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How Does an Oxygen Concentrator Work?

An oxygen concentrator is a medical device that helps deliver supplemental oxygen machine levels to individuals with breathing problems By understanding how it works, you can gain insights into its indispensable role in improving the quality of life for those in need.

The chemical make-up of normal ambient room air:

  • Nitrogen (N2): 78.08%
  • Oxygen (O2): 20.95%
  • Argon (Ar): 0.93%
  • Carbon dioxide (CO2): 0.04%
  • Other gases: 0.001%

What this article covers:

Here Is how an Oxygen Concentrator Works in More Detail:

  1. The concentrator pulls in air from the surrounding environment.
  2. A compressor then compresses the air.
  3. The compressed air is passed through a sieve bed filter system. This system contains two chambers, each filled with a type of material called zeolite. Zeolite is a porous material that has a strong affinity for nitrogen.
  4. When the compressed air passes through the sieve bed filters, the nitrogen molecules are attracted to the zeolite and are trapped. The oxygen molecules, conversely, can pass through the filters and are collected in a product tank.
  5. The oxygen from the product tank is then delivered to the patient through a nasal cannula or mask.

The amount of oxygen that an oxygen concentrator can produce depends on the size of the machine and the type of sieve bed filter system it uses. Many concentrators can produce between 5 and 10 liters of oxygen per minute.

how do oxygen concentrators work

Oxygen concentrators are a safe and effective way to deliver supplemental oxygen. They are often used by people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, and other respiratory conditions.

When operating an oxygen concentrator, it's crucial to know the answers to some common questions, such as "Can you use tap water in an oxygen concentrator?", "Can a nebulizer machine be used for oxygen?", and "Can you use an oxygen concentrator without water?". Understanding these essential aspects ensures safe and efficient usage of the device for your respiratory needs.

Here are some of the benefits of using an oxygen concentrator:

  • They are available in portable models, so you can take them with you wherever you go.
  • They are relatively quiet so that you can use them in any setting.
  • They are relatively affordable, especially when compared to oxygen tanks.
how does oxygen concentrator work

Types of Oxygen Concentrators

Stationary Oxygen Concentrator vs. Portable Oxygen Concentrator

Size and weight

  • Stationary oxygen concentrators are larger and heavier than portable oxygen concentrators. They can weigh up to 60 pounds, and they are typically not designed to be moved around.
  • Portable oxygen concentrators are much smaller and lighter than stationary oxygen concentrators. They typically weigh between 5 and 20 pounds and are designed to be moved around easily.

Flow rate

  • Stationary oxygen concentrators can deliver a higher oxygen flow rate than portable oxygen concentrators. They can provide up to 10 liters of oxygen per minute, which is the amount of oxygen many people with severe respiratory problems need.
  • Portable oxygen concentrators typically deliver a lower oxygen flow rate than stationary oxygen concentrators. They can deliver up to 5 liters of oxygen per minute, which is the amount of oxygen many people with moderate respiratory problems need.

Power source

  • Stationary oxygen concentrators typically require a power outlet to operate. They can also be equipped with a battery backup, which will only last a few hours.
  • Portable oxygen concentrators can operate on a power outlet or a battery. The battery backup will typically last several hours, enough time for most people to travel or go about their daily activities.
how do portable oxygen concentrators work

How To Get An Oxygen Concentrator

Oxygen Prescription

Do not purchase an oxygen concentrator without a prescription.

Oxygen concentrators are medical devices that require a prescription. If you are offered an oxygen concentrator without a prescription, do not make the purchase. The seller may be a scam artist or a reputable dealer selling faulty or counterfeit products.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has strict guidelines for selling oxygen therapy devices. You must have a medical prescription to purchase an oxygen concentrator.



Financing Your Oxygen Concentrator Purchase

We understand that not everyone can afford to pay for a portable oxygen concentrator outright. That's why we offer financing options through PayPal Credit and CareCredit.

PayPal Credit

PayPal Credit is a reusable credit line that can be used at any store that accepts PayPal payments. It has all the same security and flexibility that millions of people have come to trust, and it offers a 6-month, no-interest program on any purchase over $99.


CareCredit is a reusable credit line that can be used to pay for out-of-pocket expenses that are not covered by medical insurance. The CareCredit card can be used at any of the over 225,000 enrolled healthcare providers across the nation. It has a number of financing options available: 6 months, no interest, or fixed interest rates for 24, 36, or 48 months.

Apply Today

To learn more about our financing options, please visit our website or call us at 1-800-775-0942. We'll be happy to help you find the financing solution that's right for you.

On the Very Best in Portable Oxygen Today!

how does portable oxygen concentrator work

We want to make sure that everyone has the opportunity to live their life to the fullest, regardless of their financial situation. That's why we offer financing options to make it easier for you to own the best portable oxygen.

Contact us today to learn how we can help you get the oxygen equipment you need.

We're here to help you live your life to the fullest!

You get lifetime access to this helpline with the purchase of any oxygen concentrator we sell.

Maintenance & Warranties

Maintenance costs

  • Filter replacement: Portable and stationary oxygen concentrators require filter replacement every 3-6 months, depending on the manufacturer and model. 
  • Service calls: If your oxygen concentrator malfunctions, you may need to call a technician for service. The cost of service calls varies depending on the problem's severity and the technician's location.
  • Annual inspection: It is a good idea to have your oxygen concentrator inspected annually by a qualified technician. This will help ensure that the unit is working correctly and the filters are in good condition. 


A warranty is an important consideration when choosing an oxygen concentrator. Our oxygen concentrators come with a standard 3-year factory warranty. You can also choose to extend your warranty to a lifetime warranty.

We go the extra mile to give you peace of mind. In addition to our standard warranty, we also offer a lifetime warranty, service, and maintenance option. This includes our exclusive "drop protection."

Standard Warranty

Our standard warranty covers all parts and labor for 3 years from the date of purchase. This warranty is valid for the original owner of the unit and is non-transferable.

Lifetime Warranty

Our lifetime warranty covers all parts and labor for the unit's lifetime. This warranty is valid for the unit's original owner .

Drop Protection

Our exclusive "drop protection" warranty covers damage to the unit caused by accidental drops. This warranty is valid for the lifetime of the unit and is transferable. 

We are confident that our oxygen concentrators are of the highest quality. However, we understand that things can happen. That's why we offer our comprehensive warranty program. We want you to be able to rely on your oxygen concentrator for years to come.

If you have any questions about our warranty program, please do not hesitate to contact us. We would be happy to answer any of your questions.

Total costs

The total cost of owning and operating an oxygen concentrator will vary depending on the type of unit you choose, the frequency of use, and the cost of electricity in your area. However, in general, the price of oxygen concentrators is relatively affordable.

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