Are 1860 N95 masks reliable?

An N95 mask is a type of disposable mask regulated by the United States National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). An N95 mask has a very close facial fit and it can filter at least 95% of the airborne particles. 

N95 masks come in different designs, styles, and models. They are widely used in different industries like mining, construction, manufacturing, and medical fields. But in recent times, the N95 mask has become very useful in preventing the spread of coronavirus, which can be transmitted through respiratory droplets produced when talking, sneezing, and coughing. 

What is an 1860 N95 mask?

The brand 3M is among the popular brands when it comes to N95 masks. The brand manufactures NIOSH-approved N95 masks and these masks come in different models and styles. The 3M N95 masks are widely used in the medical and industrial fields.

The 3M 1860 face mask is a model of N95 masks.  This specific N95 mask is NIOSH approved and it is cleared by the FDA to use as a surgical mask. The 1860 N95 mask is designed to protect the wearer against certain airborne biological particles. It has a fluid-resistant design in accordance with ASTM F1862 and just like the other N95 masks, 3M 1860 N95 masks are disposable.

The 3M 1860 N95 mask meets the guideline for Mycobacterium tuberculosis exposure control as per the CDC. It has a collapse-resistant cup shape design that makes the mask really durable. It features a cushioning nose foam and braided headbands for comfort. The 3M 1860 N95 mask is very lightweight and it is recommended to be used in infection control, operating rooms, clinics, TB wards, labor and delivery, and TB wards.

1860 N95 mask vs surgical mask

The 1860 N95 mask is approved by the FDA to be used as a surgical mask. But how does it differ from the other type of disposable surgical masks?

Disposable surgical masks are loose-fitting. Unlike the 1860 N95 mask, it does not filter tiny airborne particles. It has the capacity to filter large liquid droplets but does not provide the same level of protection as the 1860 surgical mask. So, which one is better?

If you work in the medical industry or in a clinic or if you are a healthcare worker, then it is better to use the 1860 N95 mask that provides fluid resistance to splash and spatter of blood and other infectious elements.  But if you do not need that kind of filtering capacity, then it is fine to use the loose-fitting surgical mask.

When not to use the 1860 N95 mask?

  • Meant for medical applications, an 1860 N95 mask is not suitable for industrial settings. For industrial use, consider the 3M 8511 and 8210 models.
  • Do not use the 1860 N95 mask for gases or vapors.

How to wear the 1860 N95 mask properly

To achieve the full protection expected from the 1860 N95 mask, follow the guide on how to wear and remove the 1860 N95 mask.

  • In one hand, cup the 1860 respirator with a nosepiece at fingertips.
  • Allow the headbands to hang freely below your hand.
  • With the nosepiece up, hold the 1860 mask under your chin.
  • Place the upper strap across the crown of the head. The lower strap should be placed below the ears. Make sure the straps are not twisted.
  • Shape the nose for a close fit. Make sure to use both hands. Using only one hand may result in less effective performance.
  • Do a fit check exam.

Other N95 masks from 3M

3M is a popular brand when it comes to N95 masks. Aside from the 3M 1860 N95 mask that is meant for medical use, other popular 3M models include the following:

3M 8210 Particulate Respirator 

It is a NIOSH-approved N95 mask that has a two-strap design with a welded dual point attachment for a closed, secure seal. It is lightweight and comfortable with a cushioning nose foam. It has a cup-shaped respirator and comes in standard adult size. It features advanced electrostatic media for easy breathing. This specific type of N95 masks is not cleared by the FDA as a surgical mask. Unlike the 1860 N95 mask, the 3M 8210 is not fluid-resistant. 

3M 8511 Particulate Respirator

This N95 mask features the 3M Cool Flow Exhalation Valve that is designed to help reduce heat build-up. It has an M-nose clip design for easy adjustment and a braided headband with a two-strap design for a secure seal. Spacious and durable, the 3M 8511 N95 mask comes with an Advanced Electret Media for easy breathing. This mask is suitable for construction, agriculture, mining, oil and gas, construction, and manufacturing industries.

3M VFlex 9105 Particulate Respirator

This N95 mask features the 3M proprietary filter media and it has V-shaped pleats that help to breathe easier. The pleats also flex as the moth moves while talking. It has a smooth inner lining and spacious inside for comfort. Lastly, this economical N95 mask is suitable with a variety of 3M eyewear and hearing protection.

3M 8515 Particulate Welding Respirator

This 3M N95 mask is an economical option for welders. It has the 3m Cool Flow Valve to reduce heat build-up and an adjustable M-nose clip and braided head back for a comfortable, secure seal. It is also flame resistant as per ASTM D2859. The 3M 8515 N95 mask is compatible with a variety of protective 3M eyewear and hearing protection.

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