/ Respro Pollution Masks

Please Register as a New User in order to reply to this topic.
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 17 May 2019

Thinking of getting myself one for the commute. It's incredible the amount of MOT failures driving around belching out black smoke that overtake me. Seems to be two schools of thought on this, essential piece of kit or unbearably hot breathing inhibitor that only works if you poodle along?

Then seeing this today

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/ng-interactive/2019/may/17/air-pollution-may-be-damaging-every-organ-and-cell-in-the-body-finds-global-review

made me think I should just bite the bullet and get one. It seems Respro do make masks for high intensity but the reviews are very mixed. Does anyone have any experience worth considering?

Thx

Report
gethin_allen on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I can't even begin to consider how unpleasant cycling in a mask would be. I struggle enough with a huff over my face when cycling to work in Baltic weather.

There's a bloke near me who I regularly see riding about and I spotted him with one for about 2 weeks before he gave up. Obviously he wasn't a fan.

Report
LastBoyScout on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

Never worn one cycling, but having done a lot of DIY with dust masks on, I'd hate to be doing something as aerobic as cycling with one on - as Gethin said, it's bad enough cycling with a Buff pulled up in the cold.

I agree with you about some, mainly diesel, cars, though - if I see such a car, I try and hold my breath for as long as possible until they've gone past.

That said, they're probably quite a good trainer for your lung muscles!

Report
thepodge on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

There was a study recently that said you absorb far less pollution when cycling than you do walking or driving the same commute. Doesn't help on the mask matter but it's maybe not as bad as you think. 

Report
blurty - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I'd be amazed if they could filter out the really harmful particles (which are PM2.5 or smaller and can cross lung membranes and damage the body, particularly the heart).

As a rule of thumb, the fumes you can see are not particularly harmful, it's the small stuff that does the damage, which gross filters can't address

Report
blurty - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

You got me interested so I checked. Respro masks are FFFP3, which are design to work on particles down to 6 microns - as mentioned above it's the sub 2.5 micron particles that do the damage.

Report
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 17 May 2019
In reply to blurty:

Interesting. So the larger particles that they do filter are far less harmful?

Report
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 17 May 2019
Bobling - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

Timely thread!  I was thinking about this just yesterday as I got home and blew twin black patches from my nose into a tissue.  

Report
the sheep - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

Bear in mind that for a mask to be effective you would need to be clean shaven all the time   

Report
Ridge - on 17 May 2019
In reply to the sheep:

> Bear in mind that for a mask to be effective you would need to be clean shaven all the time   

^ This. Looking at the design and materials I think you'd struggle to get anything approaching a decent face fit. Also what exactly is a 'HEPA - type' filter?

Report
the sheep - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Ridge:

Also as soon as you start to sweat the seal of the mask on the face starts to become compromised. 

Report
nniff - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I looked at one for lots of commuting in London and decided against for some of the reasons listed here.  Besides, with hay fever it's like breathing through a straw at this time of year anyway - I don't much fancy a straw with a few sheets of kitchen roll over the end.  I never get to blow my nose at the end of a ride,  simply every set of red traffic lights instead, and there's no end of those (c.100)

Report
harlequin100 on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I agree getting a good fit is going to be hard, I don't see the seal remaining intact when it is  jostling against helmet straps, sunglasses, chest etc

Report
captain paranoia - on 17 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I wore one about 15 years ago. I didn't notice too much restriction on my breathing. I did end up with a fungal mouth infection, though, which I suspected was down to the mask. I've never worn it since.

Report
dovebiker - on 17 May 2019

I was a product manager for a respiratory protective equipment manufacturer many years ago and sat on some of the European Standards committees. Half-masks of most descriptions perform very poorly - they simply don't seal well enough to the face and as you inhale, the air takes the path of least resistance - the big gap between your nose and cheek. As noted, most particulate filters aren't effective against the types of substances the cause lasting damage - the tiny particles that become embedded in your lung tissue.

Report
nufkin - on 17 May 2019
In reply to the sheep:

>  as soon as you start to sweat the seal of the mask on the face starts to become compromised

More to the point, as soon as you start to sweat it becomes harder to breathe, which is why - along with the price of replacement inserts - I eventually gave up wearing one. In the summer, anything over about twenty minutes would leave me gasping and my mask drenched

Report
Siward on 18 May 2019
In reply to nufkin:

The answer is scuba gear isn't it?

Report
Ridge - on 18 May 2019
In reply to Siward:

> The answer is scuba gear isn't it?

If you were really worried a powered respirator would do the job. No breathing resistance and positive pressure in the mask (unless you were really exerting yourself). 

Report
Monk - on 18 May 2019
In reply to Bjartur i Sumarhus:

I used to use one, mainly to help my asthma which is triggered by cold air and car fumes. As others have said though, they get a bit restrictive on breathing when working hard and get horribly wet. I found it ok on flat and downhill, but not great uphill. I gave up and just use a buff for cold air. I'd still consider it again in winter though. 

Post edited at 08:01
Report

Please Register as a New User in order to reply to this topic.