When to Protect Your Lungs During a DIY Project

Preserve your health as make home improvements

All DIY projects carry some level of risk. After all, you’re using high-powered tools, heavy materials and chemical mixtures in close quarters. All of this creates an atmosphere that can be harmful to your health, especially your lungs.

While there’s nothing wrong with being a DIY junkie, you have to play it smart. Most projects release some amount of airborne particles or gasses that can go straight into your body if you’re not wearing a respirator.

Protect Your Lungs for Lifelong Health

Your respiratory system is a sensitive network that needs to be kept clean in order for you to stay healthy. Failure to protect yourself when working on DIY projects may expose you to:

• Sawdust
• Paint fumes and spray
• Fiberglass insulation particles
• Lead paint
• Acids and acid fumes
• Dust, mold or mildew

Respirators are designed to filter out these harmful substances so that you can breathe easier while you work and in the long term. However, to provide adequate protection, your respirator needs to fit properly, be maintained well and be stored in the right conditions so that it functions as it should. Above all, it’s necessary to have a respirator designed for the particles or fumes you’re likely to encounter.

Choosing a Respirator

For most DIY projects, you’ll need one of two types of respirator: particulate or “gas mask” style. Particulate respirators are disposable face masks that fit over your nose and mouth to provide a barrier between you and any potentially harmful substances in the air.

Mask respirators are larger and usually include some type of eye protection. These respirators fasten around your whole face and feature replaceable filters at the front. Every time you take a breath, air passes through these filters to ensure that it’s clean when it enters your lungs.

Choosing the right tools and supplies for every job is essential to maintain lung health. Look for a high particulate filtration rating when buying a respirator. Particulate models are generally classed with an N/R/P rating and a number. The N/R/P shows what level of oil resistance the respirator provides while the number, such as 95 or 100, denotes the percentage of particles that are filtered out. Other respirators may have an Assigned Protection Factor (APF) showing how much they reduce the concentration level of particles and fumes.

Before you start your next DIY project, head to Rocky’s Hardware. We stock a full range of respirators and filters to keep you safe no matter what you’re working on. Our staff can help you choose the right respirator for the job so that you can work without worry and focus on getting great results on every project.

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