[OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

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[OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

Jason White-20
Hi everyone,

I have taken an interest in measuring and reducing the airborne dust levels
in my basement. (I suffer from dust allergies)

On a whim I've bought a cheap Chinese air quality monitor, a "Yvelines
HTO-131." I figure it would be neat to try to measure dust levels before
and after doing a variety of different things clean up the air.

This monitor claims to measure:
* Total volatile organic compounds (mg/m3)
* Formaldehyde (mg/m3)
* PM10 (ug/m3)
* PM2.5 (ug/m3)
* CO2 (ppm)

I'm not sure how relevant most of the parameters, like TVOC, are to dust
allergies.

I was wondering if anyone has had experiences with these types of monitors
and with improving "air quality" in general?

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Re: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

Richard J. Pytelewski-2
Jason:

My wife and I suffer from airborne allergies too and after trying all sorts of filter media in our house main HVAC, we bit the bullet and bought a Dyson HP04. It is expensive but, after about a week, our eyes stopped watering, our nose running was virtually gone, and the cursed sneezing all but a memory.  I do believe the Dyson addresses and measures everything you listed.  I assume your area is solid, non-powder generating (unpainted concrete, etc)....

As an example of the Dyson's detection and capabilities.... our kitchen is on the first floor and our master bedroom (where the Dyson is) is on the second..... if we use a frying pan or the over, the detector(s) evidence the particulate change(s) and after a hour or so of operation the filters remove the offending airborne particles.   if you saw the distance that I am talking about, you'd be impressed.  The first few times it happened we didn't believe it but it is quite reproducible.  I do NOT work for Dyson BTW.....

Anyway, food for thought.

Best Regards,

Rich

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________________________________
From: [hidden email] <[hidden email]> on behalf of Jason White <[hidden email]>
Sent: Wednesday, December 23, 2020 2:42 PM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public. <[hidden email]>
Subject: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

Hi everyone,

I have taken an interest in measuring and reducing the airborne dust levels
in my basement. (I suffer from dust allergies)

On a whim I've bought a cheap Chinese air quality monitor, a "Yvelines
HTO-131." I figure it would be neat to try to measure dust levels before
and after doing a variety of different things clean up the air.

This monitor claims to measure:
* Total volatile organic compounds (mg/m3)
* Formaldehyde (mg/m3)
* PM10 (ug/m3)
* PM2.5 (ug/m3)
* CO2 (ppm)

I'm not sure how relevant most of the parameters, like TVOC, are to dust
allergies.

I was wondering if anyone has had experiences with these types of monitors
and with improving "air quality" in general?

--
Jason White
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Re: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

James Cameron-2
In reply to this post by Jason White-20
On Wed, Dec 23, 2020 at 02:42:48PM -0500, Jason White wrote:

> Hi everyone,
>
> I have taken an interest in measuring and reducing the airborne dust
> levels in my basement. (I suffer from dust allergies)
>
> On a whim I've bought a cheap Chinese air quality monitor, a "Yvelines
> HTO-131." I figure it would be neat to try to measure dust levels before
> and after doing a variety of different things clean up the air.
>
> This monitor claims to measure:
> * Total volatile organic compounds (mg/m3)
> * Formaldehyde (mg/m3)
> * PM10 (ug/m3)
> * PM2.5 (ug/m3)
> * CO2 (ppm)
>
> I'm not sure how relevant most of the parameters, like TVOC, are to dust
> allergies.

They can be correlated sometimes, but not always a cause.

In my own experience, air humidity and suspended sea spray also plays
a significant part, which I guess is because it changes cilia and
mucociliary clearance (MCC) in respiratory tract.  I live 400km from
the sea.

Also in my own experience following brain surgery, suboptimal T3 or T4
hormone levels led to weakened efforts by cilia until supplementation
began.  So if you have any known or undiagnosed thyroid function
issues, get them worked.  Aging also slows cilia, and smoking damages
them.  If symptoms take many hours to begin, suspect an MCC loading
problem.

Check for mould spores; four to 20 microns, blocked by HEPA.
Developing an allergic response to spores can make it look like you
have an allergy to dust in general.  I don't know how to measure mould
spore density.  If symptoms go away in a bleach-cleaned and ventilated
bathroom, and rapidly begin on exit, be suitably suspicious.

> I was wondering if anyone has had experiences with these types of
> monitors and with improving "air quality" in general?

We have a retail air filtering appliance with a display which spends
half the time showing either PM2.5 or VOC.  During dust storms or
bushfire smoke events, we run it to relieve symptoms.  The symptoms
only correlate to the PM2.5 display, not the VOC display.  The VOC
display is really good at detecting farts.

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Re: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

Justin Richards
>
>
> In my own experience, air humidity and suspended sea spray also plays
> a significant part, which I guess is because it changes cilia and
> mucociliary clearance (MCC) in respiratory tract.  I live 400km from
> the sea.
>
>
> Regarding humidity, do you think high humidity is better or worse for
allergies?  At work, it is mostly dry and people seem to suffer blood noses
and other related issues.

We have a swampy (which is working just great today with outside @ 39degC
and 13% humidity) and always figured that it filters the air while it cools
and humidifies.

I should get an air quality meter and do the comparisons.

Justin
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Re: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

Trevor
Justin Richards wrote on 24/12/2020 14:39:
>>
>>
>> In my own experience, air humidity and suspended sea spray also plays
>> a significant part, which I guess is because it changes cilia and
>> mucociliary clearance (MCC) in respiratory tract.  I live 400km from
>> the sea.

> Regarding humidity, do you think high humidity is better or worse for
> allergies?  At work, it is mostly dry and people seem to suffer blood noses
> and other related issues.
>
> We have a swampy (which is working just great today with outside @ 39degC
> and 13% humidity) and always figured that it filters the air while it cools
> and humidifies.

I'm fairly convinced that our swampy deposits fine orange clay dust
throughout the house (curse of the Riverina). I can't otherwise explain
the fact that the dust is on every surface despite frequent cleaning.

While you'd expect that it might filter out dust when drawing hot air
through cardboard filters running with water, I'm not convinced that it
doesn't also suck in the dust through other gaps in the housing. It's
serviced every year and covered in winter to help prevent smoke from
next door's woodfire being spread throughout the house.

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Re: [OT] Air quality, Dust, TVOC?

James Cameron-2
On Thu, Dec 24, 2020 at 11:39:21AM +0800, Justin Richards wrote:
> Regarding humidity, do you think high humidity is better or worse for
> allergies?

Apart from aforesaid mucociliary clearance, both high humidity and low
humidity have downsides.

High humidity triggers any mould to grow and therefore release
spores.  Water can also contained dissolved substances, hence rusting
cars near the sea.

Sudden low humidity dries the respiratory tract; it can take a few
days for the body to compensate, but it does, so constant low humidity
can be adapted to.

Curiously, COVID-19 aerosols hang around for longer in drier air.
https://theconversation.com/the-144508

On Thu, Dec 24, 2020 at 03:02:03PM +1100, Trevor wrote:

> I'm fairly convinced that our swampy deposits fine orange clay dust
> throughout the house (curse of the Riverina). I can't otherwise
> explain the fact that the dust is on every surface despite frequent
> cleaning.
>
> While you'd expect that it might filter out dust when drawing hot
> air through cardboard filters running with water, I'm not convinced
> that it doesn't also suck in the dust through other gaps in the
> housing. It's serviced every year and covered in winter to help
> prevent smoke from next door's woodfire being spread throughout the
> house.

I've lived in a house with one of those evaporative air coolers.

The filters we used were straw, which was wet with water from a bore.

I tested by placing a tissue across a vent.  I got dust from outside
air, and from what was suspended in the bore water.

For any filter that isn't to HEPA grade, I expect it will collect some
of the dust by random collisions, but also release the dust once it
has accumulated.  Eventually the dust collection equals the dust
release.

If you're using town water supply, then you get to breath whatever the
processing plant uses to bring it up to standard.  I've heard rumour
of walls changing colour based on decisions by the shire engineer to
switch between river and bore while changing dosing.

On the other hand, heat pump air conditioners usually have weak
filters designed to prevent fouling of the heat exchanger, yet people
often believe they can somehow filter small particles.

My favourite design, not yet attempted, is an earth tube with a HEPA
filter at the distant end, and another filter at the house to catch
any mould spores.  ;-)

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