Best respirator for winter cycling?
August 26, 2011 4:02 PM   Subscribe

What's the best (okay, a good) respirator for bicycling through winter inversion?

I have a Respro Techno but loathe it because the neoprene stink is worse than breathing pollution.

Last winter I used the 3M Particulate Respirator 8577, P95 with Nuisance Level Organic Vapor Relief.

I decided to look into ozone filtering, and the 3m respirator selector suggested a welding oriented mask instead, the 3M Particulate Respirator 8214, N95, with Faceseal and Nuisance Level Organic Vapor Relief.

Is this a/the good/better/best choice?
posted by BleachBypass to Health & Fitness (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You've probably already ruled them out, but I found that the ones with the replaceable filter cartridges have a great seal, no smell, and give incredibly clean air. But a single-cartridge respirator will restrict your breathing if exerting yourself, and the double cartridge respirators work great but are starting to get pretty bulky, which may or may not be a big concern.
posted by -harlequin- at 4:16 PM on August 26, 2011

I'm curious to know where your winter inversion is so bad, you need basically a mask to ride bikes? Even in Denver, it can get bad, but not *that* bad.
posted by alex_skazat at 6:50 PM on August 26, 2011

(Alex_skazat -- there are a lot of cyclists who wear respirators because a) they breathe in a whole lot of smoggy air for hours at a time, making them much more prone to lung diseases b) unlike runners or bricklayers or whatever, it's actually practical to wear a respirator while biking. There are even cool looking expensive ones made just for cyclists. )
posted by miyabo at 7:11 AM on August 27, 2011

Salt Lake City. It's no Bangkok, but in late winter, we will have weeks of high 2.5┬Ám/m^3 particulate levels. Simply put, you can't see the buildings downtown (in the valley) from the benches. And you might be interested in this.

Recently, we have had some elevated ozone levels that left my lungs a-burnin'. I think O3 drops off most places in the winter, though.

I wouldn't say you ~need~ a mask, but then I wouldn't say you ~need~ to wear a helmet, either.
posted by BleachBypass at 11:59 AM on August 28, 2011

harlequin - I think the thing I don't like about the replaceable filter half-masks (I own one) is while it's great for regular breathing while painting or sanding, it does too good of a job catching the moisture in my breath. I think 5 minutes into the ride and it would be like trying to breathe underwater. (This is even with the exhalation valve.)
posted by BleachBypass at 12:02 PM on August 28, 2011

I've noticed that on occasion too. I have one where the water runs down into a fold at the bottom. I wonder if cutting a hole there, putting in another valve, and silicone-sealing it together, might not vent the moisture better?
posted by -harlequin- at 4:30 PM on August 29, 2011

That's an interesting idea... What would be a source for a good valve, I wonder?

FYI, I ordered the 8214 ten pack from Amazon. If I remember, I'll try to give an update once they are in-use.
posted by BleachBypass at 2:14 PM on October 4, 2011

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