Dry camping with a CPAP

Discussion in 'Camping for the Medically/Physically Challenged' started by movingparts1, Aug 1, 2014.

  1. movingparts1

    movingparts1 Member

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    I understand that while dry camping (battery power) the electrical outlets wont work. Does anyone here camp with a cpap and if so, how do you power it?
     
  2. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    There are many, many discussions of this point here. Do a subject search and you'll find enough reading to keep you going for hours.

    In short, however, check to see if your machine can operate on DC power. Many of them do and actually have a small converter on the electrical cord you plug into the wall so it can run on AC. If so, you can run it directly off the camper's battery or bring an extra, dedicated deep cell battery for it. My DW uses a CPAP (Remstar Pro M series IIRC) and we just bought the adapter cords for it. See the two parts of the cords HERE. One has the male side of the cigarette lighter connector and the other has the female side. We run them out to the battery under the bunk. She does not use the humidifier when camping. That uses a heating element and runs up the amperage. Hers needs about 1.5 amps per hour without the humidifier.
     
  3. PeterP

    PeterP Member

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    What kind of CPAP?
     
  4. movingparts1

    movingparts1 Member

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    would it be just as easy to buy a power inverter and plug it into the 12v port?
     
  5. movingparts1

    movingparts1 Member

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    peter, its a really cheap one, however it does have variable voltage for overseas travel (110-220)
     
  6. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Some people use inverters but in general I dislike them because they are inefficient. They draw more power from the battery than is needed for the operation of the appliance because of the process of changing from DC to AC. That means you can run the device for less time on the battery.

    If your machine is one of the ones like my wife's that is really a DC machine with a converter on the cord, you'd be drawing DC power from the battery, changing it to AC with the inverter, running it into the CPAP's converter and changing it back to DC. That would be wasteful and unnecessary.
     
  7. PeterP

    PeterP Member

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    The reason why I asked what model was that because you can go to the manufacturer's website and see what they say about it running on dc. I just got a new one myself about a month ago. It's a ResMed S9. The 12 volt cord was $90.00. But the website said that it would run it off of a 150 watt modified sine wave inverter. I used my 400 watt inverter last weekend with it and it worked fine. The only thing is, you can't use the humidification with it, but otherwise it worked great on the inverter which saved me $90.00.
     
  8. movingparts1

    movingparts1 Member

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    Im sure my cheap cpap is not DC capable
     
  9. PeterP

    PeterP Member

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    Might be worthwhile to go the inverter route.
     
  10. movingparts1

    movingparts1 Member

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    how many days will I get on a fully charged battery if I only use the cpap and the occational light/water pump?
     
  11. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Can't tell because we don't know the amp hour capacity of your battery nor the definition of "light use" for the lights and water pump. This includes the issues of how many lights are on and the total amount of time they are on. We also don't know how many hours per night you'd be running it. My DW sometimes sleeps 8 hours but often 9 or 10. Check your battery and see what amp hour capacity it has. (You can generally use 50% of that.) Let us know and we can try to work from there.

    Instead of just being sure your machine is not DC capable, why not check it out and know for certain? Google it on the web, call the dealer or manufacturer, etc.
     
  12. West Coast Canuck

    West Coast Canuck Jumped to the dark side ......

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    I have a portable battery pack that I use that I purchased at Canadian Tire. It is the Marine power pack with AC outlet. I have the Resmed S9 and I can get 2 nights before having to recharge it. I am going to get a DC cable and bring a hook up a 12 volt outlet to connect to the rv battery. I have a generator that I use to recharge the battery.
     
  13. mv520

    mv520 Member

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    We did some trial runs at home - connected a no-name170W (?) power inverter (one we happened to already have for use in the car) to the small group 24 fully charged PUP battery in the garage, and ran the 120V extension cord out of the inverter to the bedroom and a Resmed C9 CPAP. Ran it 3 nights (taking voltage readings morning & nights to record how it was doing) and it didn't even get close to 50% discharge. So we knew using it for a weekend was a non-issue. If you have a humidifier feature, be aware those use far more power than the base CPAP (since its basically a heater to vaporize water), so turn that part off if you can manage without it in the PUP.
     
  14. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    We plug the wife's CPAP directly into the 12vdc system with a cord that cost $25 from the CPAP manufacturer.

    Look at the label on your CPAP and see what voltage it operates on, you may be surprised.
     
  15. Unstable_Tripod

    Unstable_Tripod Well, there's your problem!

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    Is that Resmed an S9 or C9? I googled C9 and got only results for S9. The S9 is a 12-volt device so you can use it directly off the camper's battery without needing an inverter. Check out the info HERE.
     
  16. Phranc

    Phranc New Member

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  17. Customer

    Customer Well-Known Member

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    Resmed has 24vdc devices and can be reduced to 12vdc with the converter cord.

    Respironic has 12vdc devices that can be powered directly from the 12vdc system and the cord is only ~$25.

    When purchasing ours I specified that we wanted the Respironic.
     
  18. mv520

    mv520 Member

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    I'm guessing that was directed at my previous comment as it looks like I said C9. I meant S9.

    The S9 (at least the one we have) is inherently a 24 VDC device. At the time it was purchased the 12 V converter/cable (which I see is now available) was not even a option. For anyone with a Resmed S9 there is an nice .pdf on running it on batteries. Google "19825_battery-guide_glo_eng.pdf".
     
  19. Lathrop Bob

    Lathrop Bob New Member

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    I have a Philips System One. I found a 12 volt adapter for it on Amazon for $25. I have a Goal zero power unit that has a 12 volt outlet and a 120 volt converter. The power supply can be recharged by car 12 volt, 110 or by using a solar panel that came with it. The system one can run with the humidifier on 12 volt. The solar panel tops off the units battery each day.
     
  20. PJ popUP

    PJ popUP New Member

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    The first time I took my C-pap camping I was still using a tent. I had one of those battery jump starters with all the gizmos, 12v cigarette lighter, air compressor, inverter, etc. I was on our 16th annual "boys fishing 3 night trip" with my buddies. I plugged my Respironics M series into the inverter and a noisy fan came on. I had never used an inverter before so I just put up with the noise and went to sleep. At Bout 3am the battery died and I went back to snoring and woke up with a headache. When I went to pack it back into it's travel case it had turned over and I noticed it said 12v on the underside. I don't know much about electricity, but it seemed to me that this was really inefficient, my 12v battery had to invert up to 110v and then step down to 12v to run my 12v C-pap. On this trip my buddy showed up for the first time without his pup. He had recently purchased a minivan without a hitch. I told him my wife and I were looking at getting a pup. He offered it to me on the spot but I had to come get it 6hrs north. Anyway, when I got home I decided to see if they made a cigarette adapter. They did, so I ordered it up on the net and had it in a week.
    I called my buddy to see If the offer for the pup still stood. It did! So I packed the battery jump starter, my new adapter, C-pap, DW and 2DD's and went and picked it up. That night we camped and I plugged my C-Pap in the 12v socket of the battery jump starter. I made it through the entire night! The next night I got about 5 hours. A great improvement but not enough for the weekend. I might add my new to me pup had a 2 burner stove and a super small worthless sink with no reservoir, later removed for more counter space. Before my next trip I started to research solar power and I found this website and was able to learn enough that I ended up installing a cheap Harbor Freight 45watt system on the roof of my pup with their 35amh purpose built battery. I put 1 12v outlet at each end my pup so I could sleep on either bunk end. I also wired in the cabin and step light. Since then I have never run the battery out. My DW charges a phone and ipads, my children use potable dvd players to watch movies and I run my c-pap without ever running out of power. We always dry camp and have done multiple five day trips without any trouble. I have recently payed that pup forward to another fishing buddy in our group and have purchased a new pup that I can't wait to install solar in. It came with a group 27 battery and haven't had a problem yet but I've yet to spend more that 2 nights in it.
     

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