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Common CPAP Mask, CPAP Machine And Sleep Apnea Questions

Listed below are some of the more frequently asked questions we hear from our 1800CPAP.com customers. Please check back often because there are more and more products released every day to assist with the treatment and adherence to sleep apnea. We also adapt our policies to suit the needs of all our CPAP customers, from international users to domestic,and with this it allows us to provide more products at lower prices to more CPAP users all over the world.


Frequently Asked Questions



Does 1800CPAP.com set my CPAP or BiPAP machine pressure before it is shipped and delivered to me?

Upon receiveing your prescription for your CPAP or BiPAP machine, our registered sleep technologists set all of you CPAP machine setting per the prescription and then test it for accuracy.


How can I get a copy of my prescription to 1800CPAP.COM?

There are 4 easy ways to provide us with your prescription:

  1. By Email: Simply scan and email a copy to rx@1800cpap.com
  2. Fax your prescription to (888) 290-6188
  3. Mail your prescription to 2098 W US 22-3, Maineville OH 45039 Attention: Admin
  4. Provide us with the name and telephone number of your doctor or Sleep Lab/Physician or current Medical Equipment Provider

Who writes my prescription for CPAP or Bi-PAP supplies?

Commonly, your sleep physician or primary care physician will write your CPAP prescriptions but prescriptions can be written by any licensed physician.


Will my original prescription work?

Yes. Once your prescription is on file, there is no need to submit a new one unless your physician makes a pressure adjustment to your machine. Should this happen, please just send us your updated prescription for your file so we may better serve you in the future.


If I have a machine prescription, do I need a separate prescription to purchase a mask or humidifier?

No. A CPAP or Bi-PAP machine prescription will cover the prescription requirements for a mask, humidifier, and machine.


Do you bill my insurance company?

Currently, 1800CPAP.com does not bill insurance companies for purchases. However, we can provide you with the necessary information on your invoice that will allow you to file for reimbursement from your insurance company. Simply call us at 1-800-274-1366 and we wil step you through the process.


What is Obstructive Sleep Apnea?

The partial or complete closure of a patient’s airway during sleep is known as Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA). Apnea is Latin for “without breath”. The body responds to this lack of oxygen by arousing, or waking from sleep sometimes in a violent fashion. This cycle leads to the patient being unable to get the needed quantity of restful sleep and results in irritability and mood swings, fatigue, memory loss, just to name a few.


What is a CPAP machine?

CPAP stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. CPAP therapy provides a constant airflow which holds the airway open so that uninterrupted breathing is maintained during sleep. This eliminates or reduces sleep disordered breathing events (sleep apnea) and allows you to get a restful sleep. CPAP therapy is traditionally provided through a nasal mask that seals around the nose. However, more innovative, comfortable and better sealing options are beginning to emerge.


Which CPAP machine is for me?

Since your CPAP machine requires a prescription; it is best determined by your physician as to which device will work best for you. We encourage you to ask many questions or describe your typical sleeping situation, this may assist your physician in the decision making process. Things to consider are: type of usage, do you travel; do you need humidification, weight of the machine, size of the machine, noise level, etc.


How do I travel with my CPAP machine?

Traveling with your CPAP can sometimes be a hassle. However, with proper preparation, it can be very easy. If you are flying with your CPAP, you can bring your CPAP machine on the airplane with you and it will not count as one of your carry-on items. Never check your CPAP machine because through normal luggage handling procedures it can easily be broken. You may want to call ahead and find out your airline's procedures for carrying your CPAP machine on the airplane to prevent any delays through security. If your machine has the ability to run off of 12V (check your owner’s manual) then you will be able to run your machine off of either a battery, or plug it into the cigarette lighter adapter in your car / RV if you purchase the proper cables. Travel machines are the other option. There have been signifigant technological advancements when it comes to portable cpap machines.


What is an Auto CPAP machine?

An Auto CPAP machine is a machine that uses two pressure settings; a high setting and a low setting. The machine starts at the lower setting and through the course of the night it senses when you are having sleep disordered breathing. It then begins to slowly raise the pressure toward the set high pressure. Once the apnea is eliminated it will stay at that pressure for a period of time and then slowly begin to decrease back toward the lower pressure. If another apnea occurs in the meantime, it will then begin to increase, so on and so forth. In this way, the machine automatically figures out the best pressure for you to be sleeping at for that particular night. This is a nice feature because your best therapy pressure is not always the same. It greatly depends on your daily activities and your personal habits.


What is a Bi-PAP or Bi-Level machine?

A Bi-PAP or Bi-Level machine uses two separate pressure settings for your therapy: An inspiratory pressure and an expiratory pressure. When you inhale, the therapy is delivered at the set inspiratory pressure, and then when you exhale, the pressure is delivered at the set expiratory pressure. The inspiratory pressure is always greater than the expiratory pressure. This type of machine is usually used for people who cannot tolerate a normal CPAP machine or for people who have other conditions along with their sleep apnea.


How do I know what size mask I need?

If you are purchasing the same mask that you already have then somewhere on your existing mask there will be a size indication, usually a single letter (M for medium, etc.). If you are selecting a different mask then the best option is to click on the sizing gauge option located on the product page of the mask you are selecting. If there is not a printable mask sizing gauge, email us at products@1800cpap.com and we can send you information on selecting the right size mask


How often should I change my CPAP filter, CPAP tubing, and water chamber?

For your CPAP filters you should change them whenever you start to see them get fairly dirty. Remember, this is the air you are breathing at night! If you have the foam, reusable filters, then you should rinse them out and let them air dry at least once every other week or based on manufactures recommended procedure. We recommend replacing your tubing once every three months to reduce the risk of dirt and bacteria build up in your tubing that can cause you to become ill. Water chambers should be replaced at least once every 3-6 months depending on how well you clean it daily.


What kind of water should I use in my humidifier?

You should always use distilled water in your humidifier to prevent the buildup of mineral deposits on your water chamber. This will significantly prolong the life of your humidifier.


How do I know if the mask I want will work with my machine?

All of the masks are standardized so that any mask will connect with any machine. The only exception is the AirMini Travel machine by ResMed. The AirMini requires mask kits that specifically work with that machine.


How long does a CPAP Machine last? How long does a CPAP mask last before I should replace it?

With proper maintenance a CPAP machine should last as long as 5-7 years. Always make sure you purchase a trusted brand to get the longest life out of your CPAP machine. CPAP masks on the other hand only have a shelf life of about 6-12 months with proper care. For more information, please see our CPAP replacement schedule.


I want to purchase a CPAP machine online but I heard they don't come with a warranty?

The products sold at 1800CPAP.COM is fully covered by each manufacturers warranty, so rest easy when you purchase your CPAP from 1800CPAP.COM.


Will my ResMed mask work with my Respironics CPAP machine?

Yes, CPAP masks are adaptable to fit any CPAP tubing and will work with any machine. Please note: Certain CPAP hoses and tubing are custom to certain CPAP machine (i.e. the S9 climate line will only work with the S9 series of CPAP and AutoSet machines.


How can I adjust the pressure settings of my CPAP or BiPAP machine?

CPAP and BiPAP Machine pressures are a prescription therapy setting. These setting are controled and locked by the CPAP machine, only accessible by authorized clinical staff. CPAP pressure settings are based on the recommendation of your physician and should not be adjusted without speaking with him/her first.


I feel air leaking around my CPAP mask when I put it on; how do I fix this or is it normal?

CPAP masks are designed with an intentional leak so that during exhalation your CO2 is "blown off" and you are not retaining it. This blowing air can usually be felt from the exhalation port on your mask. If the air leaking from you CPAP mask is around the cushion seal it could be a number of things.

  1. Has the CPAP mask leak just developed or has it been leaking since you first got the CPAP mask? If it happened over a period of time, it's most likely oil and dirt build up on the cushion from lack of proper CPAP mask cleaning or maintenance OR the CPAP mask has been used for a longer period and needs replaced (remember, these masks really only have a shelf life of 3 months to a year.
  2. If the mask has leaked from the begining, it's most likely that you have not been properly fit for the right CPAP mask size or your facial structure dictates that you need a different style mask.
  3. You have facial hair that is limiting the CPAP mask seal; in which case you may want to explore a different mask style.
  4. The CPAP mask cushion has seperated from the CPAP mask frame. Examine the mask and make sure it is properly put together.