Batteries and winter camping

Discussion in 'Winter Camping' started by Backyard, Jan 3, 2017.

  1. Backyard

    Backyard Supporter Supporter

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    I have sleep apnea. For the sake of others and myself, I use a travel cpap machine on overnights. The last two trips I've been on the cold killed my battery.

    I've been thinking of creating a reflectix sleeve for the battery and trying to keep it warm with hand warmers. Has anyone done anything similar or has another solution?
     
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  2. teb_atoz

    teb_atoz Banned Member Banned

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    can you sleep without the machine, I can sleep with out my CPAP and there fore when I go camping do not bother. But have wondered if just using the mask would keep me from snoring.

    Build a Li-ion battery pack. It might stand th cold better.

    cheers
     
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  3. WY_Not

    WY_Not Supporter Supporter

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    Have you used your CPAP machine in cold air yet? I don't use one (did write technical manuals for them years ago, for Invacare) but a fellow I knew had one and he couldn't use it in really cold weather. The cold air was REALLY rough on his airways.
     
  4. Backyard

    Backyard Supporter Supporter

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    My doc told me that a score of 1 - 10 was normal, 11 - 20 required treatment, 20 - 30 was extreme. My score was 62.
     
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  5. Backyard

    Backyard Supporter Supporter

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    I use a modular sleep system, black bag on the inside, green on the outside, covered by a bivy. Machine goes inbetween the black and green bag due to the air temp. Took me about 10 minutes to figure I needed to do something other than have the machine exposed to the cold air.
     
  6. Seeker

    Seeker Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    Just did a quick google search of CPAP batteries... are all of them relatively flat? Seems so.

    Would it be possible to rig up an extension cord of sorts, enabling you to sleep with the battery inside your bag somewhere (even down near the feet, with the cord feeding through the bottom zipper, if you had one)?
     
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  7. rsnurkle

    rsnurkle Supporter Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Re: the chemical hand warmer heat source: This has always sounded liked an interesting idea to me, but I would do a lot of testing before putting one in an enclosed container, unsupervised, with an important and possibly sensitive device.

    My usual electronics all are fairly small, so this is easier for me, but I am a big fan of keeping what I can in the sleeping bag with me, so if your battery can fit into a sleeve, it might fit in your bed.
     
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  8. maineman1985

    maineman1985 Scout

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    Lithium ion batteries suck in cold climates. You got to keep them worm or they die quick on ya. Like seeker mentioned make an extension cord and keep the battery in your bag with you.
     
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  9. Backyard

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    I appreciate all of your suggestions. Part of the challenge is that the battery gets cold well before I tuck in for the night.

    I'm going with a reflectix / handwarmer attempt and will report back after testing is complete
     
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  10. beeperboy

    beeperboy Scout

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    Would a hot water bottle in your sleeping bag with the battery an hour before bed help?
     
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  11. Magic Tad

    Magic Tad Tinder Gatherer

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    I have had the same problem. On car camping trips I have used a gel type car battery w/power inverter. This has given me two nights easily plus charged phones. How ever the best I have done was the time I added a tent wood stove this kept the tent in the 50 to 60 range. I have also doubled up smaller battery's for extended use. But be careful some CPAPs need a certain electrical signature ( I had to buy a specific power inverter to prevent warranty problems) Good Luck Magic Tad
     
  12. Backyard

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    I appreciate all the responses. I'm using this in the woods, no outlets or cars available. I think my best option is to keep the battery as warm as possible without exceeding 110 degrees. And make sure that anyone sleeping near me realizes I will stop breathing several times each night and they don't need to worry, and good luck getting back to sleep
     
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  13. bodhran4me

    bodhran4me Supporter Supporter

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    How large are the batteries and how heavy are they ? Maybe you could keep them in a mickey pocket to help keep them warm during the day.

    How about on top of a black bag during the day time? I have seen where putting snow on top of a black plastic bag will melt the snow if the sun is shining. Maybe some reflectix under the bag to help the unit from losing heat through conduction to the ground?

    I have avoided having my water bottle freeze by burying in the snow. The water was still danged cold mind you, but not frozen. Likely to cold for batteries, but better than the open air. Snow is actually a good insulator and helps protect from the even colder ambient air temperature.

    Good luck with your search for a solution.
     
  14. 66drifter

    66drifter Scout

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    battery technology has come a LONG WAY butt what we need to power our CPAP machines isn't being made available to us

    the battery i got is the one that's spost2 run my machine 2 nights on a charge

    when exposed to temps below 50ºf it dies pretty early on the 2nd night which isn't good

    you might take your unit to BATTERIES PLUS and tell them about your problem

    they might be able to hook you up w/ a M/C type AGM that will get you by

    GOOD LUCK
     
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  15. Broke

    Broke Back yard bushcrafter Supporter

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    In extreme cold temps you cant have the battery not be warmed. At 19* farrnheit my iPhone went into high temp shut down (yeah, high temp...) after less than 10 minutes exposure to outside air. The cpap machine has the added vulnerability of needing to pump air to the mask, that air typically has an added moisture element to prevent chapping, not sure if the mobile/travel units have that.
    About the only solution I can see to continue using it is to have either a remote battery pack or a battery and inverter in your sleeping bag with you.
    Good luck!
    Adam G
     
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  16. svh

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    Tagged for interest.
     
  17. Backyard

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    My trip starts Friday. Time to work on a mock up.
    IMG_1521.JPG

    Good enough to start cutting

    IMG_1523.JPG

    Reflectix is smooth, so smooth many pens won't transfer any ink. Found a decent marker in the kids craft bins

    IMG_1524.JPG

    Used some foil tape to make the box and added a sleeve on the outside for a hand warmer

    IMG_1525.JPG

    I'll use some rubber bands to keep the top closed.

    If I don't burst into flames, I'll update after next weekend's trip.
     

    Attached Files:

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  18. beeperboy

    beeperboy Scout

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    That looks great. The Reflectix stuff is great. You just gotta be sure it won't touch the electrical terminals and short out. I use it for lots of projects keeping stuff warm, and cold. What will the ambient temperature be where you're camping?
     
  19. Backyard

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    Between high of 40 and low of 20 F, had issues with the battery last time out in cooler temps. Good call about the terminal!

    We were recently bringing a meal to a family event in a large lasagna sized pyrex pan. Needed something to keep it warm. Some reflectix, some duct tape, and some card board to give it structure. 3 hours later, it was as hot as it was coming out of the oven.

    Once it gets warmer, I'm building an envelope as a pack cooler for eggs and steaks.
     
  20. beeperboy

    beeperboy Scout

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    Yeah, I wrapped a beer keg in a double layer of that stuff once. The keg was emptied before the beer warmed up even a few degrees after several hours.

    My daughter went on a weekend outdoor education backpacking trip through school. I made her a seating pad from Reflectix that was 4-6 layers thick and about 12"X12". She said her butt was cozy sitting on the ground all weekend. Everybody kept stealing it because it was so warm.

    I'm going to put several pieces of it in my daypack. It's light and compact.
     
  21. Backyard

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    Like a tube to stick your hands in?
     

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