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Organic mask and smelling paint

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Forum topic by OldBull posted 09-16-2021 03:52 PM 317 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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OldBull

516 posts in 543 days


09-16-2021 03:52 PM

Good Morning,
I know this has to have been hashed out before but the search feature did me no good. I bought an organic P100 for rattle can paint, krylon fusion 5X matte white. I fit the mask and checked for leaks and it was good. While painting it felt as though I had no mask on at all, strong paint odor. I felt like I got a full load of paint in me. I adjusted my position as much as possible to be behind the cloud going out the door and continued. The mask had the black and chartruse filter colors on the box for organics. The website I purchased it from listed it as ””Suitable for high vapor applications such as painting, finishing, epoxy and more””. I was at the exit of the garage with a fan in the window pointing at me on full blast.

What are your experiences and thoughts, Is this common ??
Thanks
Donny
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12 replies so far

View jonah's profile

jonah

2223 posts in 4546 days


#1 posted 09-16-2021 04:56 PM

Post a picture of your respirator. A particulate filter (P100) will not filter VOCs from paint, and an organic vapor cartridge by itself won’t filter particulates. Usually you have to combine the two – at least in the 3M world.

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splintergroup

5877 posts in 2469 days


#2 posted 09-16-2021 05:24 PM

+1

VOC’s typically are filtered with a layer of activated carbon, almost always in a thick canister/cartridge. The thin, paper-like filters are for particles and do work to keep paint mist droplets out, but do little or nothing for vapors (which is what you are smelling).

I use the 3M variety of half-face masks and combine the organic vapor cartridge with a P95 pre-filter, The cartridges will block the mist since they have a thin paper pre-filter, but it will clog quickly, Using the combo, the cartridge will last much longer as the cheaper add on pre-filters will get the bulk of the filter clogging “chunks”.

Ventilation is something you want to deal with regardless. For rattle cans, just going outside on a nice day (in the shade) or using a large box fan at the garage door to suck the air out can help bunches. Sucking reduces dust and other garbage getting into your wet paint versus blowing.

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tvrgeek

2292 posts in 2896 days


#3 posted 09-16-2021 05:29 PM

I used to use 3M organic cartridge masks, but have switched to Eclipse as they fit me better. I have a full beard, so I have to snug it down hard. I only get the faintest hint of VOC.

One change I made is to build an outside workbench. Spray outside, take inside.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

7238 posts in 3740 days


#4 posted 09-16-2021 05:53 PM

They said it above, that filter isn’t to stop organic vapors…you need the charcoal filter for that.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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OldBull

516 posts in 543 days


#5 posted 09-16-2021 06:11 PM

This is it.
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View AlanWS's profile

AlanWS

169 posts in 4805 days


#6 posted 09-16-2021 06:19 PM

That mask does say “organic vapors” on it, so it should not allow you to smell the paint if it’s working properly. Was the mask stored sealed away from exposure? The reason I ask is that activated carbon acts to adsorb the contaminants, but it has a limited capacity. Once it has soaked up a certain amount, it stops being effective. If you smell something, that’s an indication it’s used up. If it’s a new mask with a recently broken seal, I would complain to whoever sold it to you.

-- Alan in Wisconsin

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therealSteveN

8900 posts in 1821 days


#7 posted 09-16-2021 06:43 PM

I think in this case it’s just a cheap mask. A lot of Chinese goods in this market since Covid, and unlike the products made in the USA there is no oversight to see if they are worth a XXXX. Depending on where you bought, if it’s new see if you can return as not doing what it was advertised to do. Clearly marked as Organic vapors, so you shouldn’t be smelling VOCs. if as you say, you have a good fit. Plus I would imagine it’s probably also not doing much to protect you from airbornes either.

3M might be a giant, but it’s a giant that makes stuff that pretty much does what it says it will do. I’d go 3M. What I have found with them is they still make filters for masks long since retired, so you can buy for the long term with them.

This one will do what you want it to. I’ve got an older 6300, and have been using it without issue for almost 20 years. Scroll down, and look at Frequently bought together, you want both of the filters shown. If they have a way to stack them like Splint was talking about then do that, it will allow the more costly Organics a longer life. The powder puffs are fairly universal, and can be bought in quantity pretty cheap. My suggestion is if you plan to spray is to always get P 100’s over N 100’s as the P’s will work with wet conditions better, and against dry dust either is good to go.

-- Think safe, be safe

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therealSteveN

8900 posts in 1821 days


#8 posted 09-16-2021 06:47 PM



That mask does say “organic vapors” on it, so it should not allow you to smell the paint if it s working properly. Was the mask stored sealed away from exposure? The reason I ask is that activated carbon acts to adsorb the contaminants, but it has a limited capacity. Once it has soaked up a certain amount, it stops being effective. If you smell something, that s an indication it s used up. If it s a new mask with a recently broken seal, I would complain to whoever sold it to you.

- AlanWS

Actually the test that an organic vapor cartridge is used up, is it will be harder to breathe in. Smelling just says you have a crap fit. Refit reseal is the mantra there.

-- Think safe, be safe

View OldBull's profile

OldBull

516 posts in 543 days


#9 posted 09-16-2021 07:05 PM

Brand new out of the box first use sealed in aluminum package. I am an X firefighter and a diver, I did check for mask fit and seal, I use the tighten strap on face method and check with hand over filters.

I will be trying this again tommorow.
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OldBull

516 posts in 543 days


#10 posted 09-17-2021 01:34 PM

” Refit reseal is the mantra there.” Winner winner chicken dinner.

2nd day much better, the only conclusion is that it was me. Mask was only adjusted the normal amount one has to do when donning newer gear the first few times.

I did learn on the second day it does not take but a split second to flood the mask with smell from a tiny quick leak.

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therealSteveN

8900 posts in 1821 days


#11 posted 09-18-2021 02:41 AM

You got that right. In the hospital setting we used to do fit tests on those 2 string paper masks. One string it’s a mask, technically 2 strings makes it a Respirator, per OSHA. We’d put them in a hood, and used a strong rotten egg mixture, just a bare amount of it. If they didn’t get the fit right, it was something to see those people coming out of that hood, you’d have thought their hair was on fire.

Glad you got it figured out.

-- Think safe, be safe

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

3805 posts in 4191 days


#12 posted 09-18-2021 05:57 PM

I’ve done a lot of spraying. Using my good respirators, I never smelled anything I was trying to avoid. If you’ve got the right filter and are still smelling anything, your mask or filters, or both are garbage for the task.

A few times I smelled something, but tightening the straps solved that problem.

Double check that the ports for exhaling are closing right when you breath in.

As to cartridges going bad just sitting around, activated charcoal doesn’t run around a room collecting all the bad stuff. If you don’t believe that, set a can of activated charcoal in a stinky fridge and see if it removes the odors.

You could abuse (neglect) your mask a long time before just laying around would make it go bad. Air has to get to and be drawn through it.

As to the one string and two string thing, for about twenty years at least fifty N-95’s could be found in my respirator – filter – mask bin. I’d never call the disposables respirators. They are what they are – nuisance dust masks. They’re great for sanding dust, weed eating dust, sheet rock dust and so on, but they won’t compete with real masks for fit and finish.

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