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Dust Masks Terminology and FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions regarding Respiratory Protection

The correct choice of respiratory protection depends upon the chemicals being handled, the conditions of work and use,and the condition of the respiratory equipment. Safety procedures should be developed for each intended application.Respiratory protection equipment should therefore be chosenin consultation with the manufacturer and with a full assessment of the working conditions.

Question: What mask do I need when working with Ammonia?
Answer: Ammonia requires a full face mask with K rated filters such as Moldex 9400 ABEK1.

Question: What mask and filter do I need for Acectic Acid?
Answer: A half or full face mask with A1 filters.

Question: I am working with Sodium hypochlorite, what mask do i need?
Answer: For sodium hypochlorite you would need a full face mask with a B rated filter. We suggest Moldex 9300 A1B1E1 filters. If there are any mists or sprays you would also need a P3 filter (Moldex 9030).

Question: I am working with Formaldehyde, what mask do I need?
Answer: For formaldeyde you would need a full face mask plus either B1 or B2 gas filters. B2 filters have a higher capacity (5000ppm) than B1 (1000ppm)

Question. I am working with MDF, what mask do I need?
Answer. Most, but not all, MDF contains formaldehyde. An FFP3 disposable mask is the most advisable type to have if you are exposed to high levels of dust. If formaldehyde vapours are present a half face mask fitted with organic vapour filters and P3 particulate filters should be used such as the Moldex 5320.

Question. I am working in a property where there could be asbestos present. Which respirator should I use?
Answer. As a minimum a disposable mask conforming to EN149 Type FFP3 such as the Moldex  3505. A more popular choice is a tight fitting facepiece such as a Moldex 7000 Series Half Mask fitted with 9030 P3 Filters.

Question. I work with poultry, which mask should I use?
Answer. Poultry dust may vary in composition from pure wood dust to a complex mixture of organic and inorganic particles, faecal material, feathers, dander (skin material), mites, bacteria, fungi and fungal spores, and endotoxins depending on the type of birds, the work activity and the point in the growing or production cycle.

The HSE gives the following benchmark standards:- Laying down whole straw by hand - FFP3 Dust Mask.
Laying down whole straw by machine - FFP2. Example Moldex 2405.
Laying down chopped straw, wood shreds or shavings by machine - FFP3. Example 3M 9332.
Laying down chopped straw, wood shreds or shavings by hand - FFP2. Example Moldex 2400
Populating houses - FFP2 Dust Masks.
Routine flock management - FFP2. Example Moldex 2475.
Poultry catching - FFP2. Example Ultimate UCF-P2V.
Litter removal - FFP3. Example 3M 8835.

Question: What is the best way to store gas filters?
Answer: In a clean and dry area at room temperature in a tightly sealed container for example a plastic bag.

Question: What filters do you use when you spray paint?
Answer: If the paint is solvent-based, use a brown A-filter (Moldex 9100 or 9200) combined with a particle filter  (Moldex 9020).

Question: Why is Silica dangerous and which respirators should be used?
Answer: Silica dust inhalation may cause diseases such as ”silicosis”, which is an chronic lung disease. It may also take many years (10-30) before the disease is detected after being exposed to silica.The disease mainly affects people who work in construction, foundries, mining and quarries. Use respiratory protection unless the silica dust level can be kept below the limit 0.1 mg/m3. Respiratory protection should be at least a half mask respirator with P3 filter that is effective against silica dust.