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Tereci 2020-08-13 11:13pm

Smell from oxygen concentrator

I started using Smith little torch with oxy concentrator and a disposable propane tank for jewelry making. I noticed that when I turn the oxy concentrator on there is a weird smell coming out from the oxygen line (the propane is shut off at this point so it's not it). If I breath that for some time I get a headache. If I turn on the propane and light the torch and mix the two I get orangy/redish flame around the inner blue cone instead of a light blue one when I mix in the "oxygen".

I tried googling but cannot find anything about what the smell might be. I assume the oxy concentrator is somehow malfunctioning and whatever is coming out of it is not a pure oxygen but I don't know how to test this or how to find out what is going on. Anybody has any ideas?

Thank you!

Speedslug 2020-08-14 3:07am

Very curious.

I can't think of anything that would cause that.

echeveria 2020-08-14 11:02am

You never get pure oxygen, but it should be at least 93%. What is the smell, other than weird? Musty, moldy? If so, it might be mildewy inside and need some cleaning. Not sure I would try to clean the tubing though unless it looks easy to disconnect/reconnect.

If it is running your torch, it is generating oxygen, but it sounds like your purity is low.

Tereci 2020-08-14 4:28pm

@echeveria it smells chemical and maybe a bit sweet - if anything I would liken it to a very bad, headache inducing, car air freshener. It only smells like that when running.

I have devilbiss 515ADS and it has a purity measuring device built in. It shows "normal oxygen" when running which should mean more than 84% pure.
Few times though I had the "service required" or "low oxygen" controls come on. But both times when I switched the machine off for a while and turned it on again they didn't come back. The machine also makes kind off a "breathing" noises, I think it's maybe a pressure valve releasing excess pressure.. which I am not sure is normal..

I wonder if there is some way for me to double check the purity of the oxygen but it seems like those devices are pretty expensive. Do you by any chance know how pure the oxygen has to be to power a torch properly?

echeveria 2020-08-15 9:04am

I don't really know for a fact - I have seen 90% but have no idea if that was stated with any true knowledge. There is a website for manuals for troubleshooting, maintenance and repairs. Maybe that will help.

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