Alternative Power Options for Your CPAP Machine

Posted Aug 10, 2011 by Kristen P. in Lifestyle

Battery and Power Options for Your CPAPPowering a CPAP machine when AC power is not available is a very popular topic in the CPAP community. Whether referring to power outages, camping, driving or flying long distances, CPAP users need options for treatment in any situation. Thankfully, there are multiple alternative power options available for most machines. CPAP battery packs, DC power options, marine battery adapters and travel-specific CPAP machines provide alternate power options for your CPAP therapy.

CPAP Battery Packs

Among the most popular alternate power options for their reliability and ease-of-use, CPAP battery packs are an all-in-one power solution that allows you to connect your machine (via DC power adapter) directly to a battery pack. With battery options that last from 8 to 24 hours before needing a charge, a battery pack is a convenient option that will provide a reliable power source for a full night’s sleep, anywhere.

The cost of purchasing a battery pack can be prohibitive for some CPAP users, but the convenience and reliability gained from having a battery pack available for travel or as a back-up power source cannot be beat.

Here are a few different battery pack options currently available:

  • The CPAP Battery Pack – Currently the smallest, lightest battery pack available. Runs your CPAP for up to 24 hours before needing to be recharged.
  • Respironics CPAP Battery Pack – Though designed by Respironics, this battery pack can be used with most CPAP machines, as long as the appropriate DC adapter is purchased. Usage times are between 7 and 20 hours. 

* Remember, heated humidification should not be used with battery power as it will drain the battery very quickly.

DC Power Options

DC (or direct current) power is the type of electricity used in automobile or marine power situations, where power is delivered from a battery. CPAP battery packs require a DC power adapter to convert your machine from the AC power plug to a DC power plug (a plug that fits into the cigarette lighter or power source of your car), but there are ways to power your CPAP directly using this DC adapter alone. Long distance truck drivers and those who travel in RVs may be able to use a DC power adapter to connect their CPAP directly to a power source within their vehicle.

Here are a few DC power cables available:

Marine Battery Connections

Expanding on the DC power options listed above, some CPAP machines have adapters available that allow you to power your machine by connecting directly to a 12-volt, rechargeable marine battery with battery alligator clips. This solution depends on the CPAP machine you own, what type of marine battery you use, and other complex factors, so, while a marine battery may be less expensive than a standard CPAP battery pack, it’s often a more difficult solution to execute. Before purchasing an adapter or marine battery, contact our customer service team or your CPAP machine’s manufacturer for more information.

Here are a few direct-to-battery adapters:

Travel CPAP Machines

Over the past few years, travel CPAP machines have become more and more in demand as patients realize the value of having a portable unit they can use anywhere. These machines generally include an optional battery pack that’s designed for and integrates with the travel unit. Most travel machines are lighter, smaller, and easier to transport that standard CPAP machines. A new travel CPAP machine that is very easy to use and has an option for a battery is the Transcend Wearable CPAP Machine. Another popular unit that had an integrated battery, the Aeiomed Everest, recently went out of production, but we hope to see another comparable travel unit replace it soon.

Regardless of which alternate power option you choose, it’s always important to use your CPAP every night, regardless of the environment in which you are sleeping. It’s always nice to be well-refreshed in the morning (especially when traveling!), but, more importantly, it’s unsafe for sleep apnea sufferers to forego the CPAP, even just for one night.

Remember, contact our customer service team at 866-560-2727 for questions about alternative power options for your CPAP machine.

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Comments (3) -

9/23/2011 2:20:10 PM #

I have a repironics machine that is about 4 years old now and have been using the 12v connection and a deep cycle marine battery to power my machine when we got house boating - I recently found my self in a pinch and needed a 12v power source and didn't have my 75lbs marine battery with me.  I took a chance and went to Walmart - I purchase the cheapest 12v battery I could find (a small riding lawn mower battery) it worked for 2 nights of about 12 hour sleep and still had 2/3 of a charge on it.  I'm thrilled that I don't have to lug around that huge deep cycle battery any more.  I haven't pushed it yet but I'm betting I can get 24 hours out of my 25 dollar battery - The draw back is that you have to have the means to recharge it - so you'll have to buy a regular automotive battery charger, or a small solar panel (of which I have both)  I'll really get to experiment with this next summer and will re post the results then.  

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