Sleep groaning happens when there is a problem with your CPAP machine.
If you are one of the millions of people suffering from sleep apnea and have found refuge from using a CPAP, you value this device more than anything else. But when you get disrupted from a good night’s sleep by a gurgling sound, then it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, after all.
Don’t worry because CPA gurgling is just one of the common problems CPAP users experience.
If you thought you couldn’t have back your restful night and harmonious breathing, read on more about CPAP bubbling or gurgling and how you can stop it. It’s a no-brainer thing to follow the practical solutions to stop your CPAP from making noise.
The convenience of using CPAP for those with noisy breathing while sleeping is unparalleled because it is non-invasive breathing support. However, some CPAP users encounter adverse effects of CPAP in their lives.
What are these Common Problems:
- Dry mouth and throat
- Stomach acid
- Stuffy or dry nose or nasal congestion
- The wrong CPAP mask size or the CPAP pillow (also called nasal pillow) won’t fit
- Mask leak
- Noisy CPAP machine
PRO TIP: CPAP machine is only used to treat obstructive sleep apnea. If you are an apnea patient, it would be best if you never stopped using it when required to wear it, or it will weaken your immune system and become more susceptible to illness.
Is My CPAP Machine Supposed to Make Noise?
Now, you are breathing correctly. You are sleeping in a bedroom with perfect lighting, a comfortable bed cushion, and an ideal temperature.
What if your CPAP noise awakens you?
What can you do if inhaling and exhaling cause the whirring sound?
Next Read: Quiet Nebulizer Machine for Adults and Kids
Some people use a white noise machine when their CPAP fails. But this doesn’t correct the issue. A white noise machine only provides a sound that creates a relaxing bedroom to help you doze off.
Understanding CPAP Making Noise When I Inhale
Your CPAP will typically produce a sound when you begin wearing the mask and breathe on it, and your breath sound is very low to the hearing.
The level of sound your CPAP should produce when air circulates through the machine is the sound of a soft fan. CPAP makers list their decibel ratings as 30 decibels for an average CPAP noise. This range represents a whisper-like sound.
A CPAP in good working condition shouldn’t wake you when you inhale but give you a harmonious sleep. But a faulty CPAP will make noise and disrupt your sleep and breathing.
A weird heated noise starts to sound if your mask is not properly sealed to your face. Uneven mask-wearing will result in air leaks that escape between your face and skin. Such occurrences will disrupt the airflow and make noise as well.
What Causes My CPAP to Gurgle?
Sometimes, you ask yourself, “why is my CPAP making gurgling noises?” To answer your own question, you would rather think about what causes the gurgling sound.
Have you ever heard of a CPAP rainout? As a CPAP user, you will encounter a weird gurgling noise while sleeping and awaken to the presence of water in the mask. Where is the water coming from?
CPAP wearers experience a CPAP rainout. Rainout is the water leak that condensates with the CPAP device hose, mask, and gurgles while you breathe.
Condensation Explained: The Cause of Rainout
When there is excess humidity, condensation happens. How?
In simple science, condensation is a process in a water cycle where water turns into liquid. Condensation happens when the air cools down and exceeds the humidity level. For condensation to succeed, the level of humidity should exceed 100%.
CPAP rainout means that the CPAP tube has reached the humidity level where condensation occurred. If the water condensation reaches the tubing and the mask, it will produce a gurgling sound when the mask is not fitted well. Imagine a scenario where you are trapping water from a water dipper lid.
The CPAP rainout is a production of sound combinations made by the wet tubing and the air passage. The moisture in your mask is the water buildup through condensation. CPAP rainout is only possible when the temperature in your room is less warm than that of the airflow in the machine’s heated hose.
How to Get Rid of CPAP Rainout
1. Insulate the CPAP tubing with a cloth or use a heated tube
The wrapping keeps the air temperature constant while it travels from the humidifier to the mask. And then warm air will not condensate into water droplets. Heated tubing works efficiently in controlling the temperature, preventing CPAP rainout.
2. Wrap the CPAP hose for constant warm air
As explained in number 1, the wrapping will insulate airflow. You can also run or keep the tubing underneath the sheets to keep it warm but be careful not to put weight on it.
3. Adjust the temperature in your room
Cold temperatures due to air conditioners can be cold at night. This differentiates the temperature between the room and the tubing, causing water droplets to form.
4. Adjust the humidifier settings
This could be the easiest way to prevent CPAP rainout from forming in the tubing. But if you are in a warm climate, there is no need to reset the temp setting.
Ask your CPAP provider about the humidifier setting before attempting to make the change. Heated humidification will solve the problem.
Make sure that the CPAP machine is not leveled with your mask
The gravity serves as an advantage to keep the condensation from reaching your mask. The air must flow upward, so despite droplet formation, moisture will flow down to the humidifier.
How do I Stop my CPAP from Gurgling?
A CPAP machine making gurgling noises is a sheer nuisance while having a good sleep. How can you stop your machine from making such noise?
What are the common reasons for CPAP making gurgling noise?
Humidity level: Differences in environment temperature and the tubing will make the humidity level uneven, forcing a gurgling noise near the mask.
Humidifier settings: Wrong humidifier settings will result in varying humidity levels. Know how to adjust the settings to your CPAP.
Air pressure: Warm air pressure will form droplets in the tubing and the mask, causing a gurgling sound.
Use a heated tube: One of the ways to solve the CPAP rainout is so air pressure won’t form into droplets.
Insulate your tubing: Insulating keeps the temperature in the room and tubing at the same degree.
The temperature of your room: Place the CPAP in a room with almost the same temperature level as the CPAP tubing.
CPAP mask: Adjust your nasal mask fitting so that it seals off the airflow from penetrating in between your skin and the mask. The mask should let the air flow normally through your nasal passage.
PRO TIP: Be aware of months when the temperature outside is colder. This will produce more CPAP rainouts if you are not vigilant about it.
Further Tips to Stop Your Loud CPAP Machine
If your CPAP is producing more than a whistling or wheezing sound but a burping or gurgling sound, check the source of the noise and start fixing the problem. The noise could be mistakenly thought of as stomach gurgling.
- Check the CPAP hose.
- Check if the lid of the humidifier is tightly secure.
- Change CPAP filters. Clogged filters will make a loud noise as the CPAP machine will strive harder to cycle air.
- Move your CPAP device to a level lower than the nasal mask.
- Replace your CPAP and get a quieter CPAP machine.
CPAP Machine Common Noise and Troubleshooting
ResMed CPAP machine makes noise when inhaling
If your device makes noise whenever you inhale, such as vibration coming from the filter area, make sure that the humidifier tank is cleaned regularly and appropriately placed or intact inside the machine.
If you wish to have a CPAP machine with a heated humidifier, check the Resmed AirSense 10 Autoset CPAP. It is perfect for users looking for CPAP therapy without disruption.
DreamStation CPAP popping noise
Check the CPAP for any leak, beginning from the hose. A popping or knocking noise is louder than a gurgle or burp, and it is pretty severe. This could lead to a machine failure since it could not transfer sufficient air to the patient.
Dreamwear CPAP mask whistling
CPAP whistling on your Dreamweaver device has something to do with the buildup of moisture in the vent. Keep the condensation down by adjusting the temperature. Or widen the exhalation ports on the mask a bit by using a toothpick to unclog the holes.
The CPAP machine makes a bubbling noise.
Similar to a gurgling noise, bubbling is due to the moisture buildup, creating a noise. Using heated tubing is the best solution to keep moisture and condensation away.
Make sure that the tubing delivers only warm and moist air to the mask coming from the humidifier.
Why is my CPAP making a high-pitched noise?
The pressurized air causes the high-pitched noise. If there is difficulty in airflow, it could be an air leak, clogged, or dirty diffuser, resulting in a high-pitched whistling sound. If you mistakenly think the sound is coming from a whistling kettle, you should check the mask cushion seal on your face.
PRO TIP: Latest CPAP machine models offer a machine with a climate line tubing or a heated tubing, built with a heated coil to keep the air inside the tubing warm.
As shown in the whole discussion of why your CPA produces a gurgling sound, the main culprit of the annoying noise is condensation, faulty tubing, the wrong mask, the uneven placement of the humidifier tank, and so on.
The suggestions here are practical solutions to stop your CPAP from making a loud sound. Though moisture is beneficial, too much condensation and ineffective humidifiers will nullify the efficiency of your CPAP equipment. Thus, you will never get a night of uninterrupted sleep.
Avoid disruptions in your sleep and keep yourself healthy by using a well-functioning CPAP machine for your breathing condition. Start looking for CPAP supplies online from different vendors.
CPAP machines also increase your REM sleep minutes. Make your CPAP your best sleep therapist.
If problems with CPAP noise persist, talk to your health practitioner to correct whatever needs to be fixed and help you get the most durable CPAP machine on the market.
Robert is an electronic engineer with more than five years of experience with a solid affinity for helping people reduce noise. He writes about these silent home appliances and easy soundproofing measures to help everyone avoid the negative effect of extended exposure to high noise levels.