Fit testing is essential to insuring that a respirator forms a good seal against the user’s face and prevents contaminants from leaking into the mask. Manufactures provide fitting instructions and use limitations on the product package. Respirator face pieces are made in various sizes to fit a wide variety of face shapes and sizes.
A fit test is a test protocol conducted to verify that a respirator is both comfortable and correctly fits the user. Fit testing uses a test agent, either qualitatively detected by the wearer’s sense of taste, smell or involuntary cough (irritant smoke) or quantitatively measured by an instrument, to verify the respirator’s fit. See questions related to qualitative and quantitative fit testing for more specific information.