How to choose the right HVO model

The HVO product line has three models known as the Standard, the Mighty Mite, and the MAX. In this post, you'll learn the difference between them and how to decide which one is best for your application.

The fundamental difference between the models is the compressor:

  • The Standard maintains tank pressure between 30 and 100 PSI. It can accept up to 45 LPM of input volume and requires a minimum input of 10 LPM.

  • The Mighty Mite maintains tank pressure between 100 and 150 PSI. It can accept up to 45 LPM of input volume and requires a minimum input of 20 LPM.

  • The MAX also keeps the tank pressure between 100 and 150 PSI. It can accept up to 55 LPM of input volume and requires a minimum of 40 LPM.

The input volume is the combined gas volume produced by the oxygen concentrators connected to the HVO system.  Oxygen concentrators typically produce 5, 8 or 10 LPM each. The concentrators we recommend using with HVO systems are 10 LPM, as they are more efficient with energy usage.

Here’s a list of important questions:

  • What is the required oxygen flow rate? You should know the average flow rate you require in Liters per Minute (LPM). Take that number and add 5, then divide by the LPM output rating of the oxygen concentrators you plan to purchase and round up. Now you know the number of oxygen concentrators you’ll need. 
    For example, if the flow rate needed is 20 LPM, add 5 to get 25 LPM. Divide by 10 LPM which yields 2.5 rounded up equals 3. You should buy (3) 10 LPM oxygen concentrators.

  • How consistent is your oxygen usage throughout the day? For inconsistent usage (the typical case) you'll want a larger or extra storage tank and one or more extra oxygen concentrators to handle peak usage periods. If usage is consistent, you can use the number you calculated above.

  • How likely is it that your overall oxygen usage will grow over time? If it's very likely, choose a system that has some "headroom", meaning you can add oxygen concentrators. For example, you may choose a 5-outlet relay box instead of the 3-outlet model. If there’s uncertainty, keep in mind that the HVO system is modular and expandable, so you can start small and add components as your requirements become better known.

  • What is the output pressure requirement? If you are a veterinarian running oxygen cages, you probably need at least 50 PSI. This would eliminate the Standard as an option since the tank pressure with this model will go down to 30 PSI before starting to refill, whereas the restart pressure for the Mighty Mite and MAX is 100 PSI.

Remember that the larger the tank size and the higher the maximum tank pressure, the more stored oxygen will be available to handle peak usage. You can see exactly how much oxygen is stored for the various pressures and tank sizes in the General Questions post.

Here are some example cases:

Example 1: Small
You need 15 LPM of sustainable flow and an output pressure of 30 PSI. Consumption doesn't vary much throughout the workday. In this case, an HVO Standard 20 gallon system (or HVO 2-Go) with two 10 LPM oxygen concentrators will satisfy your immediate requirements.

Example 2: Medium
You need 30 LPM of sustainable flow most of the time, with occasional peak usage of 50 LPM. In this case, a Mighty Mite 60 gallon system with three 10 LPM oxygen concentrators will be a good fit. The higher pressure of the Mighty Mite, as well as the larger storage tank, will allow more oxygen to be stored to handle peak usage periods.

Example 3: Large
You need 50 LPM of sustainable flow with peak usage of 80 LPM. The MAX will be your best choice here, as you'll be able to attach six 10 LPM oxygen concentrators. Another way to grow an HVO system is by adding drones and/or storage tanks. For more information, see the post “How to expand your HVO system”.