A fact is that there’s nothing worse than a noisy CPAP machine. They make nap time a nightmare for you and your partner.
Did you know that there are ways on how to make a CPAP machine quieter?
In this article, we are going to focus on four important topics on Cpap machines.
- What is a Cpap Machine?
- Are Cpap machines loud?
- CPAP machine making high pitched noise
- Quiet Cpap machine
- How to make a Cpap machine quieter
CPAP machines are designed to improve the quality of your sleep. Unfortunately, a noisy machine can affect the quality of your sleep and make it possible for you and your partner to get a good night’s sleep.
Humans perceive sound differently. Therefore what could be noisy for you could be quiet for another person.
If you’re on the hunt for the quietest CPAP machine, there are essential factors that you should consider. If you adhere to these tips, you’ll be able to get a silent machine and learn how to quiet a noisy one.
What is a Quiet CPAP Machine?
CPAP are machines used to treat sleep apnea by delivering oxygenated air to a person’s airway via masks and tubes. This pressurized oxygenated air prevents your airways from collapsing, allowing you to breathe continuously as you sleep. (Source)
There are different types of quiet CPAP devices, and the one your healthcare will prescribe will depend on the type of sleep apnea you have, how comfortable the devices feel, and your sleeping habits.
A CPAP machine has a compressor/motor that produces a continuous stream of pressurized air forced through an air filter into a flex tube.
This flexible tube then delivers purified air into a mask sealed around your mouth or nose.
While you take a nap, the CPAP pushes air against any blockages in your respiratory system, opening the airways, so your lungs receive more oxygen.
Without any air blockages, your breathing won’t pause, so you won’t have to wake up to resume breathing.
Are Cpap Machines Loud?
All CPAP machines have sound decibel (dB) ratings recorded by the manufacturer. Most of these CPAP machines have a sound rating of 30 decibels and are considered as loud as the sound of raindrops.
To get a better understanding:
- Snoring sound ranges typically between 60-90 decibels
- Humming fridge generates about 40Db
- Whisper or rustling leaves produce about 40 decibels
- Vacuum cleaners (70 decibels)
- Chainsaws (100 decibels)
They aren’t that noisy. In some cases, snoring can be as loud as laundry and other household chores.
But because the person’s perception of sound is always different, it can be almost impossible for your gauge.
In most cases, after switching to a new machine, it’ll feel louder than the previous one.
In addition, every machine has different sonic quality even at equal decibel rating.
Quietest CPAP Machine Benefits
With a quiet CPAP machine, you will be able to have a comfortable, uninterrupted sleep pattern.
In addition, research has shown that CPAP therapy also helps protect sleep apnea patients from health risks, including congestive heart failure, stroke, irregular heartbeats, and coronary artery disease.
It’s also been shown that untreated sleep apnea can result to type 2 diabetes since it causes insulin resistance and glucose intolerance.
A noisy Cpap device will interrupt your sleep pattern just as much as sleep apnea itself does.
Cpap Machine Making High Pitched Noise
Two machines with equal decibel ratings (say 28 decibels) can have different sound pitch also known as sonic quality.
The difference in sonic quality can make different people perceive the sound it generates differently.
A perfect example is the Transcend and DreamStation Go.
The Transcend is rated 26 dB, and DreamStation Go is 30 decibels.
While Transcend may seem like the best deal, you’ll be surprised to learn that most people don’t like the high pitched sound Transcend makes.
DreamStation has a sound decibel rating of 30 dB, but most people are comfortable with it because it doesn’t produce high pitched sounds.
However, you should know that it’ll take time before you get used to the sound of your new CPAP machine/
In addition, a little background noise doesn’t have to be bad for you. Some people will do fine with some background noise while others can’t fall asleep with even the slightest sound.
Top 6 Quiet Cpap Machine (Affordable)
The quietest CPAP machines have a sound decibel rating below 30 dB. Below is a list of 6 quiet CPAPs in no particular order.
1. DreamStation Auto
Philips Respironics designed the DreamStation. It’s user-friendly design with several advanced features such as OptiStart, SmartRamp, and Bluetooth connectivity make it one of the most common machines on the market.
This CPAP features an optional Heated Humidifier that helps increase comfort by adding heat and moisture to the therapy air.
Its rated 25.8 decibels hence falls amongst the quietest –whisper-quiet Cpaps on the market.
Some of its unique features include:
- It’s whisper-quiet- rated 25.8 decibels
- Simple, smart controls
- OptionStart Technology
- 45-minute ramp
- Optional heated humidifier
If the slightest noises easily awake your partner, DreamStation could be the perfect pick for you.
It’s quieter than most other high-end CPAP machines.
2. AirSense 10 AutoSet
AirSense AutoSet is rated 26.6 dBA and boasts positive reviews from different users thanks to its quiet operation.
Besides quiet operation, the AirSense 10 is one of the best CPAP machines on the market today.
Using this device can help reduce your doctor visits. Let’s have a look at some of its unique features:
- Expiratory Pressure Relief (EPR)
- Automatic pressure adjustments
- Advanced-Data options, AutoSet Algorithm, and My Options Color LCD Display
- Optional ClimateLineAir Heated tube
- Built-in real water humidifier
3. IntelliPAP AutoAdjust CPAP Machine
The IntelliPAP is also a noiseless CPAP backed by a five-year warranty. The machine is designed for home use and even for traveling purposes.
It boasts SmartFlex and an AutoAdjust feature that allow for exhalation relief with smooth, transitioning pressure when needed.
Other features include a backlit LCD screen, an optional heated humidifier, SmartCode compliance tracking, and an easy to follow user menu.
4. Transcend Auto Mini CPAP Machine
If you’re looking for a compact CPAP machine that you can use both at home and when traveling, then Transcend mini CPAP is the perfect choice for you.
With a sound decibel rating of 26.6 dB, it guarantees whisper-quiet operation.
While most people don’t use it as their first choice CPAP, it’s something you can use for traveling. It’s compact enough and can fit in most backpacks.
Additionally, it’s also lightweight, and its weight won’t weigh you down.
5. Z1 Auto Travel CPAP Machine
The Z1 is considered the quietest travel machine that gives a whisper-quiet operation at 26 dBA.
Since it’s specially designed for travel purposes, it’s also the lightest machine on this list.
Some unique features with this machine include Nitelog data, Z-Breath exhalation relief. Such features make it an excellent option for travel and home use.
However, some users have complained about sound levels. Some users report that the CPAP is loud while others say it’s not noisy, and it generates noise that their partners can tolerate.
How to Make a Cpap Machine Quieter
Some factors can affect how quiet or loud your device is. Below are some quick fixes you can implement to make your machine quieter.
It’s always advised to replace the filter frequently. This will help reduce noise levels and also improve its performance.
Replacing the filter regularly will also keep dust and dirt out of your motor hence prolonging its lifespan.
According to different reviews, we collected online, CPAP machines with optional humidifiers are noisier than ones with an integrated humidifier.
For this reason, most users have resorted to using CPAP machines that have standalone humidifiers that can be stored far away from the machine itself. (Read my guide on quiet humidifiers)
But a quieter option is investing in a CPAP with an integrated humidifier.
Just like a car requires a muffler, and a generator requires a silencer, it also needs a muffler.
The Human Design Medical brand designed a Q-Lite In-Line muffler dubbed as the CPAP muffler; a device designed to reduce the acoustic noise coming from the tubing.
The CPAP muffler is compatible with all APAP, CPAP, and BiPAP machines. You simply need to attach the 8-inch short tubing to your CPAP device where the standard tube inserts and then attach it to the standard tube.
However, there are things you should know before using this product.
You shouldn’t saturate the Q-Lite CPAP muffler system. Avoid using it with a water-based humidifier. Saturating the machine will make the acoustic foam material fit inside the tubing lose its ability to reduce noise.
Luckily you can use waterless humidification using the heat moisture exchanger, which you can purchase separately.
You will be shocked to learn that most of the noise you hear at night is a result of air through the hose to the mask.
Your CPAP mask could be the cause of unwanted noise. If that’s the case, opt for a quiet mask to help you reduce noise.
How to Make CPAP Mask Quiet
If you notice that your CPAP mask is emitting unusual loud noises when inhaling or exhaling, then there are several things you can do to ensure that you make it quieter again.
Change Mask Type
It could be possible that you have the wrong type of mask for your specific pressure settings. Here’s a good example, assuming you have a high CPAP pressure, then it’s best you use a full-face mask to disperse air across your mouth and nose.
On the other hand, you could have a nasal CPAP mask, but you are a mouth breather; you could exhale or snore loudly, disturbing your neighbor.
Adjust the CPAP Mask
In most cases, loud masks you be as a result of having a mask that’s an incorrect fit. Therefore, if your mask it too tight or too loose, it could cause a noise problem.
It’s always important to note that a mask should always be snug, not too tight, or loose. It shouldn’t cause any pain or pressure.
Replace CPAP Cushion
Over time the cushioning undergoes wear and tear as it’s exposed to oil from your skin and much more.
Because of the wear and tear, the cushion could result in leaks making your mask sound noisier than before. In that case, replace the cushion.
Because CPAPs have a motor unit, they are prone to producing vibrations that can negatively affect your sleep patterns.
You can reduce the vibrations made by the device by placing it on a soft cushion, foam pad, or a towel. This will help reduce the noise the unit produces.
In addition, you should also place the device away from your ears. In most cases, placing the device below the ear level can significantly help reduce the noise problem.
I wouldn’t advise you to place it next to your head on your nightstand. Instead, you can place it below your bed and on a soft pad, and it may reduce the vibrations and the noise.
You can also opt for a longer hose to allow you to keep the machine far away from your bed. However, it’s important to note that a longer hose significantly increases the chance of rainout, especially if you use a humidifier.
Quietest Cpap Mask
When you breathe out, the pressure from the machine is exhausted through the ports on the mask. In this case, the design of your CPAP machine will affect the amount of noise it emits.
The venting of the air can also affect your partner’s sleeping habits, especially if you have a sleep position where exhaled air blows direct to them.
Below are some of the quietest CPAP masks you can get on the market today.
Airfit™ P10, ResMed’s Quietest CPAP Mask
The ResMed Airfit is a reliable nasal pillow mask and gives a proven performance. The manufacturer’s design is 50% quieter and lighter than the Swift FX mask series.
The best part is that a study has shown that over 70% of sleep apnea patients prefer this Cpap mask over other masks due to its comfort and stability nature. The study also found that patients slept 40 minutes longer using the Airfit nasal pillow mask.
Other unique features come with the Airfit P10 mask.
- The woven-mesh vent blows air away not only from you but also from your partner.
- Features an elastic headgear that is automatic-adjusting and easy to fit.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Are CPAP Machines Quiet Now?
Yes, most modern CPAP machines are quiet. They tend to operate quietly with most of them having an average sound level of less than 30 decibels- the sound of rustling leaves.
Quiet Cpap machines are ideal for light sleepers or those sleep on the same bed with their partner. Unfortunately, some light sleepers find these devices still loud.
Are All CPAP Machines Loud?
No, not all machines are loud. Most modern ones are extremely quiet allowing you and your partner to enjoy some quiet night’s sleep.
It’s also important to note that most modern generate a sound that’s best described as a continuous white noise which is not only soothing but also help you fall asleep faster.
On Making a CPAP Machine Quieter
Although every person has a different perception of sound, it’s possible to find a quiet CPAP machine or quiet your noisy machine
You can try the above tips to enjoy quieter therapy sessions and allow your bed partner to enjoy some quiet nap time.
Meet Mike O’Connor, (a DIY enthusiast), living in Cincinnati, a city ranked as the noisiest in the USA.
As a work from home dad, I have a first hand experience of how noise can truly affect your well being.
Soundproofing isn’t something that should be taken as a hobby, it should be a skill that every homeowner should be equipped with.
Most of the work documented on this blog comes from purely first hand experience, and the products recommended work as indicated.