N95 vs paint mask

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Jim Rosenow, Mar 26, 2020.

  1. Jim Rosenow

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    OK...so I did my googlefu, and it seems that regular white, rubber-bandy face masks are useful only to contain the spread of germs out thru the mask.

    In N95, the '95' apparently comes from the 'certification' that they will stop 95% of INcoming germs thru the mask.

    Question for the medical folks on the site. Where does my handy, dandy paint respirator stand on this scale? I'm talking about the the kind with a filter on each side of the face....Each side has a first-line filter, an open space and then a second-line filter cartridge. Normal use is spraying poly paint and poly-fiber products. Filters appear to be similar in consistency to the N95 fabric, but much thicker. I'm sure many of you have them.

    What say ye?

    Jim
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
  2. topgun260

    topgun260 Pre-takeoff checklist

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    You may be able to find N95 rated filters for your respirator. On second thought, they probably make N95 rated filters for your respirator but you probably can't find any right now.
     
  3. Ryanb

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    Dad was an automotive sprayer for nearly 15 years - those paint respirators are no joke, but they get hot and sweaty quick in the warm weather. I’d definitely say they’re just as good of a barrier as a standard N95, but you might get some funny looks wearing one in public.
     
  4. sarangan

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    It is 95% effective for particles larger than 0.3um in size. That's sufficient for bacterias, but not viruses. Viruses can ride on dust particles much smaller 0.3um. So I would imagine the effectiveness of N95 masks for virus carrying particles would be much smaller than 95%.
     
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  5. Jeff Oslick

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    Much of the point of the mask isn't to perfectly limit exposure, but to greatly reduce the potential viral load you are exposed to.

    The side of the cartridges on the paint respirator will have a code for what it protects you against.
     
  6. Jim Rosenow

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    Actually, I wore it to both the liquor store and grocery store last Monday....nobody gave it a second glance! :) I asked the lady at the liquor store if all the people coming in wearing masks scared her (protection, as opposed to armed robbery). She had never thought of the issue.
    --------
    Thanks, Jeff....will have a look!

    Jim
     
  7. Checkout_my_Six

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    don't forget to sanitize the mask.....after each use. You don't want to let those nasties live. I use denatured alcohol in a spray bottle.
     
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  8. murphey

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    • #5 Balkan Vodka — 176 Proof. Nearly flavorless, you might not even notice that a bottle of Balkan Vodka is 88 percent alcohol. ...
    • #4 Hapsburg Gold Label Premium Reserve Absinthe — 179 Proof. ...
    • #3 Bruichladdich X4 Quadrupled Whisky — 184 Proof. ...
    • #1 Spirytus — 192 Proof.
     
  9. Kenny Phillips

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    Being a germophobe, I keep a spray bottle with that stuff on my desk. Have for years. Ahead of the curve!
     
  10. SoonerAviator

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    I've got a 3M painter's respirator, but I wouldn't want to walk around with it. Your face would be sweating up a storm in that thing! It would be a last resort.
     
  11. Jim Rosenow

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    Good idea to sanitize the mask! Thanks!

    I like the way you think, Murphey! One could multi-task that product list!

    Jim
     
  12. Checkout_my_Six

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    if it's more than 80 proof....it will not kill the virus....if less than 70 also won't work.
     
  13. Palmpilot

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    How high does the proof need to be to kill the virus?
     
  14. Gary

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    Depends on the mask. Nearly all will have a rating printed somewhere on the mask/filter or the box. Your paint mask may be a combination, a particulate filter and an organic vapor cartridge. If so, and the particulate filter has the N95 rating, it will probably work just fine. The organic vapor cartridge is great for vapor, not so much for particulates. Most masks are time limited depending on the load.

    That being said, fit is far more important. The best mask in the world is pretty much useless if it doesn't fit right. Need a snug fit all around, no gaps. If you have a beard, that's a problem.
     
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  15. Palmpilot

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    I have read or heard that the airborne viruses from a person tend to be carried by droplets that are larger than 0.3 um. :dunno:
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
  16. murphey

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    I knew that 70% was minimum, but I'm also seeing reputable medical reports that isopropyl alcohol (91%) is effective.

    From Rutgers University:
    https://www.rutgers.edu/news/best-ways-kill-coronavirus-your-home
     
  17. chartbundle

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    That's not how proof works.

    You need 140 proof(which is 70%) at a minimum. Higher if you want to mix it with something else to make it taste bettter, er, be better for your hands just don't dilute it so it's below 70%. So, start with 190 proof Everclear and you have some leeway to mix in some Aloe or something.
     
  18. flyingron

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    N95 does not mean 95% of germs. It means 95% of small (.3 micron) test particles are blocked. Coronal virus is about a third of that size. What the masks do primarily is block the small fluid droplets that the virus is riding on. Coronavirus itself has not been seen to be airborne. It's transmitted by aerosolized droplets.

    N95 is just a commonly available certification point. For blocking the aerosolized droplets, other masks may work fine. The big key is to have it fitted properly. It does no good if the mask is gapping along the sides and allowing the droplets in or out rather than being filtered through the mask.
     
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  19. Matthew Rogers

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    How could high concentrations of alcohols not work? That is like saying that the important part of the mixture is the completely inert and varied combination of ingredients that are used to make hand sanitizer. So taking 70% alcohol and 30% orange juice will work, but 85% alcohol and 15% bleach (or even water) won’t work?
     
  20. Checkout_my_Six

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    According to the experts....the virus is able to fight the higher levels....and survive.
     
  21. Matthew Rogers

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    I would like to see any sort of reference for this. It would be actually fascinating to learn what the mechanism is.
     
  22. Matthew Rogers

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    From what I saw the ranges mentioned were what different studies (CDC at one point said 62%-70%) found to be the minimum concentration required to kill the virus. Anything over 70% will kill the virus, be it 75, 80, 90, or 100%.
     
  23. Checkout_my_Six

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    google it.....
     
  24. weilke

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    If you have something like a series 6000 3M facepiece, you can get different particulate filters for it. The ratings are issued by NIOSH and refer to the respirators ability to filter 95% of 0.3 μm particles for the length of a full shift. A N95 rating is mostly for disposable respirators, the R95 and P95 will provide the same level of particulate protection but are also certified to protect for up to 8hrs if the particles are oily (e.g. when you are spraying pesticides or certain paints).

    As mentioned above by flyingron, you do not have to protect yourself against free floating virus particles, you need to be protected against droplets and to a lesser degree aerosols that carry the virus. There is a difference whether you are an emergency room nurse who goes in and out of patient rooms with coughing sneezing sick patients or whether you are walking around in the street or in and out of a store. Wearing a N95 or higher respirator for hours at a time is physically challenging. Outside of a medical setting, the one time you would really need one is if you have a family member who is sick and you have to be in close proximity to them to assist with their personal care.

    Btw. If you wear a respirator, make sure you understand how to don and doff it without transferring substances from your potentially contaminated hands to your nose, eyes or lips. There is a system to it. If you dont have the facilities to do that, wearing a respirator may not give you a net benefit.

    Oh, and surgical masks are not designed to protect the surgeon/scrub-tech/scrub-RN against aerosols. They are worn to protect the surgical field from contamination by spittle from the surgical team and to protect the surgical team from drops of blood that may be created during a procedure (e.g. during suturing, if there is a 'bleeder' or when the surgeon fires a surgical stapler). They make some sense to put on a coughing patient to keep them from throwing droplets 1/2 way across the room. The cough will still create droplets but now they stay slightly closer to the coughing patient.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
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  25. Ryanb

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    Not true. Alcohol above 60% will kill virus’ and bacteria. Why would a higher concentration NOT kill the virus?
    At least 60%.
     
  26. Ryanb

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    I would like to see what kind of ‘experts’ these are. :rolleyes:
    It’s false.
     
  27. Jim Rosenow

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    I think that for my purposes (walking around the street and in and out of a store), and given the fact there are really no other options available at this point, I'm going with the paint mask... Interesting discussion!!!

    .....oh, and some high-octane booze, Murphey! :) Best excuse I've heard in ages!

    Jim
     
  28. Matthew Rogers

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    I did and the CDC and all other sources say the opposite of what you are claiming. So if you want to back yourself up, then please provide me with a reference.

    Rutgers says minimum 60% and products exist up to 80%, and only states that 100% alcohol will evaporate quickly and you want to keep the surface wet with alcohol for 30 seconds.
    https://www.rutgers.edu/news/best-ways-kill-coronavirus-your-home
    So 100% alcohol kills just as well as 70%, you just have to keep the surface wet for as long as you do with 70% (30 seconds). Nothing about a high concentration of alcohol allows a virus to fight it off, it is all in the application.
     
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  29. azblackbird

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    I’ve got an N99 mask along with goggles and headgear that I wear for when my job gets too extreme. I’ve only donned them a couple times so far. Never thought once to wear them for my excursions out into the public. I just wash my hands regularly and don’t touch my face.
     
  30. Palmpilot

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    My can of denatured alcohol says that it contains methanol and ethanol. Does anybody know if there is any danger in using that to sterilize face masks, vs. the isopropyl in my bottle of sterilizing alcohol? (I assume that one needs to let it evaporate before using the mask.)
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
  31. Palmpilot

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    I have a bottle from CVS that says 91%. (It's only about 1/3 full though, which is why I'm asking about the denatured variety, which I have nearly a gallon of.)
     
  32. Checkout_my_Six

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    I guess you get the internets prize of the day..... ;)
     
  33. Ryanb

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    Since when are you concerned about sanitation? I recall some jarring remarks from you and a few others for being a germaphobe and ‘one of those people’ because I choose to remove my dirty shoes at the door. I suppose COVID-19 has revealed the germaphobe in all of us...;)
     
  34. weilke

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    The methanol is in there so you dont drink it (and so the state doesn't collect a liquor tax on it).
     
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  35. Checkout_my_Six

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    hey....shoes are different. lol ;)
     
  36. Ryanb

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    Suuuuuure they are...since viruses and bacteria definitely don’t live on the soles of your shoes...:rolleyes:

    ;)
     
  37. Matthew Rogers

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    Methanol is much more toxic to us, but if it is totally evaporated, probably not a big deal. There is a tiny amount of denaturant in the product and I once googled the MSDS for it and it had some effects, but I imagine that it too evaporates away. This is not proven fact, just memory.
     
  38. Checkout_my_Six

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    https://www.quora.com/Is-70-or-90-isopropyl-alcohol-better-for-disinfecting

    google is your friend pal....

     
  39. PPC1052

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    Not sure which filters you are using, but N95 is not the highest rating. The N means it's not certified for petroleum based products. You can get higher ratings, such as N99 or P99. That would provide more protection from smaller sized particles. (99% of 0.3 μm particles.) However, your respirator mask probably has a valve for exhaling. So, what you breath out isn't filtered.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
  40. PPC1052

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    True. But the key word is "tend." As in, not "inexorably." This virus is spread through aerosolized particles that are much smaller and travel farther. So, yes, they provide some protection, but are not absolute.