Your new stove is going to come with a skull and crossbones government warning

Sawset

Minister of Fire
Feb 14, 2015
1,121
Palmyra, WI
My wife sets the smoke alarms off when cooking breakfast. She came with warnings too, but i didn't listen.
But seriously, I wonder how this would compare to all the other respiratory hazards out there. Cooking, wood shop dust, diesel, the neighbors bonfires, inversions. We're fairly rural and up high, so those outside influences are rare. I purposely keep the house kind of loose at the joints (a few gaps here and there like at the door seals) just to get a supply of fresh air. As long as I have a supply of wood, I'll take the fresh air. There are homes that are super sealed, with air/air heat exchangers - are they healthy?
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
My wife sets the smoke alarms off when cooking breakfast. She came with warnings too, but i didn't listen.
But seriously, I wonder how this would compare to all the other respiratory hazards out there. Cooking, wood shop dust, diesel, the neighbors bonfires, inversions. We're fairly rural and up high, so those outside influences are rare. I purposely keep the house kind of loose at the joints (a few gaps here and there like at the door seals) just to get a supply of fresh air. As long as I have a supply of wood, I'll take the fresh air. There are homes that are super sealed, with air/air heat exchangers - are they healthy?
I tend to agree with this, wood stoves are just one source of indoor air pollution, and probably not one of the worst.
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,890
SEPA
I do find that during the burning season, everything in the stove room gets a layer of dust on it. I think most of it is ash from cleanouts and the little bit that spills out during reloads then sucked through the blower when it is turned back on.

Maybe I'll just start wearing my mask at home now, too.
 
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Stagolee104

Member
Nov 16, 2018
1
06413
I have a large Hepa filter air purifier in the same room as my woodstove, every time I open the doors to reload I run it on the highest setting and is running on low-mid all day. ill probably always heat with wood and I’ll always run a air purifier, it makes all the difference.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
I do find that during the burning season, everything in the stove room gets a layer of dust on it. I think most of it is ash from cleanouts and the little bit that spills out during reloads then sucked through the blower when it is turned back on.

Maybe I'll just start wearing my mask at home now, too.
I get a bit of ash on the ground in front of the stoves on occasion, especially the cookstove, but a good room air filter and mopping frequently have really cut down on our house dust.
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,890
SEPA
I get a bit of ash on the ground in front of the stoves on occasion, especially the cookstove, but a good room air filter and mopping frequently have really cut down on our house dust.
You are right!

We are pretty diligent about sweeping the ash up during reloads, before turning the blower back on, and we have an air filter that we fire up from time to time when I see lots of particles in the afternoon sun beams. We have a lot of rugs, so that catches a lot, and for some odd reason the little lady loves to vacuum, and has a real nice one that she uses to the point of distraction.

I'm not worried for a second about the dangers described in the article. My draft is sucking almost everything right out the chimney when we reload.
 
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Dataman

Minister of Fire
Sep 10, 2018
897
Newport, Wa
Another source of Dust if you run Humidifier. White dust is a byproduct of minerals found naturally in water, which can sometimes be released into the air during the humidification process. White dust, which can be a nuisance but is not harmful, may settle on surfaces and furniture near the humidifier. It is easily cleaned just as you would normally dust.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
You are right!

We are pretty diligent about sweeping the ash up during reloads, before turning the blower back on, and we have an air filter that we fire up from time to time when I see lots of particles in the afternoon sun beams. We have a lot of rugs, so that catches a lot, and for some odd reason the little lady loves to vacuum, and has a real nice one that she uses to the point of distraction.

I'm not worried for a second about the dangers described in the article. My draft is sucking almost everything right out the chimney when we reload.
I got a Dyson V10 Pet cordless and my wife uses it several times a day. We also have dogs in the house, one being a white German Shepherd, so it comes with the territory. We are finding more dust upstairs, since our dogs don't go up there we don't vacuum as often. If you live in a place with high silica content in the soil, that is probably more dangerous than a bit of ash in the house. People often burn scented candles in an effort to improve indoor air quality, but most of those candles release led and other carcinogens into the atmosphere. Even the "soy" candles are not good, only the real beeswax and cotton wicked candles are non-carcinogenic.
 
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Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,890
SEPA
I got a Dyson V10 Pet cordless and my wife uses it several times a day. We also have dogs in the house, one being a white German Shepherd, so it comes with the territory. We are finding more dust upstairs, since our dogs don't go up there we don't vacuum as often. If you live in a place with high silica content in the soil, that is probably more dangerous than a bit of ash in the house. People often burn scented candles in an effort to improve indoor air quality, but most of those candles release led and other carcinogens into the atmosphere. Even the "soy" candles are not good, only the real beeswax and cotton wicked candles are non-carcinogenic.
Your point about candles is a really good one. It's sort of ironic that wood burning for actual heat gets all this attention in the UK, wonder if candle burning for "ambiance" gets any?
 

kennyp2339

Minister of Fire
Feb 16, 2014
5,613
07462
I'm so glad mankind made it from before BC to the mid 2000's without these warnings about dangerous indoor pollutants. I mean lets get real here, as a society we have shifted to such a nanny state of mind. I can remember the days of going to a bar and literally wearing cigarettes by the time I left to go home, sometimes to much is really to much.
 

Mech e

Feeling the Heat
Feb 26, 2019
385
NorCal
www.dtengineer.com
Just about anything you buy in CA has warnings, so much so that no one pays attention to them. When did it become the government's job to warn you about all of the risks associated with living, real or imagined?
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
I'm so glad mankind made it from before BC to the mid 2000's without these warnings about dangerous indoor pollutants. I mean lets get real here, as a society we have shifted to such a nanny state of mind. I can remember the days of going to a bar and literally wearing cigarettes by the time I left to go home, sometimes to much is really to much.
Indoor air pollution has killed millions of humans over the years. Smoke inhalation from open firepits in houses, the primary means of having a fire for most of human history, was a huge cause of illness among early humans. Whenever I see a fireplace in a youtube video, movie, tv show, etc. and see heavy smoke staining on the lintel I know that someone in that house probably suffers from respiratory issues. I know it seems kind of "nanny state" but that very thing is what helps people live healthy lives into their 70's and 80s, sometimes even folks in their 90's are active, using stairs, etc. Ever seen what a Kerosene lantern looks like after it burns for a while? Even just lighting a home introduced smoke and toxic particles into the room air. Sometimes I do marvel that humans are even alive.
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
Just about anything you buy in CA has warnings, so much so that no one pays attention to them. When did it become the government's job to warn you about all of the risks associated with living, real or imagined?
This is because manufacturers and other makers of retail products do not always disclose harmful compenents/ingredients. Used to be that arsenic was used to make green dyes and paint. This caused thousands of arsenic poisoning deaths since arsenic can be absorbed through the skin by touching the painted objects or inhaled when the wallpaper or paint was removed from a surface. Just like asbestosis caused by asbestos being in just about everything .The fact that the CA Prop 65 warning is on almost everything should be a wake up call, not the butt of a joke. It should be terrifying to people that cancer causing ingredients can be found in your wife's skin cream or other basic products.

The "oh well, everything causes cancer" mentality is a quitter mentality. We should be pressuring our legislators and corporate overlords to force manufacturers to stop using harmful ingredients, components, etc. I don't understand why everyone is just OK with toxic chemicals in almost everything.
 
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ABMax24

Minister of Fire
What really amazes me is the differences in the resiliency of the human body. I work in a welding shop, I've worked with career welders in their 60's and early 70's that are healthier then most in that age group, welding fumes, metal fumes, grinding dust, and a pack of cigarettes a day hasn't seemed to phase them. I've also worked with those in their early 30's that have been diagnosed with "manganism", essentially a Parkinson's like condition caused by a build up of manganese in the brain from the inhalation of metal fumes.
 

jatoxico

Minister of Fire
Aug 8, 2011
4,334
Long Island NY
I don't dismiss the article out of hand and to some extent point well taken. On the other hand I wish they provided the data for each of the households separately. The mean peak 2.5 is barely above recommended max while the highest is about 4x that.

Consequently I couldn't figure out if any of the homes were of "doing it right" and the overall results are skewed by one or more poorly drafting or maintained setups. The high CV suggests that may be the case. While the point was made that outdoor particulate was not source of the peaks it was also tough to tell what the baseline particulate was.

Maybe a more careful read would answer the questions or maybe I'm just dense but if you're getting a lot of smoke spill probably should takes steps to fix it.
 
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SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
What really amazes me is the differences in the resiliency of the human body. I work in a welding shop, I've worked with career welders in their 60's and early 70's that are healthier then most in that age group, welding fumes, metal fumes, grinding dust, and a pack of cigarettes a day hasn't seemed to phase them. I've also worked with those in their early 30's that have been diagnosed with "manganism", essentially a Parkinson's like condition caused by a build up of manganese in the brain from the inhalation of metal fumes.
I'm sure there will be research that discloses exactly what the cause for some folks to do better. In past jobs I worked with some welders and they were 50's and up, all suffering from eye damage and lung damage. I'm willing to bet those guys you know are acting tough when folks can see them, but have undiagnosed issues. Younger people are more likely to go to the doctor because they don't want to live with COPD for 50+ years like their fathers and grandfathers did. My wife is terrified of airborne contaminants because her grandfather worked in a coal fired power plant and suffered immensely from it.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
5,394
Downeast Maine
I used to be a "safety third" kind of guy until I was struck with an unexplained health problem. Now I actively try to seek out products that don't have toxic components, make most things myself, and generally stay away from unregulated products from China, third world nations, etc. I love the prop 65 warning because it helps me avoid products that could harm my future productivity. I'm too young to die and leave my wife with a bunch of unfinished projects!
 

Woodsplitter67

Minister of Fire
Jan 19, 2017
1,690
Woolwich nj
I believe that there is some Validity to the article. That being said I think that there are a ton of other things that are worse. We use the Central vac on a daily basis. As far as loading goes.. Im a top loading stove and I don't see how alot of particles are getting out..

We bring wood in once to every other day.. wood come in break out the small shop vac.. then the house gets vacuumed with central vac.. I like it clean.. The ash pan gets dumped once a week if were burning alot..
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,890
SEPA
I'm so glad mankind made it from before BC to the mid 2000's without these warnings about dangerous indoor pollutants. I mean lets get real here, as a society we have shifted to such a nanny state of mind. I can remember the days of going to a bar and literally wearing cigarettes by the time I left to go home, sometimes to much is really to much.
My counterpoint would be: So we should expect corporations with one exceptionally dominant motivation to look out for us? A recent example is the Sandler family and their corporate machine who made billions by getting as much of the world as they could hooked on opiates. Cigarette companies and fossil fuel companies are other good examples. There are many, many other examples.

One failure of the capitalist system is the lack of protections to individuals and environments. The government has a role to play in counterbalancing this lack of incentive on the part of capitalists.

The argument that it's bad business to kill your customers, fails in the misalignment of time frames. The corporate brass simply plays the game of "I don't have to outrun the bear, I just have to outrun my friend". They gamble, because it's extraordinarily rewarding to do so, that their successor will be holding the bag when the music stops.

I hate government interference in my personal liberties. I'm all for it when it comes to corporate entities. The owners want maximum profit, management is highly pressured to deliver. Third parties, including customers and rank and file, often pay a steep price. Protection of these third parties, that's a role I really want my government to play.
 

rosem

Member
Aug 27, 2019
123
Northern Michigan
I have young kids and read about PM2.5 a lot before burning wood in our house.

I'm a software developer and have invested in multiple air quality sensors that measure PM2.5 and VOCs among other things.

I plan on having a more detailed post about this but I can not replicate these results. I have the PM2.5 monitor in my stove room too and never see a spike. Sure it might go from 1ppm to 4ppm and that's 4x, but it's still nothing crazy like they (and other studies I've seen) report.

I can get the sensor to really go crazy putting it above the door with a half burned log rolled near the front of the door. But as for that room and the whole house in general I don't see any difference.

Cooking makes the VOCs go off the charts and raises PM2.5 more and we have an electronic stove.

Anyway I'm very interested in this and plan on investigating them more. I might even create similar sensors to send to members for our own tests if people are interested.

I can see if you reload with wetter wood and it's not down to coal and you load e/w and you have a week draft that the smoke could really roll in. There is for sure good and bad practice. I try to keep all my wood ready to load and get the door shut quickly. If I open the door I make sure it's mostly hot coals going. Cracking a window, etc... Making smart choices can make a big difference.

One thing I like about not having an outdoor air kit is that the air on constantly recycling in my house, especially with the window open. I described the air in our house to my wife by saying it's lime a river, instead of a pond, always moving and staying fresh. I know that's a draft to some people and. It efficient but I think it's healthy. That said I live in the country and to the west wind there isn't another house for miles and lots of national forest. So I'm not worrying about someone polluting the air coming in.

With an outdoor air kit and a tight house I can see that stuff building up quick if you're spilling smoke out the door.

All this said I always have a window cracked now that I'm hyper away of how quickly VOCs can build up in the winter. Especially if you don't run your kitchen vent and keep temps above 70F.

Here is the sensor I currently use the most, it is not widely available in the US for whatever reason.

All that said I think it's something we should be aware of rather than scoff at.

More to come later.
PXL_20201218_201642909~2.jpg
 
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I'd love to see the stove setups in that study. Id think some stoves with stronger drafts will deposit very little smoke into a house. One advantage to my setup with a draft that i suspect is a little on the strongside... its tough to get any smoke into the house... i have to open the door rapidly during a high burn.


Can you get significant pm2.5 contamination without smoke smell?
 

jetsam

Minister of Fire
Dec 12, 2015
5,056
Long Island, NY
youtu.be
I do find that during the burning season, everything in the stove room gets a layer of dust on it. I think most of it is ash from cleanouts and the little bit that spills out during reloads then sucked through the blower when it is turned back on.

Maybe I'll just start wearing my mask at home now, too.
I get a noticeable amount of ash settling around the room after a cleanout even if I run a filtered fan while I'm doing it.

I don't doubt that a lifetime of getting wood and burning it has taken a few years off my lungs' expiration date. I'm in favor of the skulls and crossbones sticker for new stoves, and also I'd like them to send me one or two to put on my old stove. (And about 30 for my ring of rocks that I burn brush and toast marshmallows in, that one is extra hazardous to your lungs.)
 
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Mech e

Feeling the Heat
Feb 26, 2019
385
NorCal
www.dtengineer.com
The last place I would put my health and personal safety would be in the hands government.