About Cleaning Masks

Sterilization vs Cleaning

Sterilization and cleaning are different.

Cleaning removes foreign substances. Sterilization kills microorganisms.

Most sterilization devices do not remove foreign substances.

The only medically acceptable method to sterilize equipment is with an autoclave or by treatment with proper disinfectant agents. Autoclaves heat the contents to a high enough temperature for a long enough time to kill germs to avoid disease transfer.

Most sterilization equipment using heat, ozone or infrared radiation will not remove dirt, saliva, or sweat.

Masks are Personal Items

Most people sweat and exhale saliva in their breath when they work out. This creates a film which must be removed by rinsing or washing with soap and water.

Putting a mask with sweat and saliva into any sterilization equipment will dry the sweat and saliva and it will come out with dried sweat and saliva. It may be sterile, but it will still be dirty.


This is one reason we have maintained the Standard Mask Kit as a personal issue item.

It just makes sense to have an affordable mask issued to each user in a multi-user environment.

It’s logistically simpler when everyone has their own affordable mask.

This way they can wash it when necessary and not share it, or their germs. The solution is simple and sanitary.

The Ick Factor

We recommend against “sharing” masks.

Think about it. A mask that goes on your face is a very personal item.

Doesn’t it seem distasteful to put a mask that someone else used on your face even after it was washed and even sterilized?

We have no objection to washing or sterilization and we trust they work in properly designed equipment.

We urge personal hygiene, but the best method is simply not to share masks and to wash them when necessary.

When is sterilization necessary

Most LiveO2 users are not concerned with sterilization because our basic masks are affordable enough to own several.

It is conceivable that a user may want to sterilize a Premium Mask Kit in a shared application.

But the process of cleaning and sterilizing is time consuming. Both the valve and mask are designed to be autoclave compatible so it is possible – but time consuming.

Ozone Sterilization

Ozone is considered a respiratory toxin because ozone injures the lungs.

It is not medically appropriate to use ozone to sanitize components used in breathing circuits.

Why LiveO2 doesn’t include Sterilization Equipment

LiveO2 does not include sterilization equipment because it does not fill a common need for LiveO2 customers.

Neither of these uses calls for sterilization. Both require periodic cleaning with soap and water.

Most sterilization it quickly falls into disuse because it doesn’t do what the customer needs it to do.

Inconsistent With Branding

Sterilization suggests the product is intended for use in medical in medical applications, where it is important to sterilize all equipment which comes into physical contact with a user.

Since LiveO2 is marketed as exercise equipment, this labeling would suggest it is intended for medical use.

We also believe that it is important to allow our customers not to to buy what they need to keep our products as affordable as possible.

We offer sterilization equipment as an add-on, but not as part of the basic product because it would distract from what LiveO2 is intended to do.

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