Face Fit Testing

If your business requires qualitative testing services, contact Telford Safety Consultants Ltd today!

Telford Safety Consultants provide a Qualitative Face Fit Testing service and tailor our service to your needs and site requirements. Telford Safety Consultants are accredited to the “fit2fit” accreditation scheme, The Fit2Fit RPE Fit Test Providers Accreditation Scheme is designed to confirm the competency of any person performing facepiece fit testing. It is a legal requirement that workers using tight fitting respiratory protective equipment (face pieces/masks) must be fit tested by a competent person.

What Is Face Fit Testing?

Required by law, it is a method for checking that a tight-fitting face piece matches the person’s facial features and seals adequately to the wearer’s face. It will also help to identify unsuitable face pieces which should not be used. There are two types of Face Fit Testing, qualitative and quantitative, depending on your requirements.

Why Do We Need It?

To ensure that the protective mask you wear is suitable for your face profile in order to maximise protection against harmful airborne substances. Recent research has shown that around 50% of RPE used does not offer the wearer the level of protection assumed. The major reason for this is that is simply does not fit.

Who Should Be Tested?

Workers who wear tight fitting respirators such as:

  • Disposable Half Mask Respirators
  • Reusable Half Mask Respirators
  • Powered Half Mask Respirators
  • Fresh Air Hose Half Mask Breathing Apparatus

Why wear high performance respiratory protective equipment then compromise the protection given if the mask does not fit the wearer correctly?

What Are The Legal Requirements?

Under the regulations for COSHH, Control of Asbestos, Control of Lead at Work and the guidance document HSG53, all Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE) at work requires you to ensure that the selected RPE is adequate and suitable for the wearer, task and environment. To conform and provide evidence, a fit test is required.


Qualitative tests rely on a wearer’s subjective assessment of face seal leakage. These methods, during a series of test exercises, use the wearer’s sense of taste to detect face seal leakage of test agent. Qualitative tests are subject to problems with sensitivity, lack of objectiveness and inability to provide a numerical result. For these reasons Qualitative tests can only be employed for fit testing FFP’s (disposable) and half masks

The objectives of the test are to recreate a working environment and to test the Respiratory Protective Equipment (RPE). RPE must fit the wearer correctly leading to a good seal whilst they are working. The candidate will have to perform some simple exercises whilst wearing the selected face piece. These will be Normal & Deep Breathing, Head side to side, Up/Down, counting Aloud and Bending Over. These are the times when the RPE may fail & leak! All the tests take 10 minutes, depending on failure. Once the candidate has passed the face fit, they will be issued with their certificate showing their details, RPE details & Date Tested. The wearer may have a peace of mind that the RPE selected is performing, as long as the mask is being donned (Put on) correctly & maintained.

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