Respiratory Protection & Face Mask Testing

Respirators and face masks are tested for performance, based on regulatory standards, to help assure the wearer’s safety and protection of others. Understanding those regulations can be difficult, but Intertek has the industry knowledge and technical expertise to evaluate your product. As a leading provider of respiratory protection device testing, Intertek can assist you with testing requirements for different global markets like the U.S., Europe, and Asia and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) pre-certifications, helping you get your product to market quickly.

Respirator Testing
In the United States, respirator performance is regulated by NIOSH. These devices include N95 disposable respirators and are typically reserved for medical and other professional personnel. To submit your respirator to NIOSH for certification you must have your product pre-certified by a NIOSH approved third-party laboratory, like Intertek. The pre-certification process requires a series of performance tests, designed to evaluate particle penetration and air flow resistance in compliance with 42 CFR Part 84. In Europe, respirators must comply with EN 149, which outlines performance requirements for three types of particle-filtering respirators: FFP1, FFP2 and FFP3. Australia, Brazil, Canada, China and India also have respirator standards and testing requirements in place.

Medical / Surgical Face Mask Testing
Medical or surgical face masks require a comprehensive set of tests that measure performance by evaluating the material’s resistance to penetration. Medical face mask performance is regulated by the FDA in the United States following ASTM F2100. Intertek also offers testing to medical face mask standards in Europe (EN 14683), China (GB 32610, GB 19083, YY/T 0969-2013 and YY04969-2011) and Taiwan (CNS 14774).

Intertek’s Mask Label Program is offered to support our customers in communicating the verified quality and performance attributes of mask products through a trusted tool. It also helps to promote regulatory compliance and increase traceability of mask products on the market.

Download our Mask Testing Requirements Guide

Barrier Face Coverings (BFC) & Fabric Face Mask Testing
Barrier Face Coverings or fabric masks are not currently regulated by any federal agency but follow ASTM F3502 standard or AATCC M14 guidance and considerations for measurement of mask performance and quality.

Intertek offers fabric face mask testing to determine safety and performance attributes like restricted substances, labeling, fiber content, care label instructions, flammability, packaging requirements, breathability assessment, security of ear loops and tensile strength.

Law Enforcement & Emergency Services Respiratory Protection Testing
Intertek offers additional respiratory protection testing for respirators used by law enforcement and emergency services following the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) standards. Tests include:

  • NFPA 1981, Standard on Open-Circuit Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) for Emergency Services
  • NFPA 1984, Standard on Respirators for Wildland Fire Fighting Operations
  • NFPA 1986, Standard on Respiratory Protection Equipment for Tactical and Technical Operations
  • NFPA 1987, Standard on Combination Unit Respirator Systems for Tactical and Technical Operations
  • ASTM E2952, Standard Specification for Air-Purifying Respiratory Protective Smoke Escape Devices (RPED)
 

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