Everything You Need To Know About Full Face Respirators
Whether it’s for construction, DIY, or simply to keep the air you breathe a little cleaner, full face respirators are an essential tool and fundamental protective measure. No doubt anyone reading this who has worked on a jobsite or with contaminants in the air have had their share of full face respirators and understand the fundamental differences between the main variants thereof.
For those who are not as familiar, these full face respirators protect the wearer from a range of dangerous inhalants such as dangerous vapors, gases, fumes. Full face respirators cover the eyes, nose and mouth and can either be used with filtration/cartridge systems, or with an external air source being supplied into the masks themselves. The choice of either one will be dependent on the situation and contaminants involved.
What Situations Require Full Face Respirators?
As mentioned earlier, there are different situations that will necessitate different levels of protection for workers and users. The type of half or full face respirators and the cartridges therein are usually colour coded denoting according to the type of contaminant they’re supposed to filter out. Some common cartridges are organic vapor, acid gas, HEPA, or mercury. If working on a worksite or construction site, safety foremen will usually ensure that the right cartridges are being used.
In areas where there is a higher degree of contaminants in the air, there may be credence to change out cartridges more often in order to protect the user from dangerous inhalants.
Safety Features & Checks To Conduct
Of course, it goes without saying that the main advantage of full face respirators over their half and disposable compatriots is the superior levels of protection that they offer for high-intensity situations and contaminant fields. Protection of the eyes, mouth, and skin is also a major health benefit for the use of these protective measures. The option to have supplied air or cartridges further the potential uses.
When wearing full face respirators, it is essential that the user conducts a few quick and efficient tests to ensure the efficacy of protection and safety. For instance, there should be a tight seal around the mask insomuch that there is no outside air that is leaking into the mask.
The fit is often the most important part of the fit, oftentimes those with facial hair will have some issue with a fit test and should consult a professional for an alternative fit. The same considerations should be made when there is a change to the facial structure, this can be after dramatic weight loss, dental procedures, anything that could impede on the seal and integrity of said seal.
It is also wise to ensure you conduct a breathability check before entering a hazardous environment, this can involve blocking off either side of the breathing apparatus to ensure there are no blockages. These devices are wonderfully effective and quite powerful, always ensure you purchase full face respirators from trusted sources and brands you know.