Welcome to the 3M Protective Apparel Product Selector
This product selector is only a guide. It should not be used as the only means for selecting protective apparel. Before using any protective apparel, the wearer must read and understand the user instructions for each product. Specific country legislation must be observed. If in doubt, contact a safety professional. Selections of the most appropriate PPE will depend on the particular situation and should only be made by a competent person knowledgeable of the actual working conditions and the limitations of PPE.
Final determination as to the suitability of these products for a particular situation is the employer's responsibility. This information is subject to revision at any time. Always read and follow all User Instructions supplied with your 3M(TM) Protective Coveralls in order to ensure correct operation. If you have questions contact 3M Technical Service.
3M offers resources to help guide you in the use of protective apparel:
Per EN 340, Chemical protective clothing is commonly categorized into 6 standard ‘Type’ classifications, going from Type 1 to Type 6. A general rule is that Type 1 offers a higher level of protection than Type 2, and so on. Any product certified as meeting one of these ‘Types’ must meet the minimum criteria of both full suit, material-only, material plus seam, chemical and mechanical tests set out in the relevant sub-standards.
Splash Protection: Type 6 – Generally suitable where limited splash of liquids onto the surface of the material is likely. Applications include spray painting, general industrial clean-up, and machine maintenance.
Particulate protection: Type 5 – Generally suitable for dust applications. Applications include insulation installation, granular fertilizer application and powder handling.
Spray tight: Type 4 – Different from Type 6 in that a.) limited permeation testing is required and, b.) seams should perform at an equivalent level as the material. Type 4 is tested to a higher volume and velocity of spray, and is required where there is potential for this spray to directly impinge upon the coverall. Most products on the market will have taped seams in order to achieve this.
Jet tight : Type 3 – Tested under higher volume and pressure of chemical.
Non-gas tight : Type 2 – Wholly protective against liquids, but potential for gas to enter.
Gas tight : Type 1 – Hazardous gases should not be able to pass into the suit.
A static charge can be generated by some clothing during movement. If the charge that builds up on the body or clothing is high enough, it could cause hazardous spark discharges. Control of electrostatic discharge is particularly important in flammable and explosive atmospheres. 3M™ Protective Coveralls have a treatment to reduce the tendency for charge to accumulate, when used in conjunction with grounding straps or anti-static work practices.
When materials shed particles it is known as “linting.” A garment with a high linting propensity sheds more particles than one with low linting propensity. Linting can be an important factor to consider during garment selection, particularly for particle controlled environments. Environments that are typically concerned with linting levels include: cleanrooms; microelectronics manufacturing; automotive repair applications and industries such as food, beverage and biotechnology.
To assess linting, garment manufacturers typically use the “Helmke Drum Test.” This method aims to quantify the number of particles dislodged from a garment through the application of mechanical energy under dry conditions as a means of simulating particle shedding from the surface of the garment.
They are tested according to ASTM F1670 and EN 14126:2003. Both 3M™ Protective Coverall 4545 and 3M™ Protective Coverall 4565 are classified to these test methods. Please see the respective Technical Data Sheets for more information.
3M™ Protective Coveralls are made of two types of materials.
SMS: Incorporates a spun-bond (S) material on the both sides of one, two or three layers of a melt blown material (M). This is an advanced breathable, lightweight combination that helps reduce heat buildup and is comfortable to wear.
Laminate: Made up of a non-woven base and microporous film laminated together. Laminates are lower linting and less breathable than the SMS based products.
The 3M™ Protective Coverall 4535 and 3M™ Protective Coverall 4540+ are both laminate based but have a back panel made of the more breathable SMS. This provides a high level of protection, yet the breathable back panel helps improve air ventilation and reduce heat build-up. Both constructions provide a good barrier against hazardous particles and limited liquid splashes.
Taped seams enhance the protection of the coverall beyond those with serged or bound seams alone. The tape provides for the extra protection required when exposure to a spray or ultra-fine particles is possible.
The 3M™ Protective Coverall 4530 is treated to provide secondary flame resistance against heat and flame. The fabric is rated Index 1 per ISO 14116:2008. Coverall must be worn over a primary FR garment (ISO 14116 Index 2/3) and is not to be worn next to the skin when true flame resistance is required. Warning: Cuffs are not flame resistant and must be worn under flame resistant gloves.
3M offers a sizing guide to provide guidelines to determine the best fit. It is shown here. An appropriate size garment should be selected to allow sufficient movement for the task. All coveralls meet the ANSI 101-1996 (R2008) sizing guidelines.