Determining service life of respirator cartridges using a simple and practical method: Case study in a car manufacturing industry
Background and aim: For ensuring about proper performance of air-purifying respirators in providing protection against workplace contaminates, it is necessary to change the respirator cartridges before the end of their service life. The aim of this study was determination of service life of organic vapor cartridges using a simple and practical method in a spray painting booth of a car manufacturing industry. Methods: NIOSH Multi Vapor software was used for estimating service life of respirator cartridges based on workplace conditions and cartridge specifications. Efficiency of determined service life was investigated using an apparatus for field testing of cartridges in the workplace. Results: The result showed that existing schedule for changing the respirator cartridges is not effective and no longer provide adequate protection for sprayers against organic contaminants while working in a painting booth. It is necessary to change the cartridges before their estimated service life (every 4 hours). Conclusion: NIOSH MultiVapor has acceptable efficiency for determining respirator cartridges service life and could be used as a simple and practical method in the workplace. This software could be used as a simple and practical method in the workplace. Moreover, Service life estimated by this software was confirmed by cartridge field test apparatus.