How often should you get your POC checked?
A portable oxygen concentrator (POC) is designed to help those with respiratory issues. In order for a POC to work properly and provide the right oxygen purity, it is important that you maintain your device and get it checked regularly by a professional.
First and foremost, it is important to consider portable oxygen concentrator safety. The device should not get wet or be exposed to moist air, open flames or fire. This should go without saying, but smoking on or near your POC is not recommended. In fact, it can really diminish the life of your device if it is exposed to smoke. Any smoke will eventually clog the hoses inside and inhibit any oxygen flow. One last portable oxygen concentrator safety tip to remember is to not block intake vents on the unit. Any blockage of the vents will inhibit performance. Whether it’s baggy clothing or a carry bag that’s been shifted to an incorrect position on the machine, the vents must always be clear from any obstruction. It’s important to keep an eye on this as you use your unit day to day.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Second, you should be cleaning your portable oxygen concentrator regularly to avoid bacteria from getting in. You can wipe the outside of the unit using rubbing alcohol and a soft wash cloth, or slightly damp washcloth. Make sure not to get your unit wet! Wash or replace your filters regularly and have your healthcare provider check on the purity of the sieve beds health for you. Watch our video for more details on cleaning and maintaining your POC.
So, how often should you get your POC checked? After the first 6 months of usage, we recommend you get your unit checked every 3 months to ensure your portable oxygen concentrator is helping you to its fullest extent. Others recommend a checkup at least once a year, which is fine for the first year of a brand-new unit, but the sieve beds start to degrade after that. A maintenance technician will use an oxygen analyzer to verify the oxygen purity, flow rate, and pressure, as well as replace any worn items within the device.
You may be wondering.. if I can’t go as often to get my device checked, is there a way to tell when it’s time? If your device is no longer providing you with adequate oxygen purity you may start to feel sluggish, probably short of breath and have an overall depleted feeling. If you have not being feeling as well as usual, it may be time to get your POC checked!
Are you considering changing your POC all together but not sure how to pick your next one? Read our blog article about choosing the right portable oxygen concentrator for your lifestyle.