Gas Masks are designed to keep you safe from airborne chemicals (chemical attacks) or tear gas in the case of civil unrest. Every member of your family or household should have a gas mask.
Gas Masks will be essential during natural disasters, civil unrest or when you need to bug out.
During these times you may find yourself leading your family through areas will with smoke and fires. The materials burning may give off toxic fumes from burning and having lung problems or inhaling poisoning fumes will not help your chances of survival.
Some of the most popular gas masks are the Israeli Civilian Gas Mask w/ Nato Filter. The assumption is that the Israelis are tough people who live in a region where every county around them wants to destroy them. They have gotten really good at staying alive.
As a prepper, you want to make sure that you prepare all the things necessary to help you survive during SHTF or any other emergency and disaster. An SHTF gas mask is one of them. Note that gases are among those substances that you should not let penetrate your lungs. If you are dealing with an accident exposing you to harmful gases then your instinct is to get away from the area where it is being spread.
The problem is that there are instances and situations wherein you get cornered, causing you to have a hard time escaping the harmful gases. In such a case, wearing a gas mask can save your life. What the gas mask does is that it purifies and filters the air. This prevents you from inhaling harmful pollutants that are present in an environment.
Most prepper and SHTF gas masks also provide adequate protection not only for your face but also for other sensitive parts and organs surrounding it. It is a vital headgear designed in such a way that it can protect your lungs and prevent you from inhaling the polluted air.
As a prepper, you are also probably aware that certain occasions and emergencies spread harmful particles through the air, making the gas mask a necessity. The fact that it purifies and filters polluted and dust-filled air also improve your breathing patterns. It allows you to breathe more easily even if the air around you is not in excellent condition.
Now that you know the vital functions performed by a prepper gas mask, I encourage you to learn more about its types so you can pick one that suits your requirements. Here are the most commonly used types of SHTF and prepper gas masks:
Air Purifying Respirator – This is a great choice in case you are looking for an inexpensive gas mask that you can quickly and easily put on. This is designed in a way that it covers your mouth and nose.
It effectively purifies the air, although it does not cover your eyes, leaving them exposed to chemicals. Because your eyes are not covered, these organs are at risk of getting biological infections and chemical damage. Find out if this type of respirator is already enough for the kind of protection you want to receive before investing in it.
Full Face Gas Mask – It would be much better if you go for this type of prepper gas mask, especially if you are after receiving full protection. What is great about this gas mask is that it also protects your eyes.
It is equipped with a huge filter, which you can see being attached beneath the mouth area. It covers your whole face. Also, note that even if this type of gas mask covers your eyes, you can still see what is around you through it is plastic or glass plates.
PD-100 Organic Vapor Full Face Respirator
Offering multi-purpose protection, the PD-100 Organic Vapor Full Face Respirator is what you need to avoid the danger of inhaling toxic substances and chemicals. It is also designed in a way that it cushions heavy contact areas through its soft and comfy silicone nose cup and facial seal.
- Can protect you from toxic substances and chemicals in the air
- Soft and comfortable to wear
- Features 5 straps to ensure a snug, secure, and perfect fit
- Easy to twist filter attachments
- Lightweight and ergonomic construction
- Some find the built-in headband flimsy and thin.
UOPASD Organic Vapor Full Face Gas Mask
This full-face gas mask from UOPASD is the ultimate answer to preppers who need a mask that can protect them against most, if not, all harmful particles in the air. It offers limited face and eye protection against many things, like chemicals, flying articles, and welding and painting substances.
- Tight and secure yet comfortable
- Features an anti-scratch lens that has an anti-fog coating
- Clarity of vision guaranteed
- Protects you from toxic vapors and gases
- Easy to adjust and wear, thanks to its adjustable straps
- The straps are not as durable as the ones used in other gas masks.
Holulo Organic Vapor Full Face Mask
Offering an affordable means of protecting you from harmful gases, the Holulo Organic Vapor Full Face Mask deserves a spot in your bug-out or survival bag. The level of its protection is quite high as it covers a wide range of toxic particles and substances in the air. It is comfortable to wear and adjustable, too.
- Offers a wide coverage in terms of protection
- Distributes weight and lessens breathing resistance through its dual filtration system
- Clear lens with anti-friction and anti-fog properties
- Boasts of a huge clear view area
- Assures users of a proper fit
- Lack of seal or cover for the attached filters
Supergum Israeli Rubber Respirator Mask
Ideal for commercial and industrial use, this Israeli respirator mask is an item that your bug-out bag should have. It works well when used against dust, sand, paint, tear gas, smoke, and fume. Made of professional-grade material, it is long-lasting and comfortable. It also has goggles constructed from anti-scratch polycarbonate lens.
- Works for both commercial and industrial applications
- Constructed from quality materials
- Comfortable to wear
- Can last long
- Features a clear lens with an anti-scratch property
- Slightly tight around the chin
Shalon M15 Rubber Respirator Mask
When it comes to versatility, Shalon M15 Rubber Respirator Mask does not seem to disappoint as its protection coverage is somewhat limitless. It can handle commercial and industrial applications well, including painting, smoke, dust, fume, and tear gas. Furthermore, it can fit various sizes with its easy-to-adjust straps.
- Extensive protection coverage
- Useful for commercial and industrial applications
- Adjustable straps included
- Fits well and comfortably
- Scratch-resistant and clear lens made of polycarbonate material
- Confusing sizing information
Mestel Full Face Respirator
With the lightweight and compact structure of the Mestel Full Face Respirator, it is surely a convenient addition to your survival items. It is not going to disappoint in terms of protection because it is built to be multi-purpose and versatile. It is easy to maintain plus boasts of excellent visibility and wide and clear field of vision.
- Lightweight and compact
- Versatile and multi-purpose protection guaranteed
- Promotes excellent clarity and visibility
- Easy to clean and maintain
- Filter not included
With the increasing number of people who are obsessed with the concept of preparing for SHTF and other untoward incidents, emergencies, and disasters, it is no longer surprising to see the number of choices for survival gas masks increasing, too. This might confuse buyers who are still new to using this item.
If you are one of those confused buyers then considering the following vital factors when shopping for a gas mask can surely help you.
The Level of Protection – Note that gas masks are created in such a way that they can keep you fully protected from certain harmful agents in the air. You have to determine what a specific gas mask can protect you from before buying. If possible, go for a military-grade one as this offers superior protection.
When examining the kind and level of protection provided by a certain gas mask, it is necessary to spend time assessing its seals of approval and/or rating. For instance, if a mask has a CBRN marking and rating then you can rest assured knowing that it can protect you from nuclear, radioactive, biological, and chemical agents.
This rating indicates that the mask is verified to protect you from the mentioned harmful agents for a max of eight hours. You can also see masks marked and rated as NBC. This rating indicates protection from chemical, biological, and nuclear agents for a max of eight hours. It does not protect you from radioactive substances, though.
Before shopping for a gas mask, find out what kind of protection you want to receive. By doing that, you will be able to get one that is compatible with your needs and requirements.
Visibility/Clarity – Another important factor is the visibility provided by the gas mask. Make sure to go for one with a large field of view and a high level of visibility, especially if you plan to use it for military, law enforcement, and firefighting applications. You can go for a mask with a singular lens, which can offer superior clarity of vision while lessening anything that obstructs your peripheral vision.
You may also want to avoid goggle-type gas masks if you do not want your freedom to study and survey your external landscape sufficiently to be hampered. Also, take note that the specific material used in creating the goggles or lens contributes to the mask’s overall clarity, especially once you start using it in adverse conditions. Apart from checking visibility, it also helps to look for a gas mask with a heat-resistant visor.
Comfort – Your level of comfort should also be one of your priorities when shopping for a reliable gas mask that you can use during SHTF and other survival situations. It should be comfortable enough that you will not feel troubled wearing it for several hours.
To ensure that you remain comfortable all throughout the time you are wearing your chosen gas mask, check the nose cup. It is the part of the mask, which protects your nose and mouth. Observe whether it presses your nose bridge or pinches your cheeks with excessive force.
If it does then avoid it as it might cause extreme discomfort after just a short period of wearing it. Make sure the nose cup offers a snug fit, too; otherwise, it will expose you to toxic substances and agents.
Another thing you have to remember is that breathing in through a gas mask is harder than when you are breathing in the open air. That said, seniors and those who have lung diseases, like asthma, may experience breathing difficulties when wearing the mask. This is the main reason why you have to go to a comfortable one.
You should test your Gas Mask as soon as you receive it and then retest it again, twice annually, for a good seal and proper fit.
Negative Pressure Test:
1. Put the gas mask on and adjust straps until the mask fits securely. Do NOT open the filter canister or attach the filter canister to the mask.
2. Use your hand to cover the gas mask’s intake area. This is the circular area where the filter attaches to the mask.
3. Try to Inhale.
4. No Air should be able to enter the mask. You should feel reduced air pressure within the mask. The mask should feel like it is being sucked towards your face.
Positive Pressure Test:
1. Put the mask on and adjust straps until the mask fits securely. Do NOT open the filter canister or attach the filter canister to the mask.
2. Use your hand to cover the gas mask’s exhaust area located directly beneath the filter attachment area.
3. Try to Exhale.
4. Air should not be able to exit the mask. You should feel an increase in air pressure within the mask. The mask should feel like it is being pushed away from your face to release the air pressure inside the mask.
If your gas mask fails either of the pressure tests, return it for exchange immediately. Many times the exhaust vent will be missing the rubber seal (disc-shaped rubber flap) that is supposed to prevent air from coming in via the exhaust.
Q) Which is more important, speed or the airtight seal?
A) Both are absolutely necessary. You must become expert, both in putting on the mask and getting an airtight seal in a matter of seconds.
Strapping on a gas mask isn’t as easy as it looks in the movies. People have died by putting them on incorrectly or by not being able to put it on at all in situations of stress and panic. There are even accounts of people suffocating because they neglected to remove the plastic seal on a new filter before attaching it to the Gas Mask.
- There is a reason the military conducts gas-mask training exercises.
- Properly fitting and using a gas mask requires practice.
- Hands-on training by a professional is preferred.
- Prior practice at home is an absolute minimum.
PDF Download: Israeli-Civilian-Gas-Mask-Instructions
- Gas masks may help protect your lungs, however, some chemical agents may be absorbed through the skin or eyes.
- Gas masks may reduce, but do not eliminate exposure to chemical or biological agents.
- Gas masks do not eliminate the risk of infection.
- Negative pressure masks can be dangerous for children or people with respiratory problems. There are reports of accidental suffocation when people have worn masks incorrectly, as happened to some Israeli civilians during the Persian Gulf War.
- Remove the plastic seal (or plug) on a new filter before attaching it to the Gas Mask! There is one on all of them!!!
Gas masks for each member of your family, group or crew should be part of your emergency kit. They will greatly improve your chances of survival in a post-disaster or post SHTF scenario.