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Buildup of Mold

08/15/2017 3:30 PM

I suffer from sleep apnea and use a CPAP machine. I have noticed the buildup of a "pink" substance that looks like a mold on the damp plastic surfaces of the water chamber used for humidification. At first, I thought it could be due to contaminants in the water supplied to the chamber, but I utilize only distilled water in that service.

I remember also seeing a similar substance on water pipes and their connections many years ago when I was still employed; at that time I "wrote it off" as due to water contaminants, but now I'm unsure that was really the case.

Anyone have thoughts what type of "mold" might exhibit a pinkish color. For reference, I live in NE Ohio; I haven't noticed this mold condition when I use my CPAP in any other area. Thanks.

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#1

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/15/2017 3:42 PM

Yes quite common algae I think....

..."The most efficient whay to clean your humidifier tank and mask cushion is to clean them once a week:

  1. first with Johnson's Baby Shampoo.
  2. then soak everything, including your CPAP hose, in a solution of 1 part vinegar and 3 parts water, for 30 minutes."...

http://www.cpaptalk.com/viewtopic/t57586/pink-slime-in-tank.html

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/15/2017 3:58 PM

I was just reading about a week ago about the problems with buildup on CPAP machines and they need to be cleaned quite regularly.

ga

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#3

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 5:50 AM

I don't get that problem here in Brisbane, Oz. I just soak the tube, nosepiece and water chamber once a week with luke-warm water and detergent. Has a nice sweet smell for a short time after that. The water here is river water, and hard.

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#4

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 8:52 AM

I found this pink stuff in my bathroom starting about 5 years ago. It is very difficult to eliminate. The little bit left behind in a shampoo bottle/cap intersection after cleaning reproduced back to a major area of tile.

From the net "It is a bacteria called Serratia marcescens. It is considered a harmful human pathogen which has been known to cause urinary tract infections, wound infections, and pneumonia.Serratia bacteria also have many antibiotic resistance properties which may become important if the incidence of Serratia infections dramatically increases."

It feeds on fatty materials, loves moisture and is resistant most chemical bathroom cleaners.

My suggestion to you is to rinse your tubing with hydrogen peroxide (normal home use strength) and then store it in a bag with desiccant to keep it dry.

Good luck and good health.

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 8:55 AM

I suppose the more you use disinfectants for this 'pink bacteria' Serratia marcescens,... the stronger the remaining strain becomes.

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#6
In reply to #4

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 12:30 PM

I second that it's bacteria--if I go too long between washing out my dog's water bowl with soap and water a pink slime develops. I was told it's Serratia bacteria.

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#7
In reply to #6

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 12:54 PM

Our miniature Pinscher has being under the weather for the past few days, where we made an appointment with the Vet, (He needed his shoots anyways). I'll have to check out and wash all their dishes.

My girlfriend usually is pretty good with the dog dishes in the house, but we have a water dish on the out side where I just rinse it before I fill it.

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#9
In reply to #6

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 2:23 PM

Yep. That looks like the stuff!

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 8:02 PM
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#13
In reply to #11

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 7:19 AM

Everything was fine then Suddenly, There's an out break epidemic of Serratia marcescens at CR4,... all members are now wearing masks and latex gloves as they type... more news at the top of the hour.

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#8
In reply to #4

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 2:21 PM

Thanks and a GA.

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#10

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 3:15 PM

My wife has a CPAP machine and were advised to use white vinegar and a rinse of distilled water. That's all we use and after several years we have had no problems.

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#12

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/16/2017 10:40 PM

I found that "pink mold' in the sink, around the drain, and in the bottom of a glass that I keep in the bathroom for taking pills or getting a drink. I use common hydrogen peroxide to pour in the sink or put in the bottom of my glass and leave for a few minutes. It seems to kill it off for a while. Also shows up in the shower around the seams and corners. I spritz the peroxide around that I keep to spray on my feet. Peroxide does a great job in preventing athletes foot and toenail fungus as well as killing off the mold.

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#16
In reply to #12

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 4:20 PM

"a glass that I keep in the bathroom for taking pills or getting a drink."

I'd treat myself to the luxury of a clean "glass that I keep in the bathroom for taking pills or getting a drink" almost every day, were I you.

I deleted the remark about changing underwear every day.

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#19
In reply to #16

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 5:10 PM

Actually it is clean since it only holds water. It is probably more that I do not dry it completely with a towel that the mold occurs. Since the kitchen is on the first floor and my bathroom is on the second floor I admit to a bit of laziness on my part for not bringing a new glass up every day and returning the other downstairs, perhaps the back operation in March and the knee operation in August has something to do with it. Actually not really, I've had this issue for years. Oh, the underwear does get changed everyday since the bedroom and bathroom are both upstairs. Thanks for not asking though.

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#20
In reply to #19

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 5:48 PM

I hope you are recovering nicely.

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#14

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 8:29 AM

As surface disinfectant agent, the hospital staff uses citric acid as wipes for all equipment exposed surfaces or enclosures..

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#15

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 4:19 PM

I think the response about bacteria nailed it. Mold, which is a big problem with bikers/runners water bottles is always black - never pink. A bottle of sodium hypochlorite solution takes care of water bottle mold, and should do in bacteria as well.

Now there is a question for researchers to check into. Why does mold grow in water bottles, but bacteria grows in a CPAP machine? Seems like a similar environmental condition for both.

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#17
In reply to #15

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 4:48 PM

Probably sunlight exposure plays a role....

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#18
In reply to #17

Re: Buildup of Mold

08/17/2017 4:58 PM

Not much sunlight getting through a Polar Bottle. The outer layer is clear plastic, but the next layer is definitely a metallic coated mylar. Besides, I ride primarily in what the weather folks call a temperate rain forest. We have more cloudy days here per year then Seattle. Sunshine is a treat around here.

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#21
In reply to #15

Re: Buildup of Mold

02/20/2018 12:25 PM

Hi, a few days ago I discovered the water bottle I use all the time was completely lined with a bright red slime. It must be that bacteria!
The crazy thing is, I've been religiously rinsing it out with white vinegar, then water, nearly every day, assuming that would kill and wash out anything.

Is this bacteria resistant to acetic acid or something?

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#22
In reply to #21

Re: Buildup of Mold

02/20/2018 6:09 PM

I find hydrogen peroxide works on it.

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