We spent over 36 hours testing and researching 12 different types of CPAP machines and found that ease of use, setting features, and data capability were most important. The DreamStation Auto CPAP Machine scored high marks in all categories and is our top pick. The advanced data review was very helpful. The auto adjusting feature reduced the necessity of having to manually adjust it. It comes with a humidifier and heated tube that prevented dry air from getting into the airways and causing problems. It weighs only three pounds so it is not cumbersome to move around if necessary.
A CPAP machine is a device that is used to treat people that are suffering from sleep apnea. These machines are extremely effective for treating sleep apnea and providing relief from this problematic condition.
Sleep apnea is a condition where a person’s airway has a blockage in it that prevents oxygen from getting to the vital organs and body. This can be very detrimental to a person’s health not to mention causing them to get very poor quality sleep.
If you have or a loved one has been diagnosed with sleep apnea you will need to find a good quality CPAP machine to use at night. The way a CPAP machine works is to provide the body with a continuous flow of air that keeps the airway open. There are several things you will need to look at and consider when it comes to choosing the right CPAP machine for your needs.
This guide has been designed to help you learn these considerations and points and sort through the different manufacturers so you make the right selection. This information will make the selection process much simpler.
Top 5 CPAP Machines
|Picture||CPAP Machine||Accuracy |
|DreamStation BiPAP Pro||± 0.3||2|
|DreamStation Auto BiPAP||± 0.5||2|
|Respironics||± 0.5||Limited Lifetime|
|XT Fit||± 0.5||2|
The most commonly prescribed form of treatment for sleep apnea is a CPAP machine. You will need a prescription from a doctor to purchase a CPAP machine. For this reason you will need to see a doctor to get a formal diagnosis. Once this is done, you will need to find the best CPAP machine for your needs.
The three CPAP machines featured above are all excellent devices that are manufactured by the top brands in the industry. All of them have a humidifier and many different features that make it easy to use and easy for the user to track progress and response to the therapy.
To learn more about choosing the right CPAP machine, read the following buyer’s guide. The information in this guide will educate you on what to look for when searching for the right CPAP for your specific needs and diagnosis. With the right knowledge, selecting the perfect machine will be much simpler.
CPAP Machine Comparison Chart
|41° to 95° F||41° to 95° F||41° to 95° F||41° to 95° F||41° to 100° F|
|-4° to 140° F||-4° to 140° F||-4° to 140° F||-4° to 140° F||-4° to 158° F|
|101 to 77||101 to 77||101 to 77||101 to 77||100 to 80|
|11 x 7 x 4||6.2 x 7.6 x 3.3||12.3 x 7.4 x 3.96||7 x 5.5 x 4||5.8 x 5 x 3.9|
|Voltage||100 – 240 VAC||100 – 240 VAC||100 – 240 VAC||100 – 240V||100 – 240V|
|± 0.3 cm H2O||± 0.3 cm H2O||± 0.5 cm H2O||± 0.5 cm H2O||± 0.5 cm H2O|
CPAP Machine Buying Guide
There are three parts to a CPAP machine that are part of the therapy for those who suffer from sleep apnea:
- The CPAP unit itself
- The tube (or hose)
- The Mask
The way it all comes together is that the machine is responsible for blowing the air, the hose carries it from the machine to the user and the mask is how the airway is kept open. Although it sounds complicated, the majority of CPAP machines are not too difficult to figure out. The ones that we have shared with you are all easy to use and understand.
Things to Ask Yourself
We have listed some things below for you to think about before you purchase your CPAP machine. The answers to these questions will help steer you in the right direction when sorting through the different models.
- Will your insurance cover the cost of your sleep apnea therapy? If this is the case, make sure that the machine you choose tracks data so you can prove to the insurance company that you are being compliant with the equipment.
- How severe is your condition? – If you are dealing with a mild case of sleep apnea, a basic CPAP device will work just fine for you. If your condition is moderate to severe you will want a higher grade, professional machine or even a BiPAP machine which is the fanciest you can get.
- How much air pressure do you need? – High pressure settings need to be worked into, so getting a machine that increases the pressure gradually and adjusts it automatically on a breath by breath basis is the best choice. This will improve the comfort level for the user significantly.
Features that Improve Comfort
- Altitude adjustment – If you live in high altitude regions or travel to them frequently, you will want to make sure that your CPAP machine has an adjustment feature for altitude.
- Voltage Settings – These are necessary if you will be using the CPAP machine in places where the voltage outlets are different from regular 120v settings that US locations use. This is very useful for international travelers.
- Noise – If you are a super light sleeper you will want to look for a CPAP machine that puts quiet operation at the top of the list. The majority of machines are not that loud to begin with, but those who wake at the slightest sound will need something even quieter than they normally are.
- Pressure Monitoring – There are many CPAP machines that have an adjustable pressure feature that reduces the air when the user exhales. If you are inhaling at a higher pressure level, this is a feature that you will find very useful.
- Power Source – Look for battery powered CPAP machines. This makes them safe to run no matter where you are, even camping. This is a good idea in the event of a serious power outage that lasts overnight as well.
There are some additional features that some CPAP machines have. Your own personal needs and preferences will determine which of these additional features you may want to look for when researching machines.
- CPAP Mask – The mask is one of the most important features of the CPAP machine. If you don’t find the right mask for your sleep apnea the machine you buy won’t matter at all so pay close attention to how the mask fits and feels. You will need it to have a closed seal at the mouth or nose to ensure an effective treatment. If the machine you choose doesn’t come with a mask, look for the best one you can find before you choose your CPAP machine. If the mask is uncomfortable or doesn’t fit properly, you will be tempted to stop your therapy.
- Humidifier – Another important and special feature for a CPAP machine is the humidifier. One of the side effects of using a CPAP machine is having a dry nose. This can lead to nosebleeds and other problems. A humidifier keeps the air comfortable and adds moisture to it so the user can breathe normally and not be uncomfortable. Remember to clean the humidifier daily to avoid and problems with mold or dust.
- Ramp – This is a very handy feature that allows the user to start the CPAP machine at a lower pressure at the beginning of the night. After a certain time, the pressure will continue to increase until it reaches the level the doctor has prescribed. This is definitely a comfort feature and one that helps users sleep more easily when it doesn’t hit them all at once.
- Relief when Exhaling – Some manufacturers add an exhale relief feature that makes breathing out much easier when you are using a CPAP.
- Data Capability – This is a feature that some CPAP machines use to gather the data from your therapy sessions. This data will include leak data, pressure data and more. You want to have a data capable CPAP machine so you are able to see the types of events you have when you are using the machine while you sleep. It is important to keep track of your progress and manage your treatments just like someone with diabetes or high blood pressure has to do.
- Portability – If you are a traveler, you want to purchase a CPAP machine that is small and easy to carry with you. Some can be so small they fit into a briefcase if needed. Some of the manufacturers have carrying cases that make traveling with the CPAP much more convenient.
Make sure that you look at all the different features that are available before you purchase a CPAP unit. It is also important to know exactly what your treatment requires and what the guidelines are for your treatment.
With the different features and models that are available, it is important to do some comparisons and research on the different models. A CPAP machine is a very important piece of equipment that can improve your health so it needs to be treated as such when you are looking to purchase yours.
The information in this guide will help you understand exactly what to look for and what features you will need to decide on. This makes the whole process easy and virtually stress free.
- Dreamstation – http://www.usa.philips.com/