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The 5 Best Oxygen Concentrators

The 5 Best Oxygen Concentrators

Oxygen concentrators aid and even help individuals with respiratory illnesses thrive in life. People who have respiratory conditions such as severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or sleep apnea can use these machines to function on a day-to-day basis. Those who suffer from these ailments have the choice of purchasing a home or a portable oxygen concentrator to fit their lifestyle needs. 

There are many oxygen concentrators to select from. Before purchasing this machine though, considerations most usually take into account are the price, size, and longevity of the oxygen concentrator. 

Explore which oxygen concentrator may be best for you by reading more down below!

What is an Oxygen Concentrator and Why Do I Need One? 

Oxygen concentrators are medical devices that provide oxygen to those who struggle to breathe on their own. Unlike an oxygen tank that provides you with a limited amount of oxygen (whatever is in the tank), oxygen concentrators provide an unlimited amount of oxygen by filtering out the surrounding oxygen. 

The concentrator then uses a process called pressure swing adsorption or membrane separation to separate nitrogen and other gases from the air, leaving behind oxygen. The purified oxygen is delivered to the user through a nasal cannula or a mask. 

Elderly couple talking next to an oxygen concentrator

Various medical conditions may lead to low oxygen levels, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema, asthma, pneumonia, and certain heart conditions. Oxygen concentrators are also used in some cases of sleep apnea or during recovery from surgery.

If you have a medical condition that causes low oxygen levels, your healthcare provider may prescribe an oxygen concentrator to help increase the oxygen content in your blood. It can alleviate symptoms like shortness of breath, fatigue, and dizziness, and improve your overall oxygenation.

It's important to note that the use of an oxygen concentrator should be done under medical supervision and based on your healthcare provider's instructions. They will determine the appropriate oxygen flow rate and usage duration based on your needs.

Monitoring Your Oxygen Levels at Home

There are multiple ways that someone can monitor their oxygen levels at home. One way is by using a pulse oximeter. A pulse oximeter is a small medical device that is commonly used to monitor oxygen levels in the blood. It measures the oxygen saturation level, which is the percentage of oxygen-saturated hemoglobin in the blood, as well as the heart rate.

The following illustrates how you can monitor your oxygen levels with a pulse oximeter:

  1. Ensure that your hands are clean and at a comfortable temperature. Cold hands can affect the accuracy of the readings.
  2. Insert your finger into the opening of the pulse oximeter. It's usually designed to fit the index or middle finger, but some models can be used on other fingers as well.
  3. Press the power button to turn on the pulse oximeter. It will typically display a series of numbers, symbols, or a waveform on the screen.
  4. Wait for a few seconds until the device detects your pulse and provides a stable reading. It may beep or indicate when it has successfully measured your oxygen saturation and heart rate.
  5. Read the oxygen saturation (SpO2) value displayed on the screen. This value represents the percentage of oxygen carried by your red blood

Different Types of Oxygen Concentrators

There are different types of oxygen concentrators to suit the needs of diverse medical conditions. People, also usually choose to fit their lifestyle whether they are involved in athletic activities or travel often. The way in which you can determine which oxygen concentrator best fits your needs is by collaborating with your general practitioner.

The different types of oxygen concentrators that are available:

Portable oxygen concentrators

For those on the go, medical devices such as portable oxygen concentrators provide convenience and accessibility. Unlike a home oxygen concentrator, they do not need constant refilling. Portable oxygen concentrators are battery-operated and offer various power options, including rechargeable batteries, AC power, and DC power (such as car adapters). This versatility allows users to use them at home, during travel, or while engaging in various activities outside the confines of a medical facility.

Home oxygen concentrators 

For those who are stationary and require much oxygen, home oxygen concentrators are the best option. Unlike portable oxygen concentrators home oxygen concentrators provide an unlimited supply of oxygen using the air in the surrounding environment. There is also no need to constantly charge batteries due to the machine being electrically powered. Having a consistent oxygen supply especially while sleeping can aid in combating mental fogginess, aid you with exercising longer, and can reduce the symptoms of a respiratory illness. 

Pulse dose 

Pulse oxygen concentrators operate on a pulse flow delivery system, delivering oxygen in pulses or bursts based on the user's inhalation. This means that oxygen is only provided when the user breathes in, conserving oxygen and optimizing its usage. The device detects the user's breath and releases the oxygen accordingly, ensuring efficient delivery while extending the battery life of the concentrator. It's important to note that pulse oxygen concentrators may not be suitable for all individuals with respiratory conditions. It's crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the appropriate oxygen therapy and device based on individual needs and medical requirements.

Continuous flow

Continuous-flow oxygen concentrators are capable of delivering higher flow rates of oxygen compared to pulse oxygen concentrators. This makes them suitable for individuals who need a higher concentration of oxygen or those with more severe respiratory conditions. The ability to provide higher flow rates ensures that the oxygen needs of the user are met effectively. Continuous-flow oxygen concentrators are designed for continuous use and are known for their reliability. This reliability is crucial for individuals who depend on a constant supply of oxygen for their day-to-day activities and overall well-being.

Person sleeping with an oxygen mask

How Does an Oxygen Concentrator Work?

An oxygen concentrator is not to be confused with an oxygen tank, which only supplies a limited amount of air. An oxygen concentrator uses the air in the room, filters the air, and delivers purified oxygen to the user. The air travels from the machine, through a small thin tool, and into the nostrils. Some use full face masks in order to receive maximum concentration from the machine. 

How to Use an Oxygen Concentrator

In order to obtain a portable or home oxygen concentrator you will need a prescription from your general practitioner. Using an oxygen concentrator is a relatively simple process, but it's essential to follow the manufacturer's instructions and any guidance provided by your healthcare professional. Here's a general guide on how to use an oxygen concentrator:

  • Set up the equipment: Find a flat, stable surface to place the concentrator. Make sure there is enough space around it for proper ventilation and to avoid blocking the air intake and exhaust vents.
  • Plug it in: Connect the concentrator to a power source using the provided power cord. Ensure the outlet can handle the concentrator's power requirements.
  • Position the cannula or mask: The oxygen will be delivered to you through a nasal cannula or a mask. If using a nasal cannula, gently insert the prongs into your nostrils, ensuring a comfortable fit. If using a mask, position it over your nose and mouth, securing it with the straps provided.
  • Turn on the concentrator: Most oxygen concentrators have a power button or switch. Press it to turn on the machine. The concentrator will begin filtering and delivering oxygen.
  • Adjust the flow rate: Your healthcare provider will prescribe a specific oxygen flow rate that meets your needs. Locate the flow rate control knob or buttons on the concentrator and adjust it to the prescribed level.
  • Check oxygen purity: Most concentrators have a display or indicator lights that show the oxygen concentration level. It should typically be between 90% to 95% or as prescribed by your doctor. If you notice any significant deviation, contact your healthcare provider or the equipment supplier.
  • Use as prescribed: Use the oxygen concentrator for the prescribed duration and flow rate, as recommended by your healthcare professional. This could be continuous or intermittent, depending on your condition.
  • Maintain good hygiene: Clean your nasal cannula or mask regularly and follow the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning and maintaining the oxygen concentrator itself.
  • Safety precautions: Avoid smoking or using open flames near the concentrator, as oxygen supports combustion. Keep the concentrator away from heat sources and ensure proper ventilation.
  • Power outages: If there's a power outage, have a backup plan, such as portable oxygen cylinders or tanks, to ensure a continuous supply of oxygen.
  • Regular check-ups: Schedule regular check-ups with your healthcare provider to monitor your oxygen needs and make any necessary adjustments to your treatment plan.

Remember, using an oxygen concentrator requires a prescription from a healthcare professional, as it's essential to determine the correct flow rate and duration for your specific medical condition. Always consult your doctor or a respiratory therapist if you have any questions or concerns about using an oxygen concentrator.

Cleaning Your Oxygen Concentrator 

Cleaning your oxygen concentrator is crucial to ensure it functions efficiently and delivers clean, high-quality oxygen. Follow these general steps for cleaning your oxygen concentrator:

  • Read the manual: Always refer to the manufacturer's manual for specific cleaning instructions for your particular model of oxygen concentrator. Different concentrators may have slightly different cleaning procedures.
  • Unplug the concentrator: Before starting any cleaning, make sure the concentrator is turned off and unplugged from the power source to avoid electrical hazards.
  • Wash your hands: Before handling the concentrator, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water to prevent transferring dirt and germs to the equipment.
  • Remove dust and debris: Wipe the exterior of the concentrator with a clean, damp cloth to remove any dust or dirt that may have accumulated on the surface.
  • Clean the air intake filter: The air intake filter is responsible for filtering the air before it enters the concentrator. Depending on the model, the filter might be reusable or disposable. Refer to the manual for instructions on cleaning or replacing the filter. For reusable filters, rinse them with warm water and mild soap, let them dry completely, and reinsert them into the concentrator.
  • Clean the humidifier (if applicable): If your oxygen concentrator has a humidifier, clean it according to the manufacturer's instructions. Empty any remaining water, wash the humidifier chamber with warm water and mild soap, rinse thoroughly, and let it air dry before reassembling.
  • Inspect the cannula or mask: Check the nasal cannula or mask for any signs of wear, discoloration, or deterioration. Replace them as needed, following your healthcare provider's recommendations.
  • Check and clean tubing: Inspect the oxygen tubing for any kinks, holes, or damage. Replace any damaged tubing. To clean the tubing, you can wash it with warm soapy water, rinse thoroughly, and let it air dry.
  • Sanitize surfaces: You can use a mild disinfectant solution recommended by the manufacturer to sanitize the surfaces of the concentrator. Ensure the solution is safe for the materials used in the concentrator and follow the instructions carefully.
  • Ventilation and airflow: Ensure the concentrator is placed in a well-ventilated area, and there is ample space around it to allow proper airflow and prevent overheating.
  • Regular maintenance: Follow the recommended maintenance schedule provided by the manufacturer to keep your oxygen concentrator in optimal working condition.
Woman sitting next to an oxygen concentrator

Top 5 Oxygen Concentrators 

Best Overall

Inogen One G5 oxygen concentrator

The Inogen One G5 oxygen concentrator is considered the best overall oxygen concentrator because it offers a number of advantages over other models. These include:

Lightweight and portable: The Inogen One G5 weighs only 5.7 pounds, making it one of the lightest portable oxygen concentrators on the market. This makes it easy to carry with you wherever you go.

  • Quiet operation: The Inogen One G5 operates at only 38 decibels, which is about as quiet as a whisper. This makes it a good choice for people who need supplemental oxygen in quiet environments, such as libraries or classrooms.
  • Long battery life: The Inogen One G5 has a battery life of up to 13 hours on a single charge. This means that you can use it all day without having to worry about running out of power.
  • Multiple flow settings: The Inogen One G5 has 6 different flow settings, so you can customize the amount of oxygen you receive. This is important for people with different oxygen needs.
  • Intelligent Delivery Technology: The Inogen One G5 uses Intelligent Delivery Technology to deliver oxygen more efficiently. This means that you can get the oxygen you need without wasting power.
  • Reliable and durable: The Inogen One G5 is a reliable and durable concentrator. It is backed by a 3-year warranty, so you can be sure that it will last.
  • Overall, the Inogen One G5 is a great choice for people who need a portable oxygen concentrator. It is lightweight, quiet, has a long battery life, and offers multiple flow settings. It is also reliable and durable.

However, it is important to note that the Inogen One G5 is not the cheapest oxygen concentrator on the market. It is also important to talk to your doctor to make sure that the Inogen One G5 is right for you.

Best Continuous Flow

The Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini has great continuous flow because it uses a proprietary technology called Adaptive Pulse Dose (APD). APD allows the concentrator to deliver a continuous stream of oxygen at a lower flow rate, which is more efficient and saves battery life. The SimplyGo Mini can deliver up to 1 liter per minute of continuous flow, which is enough for most people who need supplemental oxygen.

Here are some other reasons why the Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini has great continuous flow:

  • It is a lightweight and portable concentrator, so it is easy to take with you on the go.
  • It has a long battery life, up to 4.5 hours on continuous flow.
  • It is easy to use, with a simple control panel and clear display.
  • It is reliable and durable, so you can be sure that it will work when you need it.
  • If you are looking for a portable oxygen concentrator with great continuous flow, the Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini is a great option. It is lightweight, portable, and easy to use, and it has a long battery life. It is also reliable and durable, so you can be sure that it will work when you need it.

However, it is important to note that the SimplyGo Mini does not have a continuous flow setting of 2 liters per minute. If you need 2 liters per minute of continuous flow, you will need to choose a different concentrator.

Best Battery Operated

The SimplyGO Portable Oxygen Concentrator (Continuous & Pulse Flow) is considered to be one of the best battery-operated concentrators because it offers a number of advantages over other models. These include:

  • Lightweight and portable: The SimplyGO weighs only 9.5 pounds, making it one of the lightest portable oxygen concentrators on the market. This makes it easy to carry with you wherever you go.
  • SimplyGO Portable Oxygen Concentrator (Continuous & Pulse Flow)
  • Quiet operation: The SimplyGO operates at only 44 decibels, which is about as quiet as a conversation. This makes it a good choice for people who need supplemental oxygen in quiet environments, such as libraries or classrooms.
  • Long battery life: The SimplyGO has a battery life of up to 7 hours on pulse dose and up to 1.5 hours on continuous flow. This means that you can use it all day without having to worry about running out of power.
  • Multiple flow settings: The SimplyGO has 6 different flow settings, so you can customize the amount of oxygen you receive. This is important for people with different oxygen needs.
  • Intelligent Delivery Technology: The SimplyGO uses Intelligent Delivery Technology to deliver oxygen more efficiently. This means that you can get the oxygen you need without wasting power.
  • Reliable and durable: The SimplyGO is a reliable and durable concentrator. It is backed by a 2-year warranty, so you can be sure that it will last.

Overall, the SimplyGO Portable Oxygen Concentrator (Continuous & Pulse Flow) is a great choice for people who need a portable oxygen concentrator. It is lightweight, quiet, has a long battery life, and offers multiple flow settings. It is also reliable and durable.

Best for Home Use

The Philips Respironics EverFlo is considered one of the best at-home oxygen concentrators because it offers a number of advantages over other models. 

These include:

  • Quiet operation: The EverFlo operates at only 40 decibels, which is about as quiet as a whisper. This makes it a good choice for people who need supplemental oxygen in quiet environments, such as libraries or bedrooms.
  • Philips Respironics EverFlo oxygen concentrator
  • Built-in humidifier: The EverFlo has a built-in humidifier that helps to make the oxygen more comfortable to breathe, especially for people with dry airways.
  • Long battery life: The EverFlo has a battery life of up to 8 hours on continuous flow. This means that you can use it all day without having to worry about running out of power.
  • Multiple flow settings: The EverFlo has 5 different flow settings, so you can customize the amount of oxygen you receive. This is important for people with different oxygen needs.
  • Reliable and durable: The EverFlo is a reliable and durable concentrator. It is backed by a 3-year warranty, so you can be sure that it will last.
  • Overall, the Philips Respironics EverFlo is a great choice for people who need an at-home oxygen concentrator. It is quiet, has a long battery life, and offers multiple flow settings. It is also reliable and durable.

 

However, it is important to note that the EverFlo is not the cheapest oxygen concentrator on the market. It is also important to talk to your doctor to make sure that the EverFlo is right for you.

Pros:

Quiet operation

Built-in humidifier

Long battery life

Multiple flow settings

Reliable and durable

Best Light-Weight Concentrator 

The Nidek Nuvo Lite 5 is considered to be the best lightweight concentrator because it offers a number of advantages over other models. 

These include:

  • Lightweight and portable: The Nuvo Lite 5 weighs only 32 pounds, making it one of the lightest portable oxygen concentrators on the market. This makes it easy to carry with you wherever you go.
  • Quiet operation: The Nuvo Lite 5 operates at only 43 decibels, which is about as quiet as a conversation. This makes it a good choice for people who need supplemental oxygen in quiet environments, such as libraries or classrooms.
  • Long battery life: The Nuvo Lite 5 has a battery life of up to 5 hours on continuous flow. This means that you can use it all day without having to worry about running out of power.
  • Multiple flow settings: The Nuvo Lite 5 has 5 different flow settings, so you can customize the amount of oxygen you receive. This is important for people with different oxygen needs.
  • Reliable and durable: The Nuvo Lite 5 is a reliable and durable concentrator. It is backed by a 2-year warranty, so you can be sure that it will last.
  • Overall, the Nidek Nuvo Lite 5 is a great choice for people who need a lightweight and portable concentrator. It is quiet, has a long battery life, and offers multiple flow settings. It is also reliable and durable.

Here are some other pros and cons of the Nidek Nuvo Lite 5:

Pros:

Lightweight and portable

Quiet operation

Long battery life

Multiple flow settings

Reliable and durable

If you are looking for a lightweight, reliable, and durable concentrator, the Nidek Nuvo Lite 5 is a great option.

Doctor speaking to patient about an oxygen concentrator

Factors to Consider When Purchasing an Oxygen Concentrator 

Before purchasing an oxygen concentrator, there are several essential factors to consider to ensure you select the right device that meets your specific needs and medical requirements. Here are some key factors to keep in mind:

Prescription and Medical Advice: Oxygen concentrators are medical devices, and you should never purchase one without a prescription from your healthcare provider. They will assess your oxygen needs and prescribe the appropriate flow rate and duration. Consult your doctor or a respiratory therapist to understand your oxygen requirements and which type of concentrator is suitable for your condition.

Type of Oxygen Concentrator: There are mainly two types of oxygen concentrators - home stationary concentrators and portable concentrators. Home concentrators are larger and more powerful, designed for use at home, while portable concentrators are lighter and more compact, allowing you to move around with greater ease. Depending on your lifestyle and mobility needs, you may need one or both types.

Flow Rate and Oxygen Purity: Oxygen concentrators offer different flow rates, which indicate the amount of oxygen delivered per minute (measured in liters per minute, LPM). Ensure the concentrator you choose can deliver the flow rate prescribed by your healthcare provider. Additionally, check the oxygen purity level, typically ranging from 87% to 96% or higher. Higher purity levels are preferred for certain medical conditions.

Portability: If you need oxygen on the go, consider a portable concentrator with features like lightweight design, long battery life, and ease of carrying. Some concentrators have both continuous flow and pulse dose settings, providing greater flexibility for various activities.

Battery Life: For portable oxygen concentrators, battery life is crucial, especially if you are away from a power source for extended periods. Consider concentrators with long-lasting batteries or the option to use external batteries for increased mobility.

Noise Level: Some concentrators can be noisy during operation, which can be bothersome, especially if you need to use them at night or in quiet environments. Check the noise level specifications and choose a model with a quieter operation if possible.

Maintenance and Cleaning: Look for concentrators that are easy to maintain and clean. Regular maintenance is essential to ensure the device functions optimally and delivers clean oxygen.

Size and Weight: For home use, size and weight may not be as critical, but for portable concentrators, it matters a lot. Choose a size and weight that you can comfortably handle, especially if you have mobility challenges.

Warranty and Customer Support: Check the warranty period and the availability of customer support services. A reliable warranty and good customer support can be essential if you encounter any issues with your device.

Budget and Insurance Coverage: Oxygen concentrators can vary significantly in price. Consider your budget and check if your health insurance covers the cost of the concentrator or if there are any financial assistance programs available to you.

The WestPrime Way 

When it comes to your health and well-being, making the right choice in medical equipment is paramount. That's why we wholeheartedly recommend purchasing your oxygen concentrator from our reputable company. With a steadfast commitment to providing top-quality devices, we strive to exceed your expectations at every step. Our wide range of oxygen concentrators, designed for both home and on-the-go use, ensures that you find the perfect fit for your unique needs. Backed by excellent customer support and a comprehensive warranty, you can trust us to be your reliable partner on your journey to better health. Make the decision that counts - choose our company for your oxygen concentrator needs, and experience the assurance and peace of mind you deserve. Your health is our priority, and we are here to empower you with the best equipment and service possible.

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