Hacked AC And Ash Filter

Moscow is in a bit of a hot spot right now, dealing with a heat wave and enormous wildfires. The combination of smoke, ash, and heat was driving Andrew up a wall so he built a contraption to provide some relief. It has two chambers, the bottom houses ice water, the top is an air baffle. A small DC fan pumps air into the upper chamber where it encounters the water being sprayed in from the lower reservoir. What results is a heat exchange similar to other diy AC setups we’ve seen. But Andrew also notes that after running the device for a while the smell of smoke and ash is gone. Can this setup be seen as an effective way to trap airborne smoke particles?

26 thoughts on “Hacked AC And Ash Filter

  1. As far as I know, this is what they do in the auto industry for painting cars. The airborne paint hits water particles, and the water is recycled around to collect more paint particles. This is a good method for cleaning the air, but as you can guess, it leaves the water very contaminated.
    ^^ I don’t know much about the process, so if someone can fill in more / correct me, please do so.

  2. They keep coming to my door trying to sell me a $2k(US) vacuum cleaner that works on the same principal. The only good way to remove particles from the air is HEPA. Water will work but it’s very inefficient. There have been studies on this.. Google: “Efficiency of smoke removal by charged water droplets”

  3. @sanchoooo
    If the vacuum is the kind I think it is, it doesn’t pipe the air through aerosolized water. I think they pull the air in and mixes it with a partially aerosolized and partially liquid bath. Think more blender than fire extinguisher. Not that those vacs are worth that much, but my parents bought one, way back when, and it still works quite well.

    That study just showed that charged water particles work better. I didn’t see anything comparing it to other particulate control methods, but I don’t have a log-in on hand either. Still, let’s not tell coal power plants, and chemical factories, that their wet scrubber towers are a bad design.

  4. 1. grab some highly nucular waste (beta emitter) from workshop
    2. build device:
    2a. pass air through nuclear waste
    2b. pass air between two charged plates
    2c. use air that passes up center of plates
    2d. discard air that passes near plates.
    3. breath clean air (charged particulates removed)

  5. will smell better if not used for the purpose mentioned by’smokey the bear’ but obviously the intended purpose: the fan blows downward, sucking in the smoke that would normally roll off of the bowl in the time between inhalations, keeping it from floating up and filling the room with an incriminating smell. lol you should look for a non-brass fitting for where the combustion takes place.. but of course the only combustion taking place is in that damned volcano. my apologies.

  6. this is kind of like when i put the water hose on mist and it pulls my smoke away, then when im done i spit the burning remainder into the water jet and it flies away too. except if the cops see this hack you better be prepared for a long explanation because they are very persistent when it comes to things that look like drug paraphernalia.

  7. i beleve they run water over a corse fabric while sucking air through it to scrub the air in automotive spray booths.
    wet fabric has a larger surface area than falling droplets which also have a tendancy to get blown around very easaly.
    if u want to realy remove dust u might consider going to an automotive store to get some foam air fillter oil…
    if your going for evaperative cooling i sugest u add some disinfectant & soap. disinfectant will kill the airborn bactiria that will collect and the soap lowers surface tention making it way easyer for water to evaperate!!!

  8. I have been using a similar setup for my van when parked recently. It works great for keeping the dog safe and happy on trips, and I notice quite a bit of her hair as well as particulate randomness when doing water changes. I run it off a solar panel, and it just kicks on whenever the sun hits.

  9. I am kind of curious how to get a large fine mist out of this. We used to have a pond so I grabbed one of our decent sized pumps and some of the fittings that spray water and couldn’t get anything that seems like it would be effective. I grabbed a shower head looking tip and it was much to thick of a stream and a bubble tip with not providing enough mist action. (like this one http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_BsCn0KxpU5o/SnDzbZBtMxI/AAAAAAAAAew/sOBekHjh0dU/s320/bubble-fountain1.jpg )

    Not sure what to try next as that is all we have. I am trying to build one to remove smoke from the air as my mom is an ignorant chain smoker that will not quit or smoke outside even though I have bad asthma.

  10. @ robocat – “1. grab some highly nucular waste (beta emitter) from workshop” I want your workshop! :D And am I the only one that read the description and thought it was meant to be a bong? O.o

  11. @amishx64:

    You’re right and wrong. They used to use a similar process when painting cars. Do a Google Search for “down draft paint booth” and you’ll see what you’re thinking of.

    The problem was that the water got contaminated by the paint and the EPA said they had to treat it as toxic waste. So they use the same down draft principles with more conventional filters now.

  12. I like how well he does speaking english, when it’s not his own language obviously.

    @salic for watercooling systems they use a few drops of vinegar I’m told, but that would create an all new smell issue in this setup I guess :)

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