Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1

    Asthma, Allergy, Ventilation--A students problem

    I have asthma and severe chemical allergies that have been causing me problems at apartments I have tried to stay at in Bryn Mawr, PA. The first time it was because they had painted recently and the fumes were toxic to me. I ended up living in the dorms for a month before finding my new place. I moved in yesterday and bought a bunch of IKEA furniture (made from particle board) and believe it is giving off formaldehyde because I had problems sleeping last night. I have a HEPA filter in my room and we ran the A/C (it has central air) all night with the fan on. The intake is in the room with all the furniture boxes but it is passed through a 3M 2200 Ultra Allergen 16x20x1 Filter before entering the TRANE unit in the attic. All of this and I still have problems.

    I was doing more reading on line and it seems like buying a bigger HEPA purifier (with a higher CADR rating) isn't going to make things better. The recommendation of the EPA on Indoor Air Quality emphasizes ventilation and establishing a positive pressure in the apartment or at least the room i spend most of my time in. It also mentions something called ASHRAE 62.1 spec.

    As a student who lives in a rental unit I am trying to figure out the best method to do something like this. It would have to be some sort of device that is portable, that doesn't have to be installed and make intense modifications to the unit. Something that I might be able to take with me when I have to move to another place so that it can help me there too.

    When I went up to the attic this morning to check on the 3M filter I installed in the TRANE unit I found out, with use of a super bright LED attached to my iPhone, that past the air filter (meaning where the air goes into the unit itself after being filtered by the 3M filter) in the unit there is a bunch of dust on the grates. I know the prior tenant used pretty cheap filters and figure that 3 years of this must have caused the built up. I sent an email to my land lord with an attached video and she is contacting a HVAC professional to come look at it. Is there anything I should keep on eye on in terms of being a customer who has asthma, severe allergies, and chemical sensitivities when an HVAC prof. visits?

    I would appreciate any advice or opinions you all might have on this situation, I'm trying to figure out what to do next and for the future of my life as an individual with this health condition who is going to be in school for several years to come and has many apartments in his future.

    One thing I was looking at was:

    http://www.greenandmore.com/safe-room.html

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    67,760
    Moved to IAQ forum. You might get better responses here.
    Contractor locator map

    How-to-apply-for-Professional

    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,268
    Filtered fresh air, an air change in 3-4 hours is the basics for indoor quality. Activated carbon/merv 13 is the best filter media. Maintain <50%RH to avoid dust mites/mold. Might be able to put together a small whole house dehumidifier with filter package that connects to an outside window. Portable package would a grand plus.
    Keep us posted.
    Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Lubbock Texas
    Posts
    773
    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    Moved to IAQ forum. You might get better responses here.
    The premise of ventilation is that the OA is clean or of sufficient quality to be used for dilution. Traditional ventilation is somewhat being threatened by the fact that the EPA is changing the requirements for outdoor air quality which is creating non-attainment zones in what is now becoming a significant portion of the country. That means that buildings in those areas will need to clean up the OA before they bring it into the building.
    www.genesisair.com
    Genesis Air Inc.

  5. #5
    Teddy,

    Who could I approach to construct such a unit? Or is there a place online that sells them? I'm not an HVAC professional just a customer. Thank you for your help!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,268
    Quote Originally Posted by taelvin View Post
    Teddy,

    Who could I approach to construct such a unit? Or is there a place online that sells them? I'm not an HVAC professional just a customer. Thank you for your help!
    Pieces of equipment would have to be put together to make a package. There may be enough of market for this type of portable ventilation/filtering/dehumidifying that my company would be interested in making a protype. Call or email me. Info in personal info section.

    Regarding the quality of outdoor air, all of the air in our homes comes from outside. The fresh air has more oxygen and less CO2 than the air in our homes. In addition, we are adding the pollutants from the materials and activities in the home. The concentration of the indoor pollutants depends on the fresh air infiltration rate. Low air change rates elevate the concentration dramatically. Homes should have an air change in 4-5 hours at a minimum when occupied. Most homes have good air change rates during cold windy weather. Common to find air change rates in 10-18 hours during calm warm weather. Monitoring the CO2 levels in the occupied home is the most accurate method determining how much fresh air is infiltrating the home.
    Fresh air ventilation during wet cool weather plus moisture from the occupants raises the indoor humidity. <50%RH prevents dust mites and mold from adding more biological pollutants. Fresh air ventilation during cold weather lowers the indoor relative humidity.
    Email or call for more info.
    Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Eastern Shore, MD
    Posts
    798
    Quote Originally Posted by taelvin View Post
    I have asthma and severe chemical allergies that have been causing me problems at apartments I have tried to stay at in Bryn Mawr, PA. The first time it was because they had painted recently and the fumes were toxic to me. I ended up living in the dorms for a month before finding my new place. I moved in yesterday and bought a bunch of IKEA furniture (made from particle board) and believe it is giving off formaldehyde because I had problems sleeping last night. I have a HEPA filter in my room and we ran the A/C (it has central air) all night with the fan on. The intake is in the room with all the furniture boxes but it is passed through a 3M 2200 Ultra Allergen 16x20x1 Filter before entering the TRANE unit in the attic. All of this and I still have problems.

    I was doing more reading on line and it seems like buying a bigger HEPA purifier (with a higher CADR rating) isn't going to make things better. The recommendation of the EPA on Indoor Air Quality emphasizes ventilation and establishing a positive pressure in the apartment or at least the room i spend most of my time in. It also mentions something called ASHRAE 62.1 spec.

    As a student who lives in a rental unit I am trying to figure out the best method to do something like this. It would have to be some sort of device that is portable, that doesn't have to be installed and make intense modifications to the unit. Something that I might be able to take with me when I have to move to another place so that it can help me there too.

    When I went up to the attic this morning to check on the 3M filter I installed in the TRANE unit I found out, with use of a super bright LED attached to my iPhone, that past the air filter (meaning where the air goes into the unit itself after being filtered by the 3M filter) in the unit there is a bunch of dust on the grates. I know the prior tenant used pretty cheap filters and figure that 3 years of this must have caused the built up. I sent an email to my land lord with an attached video and she is contacting a HVAC professional to come look at it. Is there anything I should keep on eye on in terms of being a customer who has asthma, severe allergies, and chemical sensitivities when an HVAC prof. visits?

    I would appreciate any advice or opinions you all might have on this situation, I'm trying to figure out what to do next and for the future of my life as an individual with this health condition who is going to be in school for several years to come and has many apartments in his future.

    One thing I was looking at was:

    http://www.greenandmore.com/safe-room.html
    A filter is designed to protect your machine....not your as( regardless of how well they market it to do so!)

    Fumes are toxic? Thats VOCs. A good UVC lamp will eliminate that. As far as allergens in particulate form...get an air cleaner for your system. those stand alone hepa filters DO work....for the air they clean....which unfortunately is only about 27 cubic ft....or 3 ft in every direction :/

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event