Asthma UK community forum

How can you tell it's finished?

As you know, I'm fairly new to all this.

I can never really tell when my ventolin is empty. My other inhaler has a counter on it, and when that is at zero it still feels like there is something in it.

Does that mean ventolin (or other inhaler without a counter) is less effective when it's nearly empty?

Sometimes it feels like it works less well, but that might just be in my head!

How do you know when you need a new one?

5 Replies

Hi, I know what you mean as I use ventolin & I am never quite sure when it is empty. I just find it doesn't feel right when it gets near to being empty & probably is a little less effective if I think about it.



Hi Gamba

I have had this problem when dealing with my daughters' inhalers and I can honestly say that my lack of experience in the early stages of her asthma led us to continue to use an empty inhaler and then a hospital admission. The health professionals advised us to shake the canister close to your ear and if you can hear the liquid inside, that means there is still some in there. My advice to you is to give it a good shake and then depending how often you have to use it change it regularly. Hope that helps



I had the same problem a while ago, I was taking a lot so my usual ordering routine was thrown out. I did run out a couple of times so switched to a ventolin accuhaler which has a counter on it. I used a standard one for years, my way of dealing with it was to order at (mostly) standard times in the month. I also, always kept a spare.

Good luck with it


Thanks everyone. It seems like it's a case of a bit of guesswork and always making sure you have a spare!


Ended up weighing a new inhaler and case then completely empty and case. Not perfect as not that much between them. Most of the weight is plastic case.


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