Respiratory masks and filtering half-masks in accordance with standard DIN EN 149 protect the wearer from particulate pollutants such as aluminium dust and smoke, glass fibres, wood dust and other harmful particles. Depending on the type and concentration of the pollutant, one of three protection classes of face masks must be available.
Classification of filtering half-masks for protection against particles
Particle-filtering half-masks and masks with changeable filters are classified into various respiratory protection classes in accordance with DIN EN 149:2001 and A1:2009. Each class is suitable for use in different areas of application, depending on the level of pollution:
Protection levels of filtering half-masks for protection against particles
|Protection level ||Limitations |
|FFP1 ||not suitable for particles of carcinogenic or radioactive substances, airborne biological substances from risk groups 2 and 3, and enzymes |
|FFP2||not suitable for particles of radioactive substances, airborne biological substances from risk group 3, and enzymes |
Learn more about respiratory protection classes on the FFP subject page.
The revised version of DIN EN 149 also regulates whether filtering half-masks can only be used for one shift, or whether they can be reused for multiple shifts. The relevant requirements for cleaning and disinfection are given in the standard. Whether masks can be reused depends on various factors in the working environment:
- pollutant concentration
- breathing intensity
- hygiene factors
The following markings regulate the reuse of filtering half-masks in accordance with the standard:
- R = Filtering half-mask is reusable.
- NR = Filtering half-mask is usable for a maximum of one shift.