Using a CPAP

Russell Bateman
August 2015
last update:

Continuous, positive air pressure.

Cleaning any CPAP machine

Not all parts have to be washed as frequently as others. I only clean the hose and humidifier every few weeks whereas I clean the pillows that press against my face daily, i.e.: I never start a night on an unwashed pillow. (I collect the pillows, which will last for nearly ever if taken care of, and wash them once a week or so in order to have a clean "pile" of them for the coming week.)

  1. Disassemble and wet washable parts. This should include cleaning of
    • Pillows, daily
    • Face mask, weekly or daily when ill
    • Hose, every few weeks, more frequently when coughing
    • Humidifier, every few weeks or when detecting particulates in water

  2. Soap up hands with a couple of good squirts of dish soap, like Dawn®.

  3. Under flowing kitchen faucet, rub parts with soapy hands and set aside to rest with soap on them.

  4. Rinse hands, then thoroughly rinse each piece you've washed, setting the piece aside to drain on towel.
    • If pillow, either air-dry or hand-dry blotting with a paper towel or lint-free cloth.
    • If face mask, blot with paper towel or lint-free cloth.
    • If hose, rinse again with distilled water, then grasp by middle and spin in an open room.
    • For humidifier, rinse again with distilled water, then blot with paper towel or lint-free cloth.

  5. Reassemble.

ResMed S9: manual

ResMed S9: adjusting ramp-up

Mostly, I just wanted to turn mine up. Its default behavior, taking 4 minutes to ramp up to full pressure, was limiting when I was experiencing the respiratory distress due to a cold, flu, bronchitis, etc., like sucking air through a soda straw.

  1. Turn on.
  2. Rotate the Push Dial to bring display focus from Home, to Humidifier to the triangle-shaped Ramp-up menu.
  3. Press the Push Dial as if a button.
  4. Rotate the Push Dial again to select time for ramp-up from Off to whatever delay you wish.

ResMed S9: adjusting the pressure

Caution: this is ordinarily set by a medical technician based on a neurologist's prescription. Your mileage using these instructions may vary.

This is only "View Settings" unless it's the very first time getting into "Settings" immediately after turning on the machine. Here's how:

First, some terminology. See the image at upper right. If you click it, you can see it bigger. I'll be using their terminology for convenience.

  1. Turn on machine.
  2. Hold both the Setup menu button and the big Push Dial down at the same time for a few seconds. This will get you a new menu down the left side of the LCD screen.
  3. When you see the new menu down the left side, it should look similar to the one here at the right and you'll see some "gears." Rotate the Push Dial, if necessary, until you see the gears. In the main part of the screen, you'll see Settings.
  4. Depress the Push Dial to engage Settings.
  5. Turn the Push Dial until a faint rectangle encloses Set Pressure (or, on some models Max Pressure). The value you see is what the machine is presently operating at.
  6. To increase (or decrease) the pressure, depress the Push Dial again, then rotate it in either direction until you reach the desired pressure. Then, depress the Push Dial again.
  7. At this point, you can restart the machine.