Face Mask For Daily Use and Riding

Live in Seattle and we’ve got horrible air quality at the moment due to fires. Training inside with a HEPA filter running, but as this seems to be a recurring pattern, I wanted to research respiratory face masks (N95, N100, something like that) for exercising outside on poor air quality days.

I used a disposable, one way vented N95 mask the other day for an outside ride and it was quite tolerable to wear, so looking for a more permanent solution with replaceable filters for marginal air quality days.

Any ideas?

1 Like

I use the 3M 6000 welding respirators at work for welding and working in dusty, smoky places. They’re pretty comfortable for all day use and easy enough to clean with lysol wipes or other kinds of disinfectants. Miller makes a similar half-mask respirator that might be a bit smaller and better suited to riding a bike, the big pancake filters on the 3M masks aren’t very aero :slight_smile: We usually use the 2097 filters.

1 Like

I bring one along in the event I go into a public indoor space where our state currently mandates them. I just don’t see a lot of need when outdoors. Admittedly most of my riding is solo and in the country.

The only time outdoors I’ve with one was when on a tour boat ride and we were all fairly tightly packed together.

I’m north of you, west coast Canada…same deal, getting all the Cali/Washington smoke drift up here. It’s a real throat burner without a mask. Need to find something more durable than those paper Ns.

Been getting worse in Seattle as the day has progressed… hopefully the wind shifts away from the south in BC before you get the worst of it!

I ordered some 3M Respirator 8233 N100 masks (disposable but apparently can be used a number of times before they lose efficacy) based on recommendation from some riders in CA.

Will try that and look into a permanent solution with reusable filters if this persists. The miller half mask clasher recommended above looks like a potential solution.

A map to figure out if you currently need a mask for more than just COVID:

East of the Rockies — No.
West of the Rockies — 24/7.
Middle of the Pacific — You betcha.

Disregarding pollution, I don’t think a mask is necessary whilst riding unless you ride in a very congested urban area. Admittedly where I ride is fairly rural, but on a 2hr ride yesterday I did not come within 10ft of another person. As someone said above, think about the purpose. If you’re not going to be close to others, they aren’t useful.

I don’t wear a mask while riding, nor do I wear a mask when walking my dogs. Where I live, ride and play there are wide enough spaces that the risk of infection is negligible.

I will not criticize those who choose to wear masks, that is their choice. But as some have mentioned here, the wearing of a mask, especially a bandana that is loosely tied, is largely symbolic and ineffective.

I had a some brand new N95 masks that I bought a few years back during the local fires. I donated them to a healthcare facility, I figured they need them more than I do. Similar could be found on https://www.protectly.co
The likelihood of my getting hit by a car while out on the road and being squished like a bug remain significantly higher than my getting infected by the virus.

Peace out.

1 Like