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Old 04-05-2006, 12:43 PM   #1
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C-PAP machines without shore power

I've searched the archives and can find nothing about using C-PAP machines off the battery with an inverter. For those that don't know, a C-PAP machine allows people with sleep apnea to "breathe" at night by forcing air into their nose and throat. My boyfriend has to sleep with one. It doesn't draw much power, but we're trying to figure out how to accomodate it and wonder if anyone else has experience. I just bought a 1972 Safari and am in the process of getting it road worthy and customizing by making the front gaucho into a full time (almost) queen bed. The problem is that the only battery outlet in the Safari is curbside over the refrigerator. Any thoughts on a dedicated battery for the C-PAP that could be put under the bed?
Since, as my screen name describes, we will be traveling a lot of Blue Highways and boondocking, shore power may not be available to recharge for days. I'm trying to convince my boyfriend that Airstreaming will a blast, but he's understandably concerned about the C-PAP.
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Old 04-05-2006, 01:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blu_Hwy_Lady
I've searched the archives and can find nothing about using C-PAP machines off the battery with an inverter. For those that don't know, a C-PAP machine allows people with sleep apnea to "breathe" at night by forcing air into their nose and throat. My boyfriend has to sleep with one. It doesn't draw much power, but we're trying to figure out how to accomodate it and wonder if anyone else has experience. I just bought a 1972 Safari and am in the process of getting it road worthy and customizing by making the front gaucho into a full time (almost) queen bed. The problem is that the only battery outlet in the Safari is curbside over the refrigerator. Any thoughts on a dedicated battery for the C-PAP that could be put under the bed?
Since, as my screen name describes, we will be traveling a lot of Blue Highways and boondocking, shore power may not be available to recharge for days. I'm trying to convince my boyfriend that Airstreaming will a blast, but he's understandably concerned about the C-PAP.
My husband uses a C-PAP machine too. We boondock quiet a bit so he installed a 400 watt converter behind the couch (that's where we have inside access to the batteries. At night he runs an extension cord from the converter to our bedroom and plugs in his machine. We carry a Honda 2000ie generator to recharge the batteries if we are going to be stationary for a while.
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Old 04-05-2006, 01:13 PM   #3
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Battery power for C-PAP service

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blu_Hwy_Lady
I've searched the archives and can find nothing about using C-PAP machines off the battery with an inverter. Any thoughts on a dedicated battery for the C-PAP that could be put under the bed?
Battery capacity is measured in Amp Hours.
The label or manual for the C-PAP should reveal how many Amps this equipment draws.
The inverter selected must have enough capacity to support this load.
Dividing the Amps the C-PAP draws into the battery Amp Hour rating will determine how long the battery will run the equipment.
Actually this result should be reduced by about half as battery life is greatly extended if the battery is not discharged beyond half of its capacity.

Adding a second battery is probably a good idea. A good choice would be an AGM type battery available in the Optima brand (yellow top) from Costco and others.
The AGM is a sealed type of battery that can be located inside of living quarters because it does not release any gas.
More info available on the Internet.
This battery could be located under the front bed but would need to be secured against movement. It could also be hooked into the same circuit that recharges the main battery from the tow vehicle.
For extend boondocking, a solar panel could be used to recharge the batteries.
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Old 04-06-2006, 12:14 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myboyburt
My husband uses a C-PAP machine too. We boondock quiet a bit so he installed a 400 watt converter behind the couch (that's where we have inside access to the batteries. At night he runs an extension cord from the converter to our bedroom and plugs in his machine. We carry a Honda 2000ie generator to recharge the batteries if we are going to be stationary for a while.
Oops! Leon says he installed an inverter, not an converter ("Whatever" was my response).
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Old 04-06-2006, 09:45 AM   #5
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CPAP use

I have a 1989 Excella 25 footer, which has two standard deep cycle batteries. I also use a Res Med brand CPAP machine. It can be powered by either 12 volt DC or 120 volt ac power. For traveling I use 12 volt, which uses a plug to fit into the "cigarette lighter" type 12 volt outlet and the cord plugs directly into the CPAP. We boon dock quite often with very good results. I do also carry a Honda 2000 generator, but don't use it often. It seems the furnace blower is the big draw on my batteries, not the lights or the CPAP. I however don't use the humidifier on my CPAP.

Good luck!
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Old 04-06-2006, 10:26 AM   #6
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Thanks for your experiences. Airstream25, I think your suggestion will work best in this situation, especially the suggestion for using a sealed battery. Using the current battery system just doesn't seem to be an option. On my rig, the battery power currently comes from a single battery in the very back of the rig, accessible (as far as I know) only from the outside access hatch. My understanding is that the farther you have to run an extension cord, somehow, more power is consumed. Plus, running an extension cord from the outside to the inside probably isn't a good idea either, not to mention it being a pain to deal with.
Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-06-2006, 10:18 PM   #7
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12v. outlet

Our 78 Argosy Minuet has a 12v. outlet in the rear bath, inside of the medicine/mirror cabinet over the sink. I have to run a 12V. extension cord from there to my CPAP. I don't know if the newer units have that option or not.
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Old 04-07-2006, 10:55 AM   #8
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Lou: Thanks for your reply. How many nights can you run the CPAP without recharging the battery?
My rig has a 12v outlet over the refrigerator in the front. But my impression was that basically running all the way from the back (where the battery is) to the front (where the 12v is) plus an extension cord to the bed would really suck the juice.
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Old 04-07-2006, 11:58 AM   #9
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Can't be that hard..

to have someone put an additonal 12v outlet by your bed, wired from the 12v fuseblock. Good luck!
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Old 04-07-2006, 05:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blu_Hwy_Lady
Lou: Thanks for your reply. How many nights can you run the CPAP without recharging the battery?
My rig has a 12v outlet over the refrigerator in the front. But my impression was that basically running all the way from the back (where the battery is) to the front (where the 12v is) plus an extension cord to the bed would really suck the juice.
Have not had enough experience to tell you how long the battery will hold out. I will be trying that out in the next few weeks when the weather warms up a bit in Ohio. I would think that the line loss would be pretty minimal, but I am not an electrician. Keep me posted on how you do with yours.
Lou
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Old 04-07-2006, 05:24 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loudruff
Our 78 Argosy Minuet has a 12v. outlet in the rear bath, inside of the medicine/mirror cabinet over the sink. I have to run a 12V. extension cord from there to my CPAP. I don't know if the newer units have that option or not.
Lou
My 1975 31' has a 3 12volt outlets, one in the front for the televison, one over the road side twin bed, and one in the rear bath. It shouldn't be too hard to add a 12 volt plug were you want one.

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Old 04-07-2006, 07:44 PM   #12
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depending on how much power it takes you should already have a 12 volt power in the bedroom. The lights run off 12 volt
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Old 04-07-2006, 08:01 PM   #13
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We have a heavy duty truck/SUV jumpstarter we bought at Wal-Mart for a under $50, I believe. It has a "cigarette" lighter outlet on it. It is completely sealed and would also be useful for back-up if your tow vehicle battery goes dead.

I've only recharged it once in about three years, but haven't used it to jump start many cars. Anyway, it might provide you with the power you need.
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