If you have recently purchased a humidifier for your CPAP machine, then you might be wondering why it is advisable to use distilled water to fill up the water chamber of your humidification system and if standard tap water could be a substitute.
Unfortunately, standard tap water is not ideal for your humidifier. This is because tap water can leave hard white mineral deposits in the chamber as the water evaporates, or potentially lead to mold growth.
It is therefore very important that you try to use distilled or deionized water every time you fill up your humidifier water chamber. If distilled water is not easily accessible to you, then you can opt for bottled water instead.
Can I use boiled tap water or filtered water instead?
Boiling water generally kills microbes, but it will not remove minerals or chemical contaminants. Filtered water may remove some of the minerals, but may not remove living organisms or other chemicals. It is therefore advisable that you opt for distilled water, as this will maximize the life of the water tub and reduce mineral deposits.
Cleaning the water chamber:
It is important that you keep your water chamber as clean as possible to avoid any deposits building up, so it is recommended that you clean the chamber on a daily basis, making sure that the water in the chamber is emptied fully every morning.
If you wake up to find that you haven’t used all of the water in the chamber the night before, it is important that you don’t reuse this water and empty it out of the tank, for new water to be added the following night.
Tips for cleaning the water chamber in your humidification system:
To ensure that your water chamber lasts for as long as possible and remains hygienic to use, it is vital that you clean the water chamber daily. You can do this by washing it with warm water and a mild detergent.
Once a month, it is advised that you take a look at your water chamber to check for deterioration, cloudiness, a build-up of hard white mineral deposits or mold. If you find that you can’t clean these deposits off of the inside of the water chamber, then it is advisable that you consider purchasing a new water tank. These can normally be purchased separately via http://www.eu-pap.co.uk/cpap-sleep-apnoea-products/cpap-machine-humidifiers/parts-spares.html
To ensure that your water chamber is thoroughly clean, you might want to check if your water chamber model is dishwasher safe for a deep cleanse once a week. If it is not, then it is advised you disinfect the humidifier by soaking it in a solution of vinegar and water, 1/5 of the solution being vinegar and the rest water. Leave it to soak in the solution for up to 30 minutes, then thoroughly rinse it with water and leave it to dry, out of the way of direct sunlight.
Things to avoid cleaning your CPAP humidification system water chamber with:
It is important that you don’t clean your CPAP humidification system water chamber with any substances that would be harmful to breathe. This includes bleach, chlorine, alcohol and other potentially harmful substances to breathe.