Safer Welding: Why Use a Welding Mask with a Respirator
Last updated ago
4 min read
By 
Welding Buddy Experts
Published 
August 26, 2021

Safer Welding: Why Use a Welding Mask with a Respirator

Last updated ago
4 min read
By 
Welding Buddy Experts
Published 
August 26, 2021

Being a welder means daily exposure to various hazardous substances that can lead to health complications. In addition, with the amount of work needed to be done in a day’s work, the different particles coming from the surfaces you work on—such as welding fumes, filler metals, and solvents—are often breathed into the lungs. Hence, a welding mask with a respirator is a must when working on fabrication welding.

Welding respirators are essential equipment for welding. As a welder, you are in constant contact with harmful particles and all sorts of hazardous materials. In addition, the fabrication process, such as cutting and brazing sheets and pieces of metal, exposes you to not just possible eye damage but also respiratory diseases.

Although promoting natural ventilation plays a significant part in protecting the workers’ safety and wellness, unfortunately, there are instances where these health and safety requirements are not met. So, as a helpful, practical alternative, wearing respiratory protection is a must to filter hazardous substances and avoid air contamination.

Why Do You Need Respiratory Protection?

The answer to this is simple—you need to look after your health while performing your job responsibilities. Doing so includes wearing the most appropriate protective welding equipment. Exposure to toxic fumes, bits of metal, and harmful gases imposes great health risks, compromising your overall asset—yourself.

Wearing personal protective equipment (PPE) and clothing is crucial to anyone working in technical, heavy equipment work environments. It is a good practice to wear the right gear when working as a welder. With the constant exposure to various health-threatening substances and chemicals, the worker’s health is always at constant risk to diseases.

So why must you have respiratory protection? Here’s a list of its benefits to your health and safety.

  • Filters weld fumes and harmful particles

With its advanced filtering system, hazardous substances coming from the cutting, brazing, and welding are blocked from entering your body. Thus, wearing protective respiratory protection maximizes your health and wellness while you’re executing your welding tasks.

With all the metallic fumes floating in the air, you are bound to breathe some in without you knowing. These microscopic particles might lead you to contract health conditions. Well-designed engineering controls help protect welders by purifying the air they breathe in, and wearing a welding mask at all times will protect your body from metal fumes and other harmful substances.

A ventilation system is one of the best features of a welding mask with a built-in respirator. The integrated layers of the filtering system absorb the toxic fumes and gases, blocking more particles from entering the breathing tube. Additionally, the exhalation valve reduces heat build-up and cleans exhaled breath, allowing better decontamination and easy cleaning.

  • Increases safety and comfort

Protective respiratory equipment aims to improve the comfort, ease of work, and mobility of the welder. In addition, monitoring the wearer’s health and protection against hazards, including materials and chemicals that come with welding, is required to ensure safety at work.

  • Promotes portability and mobility

A custom welding mask has a powered air-purifying respirator (PAPR) void of restraining belts, allowing the welder to move around freely, even in confined spaces. Along with its better airflow and ventilation, the welder can flawlessly execute the fabrication process.

Welding masks with respirator prices vary on the features it has. The more complex the functionalities are, the more pricey it gets. Nonetheless, you can always see if the quality compensates for the cost.

Safety Tips for Welders

Working in the welding industry comes with a lot of work and constant grinding. Therefore, wearing protective welding equipment, like respiratory protection, is necessary, aside from keeping yourself in good condition.

Here are some safety tips for welders:

Wear the right welding protective equipment.

Of course, you must always wear protective gear with all your welding tasks. Your primary aim as a welder is to perform your duties safely. Wearing protective equipment protects you from inhaling fine particles such as metal fumers, rust, and dust. Doing this can also prevent work accidents and health complications when working with different materials (e.g., metal, iron, aluminum, etc.)

Know your work environment.

Avoiding a cluttered environment helps secure your safety. With all the PPE you are wearing, it can be hard to move around. Knowing your environment can also help you navigate where the tools and equipment are, as well as the emergency exits, fire alarms, sand buckets, and more. Doing this will not only help increase your efficiency at work but also establish your safety.

Read the operating manual and always follow safety guidelines in the workplace.

Reading and scanning through the operating manual every now and then maximizes the worker’s productivity. However, failing to follow safety protocols within your workspace imposes more health and safety factors than one. You must be responsible for your job and colleagues at large to ensure overall safety in the workplace.

Double-check your equipment before and after welding.

Making sure your PPE is in good condition helps prevent you from work-related incidents. A good practice is checking and making sure the equipment is fully grounded and working and functioning properly. In addition, checking for wear and tear details on your PPE and surrounding equipment, such as leaking hoses, prevents the chances of incidents.

In Conclusion

Whether you are working in simple or complex welding, wearing respiratory protection is still a must. As a welder, you take it as your responsibility to ensure you execute your job while securing your safety at all times. Therefore, wear a welding face mask whenever you do welding, brazing, and cutting jobs.

Although promoting natural ventilation plays a significant part in protecting the workers’ safety and wellness, unfortunately, there are instances where these health and safety requirements are not met. So, as a helpful, practical alternative, wearing respiratory protection is a must to filter hazardous substances and avoid air contamination.

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