Broken CPAP Machine?

Your guide to troubleshooting and replacement

Isn’t is so heartbreaking and frustrating when an appliance you depend upon a lot, breaks down? Imagine having sleep apnea, being on CPAP therapy and one night you realise that your CPAP machine won’t start. What a nightmare would that be! People with sleep apnea undergoing CPAP therapy cannot sleep very well without using their device. The lack of sound sleep affects the other aspects of their lives. They feel sleepy, drowsy, and tired during the day, which makes them inefficient and inattentive at whatever they do.

If you have a broken CPAP machine, read on to know how to deal with the issue. There is a solution to every problem and so does this one.

Try Bypassing the Humidifier

The humidifier is the most vulnerable part of the CPAP machine. Detach the humidifier from the machine and attach the tube directly to the machine. Try running the machine now. If it works, you know what’s wrong. Just get the humidifier replaced. It would cost you anything between $200 and $400, but that’s way lesser than the cost of the new CPAP machine.

If the machine still doesn’t work after disengaging the humidifier, there is some other reason it’s not working.

Check the Filters

The filters of the CPAP machine can get clogged over time, which is why you are not getting enough air pressure. Should replaced the filters every months, or weekly. This would certainly solve the issue of insufficient pressure and your CPAP machine will start performing as if it were new.


Check the Tubing

The tubing that connects the mask and the machine is quite flexible. It could get damaged due to the normal wear and tear. If you have pets or kids at home, they can mess with the tubing too. The tubing can possibly develop cracks at one or more places, causing the pressurized air leak, which is why you get an impression that it’s the machine that has been malfunctioning. Replace the old tubing with the new one and then turn the machine on. Most probably, you would be able to get the right pressure after replacing the tubing.

The manufacturers recommend replacing the tubing once every one to three months. Using you CPAP machine every night can cause the tubing to develop mold and bacterial build-up on the inside from the moist, warm air passing through it. It is a health hazard and needs to be taken good care of.

Check the Power Cord

Sometimes we assume that the CPAP machine is broken because it’s actually the damaged power cord that is not letting any current pass. Obviously, the machine won’t start if it has a faulty or cracked power cord. Take a good look at the power cord and try identifying any breakages in it. Do not forget to unplug the machine from the power supply before inspecting the cord. If there is some problem with it, get it replaced.

Have the CPAP Prescription at Hand

Most people don’t know that replacing the CPAP machine also needs a prescription or a download report. If you still have it with yourself, great. If not, then you will need to arrange for one. You could visit your Sleep Clinic and explain them your dilemma. They would issue a new prescription for you. You can use it to get your CPAP machine replaced.

Consider the Warranty Status of Your CPAP Machine

Usually, the top rated cpap machines come with a warranty period that ranges between 2-5 years. If your CPAP machine is still under warranty, the manufacturer will repair it, or may replace it with a new one free of cost.

Take a Look at the Insurance Coverage

A vast majority of the health insurance providers approve of replacing the CPAP machine once in 3-5 years. If you have been using the same CPAP machine for 5 years and need it replaced with a new one, chances are that you qualify to benefit from your policy. Policies vary depending on level of cover. Check with your Private Health Insurance provider.


Like we mentioned earlier, it could be very difficult for some people to sleep well or sleep at all without their CPAP machine humming next to their bedside. If you are one of those, it would be extremely smart of you to opt for 1-day delivery or rush delivery when you and proceed to checkout and confirm your order. Obviously, you would need to shell out a few extra dollars for it but it’s definitely worth it; much better than having sleepless nights for 4-5 days.

Before you rush to purchase a new CPAP machine, you should troubleshoot the one you already have. Maybe it’s not the machine that has actually broken down. Maybe it’s the accessories that are affecting the efficacy of the machine. Let’s take a look at some things that you can do to detect the real problem.

So there is a bit of troubleshooting that needs to be done before coming to the decision that you CPAP machine is broken. You would save yourself several hundred dollars that you would have blown on buying a new one. If the humidifier, power cord, filters, and tubing are perfectly fine, there is definitely something wrong with the machine. You know what to do next. Take advantage of the warranty if it is still valid. If not, call your insurance company to see if you qualify for a new one.

If not sure how to troubleshoot, then take advantage of our
Free CPAP Support and call 1300 375 384.