Facts, Answers & Questions (FAQs)

Have a question? Below are some of our most common questions and the answers to each

An Oxygen Concentrator, also sometimes called “oxygen generator”, is a medical device used to deliver oxygen to those who require it. People may require it if they have a condition that causes or results in low levels of oxygen in their blood. Oxygen concentrators are powered by plugging in to an electrical outlet or by battery. If the concentrator is powered by an electric battery, that battery will eventually need to be charged by plugging into an outlet. Several parts make up a concentrator, including a compressor, sieve bed filter, and circuit boards.

An oxygen concentrator should not be confused with compressed oxygen or an oxygen tank. Whereas a tank has a set amount of oxygen that it dispenses, a concentrator filters in air, compresses it, and delivers air continuously. The air supply will never run out. Instead of refilling compressed air, the concentrator just needs access to power.

An oxygen concentrator takes in air from its surroundings, compresses the air and removes nitrogen and other contaminants via filters and sieve beds.  It delivers the purified oxygen via a nasal cannula or mask.

You might be aware of both as devices that deliver medical oxygen to those that require it. But the methods of delivery, as well as the device specifications, tend to differ beyond that.

The main difference between the two is in the way in which oxygen is provided. Oxygen tanks have a finite amount of oxygen compressed within them, inhaled by the user until it runs out. Oxygen concentrators filter and generate medical grade oxygen, at an infinite supply so long as the battery that powers this mechanism has life.

That difference also highlights the dosage methods used by each type of device. All oxygen tanks deliver oxygen on Continuous Flow. With oxygen concentrators, it tends to vary by device, as some of the more portable options operate on pulse-dose delivery.

There are several other attributes that separate oxygen concentrators from oxygen tanks for oxygen therapy. Oxygen concentrators offer several advantages over oxygen systems that rely on cylinders and tanks. These advantages include:

  1.   Consistency – Whereas oxygen tanks can run out of oxygen, an oxygen concentrator will never run out of oxygen as long as it has air available and a supply of power. An oxygen concentrator extracts oxygen from the air itself, making the supply unlimited and readily available.
  2.   Safety – An oxygen tank could begin to leak, creating an atmosphere that includes oxygen enriched air. Air saturated with oxygen increases the risk of a fire. If a fire ignites under these circumstances, it is harder to extinguish because oxygen induced fires burn hotter than many other kinds of fires. Pulse dose oxygen concentrators simply create oxygen as needed, eliminating the concern of leaks, and therefore the concern of flammability.
  3.   Size – An oxygen concentrator is designed for convenience. Oxygen tanks are generally both bulky and heavy while a portable oxygen concentrator can weigh less than 5 pounds. This makes a concentrator the perfect choice for those who want portability.
  4.   Cost is another factor to consider. While each device will be priced differently, it is important to remember that when buying oxygen concentrators, the price will be largely upfront. For oxygen tanks, costs will be incurred over time in the form of new oxygen tanks purchased periodically as needed, as well as oxygen refills.

An oxygen concentrator is a great choice for any of the above reasons, but it is important for individuals to consider having a backup supply of oxygen in a tank available for use, as well as additional fully charged batteries in case of a power outage.

Do I want to rely on battery life or oxygen supply? What size device am I looking for? What are my intended uses for my medical oxygen? These are all questions that any medical oxygen user should be asking when deciding between a portable oxygen concentrator and an oxygen tank. It’s a decision that will affect one’s lifestyle moving forward.

In the end, it’s about deciding what offers the best chance for better breathing.

If you’re interested in buying an oxygen concentrator, you can view our online store.

A home oxygen machine is powered by plugging it into a standard electrical outlet in the home.  Most HOCs are heavy at 30-55 pounds and use quite a bit of electricity when plugged in.

Offer Continuous Flow, and flow rates and delivery settings can be adjusted using a flowmeter or an easy-to-use electronic interface.

Since the oxygen is typically provided via a nasal cannula, it can seem hard to move around after getting a HOC installed. Fortunately, it is possible to move around without much difficulty after you become accustomed to the tubing.

Cannula Options            

A nasal cannula is placed directly into the nose to help improve oxygen intake. While the basic concept and development are the same, the cannula is available in varying lengths: long, medium or short.

The length of the cannula determines the ability to move around a home. A long cannula will make it easy to move throughout the house, while a short one may limit movement to the space within a particular room.

Getting Used to the Cannula

Although a long cannula provides the flexibility to move throughout the house, it may take time to get used to stepping over the connecting tube.

After the oxygen concentrator is installed, you should practice walking around the room to get used to the feel of the cannula as it drags behind you. Step over the cannula several times to become aware of how it falls while moving in different ways. Start with one room and then move to larger spaces.

A HOC does not necessarily limit the ability to move around the home, but it will take time to get used to the sensation of the cannula and stepping over the tube. With a little practice, it is possible to avoid problems such as tripping or pulling on the nasal cannula.

Whether you’re talking about a portable oxygen or a home oxygen unit, both operate in largely the same way when it comes to how air is processed. The oxygen concentrators will pull air inward, manipulate it and deliver it to you in a new way. Both portable and home units intake air, followed by a compression sequence and filtering and removal of nitrogen before delivering purified air to you via the attached nasal cannula.

Where these two types of units differ comes by way of the locations in which they are intended to be used. As its name suggests, a portable oxygen concentrator is designed to be used both in the home and on the go. These types of units tend to be smaller and much more compact while still being great for people with breathing issues and various types of chronic lung conditions. Portable units are commonly small enough to fit in the average-sized automobile and most major brands are approved by the FAA for travel on airplanes.

While a standard home oxygen concentrator is still small enough to travel around your home with, it is much larger and more cumbersome than a unit designed to be portable. Home oxygen concentrators also often use what is called a continuous flow system, instead of the on-demand system that is used by most portable units. The on-demand system is one of the reasons that portable oxygen units can be designed as small as they are.

Pulse Delivery vs Continuous Flow is an important factor when using a Portable Oxygen Concentrator. These machines are all designed for the masses of people using oxygen. Most people can use the pulse delivery or “on-demand device”. There are plenty of people using oxygen that can NOT use a pulse delivery device.  Most people do not sleep with a pulse delivery device. Ask your doctor about sleeping with a pulse delivery device, they will most likely have you do a sleep test to ensure it will or will not work for you. A pulse delivery portable oxygen concentrator will not work with a C-PAP or Bi-PAP machine.

Pulse delivery machines go up to a setting of 6, this is not the same as 6 Liters Per Minute (LPM) Continuous Flow. Anyone prescribed more than 2-3 LPM is considered a higher liter flow. Consult your doctor about using a pulse delivery portable oxygen concentrator at higher flow rates.

Not only is a portable concentrator a great every day solution to replace the oxygen tanks, but one of their biggest added bonus’ is the freedom to travel.  They are FAA approved for airline use.  For car travel, not only are they are much safer than transporting numerous tanks, but you can drive as far as you like without ever worrying about refills or running out.

All FAA Approved Portable Oxygen Concentrators use electricity, either from a Battery, AC Wall Power Supply, or a DC Car Power Supply. These machines are all multi-voltage, meaning they can be used all over the world. A set of International Travel Adapters are all that’s needed to make the plug fit into the electrical socket of any outlet around the world. A powered inverter should never be used with a portable oxygen concentrator.

Battery time is a critical component when using a portable oxygen concentrator on a flight. Every airline has their own rules regarding the use of portable oxygen concentrators during flight. Most airlines require 150% of the flight time to equal the battery time. Some airlines require travel time + 3 hours to equal your battery time. For international flights this may mean a lot of extra batteries to travel with. Battery times vary between each portable oxygen concentrator. The continuous flow portable oxygen concentrators battery time is much less than the pulse delivery machines. Battery management means using wall power & car power whenever you can to maximize the length of battery. Whatever time you were planning on arriving at the airport, add an extra hour to it. You can always recharge your batteries using the wall outlets at the airport boarding area. Most Portable Oxygen Concentrators can be used at the same time as the batteries are being charged.

Portable Oxygen Concentrators are designed for travel. Most come with a mini-cart with a retractable handle or a carry-bag with a shoulder strap. All of the FAA Approved Machines will fit under the seat in front of you, or in the overhead bin. Some of the Portable Oxygen Concentrators look like a piece of luggage, unfortunately some people may treat it as such. These machines are very durable, but they are still machines with moving parts that can break. It is important to know ALL of your available options when traveling with oxygen. There are different types of oxygen delivery methods (portable oxygen concentrators, stationary oxygen concentrators, compressed gas cylinders, and liquid oxygen). All of which have their own individual pro’s and con’s. All of which have their own level of risk should there be a malfunction. It is vital to know the limits of whatever oxygen equipment is being used. It is also very important to know that many people travel with oxygen these days. The odds are in your favor of having a successful trip. Do not be afraid of problems arising during a trip with therapeutic oxygen. Problems happen, just know what to do if one occurs.

Always have a back-up plan should there be any issues with your portable oxygen concentrator. Whomever you decided to buy or rent a portable oxygen concentrator from, always ask them what happens when there is a problem? Will someone answer the phone and be there when you need help? How do you get equipment replaced if its needed? Especially when purchasing a machine, it is very important to get as much information on the front end so you are as prepared as you can be.

Oxymaster Corp sells oxygen therapy equipment. We work from Monday to Friday and we are here to assist you. If you need help, give us a call at 305-994-1604. Send us an email at sales@oxymaster.net, we can provide information any time or get a quote for service.

There is a very good reason for this and it is really based on simple mechanics.

Oxygen concentrators all work pretty much the same. The ambient air we breathe contains about 78% nitrogen, 21% oxygen and 1% of other gasses. The concentrator has the job of taking as much of the nitrogen out of the air as is possible while leaving the oxygen. To do this, the concentrator draws in air through the inlet filter where a compressor compresses the air and puts it into the first of two cylinders called a zenolite tower which contains sieve beds. The sieve bed’s job is to become saturated by the nitrogen. A valve then opens (that’s the “poofing” noise you hear) and then the oxygen is pushed into a second zenolite tower where additional nitrogen is removed while the nitrogen in the sieve bed is released out of the unit. The oxygen, now at around 95% purity, also leaves the unit and travels to the user.

In order to produce large volumes of oxygen continuous flow models must have very large compressors and very large sieve beds to absorb enough nitrogen. In the case of a portable continuous unit it must have larger batteries in order to power the larger compressor. Pulse units have much smaller sieve beds and smaller compressors and therefore can use smaller batteries.

Continuous flow units put out a specific adjustable dose we measure in liters per minute. The oxygen put out by pulse units cannot be measured the same since it does not produce constant oxygen for one minute. The output of a pulse unit is determined by the size of the individual pulse (called a bolus) and is measured in milliliters per breath. The other thing that must be taken into account with pulse units is the number of pulses of oxygen they produce in a minute. It is very easy to “over-breath” these units by trying to take more breaths than they are capable of producing.

Granted, much of the oxygen in a continuous flow unit is wasted simply because we pause between breaths. Most pulse units are designed to produce a pulse when it senses you are taking a breath (conservers work the same).

Another difference between pulse units is the purity of the oxygen and when and how the bolus is released. In some cases, the bolus is released immediately when it senses a breath, and in other cases it is spread out longer or occurs later in the breathing cycle. All of this affects how you are saturated with oxygen. If the bolus is released late and you are taking short breaths, some of the oxygen could be wasted.

Talk to your doctor if you have more questions.

Battery technology is advancing at a rapid pace with batteries becoming smaller and lighter but with greater capacity. However, the limiting factor with producing smaller continuous flow unit remains the size of the sieve beds and the size of the compressor needed to produce the large volume of air required. So, until the technology changes in those areas we will be left with larger and heavier continuous flow units. This is also why portable continuous flow units do not put out more than 3 liters per minute.

Before purchasing a unit, you should consult with your pulmonologist to determine if a pulse unit is right for you. Remember also that most people requiring supplemental oxygen require more oxygen while exerting and that might be more than what the unit is capable of producing. Also, the numbers on a pulse unit are settings NOT liter flow, so don’t think that a setting of 3 is necessarily the same as 3 liters per minute on your continuous machine. The only way to determine if you are being properly saturated by a particular unit, be it pulse or continuous, is do check your saturations with a pulse oximeter during rest and exertion. You will most likely respond the same with different units. This is a test best left to a medical professional!

If you intend to travel with your pulse unit you have to consider that it might not be suitable for use while sleeping. Many supplemental oxygen users are “mouth breathers” (especially while sleeping) and pulse units are triggered by nasal inhalation. Therefore, the effectiveness of the sensitivity of the unit should be determined. If you intend to use it during while sleeping.

So, long story short, POCs are not a “one-size fits all” proposition. Make sure you speak with a medical professional prior to purchasing a unit.

In some circumstances for certain devices, we can. We can quote you a price and ETA over the phone but in some countries the shipment may be delayed by customs. The customer is responsible for any custom charges, taxes, or fees levied during transit. Our manufacturer partners have distribution agreements in place in many countries that we do not want to compromise.

A used concentrator has been taken in on trade or was from our buyback program. It has been by a technician, however not a factory technician….
A refurbished concentrator has been returned to the factory and rebuilt or parts have been replaced so that it is in “like new” condition and certified for use.
We only sell Refurbished units; we only sell you the best.

Yes. Refurbished units come with a manufacturer’s warranty that vary in length of term.

At OXYMASTER CORP we offer ONLY manufacturer supported warranties.

Oxymaster Corp is an authorized dealer for manufacturers that are known to be the best in the medical equipment industry. These companies back their products with their manufacturer limited warranty. Oxymaster Corp, as an authorized dealer of these companies, will facilitate any warranty repairs directly with the manufacturer.

All warranties and services, are valid only in Miami, FL – USA.

Oxymaster Corp is an authorized dealer for manufacturers that are known to be the best in the medical equipment industry. These companies back their products with their manufacturer limited warranty. Oxymaster Corp, as an authorized dealer of these companies, will facilitate any warranty repairs directly with the manufacturer.

All warranties and services, are valid only in Miami, FL – USA.

Returns are accepted within 30 days on most products, if 30 days have gone by since your purchase, unfortunately we can’t offer you a refund. In the event that an item is damaged, lost or incorrectly delivered, claims must be made within 7 days of the product’s delivery date. Most items sent back for return are subject to a 25% “Re-Stock Fee”. Items that have smoke odor cannot be returned or exchanged.

Contact us for an “Incoming Reference Number” before shipping any products back to us. Some of our products are offered with free shipping, so please be aware that if you return one of these products, our shipping costs will be deducted from your return refund.

To be eligible for a return, your item must be unused and in the same condition that you received it. It must also be in the original packaging.

Additional non-returnable items:

  • Downloadable software products
  • Some health and personal care items

To complete your return, we require a receipt or proof of purchase.

Please do not send your purchase back to the manufacturer.

There are certain situations where only partial refunds are granted: (if applicable)

Any item that is returned more than 30 days after delivery.

Refunds (if applicable)

  • Once your return is received and inspected, we will send you an email to notify you that we have received your returned item. We will also notify you of the approval or rejection of your refund.
  • If you are approved, then your refund will be processed, and a credit will automatically be applied to your credit card or original method of payment, within 30 days.

Late or missing refunds (if applicable)

  • If you haven’t received a refund yet, first check your bank account again.
  • Then contact your credit card company, it may take some time before your refund is officially posted.
  • Next contact your bank. There is often some processing time before a refund is posted.
  • If you’ve done all of this and you still have not received your refund yet, please contact us.

Sale items (if applicable)

  • Only regular priced items may be refunded, unfortunately sale items cannot be refunded.

Shipping

To return your product, you should mail your product to: 7791 NW 46TH Street # 407, Doral, FL 33166

You will be responsible for paying for your own shipping costs for returning your item. Shipping costs are non-refundable. If you receive a refund, the cost of return shipping will be deducted from your refund.

If you are shipping an item over $75, you should consider using a trackable shipping service or purchasing shipping insurance. We don’t guarantee that we will receive your returned item.

Contact us, we will provide you with return instructions, including the proper return address. Returns received without an “Incoming Reference Number” are not identifiable and delivery will be refused and returned. The “Incoming Reference Number” must be requested within 21 days of purchase and the returned item should be received back to us within 7 days of receiving the “Incoming Reference Number”.

Return items with an “Incoming Reference Number” must be received by us within 30 days of the date of purchase. After this time, these items are not eligible for a refund. When packing returned items, be sure to pack contents completely in their original packaging, including all manuals and other related documentation.

Oxymaster Corp is not responsible for shipping costs or damage on returned items. Please ensure, when shipping items back, that you retain the delivery confirmation number to verify our receipt of the returned item. If shipping via US Mail, you must request a delivery confirmation number with your shipment.

Shipping

To return your product, you should mail your product to: 7791 NW 46TH Street # 407, Doral, FL 33166

You will be responsible for paying for your own shipping costs for returning your item. Shipping costs are non-refundable. If you receive a refund, the cost of return shipping will be deducted from your refund.

If you are shipping an item over $75, you should consider using a trackable shipping service or purchasing shipping insurance. We don’t guarantee that we will receive your returned item.

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