When you start oxygen therapy, you often bring more medical equipment into your home than you probably ever have before. Rearranging your home to house oxygen tanks can be difficult, especially when that equipment is hazardous. Keep reading to learn how to store oxygen tanks in your home so that you can feel safe and keep your oxygen tank safe as well.
Fire Safety First
You must put safety first as you consider where you want to store your oxygen tanks in your home. While you want the tanks to be close to the user for easy access, you also need to keep the tanks and everyone in your home safe.
The oxygen inside them isn’t flammable on its own, but it ignites things easier and burns things faster, so think of tanks as a “sleeping giant” as you look for the best storage space. Choose a storage area at least 15 feet from any heat or ignition sources to protect this sleeping giant and everyone in the home.
Safely storing your oxygen tanks is about more than keeping them away from heat and ignition sources. You also need to keep them in an area where they can always be upright with no risk of falling over. If an oxygen tank falls over and its valve breaks off, the tank can become mobile, moving at 40 mph in less than a second. A broken tank has enough power to break through two cinderblock walls. Prevent this by securing the oxygen tanks in an upright position in a rack, cart, or stand.
While you should keep oxygen tanks in a secure area where children or pets can’t tamper with them, that storage space also needs good ventilation. The compressed oxygen in your tanks is very reactive, but good ventilation can prevent a dangerous reaction to fumes and air contaminants. For example, fumes from grease and paint could build up in and around your storage cabinet, posing a risk. Make sure to leave tanks uncovered so that the provided ventilation can function. You should never cover your oxygen tank with fabric or store it in an area where something could fall and cover it.
Now you know how to safely store oxygen tanks in your home to prevent fire, tank mobility, and reactivity. By storing your tanks in an area far from heat and ignition sources, where the tank can stay upright, and where good ventilation is always available, you can keep your tanks and your family safe.