jug went down the drain and needless to say, I don't buy my water from that store any more even though I had never had a problem with water from there before.

The sensation I got wasn't a bad smell...it was a burning sensation and a feeling like I wasn't getting enough oxygen.
02-02-2014 12:17 AM
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JWR Offline

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Post: #13
RE: Fumes from humidifier
You might be onto something ! I sanitize my equipment on Sunday nights and that was the night that i got fumes. Two thing were different when I sanitized that night . One. I switched to Control 3 sanitizer . Two. I picked up a gal of Distilled water from the same store but it was from a different bottler. I use distilled water for a final rinse and flushing the hose and humidifier , then filled the tank for the night . I had also installed a new water distiller that night but had to wait for it to produce enough water to use . No more buying Water..
I went to bed about 11:30 and woke back up around 4:00 nose burning from fumes , Thinking the fumes were from using the new cleaner I changed the humidifier tank and hose and refilled the new tank from the still and went back to bed . haven't had a problem since . Now you have me wondering if it was the water ? This being Sunday I will retry the control 3 again but using my home brew distilled water to flush and refill tonight .

02-02-2014 11:25 AM
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Bladskinner Offline

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Post: #14
RE: Fumes from humidifier
How do u make your own disttilled water?

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02-02-2014 10:57 PM
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jgjones1972 Offline

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Post: #15
RE: Fumes from humidifier
(02-02-2014 10:57 PM)Bladskinner Wrote:  How do u make your own disttilled water?

Home water distiller. Google it or search for them on Amazon. At around a dollar a gallon store bought and considering power consumption of the still it will probably take a while to recoup the cost of a home unit, but the convenience would probably make it worth while for many. Doesn't make much sense for me to get one right now because I travel all the time for work and the last thing I need is yet another thing to drag around.
02-02-2014 11:59 PM
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JWR Offline

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Post: #16
RE: Fumes from humidifier
(02-02-2014 10:57 PM)Bladskinner Wrote:  How do u make your own disttilled water?

I picked up a used Waterwise electric Distiller on craigslist , It can make 9 gal. of distilled water a day and is totally automatic . just connect water line and plug in . Wow have you ever made Ice tea or coffee with distilled water, you'll never use tap water again or buy water for the cpap .

02-03-2014 04:17 PM
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JWR Offline

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Post: #17
RE: Fumes from humidifier
[quote='JWR' pid='57724' dateline='1391358350']
You might be onto something ! I sanitize my equipment on Sunday nights and that was the night that i got fumes. Two thing were different when I sanitized that night . One. I switched to Control 3 sanitizer . Two. I picked up a gal of Distilled water from the same store but it was from a different bottler.



I used the control 3 last night and flushed everything as usual and refilled the tank , used the water from the still . No fumes !

I think I"ll pick up a bottle of the same brand of water that I used the last time I had the problem with the fumes and try it tonight . Only way I know to find out if it was the culprit . I'm glad it wasn't the sanitizer .

02-03-2014 04:35 PM
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JWR Offline

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Posts: 455
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Machine: DreamStation DSX700 , PR 760 bipap auto
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Post: #18
RE: Fumes from humidifier
Guess what ! I got Fumed out at 3:30am last night using the distilled water I picked up yesterday from the store . It says its 100% steam distilled , wondering if there taking a short cut or having a problem with contamination in the storage tanks or bottling systems . I clean the boiler and holding tank on my waterwize distiller every month to avoid problems . My suggestion is if you get fumes try a different water source . Funny part is I bought the distiller just for the convenience of always having distilled water on hand and found tons of uses for it . Mystery solve , for me anyhow . Hope this helps someone else with the fume issue.

02-05-2014 12:11 AM
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Shastzi Offline

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Post: #19
RE: Fumes from humidifier
Distilled water = Good for the car battery too!

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02-05-2014 09:58 PM
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PaulaO2 Offline
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Post: #20
RE: Fumes from humidifier
(01-31-2014 01:12 PM)jdireton Wrote:  If the smell is anything like ammonia, it is organic material in your water (algea, mold, bacteria, fungi). This is most likely if you "top off" your water chamber and do not empty it and refill it every night or if it runs dry during the night. Basic, whatever crap is in whatever water you use, and is blown into this water by the xPAP machine, will just keep building up if you don't flush and clean the unit.

Interesting.

Used to, whenever my humidifier ran dry, I got the ammonia smell. Burned my nose really bad! I spent most of the day sneezing. I don't top off, though. I do use tap water (rural spring). It does not have algea or fungi or the like. But I've not gotten that smell in a long time. I wake up more with just the wonderful smell of something being too hot. I don't sneeze as long at least. Actually, now that I think of it, I've not had that problem since I switched to the take-apart-able tubs. But the tub on the S7 was cleanable and that one was bad for the ammonia smell.

I have had the smell of heat and the tank still have water. I know I got up and refilled it anyway. I can't remember if I moved stuff from away from the machine or not. Problem with me is, if I wake up then go back to sleep, I rarely remember what I did. Sometimes I'll remember bits and pieces.

Anyway, on another forum, I once asked about the ammonia smell. I specifically said several times that I did not use ammonia to clean my gear. Yet I got about ten lectures on why ammonia is not a good thing to use to clean CPAP stuff with and I was an idiot to wonder why I woke up smelling ammonia. That was also the same forum that almost banned me for getting into the clinician menu and changing the length of the ramp time.

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02-05-2014 11:23 PM
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