Everything you need to know about Oxygen Purity levels in your Oxygen Concentrators

Although oxygen purity is an important part of having an oxygen concentrator or tank, patients are rarely informed about it. Most oxygen concentrators and tanks are controlled and tested to meet specified purity criteria, however defective devices will occasionally make it to the shipment truck. You now have the means to examine the oxygen purity of your own oxygen therapy device or know how to get an assessment with this information.

The quality of your oxygen delivery is critical to both your therapy and your general health. At each location, an oxygen concentrator is employed to maintain a specific level of purity. But what does oxygen purity entail and what does it imply?

Oxygen concentrators are critical medical devices, but they, like all technology, are subject to wear and tear and will eventually fail. When it comes to oxygen concentrators, the purity of the oxygen that comes out of your concentrator is critical, and it should operate within a certain range.

When you set your device to 2 litres per minute (LPM), you should get 2 LPM of at least >95 percent pure oxygen. However, if your concentrator breaks down, you may think you’re getting 2 LPM when the concentration is actually 85 percent or below. This is a severe medical concern because you won’t be able to rely on your concentrator to produce the oxygen concentration you require in this situation.

In this blog, we’ll look at how to tell if your device requires a purity check and how to go about doing it.

How can you tell whether your oxygen concentrator needs to be checked for purity?

While medical evaluation is the only way to truly tell whether your concentrator is not producing the correct purity, there is one indicator you should be aware of that may indicate the need for an exam. If you’re suffering with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or another pulmonary disease that requires oxygen and are not currently sick or experiencing an exacerbation, and you notice that you are becoming more fatigued or winded while doing activities that used to be simple, it may be time for an oxygen purity test.

Oxygen is a colourless, odourless, and tasteless gas that accounts for around 20% of the air we breathe. Supplemental oxygen is likely required if you have COPD or other lung/respiratory illnesses. When discussing your optimal settings and levels, your doctor may have mentioned oxygen purity. The term “purity” refers to the purity of the concentrated oxygen available to the patient. An oxygen concentrator should have a medical grade oxygen content of no less than 90.0 percent and no more than 96.0 percent. When looking at appropriate oxygen saturation levels, it’s also crucial to consider your altitude. Consult your doctor if you’re unsure or confused about your oxygen requirements. 

Fortunately, technological improvements have made it possible for patients to check and monitor their blood-oxygen levels at any time! A pulse oximeter is a compact, lightweight device that attaches to a fingertip without pain and is an excellent tool to monitor your health! Pulse oximeters monitor your heart rate and blood oxygen levels to ensure your concentrator is delivering the purity and concentration you require.

There are additional techniques to maintain and care for your oxygen concentrator so that it continues to provide continuous oxygen purity for many years to come. Cleaning any Gross Particle Filters in your equipment is one of the simplest techniques. This is the filter that needs to be cleaned and replaced on a regular basis. Your oxygen purity can be lowered if your filter is dirty. To clean, remove, and replace a Gross Particle Filter, follow the instructions in your owner’s manual.

It’s also worth noting that older concentrator models may have lower purity levels. This is frequently due to the model not being thoroughly refurbished or because the internal and external filters are too dirty or perhaps even clogged.

If you have a new oxygen concentrator and have been cleaning the filters on a regular basis, you should only have your oxygen purity tested if you notice or hear an oxygen purity error or warning message on your machine. The majority of today’s concentrators have oxygen purity alarm systems that will notify you if your oxygen purity levels go below the recommended range. 

The proportion of pure oxygen concentration delivered through cannula or mask to you, the patient, is critical to your oxygen therapy and general health. It’s crucial to remember that no two people’s purity and setting requirements are the same. The ability of your body to absorb oxygen is influenced by factors such as gender, weight, and heredity. Regular filter cleaning and the usage of a pulse oximeter are wonderful ways to keep an eye on your oxygen purity and check its effectiveness if you’re concerned about it or simply want to be proactive.

However, by the time this happens, you might be in desperate need of a replacement, so it’s not the best way to find out your oxygen concentrator needs a purity check.

Maintaining Oxygen Purity with Regular Maintenance for Oxygen Concentrators

It is preferable, like with most home equipment, to repair your gadgets on a regular basis to ensure good function and to spot problems before they become emergencies. The same can be said about oxygen concentrators.

Request an Oxygen Purity Assessment from your oxygen concentrator provider:

At regular intervals, your oxygen concentrator supplier should be able to manually test your concentrator to verify its function. Inquire with your provider about scheduling an appointment to get your concentrator inspected on a regular basis or if you suspect a problem.

When they come out to test your equipment, they’ll use an oxygen analyzer to examine the output flow and compare it to a control measure to see if it’s accurate. These detectors are extremely accurate, detecting oxygen purity differences down to tenths of a percent.

Clean the Particles in the Gross Filter:

The filters in your oxygen concentrator may need to be cleaned, which is one reason why the oxygen is filtered at a lower purity level. Check your oxygen unit’s owner’s manual to check if it contains a gross particle filter.

The gross particle filter should be cleaned and replaced on a regular basis. When the concentrator is turned on, the ambient air must first travel through the gross particle filter, which removes dust and debris from the air. If this filter is not cleaned on a regular basis, dirt and debris can accumulate, reducing the amount of filtered oxygen the concentrator can produce. To clean the gross particle filter, refer to your owner’s handbook for instructions on how to remove, clean, and replace the filter.

Repair your device by sending it to the manufacturer:

It’s possible that the inner filter and components will need to be serviced as well. This is the time to have your oxygen concentrator serviced by the manufacturer or reseller. You won’t be able to clean the inner filters or components without risking harming the device or voiding the warranty, so don’t take any chances and have the repairs done by professionals, especially since it’s a medical device.

Use an Oxygen Analyzer

While you can buy your own oxygen analyzer and test it yourself, there are two factors to consider: cost and calibration.

Oxygen purity analyzers are costly, with the least expensive models starting at a few hundred dollars. They are widely available on the internet, but they can be expensive. If cost isn’t an issue, a home oxygen analyzer is a fantastic tool to track any changes in your concentrator’s purity over time.

Another item to consider is calibration. Oxygen analyzers are devices in and of themselves, and they drift and malfunction with time, just like any other device. The advantage of oxygen analyzers is that they have a self-calibration function, allowing you to conduct your own quality control test at home and ensure that you get correct purity values.

The Aftermath

Although oxygen purity is an important part of having an oxygen concentrator or tank, patients are rarely informed about it. Most oxygen concentrators and tanks are controlled and tested to meet specified purity criteria, however defective devices will occasionally make it to the shipment truck. You now have the means to examine the oxygen purity of your own oxygen therapy device or know how to get an assessment with this information.

You can know more about how Servotech’s Oxygen Concentrator devices deliver above 90% purity at all times here, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wnrV23lbxJE

If you’re looking to buy a quality device, visit: 


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