What Does Fit Test Mean?
A fit test is the assessment to evaluate the proficiency of a respirator's seal between the facepiece and the wearer's face by determining the amount of leakage that the seal permits. A fit test is carried out on a person who must wear a respirator in order to prevent them from inhaling toxic substances while performing their job. A fit test is often called a mask fit test.
WorkplaceTesting Explains Fit Test
A fit test must be carried out according to the standards set out by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. In order to ensure accuracy, the fit test must be performed using a mask of the same size and specifications as the wearer would use in practice. A fit test can be qualitative or quantitative in nature. A qualitative fit test has a non-numerical, pass or fail outcome based on the wearer's response to any possible leakage using their senses such as taste and smell. A quantitative fit test has a numerical, machine-calibrated outcome which is more accurate than a qualitative fit test. If an employee's physical characteristics change significantly (such as large weight loss or gain) then a new fit test must be conducted to ensure continued safety.