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You are here: Home > Respiratory Protection > Masks And Respirators
Respiratory Protection, including dust masks, respirators and face masks. Click here to take a short quiz on Respiratory Protection

OSHA Standard CFR 1910.134 (a) (2)
Respirators shall be provided by the employer when such equipment is necessary to protect the health of the employee. The employer shall provide the respirators which are applicable and suitable for the purpose intended.
View the 29 CFR Part 1910.134 Respiratory Protection Medical Form

OSHA Standard CFR 1910.134 states that fit testing is required for face respirators. Fit testing must be performed before an employee first starts wearing a respirator in the work environment, whenever a different respirator facepiece is used, and at least annually thereafter.

Browse our Gases & Airborne Particulates-related signs and labels!

Respiratory Hazards And Types Of Contaminants
1. Particulates - A particle is a piece of matter which varies in size, from the very large and visible to the eye to the extremely minute. The three main classifications are:
  • Dusts: solid particles in the air
  • Mists: particles in liquid form
  • Fumes: solid matter that is burned or liquefied
Air-Purifying Protection needed for Particulates
  • Filters, if particulates are present
  • Filter/Cartridge Combination, if gases or vapors are also present, which is likely when applying aerosols such as paint or pesticides
2. Gases and Vapors - Many applications may have a gas or a vapor present. Some have a very distinct odor, while others may be odorless and colorless.
  • Gases are fluids that at normal temperature and pressure do not have a shape volume and can expand indefinitely
  • Vapors are the gaseous phase of matter that normally exists in a liquid or solid state at room temperature
Air-Purifying Protection needed for Gases and/or Vapors
  • Cartridges or gas canisters if only gases and/or vapors are present
  • Filter/Cartridge Combination if particulates are also present with gas and/or vapors
IDLH: Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health
These environments require very specific respiratory protection. You should never use air-purifying respirators in these applications. ADLH Environments include:
  • Containment concentrations at or above IDLH limits.
    • Check the MSDS or the NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards for this information.
  • Containment concentrations at or above 10% of the LEL
  • Less than 19.5% Oxygen
Respiratory Protection required for IDLH environments
  • Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus
  • Pressure Demand Airline Respirator with Escape Cylinder
For protection against gases and vapors, employers must rely on an end of service life indicator or implement a cartridge change schedule that is based on objective information and that will ensure that canisters or cartridges are changed before the end of their service life.
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Face Mask Dispenser
Face Mask Dispenser
Our Price: $97.99
This 12 1/2'' x 6'' x 6'' wall-mountable acrylic dispenser with safety green top features a hinged lid designed to eliminate unwanted dust particles and holds more than 30 respiratory masks.
Type of Filters and Efficiences
Filters are classified in two ways: the Filter Type and the Efficiency. Each group has three levels, for a total of nine possible filter classifications.

Personal Protective Equipment Particulate Respirator Filter Definitions

Filter Series
Filter Designation
Minimum Efficiency
N (Non-Oil)
R (Oil-Resistant)
P (Oil-Proof)
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