#11 – Changing Nitrous Oxide Tanks

A nitrous monitor is located: _______________. A “low” light will turn on alerting the secretary when the nitrous or oxygen tanks are low. A secretary will then tell a chairside assistant who will change the correct tank. Fully pressurized tanks will read 750 PSI for N2O and 2400 PSI for O2. The regulators reduce this pressure to 45 55 PSI in the lines to the operatories.

There should always be 4 tanks total hooked up, but only 2 tanks on at a time, one oxygen and one nitrous. The other hooked up tanks are backup. When a tank is empty, the next tank is already hooked up, so you can turn on the other full tank before completely turning off the empty tank and never have to inconvenience clients.

When turning tanks off (in closet) sometimes pressure will build up in N2O lines and the lines will “leak” if pressure gauge shows excess pressure, go into any operatory and connect a N2O unit and release pressure. This will complete the turn off procedure.

The tanks will read 750 PSI until they are almost empty, then the pressure indicator gauges will drop to zero. When this happens, go to the small room next to the back door housing the gases. Be sure to have someone help you change tanks a few times before you change the tanks by yourself.

Turn the tank that registers “0” off. Use the large wrench to remove the tanks connection from the line by pushing up. Undo the fly nut on the sleeve. Roll the empty tank out of the sleeve and replace it with a full tank. Screw a cap on the tank before moving it. Never move a tank without a cap on. Unscrew the cap and attach the connection to the new tank and turn the dial to increase the pressure. If it hisses, you need to tighten the connection. Make sure the new tank is firmly locked into the sleeve.

Tag the empty tank “empty” and the newly attached tank “in use.” Screw the cap on the used tank.Initial and date the sheet posted on the wall every time you change a tank. Make sure the used tank is lined up with the other tanks against the wall in a straight line and the chain is attached to all three loops. If these tanks fell over, they could explode. Handle them with care! Go back and notify the doctors that the nitrous tank has been changed. Be sure to watch that we don’t run out of oxygen or nitrous. We always keep 4 oxygen tanks and 3 nitrous tanks. Turn the knob on top of the tank clockwise (to the right) to close. If a tank won’t turn off completely, put the leaking cylinder out side and label it for replacement. Let your Team Leader know so we will not be charged. We will need to contact: __________ if there is a regulator problem. Once a tank is changed make a notation on the Log Sheet in the nitrous room with the date, your name, kind of tank changed, and how many full tanks are left.
• In huddle every morning the C&S person is responsible to report to the doctors how many empty tanks we have.
• When there are 2 empty oxygen tanks or only 1 full nitrous tank the C&S person is responsible to tell the Team Leader or higest level assistant that day ASAP.
• The Team Leader will make a note (specify what kind & pick-up) for the ordering person.
• The ordering person will call the company. They usually deliver the next day if ordered early enough.
• Follow up the next day in your huddle to be sure they have been ordered.