CPAP machines have been a game-changer for sleep disorder treatment, but what about traveling with one? Is it even possible? Luckily, camping with your CPAP machine doesn’t have to be a hassle. With a little bit of planning and smart packing, you can enjoy the great outdoors without disrupting your sleep routine. Travel with your CPAP machine year-round with these practical tips.
How To Power Your CPAP Machine While Camping
With many options to choose from, it’s easy to power your CPAP on the go. Here are a few avenues you can explore.
Battery packs: Battery packs specifically designed for CPAP machines are a popular option for camping. These powerhouses are designed for travel, providing reliable power when you need it most. But before you hit that “Buy Now” button, take a beat to consider things like battery capacity, runtime, and compatibility with your CPAP machine. Battery life depends on the battery itself and how you run your CPAP machine. In general, your CPAP travel battery can last up to 16 hours, half that if you’re using another power-intensive accessory like a humidifier. For longer camping trips, carry a backup battery or find a charging station once every two days.
Here are some examples (but make sure you get a battery designed for your machine): Example On Amazon
Portable power stations: Consider using portable power stations as an alternative energy source for your CPAP machine. These stations typically come with multiple outlets and USB ports to charge your CPAP on the go. Just make sure you pick a power station with enough juice to handle your machine’s needs. Consider reading our guide on portable power stations.
Solar chargers: Harness the power of the sun to keep your CPAP machine running. Solar chargers are a sustainable and convenient option for camping. They convert sunlight into electricity using solar panels. Look for a lightweight and portable solar charger that can recharge your CPAP machine’s battery during the day, so you can get a good night’s sleep. These can also be used to charge portable power stations.
Vehicle power inverter: A vehicle power inverter can be a convenient solution if you’re camping near your vehicle. These devices convert the DC power from your car’s battery into AC power. Before buying, check the wattage rating of the inverter against your CPAP machine’s power requirements.
Portable generators: A portable generator can provide a continuous power supply for longer camping trips or camping in areas without electricity. Choose a portable generator with sufficient wattage to power your CPAP machine and other devices you may need. Remember, generators can get a bit rowdy, and some camping spots have rules about their use.
Steps To Prepare for Your Camping Trip
Before embarking on your camping trip, some essential planning is in order.
Research campsites: Prioritize campsites that offer access to power outlets. Many campgrounds provide electrical hookups, so you can plug in your CPAP machine directly to a power source.
Amenities and comfort: While you’re figuring out how to juice up your CPAP machine, don’t overlook other essentials. Scout out campgrounds with bathrooms and access to potable water for your CPAP.
Explore alternative power options: If you’re camping off the grid, research alternative power sources for your CPAP machine. External battery packs designed for CPAP machines are a popular choice. Make sure the battery is large enough to last through the night, and that it’s compatible with your CPAP device.
Charge that battery: Whether you’re using a battery pack or solar charger, make sure your CPAP has a full charge before you hit the open road. To make sure you don’t end up with a dead CPAP machine during your camping trip, get into the habit of regularly charging your CPAP, especially if you plan to use it outside. Treat it like charging your phone or laptop by plugging it in overnight or whenever needed.
Bring an extra long hose: Consider packing an extra long hose for your CPAP machine, so you can place it wherever you like in your tent or RV. This way, you can sleep soundly under the stars without being confined to a specific spot.
Keep your CPAP clean and dry: Your CPAP gear is bound to get grimy, and that’s not a good thing, since you wear it on your face. The last thing you want is to use up your drinking water for cleaning or dunk your tank in sketchy lake water. Keep things squeaky clean by sanitizing your CPAP equipment at camp. Maintain good hygiene by cleaning your equipment regularly and pack travel-friendly cleaning supplies like alcohol-free wipes to keep your machine and accessories in good condition.
Have a backup plan: Life is full of surprises. Even with all the planning in the world, things can still go wrong. That’s why it’s important to have a backup energy source at the ready in case the power goes out or your equipment malfunctions.
Organize your gear: Organize your camping gear, including your CPAP machine, power sources, and accessories, in a dedicated travel bag. With your gear neatly packed and in one place, you’ll be ready for a rejuvenating slumber under the stars.
Don’t let sleep apnea put a damper on your camping plans! With some smart planning and the right CPAP setup, you can get excited to reconnect with the earth and wake up refreshed, revitalized, and ready to explore. If you’re ready to wave goodbye to power worries and hello to uninterrupted sleep under the stars, even without access to electrical hookups, consider a power station or generator!
Max DesMarais is the founder of hikingandfishing.com. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor adventure, travel, and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. Max grew up hiking all around New Hampshire and New England. He became obsessed with the New Hampshire mountains, and the NH 48, where he guided hikes and trail runs in the White Mountains. Since moving out west, Max has continued his frequent adventures in the mountains, always testing gear, learning skills, gaining experience, and building his endurance for outdoor sports. You can read more about his experience here: hikingandfishing/about