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How to Clean a Nebulizer [video]

Learn how to properly clean a nebulizer to take your COPD medication with the American Lung Association. The nebulizer educational videos are supported by Mylan Specialty, L.P.

Watch in Spanish


Many people with chronic lung diseases such as COPD or asthma use a nebulizer to take their medication in the form of a mist that is inhaled into the lungs.

Cleaning your nebulizer is important to prevent the spread of germs. It will also help keep your device working properly.

After each use, it is important to wash the parts of the nebulizer including the mouthpiece and the medicine cup.

To start, take the nebulizer apart by removing the tubing and setting it aside. The tubing should never be placed under water.

Remove the mask or mouthpiece, and wash the medicine cup, top piece and mouthpiece in warm soapy water and rinse.

Shake off the excess water, and let the pieces air dry in a cool, dry place until the next use.

Your nebulizer will also need a thorough cleaning once a week.

Start by disconnecting the pieces of the nebulizer.

Then soak the mask or mouthpiece, top piece and medicine cup in a white vinegar and water solution for 30 minutes or as recommended by your device manufacturer, or simply run them through the dishwasher on the top shelf.

After 30 minutes, rinse and air-dry in a cool, dry place.

Clean the surface of the compressor and the outside of the tubing with a soapy cloth or disinfectant wipe, and air dry. The compressor and tubing should never be submerged in water.

And remember, most compressors have an air filter that will need to be replaced every six months or as recommended by your manufacturer.

For more nebulizer demonstration videos and information, visit the American Lung Association's website at

    Page Last Updated: May 16, 2018

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