BMF Basement Ceiling Air Filter

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Project by SRRieman posted 02-27-2013 05:12 AM 3567 views 10 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The beginning of this year I made out a list of things that drove me crazy in my home shop. One – because I’m a hobbyist and I’m supposed to be enjoying the things I do – not getting frustrated. Two – because I spend a ton of money and I’m supposed to be completing all these project with what I already have on hand…for the most part anyway. So I’m on vacation this week and tackled the air filter. I made one last year like the majority you will see surfing the web. But I didn’t feel it really did that great of a job. It certainly filtered the air, but the circulation was next to nothing. So I figured I would rebuild it and do it better this time. The results are awesome. The air pulls much better and the flow is twice what I had using the same blower. All I really did was make two boxes, one intake and one exhaust. Put them and the blower in between the ceiling joists and closed everything in between off. I really recommend this project to anyone, without the basement low ceiling thing or not. If you do…a couple of tips. Try and build the boxes first – away from the ceiling. My arms, neck, legs, kill because I tried to do it piece by piece from the joist. I should’ve just built the boxes and threw them up there. The only other thing I wish I had done, is made two. I will make the other sooner or later. I will put it on the opposite wall to increase the circulation even more.

Oh and sorry for the bad pics, it wasn’t easy trying to take pictures of everything so any questions feel free.

-- Scott Rieman

12 comments so far

View Ken90712's profile


17594 posts in 3385 days

#1 posted 02-27-2013 08:52 AM

Nice project and should help out with the air. I like the comment should be having fun and not getting fustrated. We have all been there.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View jap's profile


1251 posts in 2250 days

#2 posted 02-27-2013 01:36 PM

good idea

-- Joel

View Natalie 's profile


367 posts in 2163 days

#3 posted 02-27-2013 03:43 PM

I’m in the process of setting up my shop, I’m curious about what else is on your list maybe I could avoid some future frustration?

PS. I noticed that florescent bulb there. I am often so absorbed in my projects that I might grab a piece of wood turn around and whack that bulb to smithereens. I think after doing that a few times, I’d have to put a protective cage over it.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

View SRRieman's profile


65 posts in 2382 days

#4 posted 02-27-2013 04:28 PM

Thanks for the comments guys and girls – Natalie, funny you mentioned the CFL. Lighting is actually on the list, I’ll be replacing some of the pull chain fixtures, if you look at the pics you can see what appears to be a strip light. I made that cover, but there is no tube lamp inside of it. It’s just two 13 watt CFLs, and really helped out. So I’ll be doing some more of that. But I did make a planer dust collection modification with a pretty cool sweeper, I’ll find out how well that works this week and posting the results. I’m in the first stages of making two flip down workbenches, which I’ll probably start a blog about. Right now though, I’ll be working out a way to combine my small dust collector setup with my shop vac setup, using all the same components so that everything is plug and play with one another. I hate having to grab adapter after adapter to make everything work just to make one simple cut. I’ll post this stuff up later on because I found some real cheap adapters that not only work with the DC but plug right into the 2 1/2” shop vac connectors, and not only do they do that, they work on both sides for the vac, the inlet and the outlet.

-- Scott Rieman

View RichCMD's profile


401 posts in 2137 days

#5 posted 02-27-2013 06:40 PM

I would really like to do something like this, but I have not been able to find a good source for the blower. Any suggestions?

-- Ride the bevel!

View Thalweg's profile


97 posts in 3602 days

#6 posted 02-27-2013 08:05 PM

I’ve been thinking about a similar “between the joists” air filter. It hadn’t occurred to me to make it as long as you did. I like that. I’m curious about what you used for a blower. That’s what has been holding me back.

View DIYaholic's profile


19696 posts in 2871 days

#7 posted 02-27-2013 09:14 PM

@ RichCMD & Thalweg,

I repurposed a furnace squirrel cage blower. You can contact a local HVAC company, they MAY just give you an old one.

This is a brilliant solution to (MY) low ceilings. I ended up builing a closet mounted unit, with inadequate circulation capabilities. This looks like a viable option for me to consider. My only problem is the ceiling is already covered in 1/4” hardboard.

Thanks for posting & sharing this!!!

This would be a great excuse to open the ceiling up to install lighting also. Hmmmm…..

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View Campzeke's profile


66 posts in 2129 days

#8 posted 02-27-2013 09:17 PM

If you know someone in the heating and air conditioning business, ask if they have any scrap or old units they have removed from service. Ofter these units will have a usable squrrel cage type blower in them that can be salvaged. After all those things were made to move air. DIY posted just before I hit the enter key …

-- Campzeke, Tampa, FL

View SRRieman's profile


65 posts in 2382 days

#9 posted 02-27-2013 11:01 PM

Yeah, my blower was an old furnace blower. I got mine off of craigslist, wired it for a plug, and put it to use. Mine is pretty small compared to some I’ve seen – but it works far better than I expected. The small size also made it easy to tuck up in between the joists. So don’t let size fool you if you find one around.

Randy – Not sure if you can tell…but It’s good that your ceiling is covered by hardboard. Figure out where you want to run your inlet and your outlet, slice open the hardboard in between that space along the joists. Mount everything and screw the hardboard piece you cut out back onto the ceiling. You just made yourself a duct, and it works great. You might have to caulk a bit if your joists were as screwy as mine though.

-- Scott Rieman

View DIYaholic's profile


19696 posts in 2871 days

#10 posted 02-27-2013 11:15 PM

I need to open the ceiling, because there are several questionable joist layouts, that need to be verified. I have to make sure it is a complete open run. I may get lucky and be able to view from my propossed openings. This is definitely a project I need to implement, when other shop projects are done.

Thanks, for the heads up.

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procrastination a bad thing?

View RakeshRos's profile


1 post in 2110 days

#11 posted 02-28-2013 05:15 AM

Nice Blog!! Great Post !! Like your Blog and your ideas and i think its benificial for us and i keep to visit your blog regularly because i got lot of information through you blog

Plastic Ducting

View SRRieman's profile


65 posts in 2382 days

#12 posted 02-28-2013 06:01 AM

Randy – I forgot to mention – I originally tried hardboard – and it was loud…kinda of like a hollow box noise?? Plywood was much quiter – I used 1/2”

- Scott

-- Scott Rieman

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