1. United Kingdom
  2. 3M Safety
  3. Aura™ 9300+ Gen3 Series Disposable Respirators
  4. How to fit Aura™ Disposable Respirators 9300+ Gen3
3M Safety

How to fit Aura™ Particulate Respirators 9300+Gen3

  • Disposable respirators are only effective when there is a good seal between the edges of the respirator and your face. The instant this seal is broken, protection is compromised as contaminated air can leak in through any gaps. The fitting instructions must be followed each time you put on a respirator.

  • 3M Aura Particulate Respirators

Integrated nose clip and soft nose foam
- Offering comfortable customization
3-panel design

- Engineered to fit a wide variety of face shapes and sizes

Embossed upper panel

- Engineered to help reduce fogging of 3M eyewear

Cool Flow™ Comfort Valve*

- Grip feature helps to make respirator donning, re-positioning and doffing easier
*(9312+Gen3, 9322+Gen3, 9332+Gen3 only)

Proprietary tabs on upper and lower panels

- Designed to make respirator easier to put on, re-position and take off

Fitting Videos

Fitting process

  • Fitting process – step 1

    1. With reverse side up and using tabs, separate top and bottom panels.

  • Fitting process – step 2

    2. Pull chin and nose panel tabs until the noseclip bends so that the respirator forms a cup shape. Ensure both panles are fully unfolded.

  • Fitting process – step 3

    3. Whilst holding the tabs, hold the respirator with open side towards face and bring respirator to face.

  • Fitting process – step 4

    4a) VALVED respirator - with one hand, hold the sides of the valve to hold respirator position on face.

    4b) UNVALVED respirator - cup respirator in one hand with open side towards face

  •  Fitting process – step 5,6

    5. With other hand, take each strap in turn and pull each strap over your head

    6. Locate the upper strap across the crown of the head and the lower strap below the ears. Straps must not be twisted. Adjust top and bottom panels, using tabs, for a comfortable fit. Ensure that panels are not folded and that tabs are folded flat.

  • Fitting process – step 7

    7. Using both hands, mould noseclip to the shape of the nose to ensure a close fit and good seal. Pinching the noseclip using only one hand may result in less effective respirator performance.

  • Fitting process – step 8

    8. The seal of the respirator on the face should be fit-checked before entering the workplace.

Fast Facts About Fit Testing

Fit testing is not only required by many national regulators (including the Health and Safety Executive), it’s vital to respiratory safety. This list provides some of the whys and hows of fit testing.

  • Fit tests should be performed before use of a tight-fitting respirator
    In addition, fit testing of employees must occur whenever a different size, style, model or make of respirator is used; when any physical change occurs that could affect fit (such as, for example, significant weight fluctuation, dental work, or other facial changes); and according to the British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF) Fit2Fit guidance: a suitable interval for repeat fit testing is 2 years. In some situations, however, more frequent repeat fit testing may be appropriate, particularly where RPE is being used as a primary or sole means of control.
  • Also known as filtering facepieces, these tight-fitting respirators must be fit-tested before use.
  • The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) require that face fit testing is carried out by a competent person. The areas in which a fit tester must have received adequate instruction and training are listed in INDG 479. In addition, the British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF) operate a voluntary fit tester accreditation scheme (www.fit2fit.org).
  • A qualitative fit test (QLFT) can be used to fit-test disposable respirators (such as the Aura Gen3) or reusable half-masks. It relies on the user’s ability to detect a particular taste. A quantitative fit test (QNFT) can be used to fit-test the majority of tight-fitting respirators. It involves using an instrument to measure leakage around the face seal and produces a numerical result called a “fit factor.”
  • Without fit testing, there’s no way of knowing if the respirator is actually able to provide its advertised level of protection for a specific worker. A poorly fitting respirator will likely not provide the stated assigned protection factor (APF) to the worker and they may be exposed to the workplace respiratory hazard.
  • A respirator can only work when air passes through the filter. Air will take the path of least resistance, so if the seal to the face isn’t secure, the air will go around rather than through the respirator. Therefore, it is essential to ensure a proper fit when wearing disposable respirators.
  • Respiratory protection is often worn simultaneously with other personal protective equipment (PPE). Safety glasses, hearing protection, face shields, hard hats and coveralls can all vie with a respirator for real estate on a person’s face, head or body, and could interfere with the respirator’s seal. Fit testing should ensure that equipment is compatible and doesn’t reduce the effectiveness of the respirator due to a compromised face seal.
  • Beards, moustaches, or even stubble interfere with the seal of a disposable respirator. That’s why regulators require that employees be clean-shaven the day of the fit test, and every time the respirator is worn, and prohibits any facial hair in areas where the respirator comes into contact with the face.
  • That’s why fit testing involves several exercises, such as head turning and speaking. This determines the respirator’s ability to retain its seal when the worker is in motion.
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