RESPIRATOR FIT & SIZE TESTS
Your team’s safety and health are easily some of your greatest concerns which is why we are committed to helping you find the respiratory and safety equipment necessary to do their jobs. At MC Tool & Safety, we perform respirator fit testing and sell qualitative fit test kits from 3M for your company to conduct their own tests.
A secure fit is essential when it comes to respiratory equipment offering its full safety potential. Our team of experts is happy to share resources for your company to conduct their own qualitative tests, and several occupational health care centers and local safety consultant services are able to conduct fit and size tests for your team, too.
Why Fit Testing?
Not every respirator is created equal, and not every face is the same. It is an incredibly important OSHA standard that a mask is fitted and tested to verify it functions properly to do its job. No one wants to encounter dangerous vapors and gases without equipment necessary to protect their lungs. Some masks which are made to protect against specific substances may require a perfect seal around the wearer’s face.
What Is Fit Testing?
In a fit testing, a full or partial covering facial respirator is applied to an individual, and it is put to the test against the elements.
There are two types of the respirator fit test: qualitative and quantitative. Qualitative tests are subjective and rely on the user to recognize a sweet or sour smell depending upon the test you choose, and this test is a simple pass/fail. Quantitative tests use a machine to give you a precise number of particles that the user is exposed to, giving you more information than pass or fail.
At MC Tool & Safety, we currently offer qualitative fit testing. To print a copy of a fit test record from 3M, click here.
For more information or questions on fit testing reach out to our team at MC Tool & Safety.
Requirements for Respirator Fit Testing
A standardized and practical respirator fit testing is designed to adhere to all OSHA standards and keep your workers safe on the job. Anyone who desires respirator fit testing must be clean-shaven and have received a clean bill of health from their employer, usually through a simple meeting with one’s doctor.
Respirator fit testing is called testing for a reason – not everyone will be physically able to wear a respirator safely. This also applies to the ever-common N95 mask.
As stated above, we sell qualitative face mask tests for non-medical means. We also offer QLSP bitter-taste threshold fittings. For the exact process which testing must adhere to, please visit the OSHA Website here, or call us at MC Tool & Safety. In general, though, a respirator fit testing process will assess:
- The subject’s basic knowledge of respirator fit. They should be asked to select a respirator which would provide them with the correct protection from a group. Demonstrate how to adjust applicable straps if the subject is unfamiliar with doing so, and help them find a respirator which fits if they do not select one that does.
- How comfortable the respirator is to wear. Respirator fit testing will ensure that the given respirator provides room for speaking and wearing eye protection comfortably, and that the respirator fits unobtrusively over the nose, cheeks, and other parts of the face.
- The adequacy of the fit itself. Does the respirator slip? Is it of the proper size for the subject in question? Can the subject breathe as deeply as necessary through their respirator? Respirator fit testing should assess these aspects and more to ensure your workers get the most out of their respirators.
More on OSHA Requirements for Respirator Fit Testing
For workers who wear respirators every day, being fit-tested is a requirement and should be completed every 12 months. It’s important that the test is completed with any additional equipment a laborer wears, such as ear muffs, safety glasses, or prescription glasses. They also must be tested wearing the specific make, model, style, and size of respirator that they will wear regularly. To get the right size and style of respirator, contact our team today, we are here to help.
The team at MC Tool & Safety is dedicated to serving our customers well and finding the products they need. Our idea of service and sales involves more than just getting a product in your hands. We know our products well, and we know the challenges many tradespeople experience on the job. Our expertise is for your benefit, as we find the respirators that not only fit your workers, but also their type of work and possible hazards. We consider it our job to know what you need and help you find it at the right price, in the right size.
To find your crew the best respirators and to learn how to get them fitted – contact our team today! Give us a call at 763-786-5350.