Solder fume absorber, or just a small fan?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Chat' started by MrSoftware, Dec 9, 2015.

  1. MrSoftware

    Thread Starter Member

    Oct 29, 2013
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    After a bunch of soldering, my throat hurts so I figured it's time to stop breathing the fumes. The big question is, do these "fume absorbers" really absorb anything:

    http://www.amazon.com/Science-Purch...1449702725&sr=8-5&keywords=solder+fume+filter

    Or would I be just as well off with a small box fan gently blowing the smoke away from me? I work in a home office so I like the idea of absorbing the fumes instead of just blowing them around the house for my family to breathe, but the filters look like simple sponge and I'm having a hard time believing that they actually absorb anything?
     
  2. dl324

    Distinguished Member

    Mar 30, 2015
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    Are you intentionally breathing in the fumes?

    I have soldered for hundreds of hours and never had a sore throat from flux fumes. I make it a point not to breathe in while fumes are being generated and I don't put my face over what I'm soldering.
     
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  3. Lestraveled

    Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2014
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    Look at the ventilation in your shop and create some air flow, preferably away from you. That is all you need to do. In my shop I just leave the outside door open. Never had a problem.
     
  4. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    yes fume extractors do "absorb" particulates, etc... not only via carbon filtration but Hepa rated filters are available..
    Is it worth it for extended/continual daily use (professional work).. absolutely yes
    Is it something a hobbiest with minimal/sporadic soldering needs.. not really as the cost for a proper system is quite high..
    Just getting the fumes away from your face/breathing zone is usually just fine for light soldering.

    Quite a few people get throat irritations,etc... from the fumes. Its not uncommon at all.

    You can pick up activated carbon pads and throw them over a cheap fan to make your own too..
     
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  5. BReeves

    Member

    Nov 24, 2012
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    I'll be 71 in January and have been soldering electronic stuff since I was 12, never worried about the fumes or did anything special other than not hold my head directly over what I was soldering. I don't get the paranoia over a little rosin smoke.
     
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  6. MrSoftware

    Thread Starter Member

    Oct 29, 2013
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    I do hold my breath and try to blow the smoke away, which helps but on those occasions when you're at it for a while it still adds up and bothers my throat. I'm in S. Florida where even now it's hot and humid so the windows are almost never open, so the smoke just hangs around. I'm thinking this might be part of the problem. I'll try a small fan, and if that doesn't do the trick then maybe I'll take the plunge and give one of those low dollar filters to see if it actually works. :)
     
  7. dl324

    Distinguished Member

    Mar 30, 2015
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    I have spent hundreds of hours soldering in a storage room with the door closed and have not had fumes affect me in any (noticeable) manner. I get an occasional whiff of smoke, but no ill effects.

    You could be hypersensitive to the smoke. In that case, a surgical mask may be sufficient. That would prevent fumes from being distributed more widely and affecting your cohabitants.
     
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  8. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    My grandma smoked 2 packs of cigarettes every day since she was 14 years old... She passed away at the age of 92.
    By your logic the dangers of cigarettes are all hype too right?
    :rolleyes:

    The hazards of soldering fumes,etc... are well defined/proven.
    Long term elevated exposure can and does cause health problems for some.. and others not so much...
     
  9. dl324

    Distinguished Member

    Mar 30, 2015
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    That's akin to comparing apples with oranges. It has been documented that soldering fumes are only an issue for hypersensitive individuals.

    This from a person who has used his lips to hold solder while soldering...:rolleyes:
     
  10. JohnInTX

    Moderator

    Jun 26, 2012
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    I use a small fan near but blowing away from the work. That creates a gentle airflow to pull off most of the fumes without blowing cool air on the work.
     
  11. AnasMalas

    Member

    Nov 27, 2015
    66
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    This channel is a legendary DIYer, he has made a simple project that is perfect for me...
    Here is the link:


    BTW. it is proven that activated carbon filter DO NOT filter out solder smoke as it it several microns smaller than the ones that activated carbon block....
     
  12. Dr.killjoy

    Well-Known Member

    Apr 28, 2013
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    Imo it's better than nothing at all ..
     
  13. AnasMalas

    Member

    Nov 27, 2015
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    Just like filtering sea water with a wire mesh is better than nothing at all! ;)
     
  14. Lestraveled

    Well-Known Member

    May 19, 2014
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    It is worse than nothing at all, it is a form of fraud.
     
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