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March/April 2008
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Proposed Standard Covers Vacuum Cleaner Bag Emissions

vacuum cleanerParticulate matter emitted during the use of a vacuum cleaner is a significant area of concern that ASTM International Committee F11 on Vacuum Cleaners has dealt with by developing and approving F 2608, Test Method for Determining the Change in Room Air Particulate Counts as a Result of the Vacuum Cleaning Process. Now, the committee is developing a proposed new standard that addresses the final phase of the vacuum cleaning process, the emptying of a vacuum cleaner’s dirt container or the removal and disposal of its primary dust bag. Subcommittee F11.23 on Filtration is developing the proposed standard, WK17254, Test Method for Determining the Particulate Emissions Generated During the Act of Emptying the Dirt Container or Removing the Dust Bag.

“There can be little question that the final phase of the vacuum cleaning process, dependent on a number of factors, is susceptible to measurable differences in particulate emission levels,” says Laurence M. Howard, F11 member and president, Laurence Partners, Inc. “Therefore a standard means of measuring this portion of the vacuum cleaner cycle is merited.”

WK17254 will be used by vacuum cleaner manufacturers, dust bag and dirt container component manufacturers, testing laboratories, certifying bodies and vacuum cleaner retail sellers. Howard says that the proposed standard will be used in the marketplace as a basis for and verification of product claims and improvement of manufacturer instructions for vacuum cleaner receptacle, bag and filter handling.

According to Howard, attendance at WK17254 task group meetings and discussions on the standard held by Susan Goldsmith, F11 member and laboratory director, IBR USA, at IBR’s laboratory in Milton Keynes, England, have shown that there is global interest in the proposed standard. Participation in the continuing development of WK17254 is welcome. “Manufacturers and testing laboratories are already participants in this and other applicable standards,” says Howard. “Greater participation by retail sellers of vacuum cleaners is warranted and would be quite helpful.”

CONTACT

Technical Information:

Laurence M. Howard, Laurence Partners Inc., Williston, Vt.

Phone: 802/865-3405

Susan Goldsmith, IBR USA, Inc., Grass Lake, Mich.

Phone: 517/522-8453

ASTM Staff: Brynn Murphy

Phone: 610/832-9640