Keeping the dust down

Discussion in 'Builders' Talk' started by GrumpyGit, Jan 12, 2018.

  1. GrumpyGit

    GrumpyGit New Member

    Any suggestions on how to keep the dust down when working in rooms that are otherwise clean and tidy?

    I've had to do some minor DIY (chasing in a cable, filling and sanding) in a living room. The room is generally clean and recently decorated but is full of furniture/books/clutter etc.

    Cutting holes in walls (even single socket-sized holes) generates vast amounts of very fine dust that seems to get everywhere. I've experimented with dust shields around my tools which I can connect directly to a vacuum cleaner, this is great and will suck up 90% of the dust before it even gets into the room. The problem seems to be that the dust is incredibly fine - much smaller than normal domestic dust. The filters on my bag- less vacuum cleaner get clogged within minutes, or if I use my old 'bagged' vacuum then the dust seems to flow straight through.

    Is there a better solution? I don't really want to spend half a day emptying the room of everything before starting work, but the only alternative seems to be to spend hours afterwards individually cleaning everything in the room once the work is finished.

    The basic problem is that the job takes 30 minutes, but cleaning up afterwards takes half a day!
  2. Devil's Advocate

    Devil's Advocate Well-Known Member

    Once you find the solution, please let us know :(
  3. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    A ordinary vacuum cleaner throws out a lot of fine dust, ideally you need to use a proper dust extractor to use with power tools, Class L minimum, which removes 99.0% of dust with limit value for occupational exposure >1.0mg/m3, perfect for gypsum plaster & filler.

    I have a Makita VC2012L which is class L, when connector to the sander, there isn't a hint of dust elsewhere in the room, very effective collecting the dust.

    Look at the Nilfisk Aero 26-21, but be carefu there are two modeals available, one L class, one is not.

    Also Makita VC2512L is excellent Class L extractor.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
  4. GrumpyGit

    GrumpyGit New Member

    Thanks KIAB - wasn't previously aware of different classes of vacuum cleaner. Shame they're so expensive.

    A colleague has just suggested to me that his solution is to use a cheap/**** vacuum cleaner outside of the house and an use a long extension hose. Most of the dust will end up in the vacuum cleaner, and any that gets through the filter will remain outside of the house.
  5. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
  6. Dr Bodgit

    Dr Bodgit Well-Known Member

    I take the view that stuff is going to get dusty and will have to clean afterwards anyway so pointless trying to prevent everything getting dirty. Take a pragmatic approach...put small items away, then they won't get dusty at all. For bigger items of furniture, get decent dust sheets to make sure the worst is kept off and accept you'll have to get the hoover and duster out afterwards. Biggest issue is carpets, which I don't have (yet) :p

    In my bedrooms upstairs I've put duvets and pillows etc in bags, in big clear boxes in the loft. Quite quick and easy to make beds again. Doesn't take that long to hoover and dust furniture and floors if they're clear of stuff.
    Jord86 likes this.
  7. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Well-Known Member

    It’s an annoyance for sure and know what you mean about the clear up taking longer than the actual job :eek:

    A lot of the good domestic hoovers have a good rate of dust collection but due to over complicated filters, they clog up repeatly with fine dust and you then run the risk of burning out the motor - then the wife will kill you

    Had a few Dysons over the years and like them for general around the house cleaning but never use them for decorating clear up - too much hassle and blockages

    I’ve also got 2 ‘basic’ hoovers, a Henry and a Screwfix Titan. Find both of these way better when cleaning up general decorating mess, don’t get blocked up, easy to clean filters and good dust retention

    Hold nozzle as close to chopping out as possible (another pair of hands is helpful) and suck up all you can

    Can’t stop fine dust that just travels across the room and it’s in the air for several days

    Can minismise dust getting through doors to clean rooms by either taping around door frame, using poly dust sheets and masking tape and blocking up any gap under door
    Dr Bodgit likes this.
  8. Dr Bodgit

    Dr Bodgit Well-Known Member

  9. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Normal vacuum cleaners are not designed to collect building crud.

    I normally sheet off the work area from rest of room, clear plastic dpm wrapped about a length of tile batten & clamped against ceiling with a adjustable support pole, & same for the bottom.
    Dr Bodgit likes this.
  10. Dr Bodgit

    Dr Bodgit Well-Known Member

    Good idea KIAB, I bought a couple of adjustable support poles so now I have a use for them :D
  11. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Do need to run masking tape down dpm & wall to stop dust escaping.

    Bought a 50mtr roll of heavy gauge clear dpm,it comes folded, but opens up to 4mtrs wide, so goes a long way, as it's tough, it's usually reusable a few times.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2018
    Dr Bodgit likes this.
  12. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Well-Known Member

  13. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Got five of these off Freecycle some years ago.

    CGN likes this.
  14. CGN

    CGN Well-Known Member

    Imagine the scenario when you have to start taking walls down and doing knock throughs.

    Hand tools will generally mean less dust, if applicable. Helper holding vac nozzle always good.
    Tenting off area in certain cases.
    You cannot get away from dust...just minimise it.
    KIAB and Jord86 like this.
  15. Jord86

    Jord86 Well-Known Member

    It's an unfortunate reality of building, it's unavoidable no matter how well you protect the surrounding area, in an ideal world homeowners would have the gumption to move all the clutter before you start, but that's just wishful thinking. Open the window, tape up the doors, set up the clarke industrial fan towards the window and get on with it.
    CGN and KIAB like this.
  16. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    Reminds of a incident I had many years ago,working on the 3rd floor of a old house ripping down plasterlath ceilings, filthy job, thick black dust, had window open, fan going, radio on loud & in my own little world.

    When all of a sudden the bedroom door disintergrated, & there were two large firemen with a hose & sledge, I nearly s*** myself, & trousers were wet, but it wasn't from their hose,someone had seen dust & mistook it for smoke & called the bridgade.
    yorkshireboy, CGN and Jord86 like this.
  17. Jord86

    Jord86 Well-Known Member

    :D at least you earned a few extra quid hanging a replacement door!
    CGN likes this.
  18. KIAB

    KIAB Well-Known Member

    And frontdoor.:eek:
    CGN likes this.

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