Proper Gauss measurement devices

I am an active PM wearer for SSS. I need to reliably measure the static and/or dynamic magnetic fields that I expect to encounter at work and play. I am willing to purchase the proper device to make the measurements. Is there anyone in the PaceMaker Club that can/will advise me of an appropriate device?

I a tired of being told "You can't get around that or the other tool item because the magnetic field MIGHT exceed 0.1mT (1G)" or the converse of "There's NO problem with that mass spectrometer."

Thanks to anyone who can give me sound technical direction.


EMF and Pacemaker

by SMITTY - 2010-01-12 11:01:22

You question about Gauss and pacemakers has come up here several times and at some point in the past I looked up some info on safe gauss limits for pacemakers. The following is what I have on the subject:

"Areas with fields higher than 0.5 mT (5 Gauss Limit) commonly have restricted access and/or are posted as a safety risk to persons with pacemakers."

I can't testify to the accuracy of that info, but I can tell you where I would go look for a Gauss mater. That is EBay. Even if you don't buy one there you can get a feel on what you are looking at in the way of meters and cost, if you need that.

Now I'll tell you my approach to electromagnetic fields and my pacemaker. I don't get concerned about them (let me inject here, I'm not pacemaker dependant) as I know that if I enter an EMF that is likely to affect my PM I will recognize it as because it will feel about the same as it does when they put the magnet over my PM during a checkup. In which case I would get away from that area and expect my PM to return to normal operation with no harm done to the PM, or me.

Of course if you get into an EMF like that produced during a MRI you can possibly do harm to your heart and the PM. But I know of no place I would expect to run into an EMF like that produced during the MRI.

Good luck,



by mike thurston - 2010-01-12 11:01:29

I work around lots of electronic equipment and went through a similar situation. I just stay away from the big stuff and mostly work on small electronic gear. I seem to remember that the manufacturer (medtronic) would come and check out a persons work enviroment although I don't know what this costs and who would pay. Recently "Dangerous To Pacemaker" Signs showed up in my former work area. Bet a dollar to a donut that they have nothing to validate how they reached that conclusion. In my situation it is not worth the effort to battle with them as I am happy where I am at. Good Luck.


by ElectricFrank - 2010-01-12 12:01:43

There are a number of gaussmeters that come up on a Google search. I haven't had any experience with them so I'm not much help.

One suggestion that comes to mind is to call the manufacturer of your pacemaker and ask. You initial contact likely won't know, but ask to talk to an engineer. Let them know that you work around a wide variety of equipment and need to be able to monitor it. My guess is that they will be able to suggest what you need.

My approach has been to monitor my pulse while I move in on a possible source of EMI. If the situation is hazardous I would have someone available to help me move away or shut it down. So far I haven't had any problem with my Medtronic Kappa 701. I know I have been around fields considerably higher than is recommended. A while back I carried a large loudspeaker from my Jeep into the house. It had a large magnet that I had close to my chest. No problem. (I was involved in what I was doing and never thought about it until it was over). I used an electric jack hammer, and been near ham transmitters/antennas. I'm sure something would bother it, but so far nothing has. I have complete AV block so a loss of pacing would drop my HR down to the 25-30bpm range, which would get my attention.


Tri-Field EMF Meter

by IdahoBackwoods - 2010-02-22 05:02:50

Being a retired scientist with a recently-implanted pacemaker, I want to know how strong the magnetic and electric field are that I might be exposed to - not just whether they are over the allowable limit. I bought a Tri-Field EMF Broadband Meter from AlphaLab in Salt Lake City, and with its help I've been learning some things.

First of all, I should mention that although the field-strength limits stated by different sources vary a little, there seems to be general agreement that pacemaker wearers should avoid magnetic fields stronger than 1000-1500 mG, electric fields stronger than 1-4 kV/m, and microwave fields stronger than 0.1 kV/m.

So far, I've found that I will no longer be able to use gasoline-powered chainsaws, brushcutters, or pruning pole saws because these place the spark plug and its ignition cable very close to my body, with electric fields at the surface of my body in the range of 50-100 kV/m.

Our snowblower and ATV are not a problem unless I get down close to their ignitions systems when the engine is running.

Our truck and car have coil-on-plug ignition systems in which all of the high-voltage ignition components are sunken in the intake manifold, which is grounded. This seems to be the reason why my EMF meter detects essentially no electric field under the hood with the engine running. If these were older vehicles, or ones with exposed high-voltage ignition wires, I would definitely have a problem.

Also, we have a 19,000-volt power line running along one edge of our property. Directly under it, the electric field reads 12-13 kV/m, so I wouldn't want to hang around there. However, the field strength falls off very rapidly with distance, so it's not a problem when I'm 20 feet away from the path of the power line.

iPhone app for magnetic fields

by lrod - 2014-08-10 01:08:33

There's a free iPhone app that reads magnetic fields. I don't know how accurate it is but here's the link.!/id510754638?mt=8

You know you're wired when...

Your electric tooth brush interferes with your device.

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