9 Best Portable Oxygen Concentrators in May 2024: Our Expert Picks

May 23, 2024
Fact Checked
Our team spent over 1,000 hours researching each oxygen concentrator, surveyed 600 oxygen users, consulted experts, and mystery-shopped dozens of brands to review the best machines.
Written by: Mikayla Morell
Medical Reviewer: Elizabeth U. Lyda, RRT

Our top picks: researched and expert-approved

1
Most Discreet
9.9
Excellent
Inogen One G5
Inogen One G5
4.7 pounds (with single battery)
Up to 13 hours of battery life (with double battery)
Best Overall
2
Best Battery Life
9.7
Excellent
CAIRE Freestyle Comfort
CAIRE Freestyle Comfort
5 pounds
8 to 16 hours battery life
3
Best Continuous and Pulse Flow
9.6
Excellent
Respironics SimplyGo
Respironics SimplyGo
10 pounds
.9 to 3.4 hours of battery life
4
Most Portable
9.9
Excellent
Inogen One G4
Inogen One G4
2.8 pounds (with single battery)
Up to 2.25 hour battery life (4 cell battery, setting of 2)

If your doctor has prescribed supplemental oxygen, you may choose a portable oxygen concentrator (POC) or a home oxygen concentrator (HOC), depending on your doctor’s recommendation. A POC, also called a portable oxygen machine, provides safe, effective delivery of oxygen to people with low oxygen levels while they are away from home, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). You may use a POC while running errands, traveling, or doing other activities outside the house.

Finding the best portable oxygen concentrator for your needs can be confusing—especially if you’re buying one for the first time. Our Reviews Team researched the best POCs on the market to help you choose. We dug into information on pricing, features, battery life, and more to help you find the best model for you.

A quick look at the best portable oxygen concentrators in 2024

Best portable oxygen concentrators in 2024

Inogen One G5
Most Discreet
9.9 Excellent
Price: $2,882
Weight: 4.7 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: Up to 8 hours of battery life (with double battery)
Maximum oxygen output: 1.26 liters per minute (LPM)
9.9 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

The Inogen One G5 is a small, lightweight device with a long battery life. This machine can be worn with a shoulder strap as you walk to and from your flight and is easily stored underneath your seat or by your side on the plane. It is also approved for use on planes by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), as is every POC we reviewed.

Pros & Cons
Pros Battery life can range from 6 to 13 hours on the lowest setting The noise level is quiet Cons The double battery adds 12 ounces of weight Only a three-year warranty
Additional details: lightweight with long battery life

Generally, the lower the oxygen output and the longer the battery life, the better the POC is for air travel. If you use a double battery for your G5, you’ll have up to 13 hours of power on Setting 1 and nine hours on Setting 2. The G5 also has a maximum oxygen output of 1.26 liters per minute (LPM) and six different flow settings to suit your oxygen needs.

The free Inogen Connect app is a bonus feature to connect the G5 to your smartphone. You can check the battery life and change your concentrator settings on the app instead of pressing buttons on the machine itself.

A customer review on the Oxygen Concentrator Store said, “I’ve used it one day so far, and all is well with the G5. I chose it because of the longer battery life it has. I was tired of feeling like a prisoner in my home. I wasn’t able to be out for more than 2 hours without carrying extra tanks with me. Now I can do more things with the G5.”

Inogen has an additional brand called OxyGo, selling the same machines under a different name. The Inogen One G5 is the same machine as the OxyGo Next. The cost is the same; the only difference is the OxyGo Next comes with a five-year warranty, and the G5 comes with a three-year warranty.

In late 2023 or early 2024, Inogen plans to rebrand the G5 as the Rove 6 to comply with European regulations. The product won’t change, but the name will.

Read our full Inogen review.

Customer service

The Inogen One G5 is available for purchase from medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Best Overall
CAIRE Freestyle Comfort
Best Battery Life
9.7 Excellent
Price: $2,995
Weight: 5 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 8 to 16 hours (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 1.05 LPM
9.7 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

The CAIRE Freestyle Comfort delivers oxygen for up to 16 hours between charges (with an extended battery), surpassing most other models on the market. This is why our Reviews Team named it “Best Battery Life.” If you enjoy long outings, this unit may be a great fit.

Pros & Cons
Pros The longest battery life of any POC we reviewed Curved design for easy carrying Comfort Zone service program will send a replacement if yours malfunctions Cons The warranty is only for three years Extended battery costs $589 extra
Additional details: leading technology and customer support

Extended batteries add an additional cost to your purchase, but offer longer battery life. With the Freestyle Comfort, it costs an additional $589 for the 16-cell battery. If you purchase the machine and the extended battery, the total cost adds up to $3,584.

A feature making the CAIRE Freestyle Comfort unique is its leading technology. It has ultra-sensitive breath detection, automatically changing the flow to match your breathing rate.

CAIRE’s Comfort Zone service program also sets the brand apart. Comfort Zone includes the following features:

  • Live online orientation with a CAIRE representative to help you set up your machine
  • Customer support seven days a week
  • A replacement POC will be sent to your home within three business days if yours malfunctions

The last point is unique among portable oxygen concentrator companies; no other brand we’ve reviewed provides this type of warranty or service. The replacement device will become your new unit, and the warranty from your older device will transfer over. Comfort Zone is included with the purchase of a CAIRE Freestyle Comfort unit at no extra cost.

The CAIRE Freestyle Comfort can also be purchased as the ARYA Portable Oxygen Concentrator. The machines are the same but sold under different brand names and prices. The Arya POC costs $3,495, while the Freestyle Comfort costs $2,995.

A customer review on the Oxygen Concentrator Store page said, “After spending two days researching for a concentrator replacement with the right balance between weight and battery run time, choosing the CAIRE Freestyle Comfort was easy. And it was a pleasant experience talking to the representative. I now have a smaller unit that easily fits into my walker’s seat compartment and has five output flow levels. Very pleased.”

The Freestyle Comfort is a good device if you don’t want to worry about changing batteries every few hours while out and about. Explore more in our full CAIRE review.

Customer service

The CAIRE Freestyle Comfort is available for purchase from medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Respironics SimplyGo
Best Continuous and Pulse Flow
9.6 Excellent
Price: $2,500
Weight: 10 pounds
Battery life: 3.4 hours
Maximum oxygen output: 2 LPM
9.6 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

Oxygen needs can change, and you may want a device to accommodate those changes. The Respironics SimplyGo offers both continuous and pulse flow options and up to 2 LPM of oxygen in the continuous flow setting. It has six pulse settings, while most other devices offer three to five. This range gives users flexibility in their oxygen flow if their doctor recommends a change in dose.

Pros & Cons
Pros Six pulse settings Pulse dose and continuous flow Maximum oxygen output is 2 LPM Comes with carrying case and wheeled cart Cons Weighs 10 pounds Battery life is shorter than other machines
Additional details: versatile settings and features

The Respironics SimplyGo offers a portable solution for both pulse-delivered oxygen and continuous flow. It comes with six pulse settings and a high maximum oxygen output. A larger motor brings this device to 10 pounds. That said, it’s one of the lightest continuous flow oxygen concentrators on the market, and its carry case and foldable rolling cart make for easier transportation.

The SimplyGo uses a “sleep mode” to automatically boost oxygen flow while you sleep. It also shows alerts when it detects a low battery, low oxygen purity, no flow, no breath, or a high breath rate. Its concentrator unit has a three-year warranty, while its accessories, like chargers, tubing, and carry cases, have a 90-day warranty.

A smaller alternative to the Respironics SimplyGo is the SimplyGo Mini, a pulse-only model that is half its weight with more than double its battery life. Both devices are designed to function at altitudes up to 10,000 feet and withstand extreme temperatures, vibrations, and impacts.

Read more in our Philips Respironics review.

Customer service

The Philips Respironics SimplyGo is available for purchase from local medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Table 1, Respironics SimplyGo vs. SimplyGo Mini

Model

Weight (pounds, with single battery)

Size (inches wide x deep x high)

Maximum oxygen output (LPM)

Battery life (hours)

Respironics SimplyGo Mini58.3 x 3.6 x 9.414.5–9
Respironics SimplyGo1011.5 x 6 x 1023
Inogen One G4
Most Portable
9.9 Excellent
Price: $2,744
Weight: 2.8 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 1.2 hours 40 minutes to 5 hours (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 0.63 LPM
9.9 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

The Inogen One G4 (also sold as the OxyGo Fit) is smaller and lighter than almost every other POC on the market, making it our Reviews Team’s pick for the “Most Portable Oxygen Concentrator.” If you’re often on the go and need something easy to carry, this model may be an ideal option.

Pros & Cons
Pros The lightest and smallest concentrator we reviewed Can connect to your smartphone Cons Battery life is shorter than other machines Only three pulse settings to choose from
Additional details: one of the smallest, lightest POCs

Because it’s so small, the G4 is less powerful than other models, with a maximum oxygen output of only 0.63 LPM. The other Inogen model on this list, the Inogen One G5, has an output of 1.26 LPM.

The G4 single battery lasts only about 2 hours and 40 minutes, depending on the setting. If you’re heading out for more than a quick errand, you’ll want to have the double battery or bring an extra one for backup. You also have the option to charge your machine in the car between errands.

You can connect the G4 to your smartphone using the free Inogen Connect app. The app allows you to use your phone to check the battery status and change device settings.

Some customer reviews from the Oxygen Concentrator Store and Trustpilot reported the device can overheat. When our Reviews Team asked a representative at the Oxygen Concentrator Store about this, they said POCs can be susceptible to overheating when the vent is covered up, which can happen if the machine is placed in the carry bag incorrectly or placed too close to another object for a long time. Overheating prevents it from functioning properly, and it may damage the machine. When you place the machine down or in the carry bag, ensure the vent isn’t covered.

Our Reviews Team found most customer reviews from the Oxygen Concentrator Store and Trustpilot on this product were positive. Reviewers praised the device’s light weight, which allows them to run errands with ease. One reviewer from the Oxygen Concentrator Store said, “Within 24 hours, I had the unit in hand, and I was just so excited. I had my freedom again! It has kept my oxygen consistent. I am already looking to get a smaller battery for extra time while I’m out. Being a small person, I don’t think I could carry a much heavier machine.”

Read more about this oxygen concentrator in our detailed Inogen review.

Customer service

The Inogen One G4 is available for purchase from local medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on the Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5
Highest Oxygen Output
9.7 Excellent
Price: $3,200
Weight: 18.4 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 3.7 hours on continuous, 5.4 hours on pulse (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 3 LPM (continuous), 1.92 LPM (pulse)
9.7 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

The CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5 has the highest oxygen output of all the portable oxygen concentrators we reviewed. The oxygen output on this machine can go up to 1.92 LPM on pulse flow and 3 LPM on continuous flow, so it can be used while sleeping. It also has nine different settings for pulse flow, allowing users to adjust to their specific dosage.

Pros & Cons
Pros Maximum oxygen output is 3 LPM Comes with a wheeled cart for easy transport Continuous and pulse flow Cons Heaviest portable machine we reviewed Customer reviews reported it might be slightly louder than expected Most expensive POC we reviewed
Additional details: high output with nine pulse settings

Since this concentrator has a high oxygen output, it is bigger and heavier than other devices and cannot be carried in a bag. The SeQual Eclipse 5 is 19.3 inches tall, 12.3 inches wide, 7.1 inches deep, and weighs 18.4 pounds. The device comes with a wheeled cart to make it easier to move around. Some customer reviews on the Oxygen Concentrator Store reported they prefer this machine as they can roll it around on a cart instead of one carried in a shoulder bag.

Customer reviews vary when it comes to the machine’s noisiness: some reported the machine is louder than expected, while others reported it is quieter than other machines they’ve used. The noise level of the SeQual Eclipse 5 varies based on its setting. At 3 LPM on continuous flow, the noise level is 48 decibels—comparable to the noise level of the average office. [2]International Noise Awareness Day. Common noise levels – how loud is too loud? Found on the internet at https://noiseawareness.org/info-center/common-noise-levels/ At the pulse dose setting of 3, the noise level is 40 decibels—comparable to background noise in a library. [2]International Noise Awareness Day. Common noise levels – how loud is too loud? Found on the internet at https://noiseawareness.org/info-center/common-noise-levels/

A customer reviewer on the Oxygen Concentrator Store wrote, “I had another high oxygen unit that did not work for me, and I returned it. The other high-flow oxygen machine was extremely noisy, but this one is quiet. When I take it shopping, I put it in the cart. It is heavy to lift, but I can still do it. I like this machine, and this is much easier after using big oxygen tanks to go out. The [SeQual Eclipse 5] has allowed me the freedom to go on trips again.”

Customer service

The CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5 is available for purchase from local medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini
Easiest to Use
9.6 Excellent
Price: $2,595
Weight: 5 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 4.5 to 9 hours (on Setting 2)
Maximum oxygen output: 1 LPM
9.6 Excellent
Why we chose this machine

Philips Respironics designed a POC with a clear and simple display screen, making it an excellent choice for anyone looking for a basic unit—especially those purchasing a portable oxygen concentrator for the first time. The touch screen relies on images and easy-to-follow instructions rather than buttons. Its user-friendly design earned the Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini the title “Easiest to Use” from our Reviews Team.

Pros & Cons
Pros With an extended battery, the unit can last up to 9 hours Can withstand extreme temperatures, vibrations, and impacts Simple screen display with large numbers and pictures Cons Loudest pulse-flow portable oxygen machine in our review Extended battery costs $500
Additional details: durable with a long battery life

While the Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini is a quiet machine, it is louder than other pulse-flow portable oxygen concentrators on this list. At 43 decibels, it is 3 decibels louder than the Inogen One G4. For reference, a refrigerator humming is about 50 decibels. [2]International Noise Awareness Day. Common noise levels – how loud is too loud? Found on the internet at https://noiseawareness.org/info-center/common-noise-levels/

With the standard battery, the device can last up to 4.5 hours. You can purchase an extended battery to give your device up to nine hours of run time, but it does cost an additional $500 at the Oxygen Concentrator Store. The device comes with a carry bag.

If you’re interested in this brand but need continuous flow oxygen, you might want to check into the Philips Respironics SimplyGo. At 10 pounds, it’s heavier than the SimplyGo Mini, but it offers both continuous and pulse flow settings and comes with a rolling cart.

The SimplyGo Mini is an easy-to-use portable oxygen concentrator able to tolerate accidental drops or falls. Read more in our full Philips Respironics review.

Customer service

The Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini is available for purchase from local medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Precision Medical EasyPulse 5-Liter
Most Affordable
9.2 Very Good
Price: $2,081.52 to $2,333.52
Weight: 6.6 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 4.7 hours (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 0.78 LPM
9.2 Very Good
Why we chose this machine

When purchasing an oxygen concentrator, you want a reliable machine able to work for years to come. Even though there’s no way to know for sure how long a device will last, you can ensure the POC you purchase has a warranty covering any damage or issues. The Precision Medical EasyPulse comes with a five-year warranty (the other POCs we reviewed come with three-year warranties). The EasyPulse is a great choice for those looking for extra protection to cover their POC.

Pros & Cons
Pros Most low-cost POC we reviewed Five pulse settings Five-year warranty Cons The heaviest pulse dose machine on our list Oxygen output isn’t as high as other POCs
Additional details: low price, long warranty

The EasyPulse has a user-friendly design with large, easy-to-read buttons and a top handle to move it from place to place when not in its carrying case. The maximum oxygen output is 0.78 LPM, which is lower than other machines on this list.

This machine is the heaviest pulse dose machine in our review, weighing 6.6 pounds. If you are looking for a smaller device, the EasyPulse is available in a 3-liter option weighing 4.9 pounds and ranges in cost from $975 to $1,118. The cost varies with either machine depending on if you purchase a backpack or an external battery.

The 3-liter machine has three pulse settings, while the 5-liter machine has five settings. The 5-liter machine is quieter than the 3-liter machine (40.6 decibels compared to 42 decibels). On Setting 1, the 3-liter device has a battery life of 5.5 hours, and the 5-liter machine has 4.7 hours.

Customer service

The EasyPulse POC is available for purchase online through the Precision Medical website. Precision Medical doesn’t have any reviews on Trustpilot or BBB. Our Reviews Team found it very difficult to reach customer service. When we contacted them through the contact form, we never received a reply.

You can contact Precision Medical customer service using the following methods:

Invacare Platinum Mobile
Most Durable
9.3 Very Good
Price: $2,495
Weight: 4.8 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 4 to 8 hours (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 1 LPM
9.3 Very Good
Why we chose this machine

Our Reviews Team chose the Invacare Platinum Mobile as our “Most Durable” POC because this solid machine can resist impact and endure accidental falls. The Platinum Mobile is encased in shock-resistant foam with reinforced bumpers for added protection. In addition to being water resistant, the machine can tolerate temperatures from 41 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit and altitudes up to 10,000 feet.

Pros & Cons
Pros Water resistant and can withstand up to 10 minutes of rain Carrying case converts to a backpack and purse-style bag Cons Only four pulse settings A single battery only provides four hours of use
Additional details: durable and water resistant

One of the benefits of the Invacare Platinum Mobile is the carrying bag, which can convert into a backpack, messenger bag, or purse. The machine is also lightweight, weighing 4.8 pounds.

The battery compartment is located at the top of the device, making it easy to access on the go without having to remove it from the carrying case. The Invacare Platinum Mobile comes with a single battery, providing up to four hours of charge. If you anticipate being out of the house for longer than four hours, you can purchase an additional battery, giving you eight hours of running time on Setting 1.

A customer review on the Oxygen Concentrator Store stated, “I travel a lot internationally, and a year ago, I realized I had been suffering from high-altitude pulmonary edema for years. Now, with my oxygen concentrator, I get off a long flight feeling great and ready to go. No more international doctor visits. It’s never overheated, and some airlines let me plug in. It’s been awesome.”

Customer service

The Invacare Platinum Mobile is available for purchase from local medical equipment suppliers such as the Oxygen Concentrator Store. See below for details on Oxygen Concentrator Store’s customer service hours, ways to reach them, and our Reviews Team’s experience with the customer service department.

Precision Medical Live Active Five
Easiest to Carry
9.2 Very Good
Price: $2,310–$2,562
Weight: 5 pounds (single battery)
Battery life: 6.5 hours (on Setting 1)
Maximum oxygen output: 1 LPM
9.2 Very Good
Why we chose this machine

The Precision Medical Live Active Five has a unique curved design, separating it from other POCs we reviewed. Some POCs are designed with a curve to fit around your body in the carry bag. But the Live Active Five is curved on both sides of the machine, so you can carry it on either side of your body. The device is lightweight, but if it does become too heavy for one shoulder, you can switch it over to the other.

Pros & Cons
Pros Five pulse settings Double-curved design for added comfort Easy-to-read screen Cons No customer reviews on the product No backpack option available
Additional details: comfortable and affordable

In addition to the curved features, the Live Active Five has a simple design with few buttons and an easily read LCD screen featuring large text. You can access the battery from the top of the device, so you do not need to take it out of the carrying case when changing the batteries.

As a bonus feature, you can also connect the machine to a computer or smartphone through Bluetooth to troubleshoot the unit if you encounter any problems. The Live Active Five has audible and visual alarms if there are problems like:

  • Low battery
  • Blocked cannula
  • Low oxygen purity
  • No breath detected
  • High breath rate
  • External power failure

If the machine doesn’t detect your breath, it will automatically deliver a pulse of oxygen. The Live Active Five also has five pulse settings and a maximum oxygen output of 1 LPM.

Customer service

The Precision Medical Live Active Five is sold through the Precision Medical website and online distributors like Vitality Medical.

Vitality Medical has a good score on Trustpilot—4.4 out of 5 stars based on over 35,000 reviews. On BBB, Vitality Medical has an A+ rating and 1.4 out of 5 stars based on 46 customer reviews. Reviewers reported the buying experience was quick and easy, and customer service representatives were prompt, professional, and friendly.

You can contact Vitality Medical through one of the following methods:

You can pay for your machine with a credit card (American Express, Visa, Mastercard, or Discover), Diners Club International, PayPal, or Google Pay.

Oxygen Concentrator Store customer service

Some of the oxygen concentrators in this review are available through the online retailer Oxygen Concentrator Store. Pricing estimates are subject to change. You can contact the customer service department in the following ways:

The Oxygen Concentrator Store website also has a detailed product support page with information on cleaning, maintenance, and use of portable oxygen concentrators.

Our Reviews Team’s customer service experience

A member of our Reviews Team called the Oxygen Concentrator Store to learn more about the brands and models in this list. It took less than 30 seconds to get a representative on the line. He was friendly, helpful, and knowledgeable about every model we asked about.

He informed us all portable oxygen machines sold through the Oxygen Concentrator Store come with a free seven-day trial period. If you find the unit you’ve purchased has mechanical problems, is hard to use, or just isn’t a good fit for you, simply call the store to receive a shipping label. Then, you can send the unit back (at your own cost) and exchange it for a different one.

Shipping takes about three to five business days, but Oxygen Concentrator Store also offers two-day and overnight shipping for an additional cost.

After sharing details of the various models over the phone, the representative offered to email us the information and gave us his direct phone number for any future questions. He also said even if we didn’t buy a unit from the Oxygen Concentrator Store, he would be happy to answer questions and provide help in the future. We were very pleased with the customer service experience; it felt like we were learning about portable oxygen concentrators rather than enduring a high-pressure sales call.

How does a portable oxygen concentrator work?

Oxygen concentrators take in air from the environment, filter out nitrogen, and deliver oxygen to the person using the device. [1]U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Pulse oximeters and oxygen concentrators: What to know about at-home oxygen therapy. Found on the internet at https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/pulse-oximeters-and-oxygen-concentrators-what-know-about-home-oxygen-therapy The oxygen is usually delivered through a cannula sitting beneath the nose. These devices are different from oxygen tanks because oxygen concentrators use electrical pumps to concentrate oxygen from outside, according to an article in the journal Breathe. In contrast, oxygen tanks have a set amount of oxygen stored inside the container requiring the tanks to be replaced with another filled container when empty. [3]Hardavella G, et al. Breathe. September 2019. Oxygen Devices and Delivery Systems. Found on the internet at https://breathe.ersjournals.com/content/15/3/e108

For more information on POCs, the American Lung Association has a webpage with helpful videos showing how to use your device. [4]American Lung Association. Getting started with a portable oxygen concentrator. Found on the internet at https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-procedures-and-tests/oxygen-therapy/getting-started-portable-oxygen-concentrator

Oxygen flow types

Portable oxygen concentrators deliver either a continuous flow of oxygen, measured in liters per minute, or a pulse flow (also called intermittent flow). Pulse flow delivery systems give a puff of oxygen every time you breathe.

Some concentrators can deliver oxygen by both pulse or continuous flow, depending on the setting your doctor prescribes. Other devices only provide one type of flow. Most portable concentrators offer only pulse flow settings.

oxygen therapy icon

When buying a portable oxygen machine, it’s important to know which type of flow you need and the amount of oxygen (in LPM) you’re prescribed. If you’re unsure of these details, check with your health care provider.

Who should use a portable oxygen concentrator?

If you need supplemental oxygen—also known as oxygen therapy—you’re not alone. The American Thoracic Society estimates 1.5 million adults in the United States use oxygen therapy. [5]Jacobs SS, et al. Annals of the American Thoracic Society. December 2018. Optimizing Home Oxygen Therapy: An Official American Thoracic Society Workshop Report. Found on the internet at https://www.atsjournals.org/doi/10.1513/AnnalsATS.201809-627WS

People with a variety of conditions may benefit from supplemental oxygen. According to the American Lung Association, these conditions include chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), pulmonary fibrosis, pneumonia, asthma, cystic fibrosis, and sleep apnea. [6]American Lung Association. Oxygen therapy. Found on the internet at https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-procedures-and-tests/oxygen-therapy

If you need extra oxygen, you may enjoy the freedom a portable unit can give you. Being able to go out with friends and family, travel, and enjoy activities outside of the house are all possible with POCs.

Staying active and connecting with people is important for our health and well-being. According to a study published in the Journal of Gerontology, socially active older adults have better physical health and emotional well-being. [7]Fingerman KL, et al. The Journals of Gerontology. Jan. 18, 2019. Variety is the Spice of Late Life: Social Integration and Daily Activity. Found on the internet at https://academic.oup.com/psychsocgerontology/article/75/2/377/5292329 A portable oxygen concentrator can help you keep in touch with friends and family by allowing you to leave the house and socialize.

POCs may not suit every person’s oxygen needs. Before you purchase an oxygen machine, talk to your health care provider. They will tell you what type of machine you need and what to look for.

Things to consider before you purchase a portable oxygen machine

Before you purchase a POC, you should consider different factors to decide which model is the best for your needs.

Info icon

If you see over-the-counter oxygen concentrators in your search, the American Lung Association warns these machines may not meet your oxygen needs. They are not FDA-approved, don’t require a prescription, and may not fit your specific prescription. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure if the oxygen machine is right for you. [4] American Lung Association. Getting started with a portable oxygen concentrator. Found on the internet at https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-procedures-and-tests/oxygen-therapy/getting-started-portable-oxygen-concentrator

How much do portable oxygen concentrators cost?

In this review, the portable oxygen concentrators range in cost from $2,125–$3,200. This is about the average price range you can expect when purchasing a new POC.

Online retailers, like the Oxygen Concentrator Store, may have financing and “buy now, pay later” options through services like CareCredit, PayPal, or Affirm, allowing you to pay off your purchase over time. Oxygen Concentrator Store pricing estimates shared in this article are subject to change.

You can also reduce the cost by purchasing a used oxygen machine through the Oxygen Concentrator Store. Speak with a customer service representative to find out what used machines are available.

Are portable oxygen concentrators covered by insurance?

Some private insurance companies will pay for part or all of the costs of oxygen concentrators, but plans vary quite a bit. Contact your insurance provider to understand what your plan covers.

Oxygen equipment, including portable oxygen concentrators, is also eligible for reimbursement if you have a flexible spending account (FSA) or health savings account (HSA).

Are portable oxygen concentrators covered by Medicare?

Oxygen concentrators are considered durable medical equipment (DME)Durable medical equipment (DME): Medical equipment expected to last at least three years, prescribed for in-home use for a medical reason. , and a rental device may be partially covered under Medicare Part B. Medicare will cover part of the cost of renting in-home oxygen equipment and accessories if you have a prescription from a doctor, a diagnosis of low blood oxygen levels, and other measures to raise your blood oxygen levels were unsuccessful. [8]Medicare.gov. Oxygen equipment and accessories. Found on the internet at https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/oxygen-equipment-accessories

If you do purchase a portable oxygen concentrator, Medicare will help pay for certain oxygen-related supplies and services such as tubing, masks, nasal cannulas, maintenance, and repairs. See Medicare.gov for more information. [8]Medicare.gov. Oxygen equipment and accessories. Found on the internet at https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/oxygen-equipment-accessories

Are Amazon portable oxygen concentrators safe?

Portable oxygen concentrators are used to treat medical conditions, so it’s a purchase you should make with a reputable medical supply retailer, not on Amazon. Amazon sellers cannot sell medical-grade oxygen concentrators, both portable and for at-home use, because they can’t sell items requiring a prescription. Doctors stress that it’s unsafe to make this kind of purchase on Amazon. If you’re looking for a portable oxygen concentrator on Amazon to save money, consider a certified pre-owned unit from a reputable retailer instead.

Traveling with portable oxygen machines

Traveling with an oxygen machine requires careful preparation for your health and safety. Below are some tips to keep in mind before you go.

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Table 2, Comparison of the best portable oxygen concentrators

Product Image Best For Cost Max oxygen output Battery Life Weight Link
Inogen One G5 Inogen One G5 Most Discreet $2,882 1260 ml/min 6.5–9 4.7 Check Price
CAIRE Freestyle Comfort CAIRE Freestyle Comfort Best Battery Life $2,995 1050 mL/min of oxygen 8.0–16.0 5.0 Check Price
Respironics SimplyGo Respironics SimplyGo Best Continuous and Pulse Flow $2,500 2000 ml/min 1.3 – 3.4 10 Check Price
Inogen One G4 Inogen One G4 Most Portable $2,744 0.6 1.2 – 5 2.8 Check Price
CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5 CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5 Highest Oxygen Output $3,200 3000 ml/min 1.3-5.4 18.4 Check Price
Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini Easiest to Use $2,595 1,000 ml/min 4.5–9.0 5.0 Check Price
Precision Medical EasyPulse 5-Liter Precision Medical EasyPulse 5-Liter Most Affordable $2,081.52–$2,333.52 0.8 4.7 6.6 Check Price
Invacare Platinum Mobile Invacare Platinum Mobile Most Durable $2,495 1000 ml/min 4.0–8.0 4.8 Check Price
Precision Medical Live Active Five Precision Medical Live Active Five Easiest to Carry $2,310–$2,562 1.0 6.5 5 Check Price
Inogen One G5
Product Image Inogen One G5
Best For Most Discreet
Cost $2,882
Max oxygen output 1260 ml/min
Battery Life 6.5–9
Weight 4.7
Check Price
CAIRE Freestyle Comfort
Product Image CAIRE Freestyle Comfort
Best For Best Battery Life
Cost $2,995
Max oxygen output 1050 mL/min of oxygen
Battery Life 8.0–16.0
Weight 5.0
Check Price
Respironics SimplyGo
Product Image Respironics SimplyGo
Best For Best Continuous and Pulse Flow
Cost $2,500
Max oxygen output 2000 ml/min
Battery Life 1.3 – 3.4
Weight 10
Check Price
Inogen One G4
Product Image Inogen One G4
Best For Most Portable
Cost $2,744
Max oxygen output 0.6
Battery Life 1.2 – 5
Weight 2.8
Check Price
CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5
Product Image CAIRE SeQual Eclipse 5
Best For Highest Oxygen Output
Cost $3,200
Max oxygen output 3000 ml/min
Battery Life 1.3-5.4
Weight 18.4
Check Price
Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini
Product Image Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini
Best For Easiest to Use
Cost $2,595
Max oxygen output 1,000 ml/min
Battery Life 4.5–9.0
Weight 5.0
Check Price
Precision Medical EasyPulse 5-Liter
Product Image Precision Medical EasyPulse 5-Liter
Best For Most Affordable
Cost $2,081.52–$2,333.52
Max oxygen output 0.8
Battery Life 4.7
Weight 6.6
Check Price
Invacare Platinum Mobile
Product Image Invacare Platinum Mobile
Best For Most Durable
Cost $2,495
Max oxygen output 1000 ml/min
Battery Life 4.0–8.0
Weight 4.8
Check Price
Precision Medical Live Active Five
Product Image Precision Medical Live Active Five
Best For Easiest to Carry
Cost $2,310–$2,562
Max oxygen output 1.0
Battery Life 6.5
Weight 5
Check Price

*Last updated May 2024

**Can vary depending on flow setting and use of single- or double-battery

How we chose the best oxygen concentrators

Our Reviews Team consulted with geriatric care experts to learn more about portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) and how they can enhance users’ quality of life. Based on our expert consultations, user survey, and own research, we determined the following factors to be important for our readers when shopping for a POC unit:

We had all of our selections medically reviewed by an expert in the field to ensure each brand and model is appropriate for our readers’ needs.

Bottom line

Supplemental oxygen is sometimes necessary to relieve respiratory or cardiac disease symptoms and improve a person’s quality of life. If you need oxygen therapy, it doesn’t mean your normal activities have to end. A portable oxygen concentrator can allow you to move freely around your house, visit friends and family, travel, run errands, or do any other activity you normally do.

If you love traveling and need a device with decent battery life, you may opt for the Inogen One G5 or the CAIRE Freestyle Comfort.

POCs can go a long way in helping you continue to enjoy outings with your family and friends. Ultimately, the best portable oxygen concentrator for you depends on your preferences, price point, and specific oxygen needs.

Frequently asked questions

According to the Oxygen Concentrator Store, most portable oxygen concentrators last four to seven years before needing to be replaced. The better you maintain your machine, the longer it will last.

Yes, you need a prescription from your doctor to use and purchase a portable oxygen concentrator. You should not use an oxygen machine if you haven’t received a prescription from your doctor because it may cause serious health effects.

A new portable oxygen concentrator may range from $2,000 to $4,000. The portable oxygen concentrators in this review range from $2,081.52 to $3,200. The cost may be lower if you decide to purchase a used machine.

A portable oxygen concentrator and a portable oxygen machine are one and the same. Both names describe a device providing oxygen therapy through a concentrated flow of oxygen.

Yes, some portable oxygen concentrators can run continuously. For instance, the Oxlife Liberty and the CAIRE Sequal Eclipse 5 have both continuous and pulse flow options.

The best portable oxygen concentrator for you depends on your preferences, tolerability, and oxygen needs. Talk to your health care provider about which type of machine to look for.

Portable oxygen concentrators are considered durable medical equipment. If you’re renting a device and you have a prescription from a doctor, a diagnosis of low blood oxygen levels, and other measures to raise your blood oxygen levels weren’t successful, it may be partially covered under Medicare Part B.

If you purchase a portable oxygen concentrator, Medicare will help pay for specific supplies and services, including tubing, masks, nasal cannulas, maintenance, and repairs. Visit Medicare.gov to learn more.

POCs may be available to purchase on Amazon, but doctors advise against it. Amazon sellers can’t sell medical-grade oxygen concentrators, both portable and for at-home use, because they can’t sell items requiring a prescription. If you’re looking for a portable oxygen concentrator on Amazon to save money, consider a certified pre-owned unit from a reputable retailer instead.

Have questions about this review? Email us at reviewsteam@ncoa.org.

Sources

  1. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Pulse oximeters and oxygen concentrators: What to know about at-home oxygen therapy. Found on the internet at https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/pulse-oximeters-and-oxygen-concentrators-what-know-about-home-oxygen-therapy
  2. International Noise Awareness Day. Common noise levels – how loud is too loud? Found on the internet at https://noiseawareness.org/info-center/common-noise-levels/
  3. Hardavella G, et al. Breathe. September 2019. Oxygen Devices and Delivery Systems. Found on the internet at https://breathe.ersjournals.com/content/15/3/e108
  4. American Lung Association. Getting started with a portable oxygen concentrator. Found on the internet at https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-procedures-and-tests/oxygen-therapy/getting-started-portable-oxygen-concentrator
  5. Jacobs SS, et al. Annals of the American Thoracic Society. December 2018. Optimizing Home Oxygen Therapy: An Official American Thoracic Society Workshop Report. Found on the internet at https://www.atsjournals.org/doi/10.1513/AnnalsATS.201809-627WS
  6. American Lung Association. Oxygen therapy. Found on the internet at https://www.lung.org/lung-health-diseases/lung-procedures-and-tests/oxygen-therapy
  7. Fingerman KL, et al. The Journals of Gerontology. Jan. 18, 2019. Variety is the Spice of Late Life: Social Integration and Daily Activity. Found on the internet at https://academic.oup.com/psychsocgerontology/article/75/2/377/5292329
  8. Medicare.gov. Oxygen equipment and accessories. Found on the internet at https://www.medicare.gov/coverage/oxygen-equipment-accessories
Mikayla Morell is a health and wellness writer who is passionate about spreading reliable, accessible, and informative health information to people of all backgrounds and identities.
Elizabeth Lyda headshot
Elizabeth U. Lyda Medical Reviewer
Elizabeth Lyda, RRT, holds a bachelor of science degree from Empire State College and associate of science degree with a certificate in Respiratory Care from Mansfield State University, and has been a respiratory therapist since 1983. She was named Respiratory Therapist of the Year in 2007 from the University of Rochester and remains licensed in the state of New York.
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