What Does End-Of-Service-Life Indicator (ESLI) Mean?
An end-of-service-life indicator, or ESLI, is a visual display located on the side of a respirator cartridge that alerts users to replace a current cartridge that has reached full absorbent capacity to filter out toxic contaminants in the atmosphere. ESLI approved respirators are often adopted as a preferred option to, or in some instances, an auxiliary method with a routine change-out schedule of cartridges on all respirator devices. Many employers introduce ESLI respirators into a health and safety program as a viable control measure against unexpected hazards that can occur in the workplace.
WorkplaceTesting Explains End-Of-Service-Life Indicator (ESLI)
All employers should uphold safety as a primary concern for the benefit of protecting workers coupled with minimizing productivity loss and financial setbacks such as increased Workers’ Compensation costs. Many workplace environments carry certain risk factors in which toxic chemicals release noxious fumes, gases, odors, and vapors compromising the integrity of employee health. ESLI technology can help reduce the likelihood of inhaling lethal respiratory agents and/or residual byproducts from normal manufacturing processes and/or freak accidents such as chemical spills or an outbreak of fire.
ESLI respirators can help protect individuals against single toxic contaminants or a combination of poisonous substances in the air. However, several factors can affect adsorption efficiency of a cartridge/canister based on individual circumstances and environmental conditions including breathing rate, work exertion, exposure duration, toxic concentration levels, temperature variations, and humidity index. The advantage with ESLI respirators is their ability to cater to the independent needs of each user, allowing individuals to monitor the indicator bar to determine if cartridge replacement is in order.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) stipulates changing out the cartridge when it reaches at or below the ninety-percent adsorption rate mark (with a ten percent window of service life). This safety approach deters exceeding the respirator service life in an emergency where overexposure to multiple organic vapors begin to penetrate through the dirty filter.
A fixed time schedule to replace cartridges is unreliable protocol given contingencies of unforeseen events where workplace conditions can fall below standard regulations and/or shifting health patterns in employees have a major influence on ESLI functionality.