When you first open the box for your brand new CPAP machine, you have a lot of questions like how long will your new CPAP machine last? What’s the average life expectancy of a CPAP machine? And how often should you replace the different parts like the mask, cushions and tubing?
The life expectancy of a CPAP machine differs based on the specific piece of equipment. In general, CPAP machines are used for roughly three to five years. CPAP masks, however, should be replaced several times per year. Why? CPAP masks feature a lot of individual parts that are heavily used and therefore wear out more quickly than other parts. For instance, the cushions on a mask may begin to wear out before the strap or hose. How long your CPAP mask lasts is affected by oils from your skin, and by regular cleaning which, while highly recommended, can wear down your mask over time.
Beyond that, a mask’s headgear, cushion and pillows can stretch out; the tubing can develop tears or cracks; air filters can wear out. If any of this happens without replacement, your sleep apnea therapy may not be as effective. That’s why regularly replacing your CPAP equipment is so important. CPAP users who regularly replace their supplies report that they sleep more hours each night and use their therapy more nights of the week.1
Replacing your CPAP machine, mask and other equipment
You might wonder, isn’t it up to your doctor or sleep therapist to make sure your equipment is regularly replaced? Aren’t they the experts on how long CPAP machines last? Shouldn’t they be keeping track of the age of the products you’re using – the CPAP machine, your mask, the hose connecting the two, and all other related accessories?
The answer is yes, however, it’s important for you to be aware of how long your CPAP machine and other equipment is expected to last. You may have to remind your physician or sleep therapist that your equipment is due for replacement.
ResMed provides an online CPAP supplies replacement guide that provides timeframes for getting new supplies. For example, it’s recommended that you replace your CPAP mask every three months, but you should replace your cushions and filters twice a month. CPAP mask headgear is recommended to be replaced every six months, and the tubing connecting your mask to our machine every three months.
The good news is that most health insurers will provide new supplies according to these replacement schedules. Check with your insurance provider to find out if you’re eligible to regularly replace your CPAP equipment. Or talk to your doctor to see whether he or she is aware of these recommended resupply timeframes. Doing so will ensure that your sleep apnea therapy is as consistent and effective as possible.