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Best Respirator for Fumes
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Top 5 Best Respirator for Fumes (2020 Review)

Respirator for Fumes
Respirators are valuable tools to have if you work in a hazardous environment. These face masks protect you from airborne hazards like dust, chemicals and fumes, either by filtering out those hazards or supplying you with an alternate source of air. That said, it’s pretty clear why you may need one if you are working in an environment that has lots of airborne dangers: the last thing anyone needs is to breathe in smoke, chemical fumes or worse. While there’s a few types of respirators, they all function effectively the same.

Our Overall #1 Rated Pick

Honeywell North RU6500 Series

Honeywell North RU6500 Series

This face mask for chemical fumes is an air-purifying type that uses filters and cartridges (sold separately) to provide you with breathable air. Admittedly, it’s a pretty expensive option if you are hunting for a respirator, but we still believe it is the overall #1 pick due to its array of very valuable features. The price tag is well worth the benefits.

For one, it is a full-face mask: that means it goes over your entire face, adding an extra layer of protection. On top of that, the lens is ANSI certified for both penetration and impact hazards, meaning the mask not only protects you from dangers in the air, but any flying projectiles as well, all while providing an excellent 200-degree field of vision. Finally, the dual-flange silicone provides an excellent fit to nearly any face, since it conforms to the shape needed. All in all, the reason we think this respirator is the overall #1 is because it provides a little bit of everything, and lacks for nothing.

Top Features:

  • Weight: 15 ounces
  • Material: Silicone
  • Dimensions: 11.5 x 8 x 7 inches
  • Included Components: Mask
  • Compatible with North Filters and Accessories

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Types of Respirators for Fumes

While all respirators essentially do the same job in regards to providing you with clean air to breathe, they go about it in different ways. There are generally two types of respirators: air-purifying and atmosphere supplying. Either type can make a good mask for fumes, as they both achieve the same end result. That said, there are some differences and some pros and cons.

Atmosphere Supplying Respirators

Also called Supplied Air Respirators, these devices give you air to breathe from an uncontaminated source. The most common example of this type of respirator would be a SCUBA tank and mask: a tank of clean air is carried by you, and a tube connected to that tank and the mask on your face allows you to breathe regardless of the surrounding environment. Generally speaking, these types of respirators are only needed for extremely hazardous environments, where there’s no air to breathe at all or where the hazards are so toxic, they can’t be purified. Needless to say, there aren’t too many environments that intense: the deep sea, burning forests and space are some of the examples of how serious an environment needs to be to justify ASR. The upside is you are totally protected from hazards in the air. The downside is that you have a limited supply of air and you have to carry a heavy tank with you.

Air-Purifying Respirators

Far more common and far more likely to be what you are looking for, Air-purifying respirators don’t supply you with air, but use filters to remove contaminants and hazards from the air around you as you breathe it in. This means it is suitable for environments with particles to filter from the air, like dust. But of course, it won’t do you any good in an environment where there just isn’t enough air to breathe. It’s a lot lighter to carry around, but is technically not as protective as an ASR. That said, bringing an ASR to an environment where an air-purifying respirator would work is like bringing a tank to knife fight: sure, it’s undeniably superior, but you really don’t need it.

The best thing to do is talk with the one in charge at your workplace to see what type of device you need. If you are the one in charge, contacting an industrial hygienist is the best way to discern what type of protective gear your employees need. That said, if you know what you need already, you can dive right into our product reviews.

The Best Respirators for Fumes

This is where you’ll find our reviews of some of the top respirators for fumes and dust. Whether you need a mask for bleach fumes or a mask for chlorine fumes, or something entirely different, one of these products will be suitable for your needs. If you’re short on time, you can skip past this review section and check out the product we felt was the best one on the list.

The top best product [hide]

FNWD 15in1 Full Face Large Size Respirator


FNWD 15in1 Full Face Large Size Respirator
This particular mask for fumes and dust isn’t the absolute best of the bunch, but it is a good budget choice, if you are looking for the most bang at a good price. It is made of polymer and thermoplastic elastomer material, so it’s comfortable, and on top of that it is also a full-face mask, so it offers protection for your eyes as well as your lungs. The dual filtration system provides far more protection than any sort of single filtration system as well.

The most notable thing about this affordable mask is the fact that it includes many items and accessories that are oftentimes only sold separately. This package includes not only the full face-mask, but also two replaceable filter cartridges, two caps, ten particulate cotton filters, a two-month unconditional return policy and finally, a one-year warranty service. This is all notable because many products only include the mask itself, and not the filters. So, considering the affordable price of this product, getting all of that in the deal makes it a very solid choice for anyone that needs an Air-purifying Respirator on the cheap. It can handle vapors and gas just as much as any other mask, though it may not be the absolutely most comfortable mask in existence.
Pros
Cons

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Full Face Respirator Widely Used in Organic Gas


 Full Face Respirator Widely Used in Organic Gas
This mask is not actually much different from the one before it. In fact, it’s pretty much just an alternate product that has the same features and even a roughly a similar price tag. It is another air-purifying respirator that covers your entire face. It even comes with filters and a few accessories, though not quite as many as the product mentioned before it. Being an APR, it is suitable for dust, painting, and pretty much any sort of particulates that would cause a problem for your lungs. That of course includes fumes. That said, frankly there’s nothing particularly special about this mask: it doesn’t have any super special feature that makes it a better choice than any of the competition. This isn’t to say that it is a bad product, only that it is a typical and average example of this type of product. It does its job as intended, protecting your lungs from fumes and particulates.

Taking all of that into consideration, the filters are easily replaceable, as they are 3M Bayonet type filters, which are quite easy to find. It’s worth noting that some customers have mentioned some long wait times for delivery upon ordering, but the mask itself is in stock, and still a pretty solid choice for most work environments.
Pros
Cons

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Honeywell North RU6500 Series


Honeywell North RU6500 Series
This face mask for chemical fumes is an air-purifying type that uses filters and cartridges (sold separately) to provide you with breathable air. Admittedly, it’s a pretty expensive option if you are hunting for a respirator, but we still believe it is the overall #1 pick due to its array of very valuable features. The price tag is well worth the benefits.

For one, it is a full-face mask: that means it goes over your entire face, adding an extra layer of protection. On top of that, the lens is ANSI certified for both penetration and impact hazards, meaning the mask not only protects you from dangers in the air, but any flying projectiles as well, all while providing an excellent 200-degree field of vision. Finally, the dual-flange silicone provides an excellent fit to nearly any face, since it conforms to the shape needed. All in all, the reason we think this respirator is the overall #1 is because it provides a little bit of everything, and lacks for nothing.

What really sets this mask apart from many others (and why it is so expensive) is that aforementioned ANSI rating. Whereas most mask lenses are only intended to block the hazardous air from getting into your eyes, an ANSI rated lens will also protect you from dangerous flying projectiles, even at high speed. That means this product can not only protect you from fumes but also other dangers in the workplace.
Pros
Cons

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3M 6700 Small Thermoplastic Elastomer Full Face 6000 Series


3M 6700 Small Thermoplastic Elastomer Full Face 6000 Series
As you may have surmised by now, all of these masks are the type that use filters, rather than supplying you with their own oxygen supply. That’s because these types of respirators are far more useful for citizens: most people aren’t in need of something that would let them breathe in a vacuum or the ocean, unless they are in a professional role.

This mask is no different. It’s definitely on the more expensive side as far as this list is concerned, but like the product before it, that’s because this mask from 3M is suitable for a lot more hazards than some of its counterparts. Most notable, the lens also has an ANSI certification, meaning it can protect you from high speed projectiles like rocks or shrapnel. This mere pound mask is made of silicone rubber for comfort and fitting to the face, with a wide lens for maximum visual range. Unfortunately, cartridges and filters are sold separately, much like the product before this one. But you can rest easy knowing that this 3M mask is made of stern stuff and will certainly last a great deal of time, not to mention the peace of mind you get knowing that there is an actual shield between the dangers of the work place and your vulnerable face.
Pros
Cons

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JOEAIS Full Face Large Size Respirator


JOEAIS Full Face Large Size Respirator
This is another full-face air-purifying respirator that is very similar to its affordable comrades. Like them, it comes with filters and accessories for the price that you pay. But unlike the more expensive predecessors, the lens is not ANSI certified and shouldn’t be trusted to protect you from an impact. Granted, the product claims to be impact resistant, but without an ANSI certification that’s just the word of the seller, and shouldn’t be treated as an absolute. However, the lens is anti-fog, and the mask has a front valve intended to reduce heat and moisture buildup in the face.

Other than that, it’s another pretty typical example of an APR. It doesn’t have too much in the way of special features, but it does what it is designed to do: filter out particles and dangerous fumes from the air before you breathe them. It’s worth noting that the mask’s wide design may allow for prescription eyeglasses to be worn under it, but that largely depends on the shape of those glasses. All in all, it’s a good choice if you need an affordable yet capable mask. Just don’t use it if you need a mask with projectile protection.
Pros
Cons

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Respirator for Fumes: Buying Guide

Respirators for fumes
There is more than one type of face mask for fumes out there. Like all products, there’s actually quite a huge selection to choose from, so it can be a little difficult to pick the right protective mask for fumes. This buying guide will cover the points that you really need to consider when you are shopping for a product and help you make an informed decision.

What are Respirators for Fumes

Respirators, as explained before, provide you with clean air to breathe in hazardous environments, either by connecting your mask to a source of clean air or by using filtration systems to clean the air you are breathing in. Neither of them can last forever, but the nature of their maintenance varies. Obviously, filters have to be replaced or cleaned every once in a while, which is different from simply refilling a tank with breathable air. At the end of the day though, respirators of all sorts achieve the same thing: they let you breathe safely in dangerous environments where you would otherwise be unable to do so.

How do Respirators Work

Air-Supplied Respirators are very simple: just think of SCUBA gear, or firefighter equipment. You have a tank of clean air, generally on your back, and this tank is connected to your mask. So long as the tank has air, you have clean air to breathe, even in an environment that doesn’t have any air in it.

Air-Purifying Respirators work in a different way. In essence, they aren’t at all different from the air filtration systems in your house: air passes through a filter or membrane, which catches all the bad stuff you don’t want to breathe in while letting the clean air you do want pass through. Just like your air filtration system, a filter will eventually be too dirty to work properly, even if you clean it regularly. When that happens, you have to replace the filter with a new one.

How do you Know which Respirator you Need?

The best thing to do when you are unsure of this is to ask the person in charge what type of respirator is needed for your line of work. If you have to determine this on your own, it really comes down to the type of environment you are working in. If there just isn’t enough air to breathe in the first place, you’ll need an Air-Supplied Respirator. You’ll also need an ASR for any environment that is so toxic that it just can’t be effectively filtered.

For any environment less dire than that, an Air-Purifying Respirator will usually do fine. Particulates such as dust are easily handled by APRs, and some types of APRs are designed to filter noxious fumes. But either type of respirator would make a good mask for chemical fumes.

There is a video with detailed description of different types of respirators:

Conclusion

Ultimately, we did not discuss any Air-Supplied Respirators in this article, mostly because that type of heavy-duty gear is restricted to professionals. There’s just no need for something that over-engineered for the kind of work most people are doing. When you are working in an environment that has hazards such as dust, chemical fumes and the like, Air-Purifying Respirators get the job done just fine. Still, you should check with your boss to be absolutely certain as to what type of Personal Protective Gear is needed in your work environment.

If it turns out that an Air-Purifying Respirator is all you need, then it just comes down to one major thing: are flying projectiles a hazard in your work environment? If so, you will want a mask that is ANSI certified, so the lens may protect you from those dangerous projectiles. If not, you can get a much cheaper mask that will still keep you safe from fumes and particles, while not unnecessarily breaking your bank. There’s no need to pay for more than you need.

Other than that, simply keep in mind that some respirators come with filters and cartridges included, while some do not. If they don’t have those included, that may be an extra expense you have to consider when making the final decision

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