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John’s Troubleshooting Tip of the Month: Poor Quality Mists or Prolonged Treatments In Nebulizer Kits

PHS understands how stressful it can be when a piece of equipment isn’t working properly, and we want to help resolve any issues as soon as possible for you. So, once a month, PHS Respiratory Therapist, John Sheahan will post a tip on how to troubleshoot a common error with a piece of equipment.

nebulizer compressor, troubleshooting, phs, pediatric home serviceNebulizer therapy (delivering medication via aerosol droplets) was first developed by the French company Sales-Girons in 1858. Nebulizer treatments have come a long way since then, but occasionally you may still run into problems. Here are some hints that might help.

  • If you are experiencing a poor quality mist:
    • Check tubing for kinks or loose connections
    • Ensure nebulizer cup towers are inserted and placed correctly.
  • If treatments seem to last longer than normal:
    • Check nebulizer cups to make sure they are not cracked or worn.
    • Be sure to replace any cracked or worn neb cups.

Additionally, always have a new, unopened nebulizer kit on hand.

Nebulizer kits can be obtained at your local pharmacy if urgently needed. Most pharmacies stock nebulizer kits behind the pharmacy counter.

If you feel that the problem is not with the nebulizer kit but the nebulizer machine itself, please call PHS to let one of our clinicians troubleshoot with you over the phone at 651-642-1825.

John Sheahan, RRT-NPS, LRTJohn Sheahan, RRT-NPS, LRT is a Licensed Respiratory Therapist at PHS and would love to hear from you if you have a tip that you’ve found helps save insurance dollars, or have an idea for a Cost Effective Corner post. Share your tip or idea through a comment here or an email to John at

Originally published: March 7, 2011