Why Doesn’t My Tube Fit into My New Mask or Machine?

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It’s hard to say goodbye, but after six months it’s time to part from your old CPAP Mask.  You get your new mask in the mail, try to hook it up and…nothing.  The tube won’t fit into the mask!  This is one of the most frustrating issues a CPAP user can have – after all, the new mask is the exact same make and model as the last mask.  It just simply doesn’t fit.

A thousand questions go through your mind: Did they change the how the mask fits? Did my tube grow while I was gone? Did I do something wrong when I was attaching it?

Don’t worry if this situation happens to you.  You didn’t do anything wrong.  The mask did not change.  CPAP tubing is built to be compatible with all CPAP masks.

But if the mask didn’t change and tubes can fit in every mask and machine, what is the problem?

If you suddenly find your new mask won’t fit into the tubing, the most likely issue is that the plastic swivel piece which was attached to the old mask may be stuck in the rubber cuff of the tube.  The easiest way to tell if the swivel piece is stuck is to squeeze the “cuffs,” which are the rubber pieces at the ends of the tube. Ordinarily, these cuffs should feel very flexible. If the cuff is completely rigid when you squeeze it, then you know the swivel piece is stuck inside. The swivel piece may be difficult to get out – depending on how far in it’s stuck. Simply remove the extra piece in order to attach your new mask.

In addition to preventing you from using your mask, this same swivel piece may be preventing you from attaching the tubing to the CPAP Machine.  This same problem can occur when you try to plug the tubing into the machine.

Once you take the swivel piece out of the tubing, you’ll find your new mask fits perfectly and you can use your CPAP machine as you normally would.  In the future, one thing you can do to keep the swivel piece from getting stuck is to keep the tube clean and make sure that you’re replacing the mask every six months.